Spaghetti Sauce

Welcome back! Today I come to you with my recipe for a scrumptious basic Italian dish: Spaghetti and Meatballs (with some Italian Sausage mixed in). Everyone has their version of a basic Marinara sauce. Here I will show you my version with a few tricks I’ve learned to really kick up the flavor.


The base recipe for the sauce I got from my Mother who got it from my Grandmother. I grew up eating this and was always a real treat when it hit the dinner table. Here are the ingredients:

sauce prep

I always make a large batch of sauce. With this basic sauce you can make a wide range of other dishes with it. As I use the sauce I will be posting more Last Night’s Dinner recipes that will feature this sauce. You will be using:

2 1/2 ea        Italian Sausage links, which ever brand or spiciness you prefer

1 Tbls           Olive Oil

2 ea              Garlic Cloves, smashed

1 ea              Tomato Paste, canned small

2 ea              Tomato Sauce, canned large

1 ea              Head of Roasted Garlic (How To Tutorial Found Here)

1/2 Cup        Parmesan Cheese

1 1/2 Tbls     Onion Powder

1 Tbls           Garlic Powder

2 Tbls           Oregano, dried

3/4 Cup        Dry Red Wine, I used a Merlot

Salt and Pepper to taste

Start off by cutting the Italian sausage in half or however large of pieces you would like. Place the pieces in the bottom of a large pot that is heated to medium heat. Brown off the sausage on both sides and then set aside.

italian sausage

Add the olive oil to the pan. Add the fresh garlic and tomato paste and let fry in the oil to gently brown the garlic and caramelize some of the natural sugars in the tomato paste. This will also pick up any of the drippings from the bottom of the pan. We’re already starting to build lots of flavors, folks!

garlic + tomato paste

Cook the paste and garlic for about 3 minutes then add the tomato sauce. Make sure you get every last drop out of your cans, I like to add a little water to one of the cans and swish it around to get every last bit out. You don’t want to throw your money away do ya?!

water in can of tomato sauce

Just one of my many tricks from working in restaurants.


Mix the tomato sauce with the tomato paste so it is well incorporated. Next, Add the remaining ingredients excluding the wine.

sauce ingredients


Mix well. Add the Italian sausage back to the pot and add your meatballs.

marinara with meat sauce

If you made meatballs yourself in the oven then you have an extra delicious step. Make sure not to drain any of the drippings from cooking the meatballs. Taking the sheet tray you cooked the meatballs on place it back in the oven and brown the bits of drippings. You can either do this under a broiler or in your 400 degree oven. If using the broiler you need to watch very closely because this will burn fast. Also, be careful the grease will start to pop.

meatball drippings

When it is sizzling and browned take out of oven, sit on kitchen counter and pour the wine in the pan. Use the wine to de-glaze the sheet tray, you can use a spatula to help scrape up all the bits of goodness.

drippings + wine

Pour everything into your sauce pot. Mix well. If you didn’t make meatballs no biggie, just add the wine directly into the sauce pot with the other ingredients and mix together.


Now, cover this and let simmer for at least 4 hours. I normally will make this sometime in the mid morning and let it simmer all day long until dinner time. The longer it cooks the better it gets. Make sure to stir a few times every hour to make sure nothing is sticking to the bottom of the pan. When I make a large batch of this I will always just make the basic Spaghetti with meatballs, served with a salad and garlic bread. Like I said before the possibilities with this sauce is endless! I will be showing you what I make with the batch throughout more posts to come! I hope you enjoyed and get ready for your whole home to smell AMAZING!




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15 Comments at Spaghetti Sauce

  1. My hubby asked me what I did different to my last batch of marinara as it was the best ever…darn, I have no idea! But I love all your hints…meatballs and marinara will be on our menu again soon and I’ll use your recipe 🙂

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