Got tomatoes coming out the whazoo? Make tomato sauce with fresh tomatoes and not only will you use up your tomatoes but, you’ll in turn get a sweet and incredibly delicious tomato sauce to put over your pasta! This is a vegetarian tomato sauce a.k.a. marinara sauce and it’s gluten-free.
Making Italian tomato sauce with fresh tomatoes is quite possibly one of the best use of tomatoes I can think of. Fresh tomatoes make the absolute best spaghetti sauce and it’s not hard to do, especially with the right tools.
If this is your first time making tomato sauce from scratch, fear not. I’ll walk you through the process and you’ll learn easily.
My friend gave me access to her huge vegetable garden while she went on vacation in Aug and I excitedly picked over 20 lbs of tomatoes in a span of three days! She had quite a plentiful garden!
Instead of canning the tomatoes, I made this delicious marinara sauce recipe and froze it for later. It was a great way to use up 20 lbs of fresh tomatoes that were ripening by the day.
Disclosure: This post contains affiliate links which means, if you make a purchase, I’ll receive a very small commission which helps with blog expenses so you can continue to receive FREE recipes but, the price you pay is the same.
Now, I only make this spaghetti sauce recipe once per year in August when I have access to a lot of fresh tomatoes. The rest of the year, I make my tomato sauce with Hunt’s canned tomato sauce but, I don’t add salt. The recipe is much the same as this one.
Don’t miss other authentic Italian recipes below.
What Tools Should I Use to Make Fresh Tomato Sauce?
Now, I’m not gonna lie. Making tomato puree involves some work. If you have a Kitchen Aid Mixer, you may want to buy the attachments to make tomato sauce as it will be much easier and faster.
But, you can use a food mill too which can be used to make apple sauce and baby food. I remember those days of making baby food. I could barely keep up with making apple sauce for as fast as it was eaten.
Why is my tomato sauce bland?
Look at these red ripe garden tomatoes! Now, I have to mention that if the tomatoes are not sweet and flavorful, your sauce won’t be either. This can happen with canned tomatoes too. If this is the case with your tomatoes, you can add canned tomato sauce to the fresh tomato sauce recipe to add more flavor.
It may seem like there’s a lot of oil in this recipe but, don’t skimp on the EVOO. It adds a lot of flavor and gives the spaghetti sauce the right consistency.
To make this fresh tomato sauce recipe, you’ll need 6 qts of fresh tomato puree.
How to Make Italian Tomato Sauce with Fresh Tomatoes
Here’s a summary of how to make this delicious fresh tomato sauce. The full printable recipe is at the bottom of this post.
- First, rinse and boil plum or roma tomatoes.
- Next, drain the water and put the tomatoes into a food mill (I have this one)or tomato sauce maker to remove the skin and seeds. If some seeds get in the puree, it’s o.k. If using a food mill, press down and turn the handle at the same time. Make sure the tomatoes are under the metal masher.
- Then, add chopped onions, minced garlic, and extra virgin olive oil to a big stock pot and simmer for 3 minutes.
- Next add fresh tomato puree, fresh parsley, salt and pepper to the oil mixture in the stock pot. Cover and bring to a boil. Put on low and let it cook for 2 hours. Use a heat diffuser so the sauce doesn’t stick to the bottom of the pot. It’s totally worth $8!
Here’s what the heat diffuser looks like. I haven’t had to scrape the bottom of the tomato sauce pot since using it!
What kind of tomatoes should I use to make fresh tomato sauce?
Roma, plum and San Marzano are commonly used to make tomato sauce but, you may also use the round tomato varieties too.
How do you reduce tomato sauce?
Tomato sauce will reduce in time as it’s cooking when it’s uncovered.
How do you reduce the acidity in tomato sauce?
Adding minced carrots 1/4 cup) will help to reduce the acidity in tomato sauce. Another common option is to add a little bit of sugar (1-2 tbsp) but, I don’t put sugar in my sauce. I’ll add the minced carrots instead.
Your family is going to love this fresh marinara sauce. Freeze the leftovers to use for later. Your pasta will never taste so good.
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Italian Tomato Sauce with Fresh Tomatoes
- food mill or tomato sauce maker machine
- 22-25 lb plum tomatoes
- 1 1/2 cups extra virgin olive oil
- 2 cups chopped onions
- 12 cloves garlic, minced or 1 tsp garlic powder
- 1/4 cup fresh parsley, chopped or 1 tsp of dried parsley
- 2 tbsp salt add more if you desire
- pepper to taste
- First, rinse the tomatoes.
- Next, boil them in big pots of water. It's easiest to use 2 or 3 pots to make it go faster. Add about 6-7 lbs to each pot of boiling water.
- When the peel on the tomatoes break open, they're ready to come out. Pour the cooked tomatoes into a strainer.
- Next, in your kitchen sink, use a food mill (or a tomato sauce maker machine on the counter) to remove the tomato skin and seeds. See the food mill instructions for how to use it if need be. Make sure there is a container underneath the food mill to catch the tomato puree. This process takes a long time.
- Once you have 6 quarts of fresh tomato puree, you're ready to make the sauce. If you want to keep it in the refrigerator overnight, to make the sauce another day, it'll keep for up to three days.
- In a large stock pot, add oil, onions and garlic. Simmer for three minutes.
- Add tomato puree, parsley, salt and pepper and bring to a boil. Reduce to low heat and cook for 2 hours. Stir every 10-15 minutes or it will stick to the bottom unless you're using a heat diffuser.