Marinara Sauce Recipe – Love and Lemons


Make this homemade marinara sauce recipe once, and you’ll never buy it at the store again! It’s super simple to make, and it has a rich tomato flavor.

Buying marinara sauce is easy, but I’ll let you in on a secret: so is making your own!

Meet my go-to homemade marinara sauce recipe. It’s simple to make – all you need is 10 pantry ingredients and 30 minutes – and it tastes immeasurably better than any kind I’ve found in a jar. Its base is canned crushed tomatoes with their juices, which I simmer with sautéed shallot and garlic for depth of flavor. Red pepper flakes give it a touch of heat, dried oregano adds Italian flair, balsamic vinegar makes it nice and tangy, and salt and pepper and a bit of sugar make all the flavors pop.

This sauce is easy enough to whip up on a weeknight, but it’s also a great recipe to make in advance. Store it in an airtight container in the fridge for up to a week, or freeze it for up to a few months! I like to keep a stash on hand for anytime a spaghetti or lasagna craving strikes. ?

Homemade marinara sauce

How to Make Marinara Sauce

Making this homemade marinara sauce is simple! Here’s what you need to do:

First, sauté finely chopped shallot and garlic in a small saucepan with olive oil, salt, and pepper until they become soft and translucent.

Then, simmer the sauce. Add 28 ounces of crushed tomatoes and their juices, balsamic vinegar, dried oregano, red pepper flakes, and a dash of cane sugar. Cover the sauce and simmer over low heat for 20 minutes, until thickened.

Finally, enjoy! Here are some of my favorite ways to use this simple homemade marinara sauce:

What are you favorite ways to use marinara sauce? Let me know in the comments!

Marinara sauce recipe

If you love this marinara sauce recipe…

Try my homemade Caesar dressing, pesto, or cauliflower alfredo sauce next. And if you want to try making tomato sauce with fresh tomatoes, check out page 251 of our first cookbook!

Marinara Sauce

Prep Time: 10 mins

Cook Time: 30 mins

Total Time: 40 mins

Serves 3 cups

This homemade marinara sauce is delicious and easy to make – perfect for using on pizzas, in pastas, and more!

  • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • cup finely minced shallot
  • 2 large garlic cloves, finely minced
  • 1/2 teaspoon sea salt
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 (28-ounce) can crushed tomatoes
  • 2 teaspoons balsamic vinegar
  • 1/4 teaspoon cane sugar
  • ¼ teaspoon dried oregano
  • ¼ teaspoon red pepper flakes
  • Heat the olive oil in a small pot over low heat. Add the shallot, garlic, salt, and a few grinds of black pepper and cook for 3 minutes, stirring often.

  • Add the tomatoes and their juices, balsamic vinegar, cane sugar, oregano, and red pepper flakes. Cover and simmer over low heat for 20 minutes, stirring occasionally.