what is your go to pasta sauce??

Hi believe it or not regarding this question pasta isnt actually a staple in my diet however, im cooking for some friends this week and want to do some pasta as it is quick and handy for everyone (students obviously) :P...so im just wondering what are people's go to sauces on here?...i know dolmio do all that stuff in the jars but is it healthy? i was thinking of making my own with cherry tomatoes or something for a bit of flavour but not sure, any suggestions welcome :).


  • links_slayer
    links_slayer Posts: 1,151 Member
    Here's mine:

    In a big pot, sweat some garlic and a shallot in some olive oil for a few minutes. Add 1/2 of a small can of tomato paste, one big can of tomato puree, and one big can of crushed tomatoes, salt, pepper, fresh parsley, oregano, and basil. Simmer for a few hours.

    Pretty simple, but pretty tasty and versatile :)
  • hj47
    hj47 Posts: 9
    Cooked prawns, halved cherry tomatoes and a spoonful of pesto - sounds odd but tastes good.
  • kwol18
    kwol18 Posts: 25 Member
    All you need for a quick simple sauce, is heat some extra virgin olive oil in a pan, with some garlic (ok a good bit of garlic) as well as a tablespoon of red pepper flakes. Let the oil infuse with the spices. Once incorporated, toss in the cooked pasta, with a little of the pasta water (this will make it silky). Let it simmer for a minute or two and Voila!. Simple sauce. Works every time.
  • PhearlessPhreaks
    PhearlessPhreaks Posts: 890 Member
    My husband is italian, and will only eat homemade sauce. Ours goes like this:

    in a large pot, saute garlic and onion in olive oil, then add in italian sausage (we use hot, but sweet works well too) and cook until browned. Here's where my husband and I differ: he uses about 5lbs of roma tomatoes diced, I use a can of crushed tomatoes and two cans of diced tomatoes… the canned tomatoes reduces the cooking time a little bit. A healthy splash of red wine (or beer, if you don't have any wine) lots of fresh basil, oregano and parsley- perhaps a 1/4-1/2 cup of sugar, salt and pepper- stir frequently to prevent burning, and it's ready when the excess liquid has cooked off. You can adjust the seasonings to your liking…

    happy cooking!
  • Anchovies and calf liver (pureed and frozen into ice cubes so I can just throw it in the pot). Also, I usually put a pinch of baking soda in tomato sauces to neutralize the acid.
  • kuderstadt
    kuderstadt Posts: 134 Member
    16 oz pasta

    2 Tbsp Sunflower Oil 1 tsp crushed chilies
    ½ tsp sea salt 3 tsp Minced Garlic

    ½ 28oz can crushed tomatoes

    lemon zest

    Cook pasta until al dente. Drain Pasta.

    Meanwhile, combine the sunflower oil, crushed chilies, sea salt and minced garlic in saucepan. Stir while you heat the saucepan over medium-high heat, sauté just 45 seconds or so until everything is fragrant ` you don’t want the garlic to brown. Stir in the tomatoes and heat to a gentle simmer, this takes just a couple minutes. Remove from heat and carefully take a taste (you don’t want to burn your tongue).. If the sauce needs more salt add it now. Stir in the lemon zest reserving a bit to sprinkle on top of your pasta.

    *Awesome sauce. I haven’t used the lemon zest yet, and doubling the recipe works well, uses a full bag of pasta (900g) and a full can of crushed tomatoes.
    Put in a casserole and melt cheddar on top… yummy leftovers.
  • holothuroidea
    holothuroidea Posts: 772 Member
    I make a traditional "gravy."

    Half an onion and 3 cloves of garlic, chopped fine. Saute in 1 tbsp olive oil over medium heat until the onions are soft. Add one can of tomato puree, season with salt, pepper, dried basil, oregano, thyme and parsley. Simmer over the lowest heat possible for about 30 minutes.

    If you want to get the stuff in a jar, just check the ingredients. I'm sure some of it is okay.
  • achasnis
    achasnis Posts: 119 Member
    bump. Always looking for good alternatives to the pre-made!
  • 3dogsrunning
    3dogsrunning Posts: 27,167 Member
    My favourite is San Marzano tomatoes, garlic, fresh basil and pecorino Romano with a little olive oil. If my husband will be eating it I add some red pepper flakes.

    Instructions here

    Simple quick and tasty.
  • n_rockey
    n_rockey Posts: 53 Member
    I'm an alfredo fan, and found a great mock alfredo sauce:

    1 cup fat free milk
    6 laughing cow light cheese wedges (we particularly like the french onion or garlic and herb but any will work you just need to adjust the other seasonings accordingly)
    fresh minced garlic to taste
    onion powder to taste
    basil & parsley to taste

    Add the cheese and milk to saucepan and heat, stirring constantly, until cheese is melted. Add minced garlic and onion powder and stir until sauce is desired constancy. Add fresh chopped italian herbs slightly before serving.

    This makes enough for 2 servings, so depending on how many you are cooking for you will need to adjust.
  • Mere_Dith
    Mere_Dith Posts: 17 Member
    I usually make my own, but it if you're looking for jarred sauce I think Muir Glenn Organic Sauces are the best, when accounting for nutrition, price and taste They make a Cabernet Tomato sauce that very good and if you get it on sale it is super cheap.
  • erwinol
    erwinol Posts: 7 Member
    My low-carb high-protein pasta sauce :

    I do not use any oil. I just put some passata (100% tomatoes, nothing else in it !!) in the pan with some crushed garlic, chili flakes, salt and pepper. I add a can of tuna (tuna in water, not oil) in it. Then I add some herbs (basil and origano are my favorite for this recipe).

    The result is somewhat like a bolognese sauce but a lot healthier. If you want you can start with a vegetables base (onions, carrots, celeri) but I avoid it so I don't have to use oil at all.

    If you want to keep it very lean, replace the pasta with courgette or squash. You just need an accessory to make pasta from courgette ... or a fork to make pasta from cooked squash.
  • dry fry bacon, onion, garlic, mushrooms, peppers, asparagus, brocolli (whatever you have in your fridge) add 1/2 a chicken stock cube, then add some water and then 1-2 teaspoons of creme fraiche or philadelphia cream cheese. Add in pasta and mix. Adapt dependent on how many people you are feeding.
  • balancedbrunette
    balancedbrunette Posts: 530 Member
    Thank you so much everyone for your replies, so helpful! :)..going to check out some of these and try making my own and see how it turns out, also open to some suggestion of good pre-made ones just to have for again ...:)
  • My favorite is to sauté fresh tomatoes in a little olive oil, with garlic, crushed red chili pepper and fresh basil.
  • I prefer a lemony sauce (angel hair pasta or lemon pepper linguini) - a little olive oil & lemon juice (other seasonings to taste).
  • 2hobbit1
    2hobbit1 Posts: 820 Member
    I will doctor up premade sauces. Take. Jared sauce throw in a pot with diced onion, diced red and green peppers,minced garlic and smoked pork neck bones and/or. Italian sausage, turkey meatball, or whatever is handy. Simmer gently then add italian seasoning and a scrap ton of basil. Add red pepper flake if you want it spicy. Works great for feeding the horde. You can give it a splash of wine if you want as well. I tend to use the classical brand. And Will mix two jars of different flavored sauces to give it lots of chunks.
  • balancedbrunette
    balancedbrunette Posts: 530 Member
    thanks for the replies load of useful suggestions on here. :)
  • Acg67
    Acg67 Posts: 12,142 Member