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Recipe for Quick and Easy Marinara Pasta Sauce

Updated on July 17, 2012


I love Italian food and so does my family, so I've been testing and trying to make a really good all-round sauce that I can use in lots of different dishes and I've finally settled on my ultimate Marinara Sauce - and I hope it's going to become one your favourites as well.

All you need to make this great sauce is 30-40 minutes, a few ingredients and an electric blender. I recently purchased a new food processor/blender as my old one was never quite big enough to take the amount of food I was trying to shove into it, my new one was inexpensive and does the job beautifully, it's easy to use and clean and comes with some really useful fitments, if you're looking for a new food processor/blender then I highly recommend the Kenwood multi-pro.


2 x 14oz / 400g cans of Plum Tomatoes

2 big fat cloves of Garlic

¼ cup of Olive Oil

2 tsp dried Parsley

1½ tsp dried Italian Herbs or Oregano

2 tsp Sugar

Seasoning to taste

How to Prepare:

There is a reason for me stipulating the use of plum tomatoes I find that the quality and flavour is generally superior to the chopped ones, but that's my preference.

Now get ready for the quickest pasta sauce you'll ever make:

  • Place in a blender your cans of tomatoes, ¼ cup of olive oil, the 2 cloves of garlic, 2 tsp of dried parsley, 1 tsp of Italian herbs (or oregano), 2 tsp of sugar and turn on your blender.

  • Pour the contents of the blender into a saucepan.
  • Over a medium heat bring the sauce to a gentle simmer.
  • Stirring occasionally, let your sauce cook and reduce for about 20-30 minutes depending on how thick you want your sauce to be.
  • Once the sauce is simmering I would taste and start to season your sauce, doing a final check before serving. Remember adjust your seasoning carefully, you can't take it back out if you add too much salt.

It's no good looking for the next stage that's it!

HOWEVER ... if you want to take this sauce to a whole new dimension you can take four big fat juicy organic tomatoes, halve them, sprinkle with some sea salt and some flavoured olive oil and roast in the oven for twenty minutes. I then chop the tomatoes into small chunks and scrape all the tomatoes and juices into my sauce while it is simmering. (See my tip below about flavoured oils).

Leftover Sauce:

Not only do I use this as a sauce for pasta, pizzas, meatball sandwiches and rolls, I make my son's favourite snack:

  • Take a tortilla and place it in a non-stick frying pan, lightly sprinkle cheese, add some sauce, add chunks of anything else in the fridge you fancy, add another layer of cheese and some herbs, now top this with another tortilla. Dry fry this on both sides over a medium heat until the tortilla is golden and crisp (be careful when turning it over that sauce is hot) and serve cut into slices like pizza. Takes minutes and tastes great!

  • Recently I used this sauce, to make another pasta dish, I fried 2 strips of chopped bacon, and enough minced beef for 2 people, added it to 1/2 a portion of the sauce and mixed with some penne pasta. See the photograph below - it was fabulous!

Eileen's Spicy Olive Oil
Eileen's Spicy Olive Oil


Pour olive oil into a deep pan and warm gently, while the oil is warming add your favourite herbs and spices - I regularly use red chili, whole black peppercorns, capers, peeled garlic cloves and bunches of fresh bayleaves. Continue warming the oil for 10 to 15 minutes, you don't want the ingredients to cook, you're just infusing the oil with the ingredients that you've added. Leave the oil and herbs to grow cold so that it will continue absorbing the wonderful herbs and spices. When the oil is cold pour it into the bottle along with a few (or all) of the ingredients from the pan, it will look pretty and taste wonderful.

I also keep another bottle filled with peeled garlic cloves topped up with olive oil for when I don't have time or the inclination to peel and crush garlic cloves and I can use this instead.


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    • Eileen Goodall profile image

      Eileen Goodall 6 years ago from Buckinghamshire, England

      Glad you enjoyed it :)

    • profile image

      rebecca 6 years ago

      i made the pasta with bacon and it was incredible! will be making it again