Use this template recipe to make a quick, healthy tomato sauce that packs loads of nutrition and flavor. Homemade tomato sauce tastes so much better than the bottled kind. With just a few minutes of cooking, you can avoid the added sugar, oil, and citric acid found in most commercial sauces. We eat a variation of this sauce about five times a week. Usually I toss it with whole wheat noodles. For a change, ladle it over quinoa, barley, or baked potatoes.
Good Tomato Sauce costs just $1.51 per serving using organic ingredients, without the mix-ins suggested below. Pay even less if you catch the crushed tomatoes on sale or buy them by the case.
The Evolution of a Recipe
My core tomato sauce recipe has changed a lot since I started the Cook for Good project. I used to use a tablespoon of oil to saute the vegetables. That was too expensive for my budget of $5 a day per person, so I dropped it to 2 teaspoons. Next I realized that 1/4 teaspoon was enough to keep the vegetables from sticking. Now I know that a tablespoon of water will do the same thing, essentially for free!
Not only does this sauce have no added fat, but it also now has:
- Red onions instead of yellow onions for more phytonutrients
- Chopped mushrooms for extra umami and cancer-fighting power
- Turmeric to fight inflammation