Spaghetti Sauce | My Family Recipe for Classic Red Sauce
Every Italian-American family has their own method for making sauce and this one is mine passed down to me from my father and his mother. This is a very easy recipe that's adaptable and rich from a long, slow simmer.
Course Dinner, Lunch, Main Course
Cuisine American, Italian
Keyword Comfort Food, Feeds a Crowd, Sauce, Sausage, Tomatoes
Prep Time 15minutes
Cook Time 4hours
8ozstick pepperonicut into 1-2 inch chunks; optional
1largeoniondiced small, ~1/4 inch dice
1lbsweet or hot Italian sausageoptional
16 oz cantomato paste
215 oz canstomato sauce
128 oz candiced tomatoes
128 oz cancrushed or ground tomatoes
kosher saltto taste
If you are using pepperoni, in a small sauce pan filled with water, boil the pepperoni for about 5 minutes. This will remove some of the excess fat in the pepperoni and keep your sauce from becoming too greasy. Drain and set aside.
If you are using sausage, in a large dutch oven or soup pot, heat olive oil over medium-high heat. Once the oil has heated up, add the sausage. Sear until each side is golden brown. Remove from the pot, cut in half, and set aside.
Turn the heat down to medium and add your onions to the hot olive oil and sausage fat (if using.) Add a big pinch of salt, about 1 teaspoon. Cook, stirring often, until the onions have softened and start to turn translucent. This will take about 3-5 minutes.
Add the garlic to the pot and cook for about a minute stirring often during this time.
Add the tomato paste to brown. This will take about 3-5 minutes. The tomato paste will get a little dark in color and start to brown. Then add a tomato paste can full of water to deglaze the pan. Use your spoon to scrape up any brown spots from the bottom of the pot.
Add the tomato sauce, diced tomatoes, and ground tomatoes. Then add the dried basil and oregano. Stir well. Cover to bring to a boil.
Once the sauce comes up to a boil, add your pepperoni and sausage, if using.
Turn the heat down to the lowest heat. You want the lightest simmer possible. Cover. Cook for 4-6 hours stirring every 30-40 minutes. Don't stress this though. If the heat is on as low as it should be, you won't burn your sauce.
Once the sauce is done, toss with pasta and serve. I like to serve with parmesan cheese and crushed red pepper. Refrigerate leftovers for up to a week; freeze leftovers for 6 months in an airtight container.