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Why we love this recipe. Making your own marinara sauce is so simple and to us, tastes much brighter and more fresh than what you can buy at the store. It’s easy to store in the refrigerator or even the freezer, too.

What you need to know. We realize it may seem strange that we ask you to buy whole tomatoes then crush them by hand before adding to the sauce. You could buy crushed tomatoes from the store, but hand crushing the tomatoes adds much more texture and feels more “homemade” to us. Also, we ask that you grate the carrot — this makes sure it is small and will melt into the sauce. The garlic will also melt into the sauce.
Equipment you’ll need. A chef’s knife, boxed grater, large pot, measuring spoons, large bowl and a wooden spoon or spatula.


Created By: Joanne and Adam Gallagher
Serves: 6 cups
  • 1/4 cup (60 ml) olive oil
  • 3 cloves garlic, thinly sliced
  • 1/2 large onion, finely chopped (about 1 1/4 cups or 180 grams)
  • 1 medium carrot, grated (about 1/2 cup or 60 grams)
  • Two 28-ounce cans whole peeled tomatoes
  • 1 dried bay leaf
  • 20 fresh basil leaves, roughly chopped (optional)
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper
Prepare Sauce
  1. Heat olive oil in a large pot over medium-low heat. Add onions and garlic then cook, stirring occasionally, until softened but not browned – about 8 to 10 minutes.
  2. Add the grated carrots and a pinch of salt then cook another 3 to 5 minutes, stirring occasionally until softened.
Crush and Add Tomatoes
  1. While the vegetables cook, open tomato cans then pour tomatoes with juices into a large bowl. Use you hands or a potato masher to crush the tomatoes until desired sauce consistency.
  2. Add crushed tomatoes with all juices and bay leaf to pan. Stir sauce then bring to a boil. Reduce heat to a gentle simmer and cook, stirring occasionally, for 20 to 30 minutes. Season to taste with salt and pepper. (Note – if the sauce is too bright or acidic, try adding a pinch of sugar to balance the acidity from the tomatoes).
  3. Remove bay leaf and discard then stir in chopped basil.
To Store
  1. To store, cool then refrigerate up to one week or freeze up to 6 months.

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