August 15, 2014

Roasted Marinara Sauce Recipe – Easy, homemade, fresh

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Originally shared in 2013, this recipe is a FAVORITE and now is the perfect time of year to make up a batch! I hope you love it! 

Roasted Marinara Sauce Recipe

This roasted marinara recipe could not be any easier and it beats jarred or canned sauce by a landslide. I admittedly tried to make a homemade marinara sauce in the crockpot last fall and it was a MAJOR fail. I don’t know why, but it just tasted bitter and blah.  But this, this is how you make marinara sauce – roasted.

The measurements in this recipe are just a suggestion. It’s what I ended up putting into my marinara sauce, but add more of what you like and less of what you don’t. I’m fairly certain you can’t mess this up.



Tomatoes – About 5 pounds
I used a combination of roma, cherry, and glacier – some from my garden, some store bought. Dice large ones and leave cherry tomatoes whole. Remove stems.

Fresh Basil – Cup (packed) with fresh basil leaves, washed (whole leaves), stems removed

Fresh Garlic – Whole cloves, about 10 or 1/4 Cup
I like garlic, use less if this sounds like too much

Zucchini – 1 – 2 zucchinis, diced in 1/2″ thick slices

Onions – Two medium onions, quartered
I used a red onion and a Walla Walla Sweet onion (from my garden)

Olive oil – About 2 Tablespoons

Balsamic Vinegar – 1 Tablespoon (optional)

Salt – 3/4 Tablespoon

Italian Seasoning – 1 Tablespoon

Ground Pepper – To taste



1.) Preheat oven to 400 degree F

2.) Wash and chop all your vegetables. If you have large tomatoes, quarter them. Basically you want everything about the same size when you chop it up – so it all cooks at the same rate.


3.) Once all your vegetables are chopped, toss them into a roasting pan or glass pyrex pan. Drizzle olive oil and balsamic vinegar over vegetables. Add salt, italian seasoning and ground pepper to taste.

4.) Pop in the oven. Cook 45-60 minutes at 400 degrees. You can take the pan out about half way through and give it a good stir. If you have enough for multiple pans, rotate them on the shelves so they cook evenly.

4.) Remove from oven. Allow to cool.


5.) Once cool to touch, use a slotted spoon to scoop vegetables into a food processor, blender or Blendtec/Vitamix. I recommend a slotted spoon because I found I had a lot of liquid from my tomatoes – leave the juice in the pan, you can add more later.


6.) Puree your vegetables. The longer you puree, the smoother the sauce. If you had very seedy tomatoes, puree a bit longer to help break those up. Scoop in liquid from your roasting pan to get it to the consistency you would like. You can always freeze this liquid for tomato soups or to add to sauce at a later time (I didn’t want to throw mine away!). If it’s not thick enough for you, try adding some tomato paste.

7.) Freeze in Ziploc bags or freezer bags. Or if you’re up for it, can it!


I knew the recipe was a keeper when my daughter sat down, right there on the kitchen floor and ate a bowl of it, without noodles, without cheese. She loved it! So it’s kid-approved, in case you’re wondering.

I’d love to hear what you think about this recipe! I’m excited to get more tomatoes and try some different variations. I might try to add the basil in fresh to the food processor – I bet that would give it a vibrant color and possibly a stronger flavor.



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  1. Kimberly S Schmaltz says

    Making this AGAIN this year. Loved pulling it from the freezer all year long! I added most of the liquid and then just add tomato paste when I use it.

  2. Thanks for this! I just picked about 5lbs of tomatoes from my garden in the last 3 days. I was fretting over finding a recipe for an easy and quick sauce that uses the other items I have an abundance of in my garden and, voila, here it is – yay!

  3. This recipe is tastes amazing! My 1.5 yr old is a very picky eater and she gobbled this down quick!

  4. This is the best homemade spaghetti sauce I have ever made!! And it was also the easiest!! My previous efforts turned out watery with a below par flavor. It was a lot of work. This time the sauce turned out thick and delicious without too much effort. I did add green peppers because I like that added flavor. Thank you so much!! I have tried for years to make good spaghetti sauce and had given up. Now I have a recipe I can make and be proud to serve. 10 pounds made 16 cups of sauce.

  5. This is a fantastic recipe! I did add the basil fresh when blending the vegetables rather then when roasting them.

    Thanks for this yummy post!

  6. This is a fantastic recipe! I did add the basil fresh when blended veges rather then roasted. Thanks for this yummy post!

  7. You should only can recipes that have a tested ph for canning. There are a few in the ball blue book, including a roasted one. If you are adding you favorite vegetables to taste you can change the ph. You can pressure can or freeze it. I just freeze my sauce.

  8. We tried this tonight – I thought it was okay. I had zero juice on my roasting pans so we used a beef broth to thin it out and I think that made the flavor a bit flat…. I was hoping for a bit stronger tomato flavor. I used about 5 lbs of tomatoes – Roma, Cherry and Heirloom. It was also a bit seedy….. Does anyone have any suggestions? I thought it was a great start though!

    • I`ve just finished eating this with meatballs.Absolutely delicious.I added tomato puree along with the juice(I had loads).It added to the taste and the colour.

    • The recipe I use adds 4 T of balsamic vinegar – it gives it a very rich, in depth flavor. I use dried oregano, basil, marjoram and parsley plus some Italian seasoning. I add a little bit more salt, too. Usually, when I’m using this after it’s been frozen, I will add more seasoning until I get the flavor I want. This is a good base recipe to play add with and add the ingredients you like. If you want to can it – it will need to be in a pressure cooker – not enough acidity for a water bath.

    • Try mesh straining after blending if the seeds are still too much. I don’t like seedy sauce either 🙂

  9. I made this today with my garden veggies. I have to say it came out fantastic! We ate some tonight over grilled chicken and whole wheat pasta. I decided to freeze the rest. I can’t wait to make this again.

  10. Walla walla sweets….. Mmmmmm….. I am drooling over this! I’m a Washington girl who is married to the Navy and has landed all over the planet in the past 7 years BUT Washington! No really… While I was pregnant with my first, I came home from Spain for a visit and left the morning Burgerville started selling the onion rings. Flight left at 7:30, sales started at 11:00. I cried. A lot. When someone says to just use a vidalia onion, it’s the same thing, I just want to beat them! Nothing compares to a Walla Walla sweet onion. NOTHING! I can not wait to try this recipe. Though I am going to have to find a way to smuggle some onions in to Californian…

  11. Reviewed this site, did all that was to do and totally enjoyed the results. Our garden was not the greatest this year, but it was nice to make a Marinara sauce because we have spagetti in the freezer.I have high cholestrol and this will be GREAT for my future dinners! p.s..will introduce this to our 3yr old grandson..Thank-you

  12. In regards to canning Cindee, did you still roast or did you blanch and cook it down in a sauce pot? Also, did you add 1 tbs. of lemon juice to the cans? The Ball blue book seems to do that with most of there non salsa tomato recipes. I have made and froze this recipe, and yes, it’s absolutely amazing!

  13. just made this and loved it.. was curious though how to make it more red? I don’t mind the color but I can just hear my kids now..and I don’t want to add any canned tomato sauce or anything.. Any other suggestions?

  14. I just made this and stood OVER THE BLENDER eating it! It’s DElish! I stopped about midway through the blending and realized it was thick enough to also be a really yummy tomato soup or bisque. I needed this batch for dinner tonight, but I think I will make another batch and leave it in its thicker form. Nothing better than soup and sandwiches for cold winter nights!

  15. Do you need to add any citric acid? Or is the recipe ok the way it is?

  16. Regarding canning this recipe, I just did it last week and I’m about to do it again. I processes quarts of sauce in a PRESSURE CANNER for 25 minutes (20 minutes for pints) at 12 pounds of pressure. Since there are vegetables other than tomatoes in there, water bath canning is not advisable.

    • Hi Cindee, did you add more vinegar, lemon juice or citric acid to the recipe? Also did you skin and roast the tomatoes? The ball blue book comments on skins holding bacteria and mold. Today I tried skinning and cooking it down on the stove and it just didn’t cook down enough, so I tossed in some cream cheese and its making a tasty creamy tomato basil soup 🙂
      Last time I roasted and was able to take out a lot of liquid and froze it for marinara, but I’d prefer to can it. Either way, this recipe rocks!!

  17. Your daughter is just precious! This sauce will have the most delicious flavor, I can’t wait to taste it. Hope you have a great weekend and thank you so much for sharing with Full Plate Thursday.
    Come Back Soon!
    Miz Helen

  18. I made this today and it was so YUMMY! Thank you for sharing this recipe!

  19. Have pinned this to make this on the weekend! I LOVE roasted vegetables so I have no doubt I will love it. I will serve it over some cheese ravioli!

  20. Your daughter is adorable! The recipe sounds great. I love the roasted veggies added in. I would like to invite you to my new weekly linky party Share Your Stuff Tuesdays. It’s live now..hope to see you there 🙂

  21. I made this last night and it is so yummy! I put some in the freezer but was wondering if you had instructions on how to can it ?

  22. This looks super good; I’m going to have to try it! I haven’t found a good marinara recipe with fresh tomatoes yet, so I am eager to try this one. Pinned!

  23. This looks great…..I will definitely be trying it! Found your link at ISBMTF Inspiration Monday…. thanks for sharing! ~

  24. Got mine in the oven for tomorrow!!

  25. I too tried sauce before and it was bitter and blah. This is amazing! Glad I tried again!

  26. I just made this. It came out so good. Thanks for the recipe. It’s so much easier, and most likely tastier, than what I was planning to do.

  27. OMG , just finished making this. Oh so good. I added bell peppers from the garden. I got about 7 cups but I had only 4.5 lb. of tomatoes. I roasted the veggies on parchment lined sheet pans.

  28. Aimee burch says

    I really want to try this recipe. But I want to can it. How would I adapt it for processing. And how long would you process for? Thanks.

  29. It looks and sounds so good. Do you know about how many cups the recipe makes? Thank you.

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