Small Batch Classic Tomato Sauce Recipe! Fresh, flavorful, easy to make, and perfect to serve with pasta, chicken or fish. So incredibly delicious!
A good tomato sauce recipe is one to treasure. It's a sauce that goes well with so many wonderful dishes such as pasta, pizza, chicken, or even fish.
This classic tomato sauce is made using fresh ingredients and will yield about 2 cups of the best tasting tomato sauce you've ever tried.
Homemade Tomato Sauce
This is a scaled down version of the tomato sauce recipe my mother used when I was growing up. She told me she learned how to make tomato sauce by watching her grandmother cook Sunday dinners.
Huge Sunday meals are pretty common in large Italian-American families. Nella mia casa di bisnonna, or in my great-grandmother's house, cooking began very early in the morning and went on until we all sat down to eat.
My mother's grandmother, "Mamma" as she was called by all the family, prepared and cooked our traditional Sunday meal. She always had lots of helpful hands in the kitchen. As Mamma got older and was confined to a wheelchair, she mainly supervised, making sure all of the dishes were prepared properly.
See recipe box below for ingredient amounts and full recipe instructions.
- olive oil
- chopped onions
- 1 carrot
- 1 celery stalk
- black pepper
- canned diced tomatoes
- dried basil
- dried oregano
- bay leaf
Why Do You Add Honey To Tomato Sauce?
It may seem unnecessary but adding a bit of sugar or honey to tomato sauce is a southern Italian trick to help balance the tartness of the tomatoes. Some tomatoes are wonderfully sweet already but many are still very acidic. Add just a touch at the very end of the cooking time, and feel free to add a bit more until you get the flavor you want.
How To Make Tomato Sauce
My mother made her tomato sauce with carrots, celery, onions and garlic as the base. As these vegetables cooked and softened, my mother poured in canned diced tomatoes and spices. She let the sauce simmer to allow the flavors to really come together. Then she finished it with butter and a spoonful or two of honey.
You might be surprised that a good Italian home cook would use canned tomatoes, right?
Truth was, my mom worked during the day and using canned was just easier. It didn't matter a bit, the sauce was always fabulous.
Small Batch Tomato Sauce Recipe
I took my family recipe and scaled it down to a small batch recipe. If you're cooking for only one or two people, you really may not need (or want) to make a normal sized batch of tomato sauce. This small batch tomato sauce recipe makes about 2 cups.
What To Do With Leftover Ingredients
If you have any ingredients left over from this tomato sauce recipe, you might consider using them in any of these single serving and small batch recipes:
- Onions: Chicken Fajitas, French Onion Soup, Stuffed Fish Fillet, Shrimp Creole
- Carrots: Roasted Carrots, Irish Stew, Carrot Cake, Curried Carrot Soup
- Celery: Instant Pot Chicken Noodle Soup, Crawfish Pasta, Red Beans and Rice
- Canned tomatoes: Turkey Chili, Goulash, Pomodoro Sauce, Minestrone Soup
- Honey: Honey Lemon Custard, Strawberry Sorbet, Healing Turmeric Tea
Single Serving Recipes Using Tomato Sauce
- Eggplant Parmesan For One
- Lasagna For One
- Zucchini Lasagna For One
- Giant Italian Meatball
- Baked Ziti
- French Bread Pizza
For more information on the cooking and baking dishes I use in our “recipes for one”, please visit our FAQ page.
For examples of the dishes used at One Dish Kitchen, please visit our Store page.
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1/2 cup chopped onions
- 1/2 cup chopped carrot , (appx. 1 carrot)
- 1/3 cup chopped celery , (appx. 1 celery stalk)
- 2 cloves garlic , minced
- 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1/4 teaspoon black pepper
- 1 14.5-ounce can diced tomatoes
- 1/2 teaspoon dried basil
- 1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
- 1 bay leaf
- 2 tablespoons butter
- 1/2 teaspoon honey
- In a a small saucepan, heat oil over medium high heat. Add the onions, carrots and celery and saute until soft, about 5 minutes. Add the garlic, salt and pepper, stir and cook for a minute more.
- Add the tomatoes, basil, oregano and bay leaf and bring to a gentle boil.
- Reduce heat and simmer, stirring occasionally for 20 minutes.
- Remove pot from heat and remove bay leaf.
- Use an immersion blender or a stand blender and pulse a few times to slightly puree the vegetables. You want the sauce to still have some texture to it, so be careful not to puree completely.
- Add the butter and honey and stir until butter is melted. Taste and season with a pinch of salt, if necessary.
The information shown is an estimate provided by an online nutrition calculator. It should not be considered a substitute for a professional nutritionist’s advice.