Summer is officially 21 days away y’all. That means it’s time to start making Homemade Marinara! I don’t think I get excited about summer because of the hot ass weather because I’m a Southern lady and it’s not my favorite thing to be sweating in general and sweating is just gross and makes for extra showers and whatnot.
Secondly, to those of you who know me in real life, you know I have fair skin and if I spend more than 30 minutes without sunscreen and a hat I walk away with burns and then I get freckles everywhere. I’ve been known to get sunburn sometimes with my sunroof down y’all. So, my excitement for summer comes from longer hours of daylight & cheaper access to beautiful produce like the cabbage & bell peppers in my yard. The corn and asparagus and berries that we can get in abundance. Most importantly, my tomato plants growing so that I can make marinara! I make it almost every week and freeze it and hoard it but, sometimes I share it. Its therapeutic guys and I am excited to FINALLY have it on the blog!
I have said so many times I am going to post the recipe but, it’s somehow never made it to Jenniferbakes because I’m slightly add at times and I have no less than 87,439.5 ideas brewing in my mind at any second of the day and also the most honest reason is, I’m a procrastinator. To post this recipe is dear to my heart because I love my marinara recipe and the world is full of critics. The world is full of people like me who think their recipe is THE best. I am however, certain that this recipe of joyfulness is THE best and cannot wait for you to make it!
So, I make it two ways. It really depends on how much I want to make and if I have fresh tomatoes on hand. Because not everyone wants this method as it requires more work I am sharing the directions for my simpler version using Canned Crushed Tomatoes. This is perfectly delicious – I promise! It can be ready in as quick as an hour vs. 4 hours. Muir-Glen canned tomatoes is my Jam. They’re my go to and I am almost always going to use their Fire Roasted recipe. It doesn’t make them hot or spicy but, adds another depth of flavor because of the roasting method. You are free to use whatever you want just use a brand you personally trust.
FYI & Miscellaneous Thangs:
*This marinara is good on pizza, any pasta dish or just eaten with a spoon. (Seriously – that good)
*Prep your veggies. Dice your onion & bell pepper small but, not fine. You can opt to use a blender to smooth out your marinara as I often do or leave it chunkier and in that case you’d like your veggies to be an appropriate size. (I use an immersion Blender but, an old school one works great too!)
*If possible use a Dutch oven to make this! This recipe isn’t more than a standard Dutch oven will hold but, if you begin to double etc. you’re going to need a much deeper pot.
*Some think the olive oil is excessive but, trust me it’s necessary. You need it to maintain a silky almost velvety texture in your marinara and it flavors better than any other oil.
*Slower is great but, it’s perfectly yummy if you cook this only for 1 hour. I tend to do it early on a Saturday morning when I am getting some good introvert time in.
*Don’t forget to take your bay leaves out prior to serving/using/storing. They cannot be blended either. (Gross)
*This recipe will produce the equivalent of 4 Ragu Jar size portions! I freeze mine in Freezer baggies.
*Feel free to add more or less of any spice/herb as you prefer. Somedays I add 25 leaves of basil because I want a tomato-basil marinara.
*Make sure you do not add the fresh basil until the last 15 minutes.
*If you need to add sugar to offset the acid please do but, be careful as it can go from balance to sugary sweet easily. I start with 1 tablespoon.
*Sometimes I add ½ cup of grated parmesan cheese because I love the saltiness it leaves in the sauce.
*Adding 1 cup of heavy cream in the last 15 minutes makes it more like a cream marinara which is amazing! Feel free to do that if you‘d like!
- 1 large onion small diced
- 1 bell pepper small diced
- 4 cloves of minced garlic
- ½ cup olive oil
- 1 cup white wine
- 3 28 ounces Cans of Crushed Tomatoes (I prefer Muir-glen Organic Fire Roasted)
- 3 bay leaves
- ¼ teaspoon garlic powder
- ¼ teaspoon onion powder
- ½ teaspoon dry oregano
- 1 teaspoon black pepper
- 1 tablespoon table salt
- ½ cup water or chicken broth if you prefer
- 10 fresh basil leaves chopped (Save for the end)
- 1/8 teaspoon crushed red pepper
- 1-2 tablespoons of granulated sugar
- ½ cup grated Parmesan cheese
- Heat Dutch oven if using or sauté/frying pan to medium high heat and add olive oil. Once oil is heated add in diced veggies and lower heat to medium. Cook for about 5-6 minutes and add in minced garlic. Allow to cook another 2 minutes.
- Add wine and allow the liquid to cook about ½ way out. About 5 minutes. Then add the crushed tomatoes followed the next 6 ingredients. Raise heat to medium high until you begin to see the sauce bubble or softly boil. (About 7-10 minutes)
- Lower heat to barely medium and cover. Allow mixture to cook for about 45 minutes. You want to start checking the marinara for flavor now.
- Salt is something that may still be needed but, that is a personal preference.
- Sometimes, depending on how the tomatoes taste you may want to add a couple tablespoons of granulated sugar to offset the acid in the tomatoes.
- If you are like me sometimes you appreciate some extra spice in your marinara so feel free to add some crushed red pepper (start small!) until you reach the level you love.
- Technically this is ready to eat right now but, let’s add your basil and give it a final 15 minutes.
- I like to let mine cook for at least two hours personally to allow the flavors to marry and build longer.
It’s so dreamy guys. Making my own marinara made life so great- truly. It’s healthy and full of good things and it’s not too hard once you’ve made it a few times you can throw it together any day of the week.
At this point you can leave it slightly chunky or blend your sauce. Sometimes like this past weekend I really wanted it chunky so I didn’t blend it. Most of the time I will blend it and I use a hand held immersion blender right in the pot. Be careful because the sauce is hot and if you have time to let it cool first I’d advise at least 1 hour. You can also scoop this into your standard blender and blend to your liking, you’re officially a marinara boss now & I can’t wait to hear what you use it on first! You’ll never go back to jarred sauce again friends.
I want to hear about how you’re using this sauce! Leave me a comment and tell me what recipe you plan to make first replacing this marinara! – Share this post with anyone you know who would love it please! Praying for your hearts this week that we remember glory is always due to Jesus and not ourselves! All My love!