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Red “Spaghetti” Sauce – Semi Homemade, Gluten Free & Vegetarian with Meat Option

December 30, 2012
Dump Everything In

Here’s another twofer: This week Semi Homemade Spaghetti Sauce and next week Better than Frozen Lasagna. We’ll use a little over half a recipe of this sauce next week.


I like to make things from scratch. It’s no secret (Spice Cake, Au Gratin Potatoes, and Buttermilk Biscuits) that I generally prefer to make things myself. 1. Because they taste better and 2. The sense of accomplishment I get from taking bits and pieces from my pantry and fridge and providing a meal or baked good.  Very few things in the kitchen do I classify as “not worth my time” but unless it’s the dead heat of summer and tomatoes are at their peak, blanching, peeling, seeding and milling tomatoes is high on that list. Megamart hot house tomatoes have subpar flavor in my opinion, so putting so much effort into making a tomato sauce only to still achieve subpar flavor is a wasted endeavor.  /end diatribe


That said, I make my red sauce from canned tomatoes. No surprise there. I also use a canned spaghetti sauce as a base. *Gasp* I know!  It’s easy, tastes homemade (or better than depending on how the tomatoes are faring this season) and can be whipped up quickly or simmered all day. Let’s get started.



  • 1 24 oz. Can Hunts Tomato Sauce (I use the mushroom variety)

    Hunts Spaghetti Sauce Can

    My Red Sauce Base

  • 1 14.5 oz. Can Diced Italian Tomatoes
  • 1 8 oz. Can Tomato Sauce
  • 1 6 oz. Can Tomato Paste
  • 1 Tablespoon olive oil – omit if using meat
  • 2 Cloves of garlic, minced
  • 1-1/2 tablespoons of Italian seasoning
  • 1 Tablespoon granulated garlic
  • 1 Teaspoon sugar
  • 1 Pint white button mushrooms, sliced
  • OR 1 can sliced mushrooms (add with canned tomatoes)


Meat Options:

  • 1 lb. ground beef, 90/10
  • OR substitute 1 lb. ground pork, venison or turkey.


“Make it Hearty” Veggie Options:

  • 1 Diced Bell Pepper
  • 1 Chopped Yellow Onion
  • 1 Diced Zucchini


If you’re going with the meat sauce, begin by browning your meat in a Dutch oven or large pot.  You can omit the tablespoon of olive oil, the fat from the meat will suffice.  Add your garlic and cook with the meat.  Break up the masses into bite sized pieces and continue to cook until browned through. Drain and set aside.

If using fresh mushrooms sauté in the meat drippings until they’ve given up their liquid. You may need to add that olive oil if you’re meat was very lean.


Ground Beef Mushrooms and Garlic

Ground Beef Mushrooms and Garlic

If not using meat, sauté garlic and fresh mushrooms in olive oil until the mushrooms have given off their liquid or until garlic is aromatic if using canned mushrooms. This is the time to add more veggies if you’re so inclined – zucchini chunks, onion, bell pepper, etc. If they give off too much liquid and you’re afraid of watery sauce, drain them before proceeding.


Now here’s where it gets really easy, dump everything in (including drained meat/mushrooms if using). Dump! Stir! Bring to a boil and then reduce to medium low and simmer for 30 minutes up to all day. That’s it!  This is even better the next day. I usually put up half and eat half that evening.  Next week we’ll be using a half recipe for a better than frozen lasagna, stay tuned!




Dump Everything In

Dump Everything In, Seriously. Then Stir and simmer. Done!

5 Comments leave one →
  1. December 30, 2012 10:31 PM

    I am a new reader to your blog. Looks delicious! Especially appreciate “Gluten Free”.

  2. January 3, 2013 6:17 PM

    Looks good.

  3. February 4, 2013 11:04 AM

    Reblogged this on Chef Simondsjr.

  4. February 11, 2013 5:52 AM

    I have been testing out homemade spaghetti sauces for the past few years and haven’t gotten them quite right. This one definitely looks like it is worth making!


  1. Super Easy Better than Frozen Meat Lasagna with Vegetarian and Gluten Free Option « adriennecooksdotcom

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