15-Minute Tomato Sauce (the best)

PREP TIME: 5mins


This quick and easy (with no faff) tomato sauce is often one of my midweek “go-to’s” in my kitchen.

With a delicious tomato sauce in your fridge or freezer you are only minutes away from lots of wholesome meals.

Tomato sauce is not just for pasta though, think vegetarian lasagnes, risottos, pizza toppings, stews and soups.

Equally the sauce can be the base for other delicious sauces like spicy Arrabbiata, Puttanesca or a creamy Tomato & Mascarpone sauce. (see serving suggestions)

Chopped Tomatoes: Italian whole peeled tomatoes tend to be better quality than chopped tomatoes but use whatever you have. Some tins of chopped tomatoes can be quite chunky, if you find your sauce to chunky you might want to whizz it (a few pulses) with a hand held blender.

Getting ahead: The sauce can be made 3 days in advance.

Leftovers: Make a batch and freeze into 250ml or 500ml jars.

Serving Suggestion:

Add a pinch of chill to make a quick Arrabbiata sauce and use parsley instead of basil.

Add some chopped capers and pitted kalamata for a veggie version of Puttanesca, I tend to use parsley instead of basil here.

Add 3 tablespoons of Mascarpone for a delicious creamy version.

What you'll need:

A medium saucepan and a spatula.


  • 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
  • 3 fat garlic cloves, minced
  • 15g basil stalks, finely chopped
  • 1/4 cup (half handful) basil leaves, finely chopped
  • 2 x 400g can whole peeled tomatoes
  • 1/2 teaspoon good salt
  • black pepper


  1. Add your oil to a medium saucepan on a gentle heat, add the garlic and basil stalks and gently fry until the garlic starts to soften, about 3minutes. Take care not to brown the garlic. Garlic turns bitter when it takes on too much colour which can turn your sauce bitter.
  2. Add the canned tomatoes and break the tomatoes up with a wooden spoon. Add the salt and let the sauce simmer, slightly covered, for 10 minutes until thickened slightly.
  3. Taste and season with black pepper, once cooled slightly add the chopped basil.
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