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Submitted by: JoDee Devaney


  • 1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon red pepper flakes
  • 6 large or 8 small garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 - 28 ounce can tomato purée
  • 1 - 15 ounce can crushed tomatoes
  • 2-3 Tablespoons balsamic vinegar
  • 1-2 Tablespoons sugar (to start with)
  • Salt and pepper
  • 2 Tablespoons cornstarch (optional)


Combine olive oil, pepper flakes, and garlic in a large pot or Dutch oven on low heat for five minutes. This infuses the flavors to the oil and is key to this sauce’s bold flavor. Add the tomatoes, vinegar, sugar, salt and pepper to the pot. Whisk until the oil is completely incorporated (this takes some muscle and a bit of time) making sure that it doesn’t separate.

Turn the heat up and bring the sauce to a boil. Then drop it back down to low, cover, and simmer for one hour. Let the flavors develop, and then taste, taste, taste! Adjust the vinegar, red pepper, sugar, and salt and pepper to your liking.

This is my go-to red sauce for pasta, pizza, meatball subs, or anything you like a good red sauce with. If you like your sauce a little thicker like a marinara or pizza sauce, you can make a slurry with the cornstarch and a little water and add it to the sauce at the end. This will thicken it like magic.

Remove from heat and let cool. Store in mason jars or freezer bags for later use. If you double this recipe, it will yield 3-quart jars. You should probably just go ahead and plan to do a double batch and do your future self a favor.


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