Tomato Basil Marinara | Homemade Pasta Sauce

by Chef Zee

Everyone must have a homemade tomato sauce in their arsenal to prepare the fire pasta dish. Now jar sauce is great especially if you find a brand with little to additives. They come in handy in a pinch and get the job done whenever you’re in a bind. However, there’s nothing like a slow simmered homemade tomato sauce. My go to red sauce is a Tomato Basil Marinara Sauce that’s been slowly stewed and kissed my red wine. My sauce is easy to make, has fresh ingredients and has a sultry depth of flavor thanks to the Cabernet Sauvignon that I like to add.



I’ll admit– when I first started cooking years ago I ate a ton of pasta yet I was scared to make my own sauce. Each time I tried, I failed miserably and that was because I was trying too hard– imagine?! The secret to making a great sauce, is to let the ingredients speak for itself. In fact, that’s what I think Italian food is all about: simplicity. Italian food is relatively simple. It’s all about the integrity of the ingredients that you’re using. If you’re using basil, making sure it’s the freshest basil that you can find. Or even better, make sure you find the best crushed tomatoes! Now my recipe doesn’t require you to have your tomato farm or herb garden, but it does require that you use all fresh ingredients.



For a step-by-step tutorial on How to Make Tomato Basil Marinara Sauce visit my YouTube Channel: Made to Order  


Tomato Basil Marinara | Homemade Pasta Sauce | Made To Order | Chef Zee Cooks

Serves: 6-8 Prep Time: Cooking Time:
Nutrition facts: 200 calories 20 grams fat
Rating: 5.0/5
( 1 voted )


  • Crushed tomatoes
  • 2 tsp Tomato paste
  • 1 Golden onion minced
  • 1 head of Garlic minced
  • Olive oil
  • 1tbs Butter
  • Brown Sugar to taste
  • 4 tsps Kosher salt *to taste
  • 1 tsp Black pepper
  • 1 tbs Parsley chopped
  • 1 tbs Basil chopped
  • ¼ cup Cabernet or Chianti *to taste
  • ½ cup water


  1. Mince your onions, garlic, and parsley and set aside
  2. In a large pot, warm up olive oil over medium to low flame
  3. Then add onions, garlic, and a pinch of salt. Saute until they are nice and soft. Be sure not to burn them. You want the onions and garlic to soften to the point where they become a paste
  4. Now add butter which will make everything beautifully creamy. Do keep a close eye since butter has the tendency to burn quickly  
  5. Next, add brown sugar and tomato paste. Mix everything until well combined
  6. Afterwards, add crushed tomatoes & mix
  7. Add salt, chopped parsley, basil, black pepper, and water and stir together
  8. Let sauce simmer for 5 minutes
  9. Add red wine- Cabernet Sauvignon or Chianti is best- and stir
  10. Cover pot and simmer on medium to low flame for 2-3 hours
  11. Before serving add more fresh basil and enjoy


This sauce tastes better the next day or when it’s had a chance to rest for a few hours. The wine is optional.



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