Basic tomato sauce

Lots of recipes use a tomato sauce and it’s one of those quick easy things to do that you can then embellish with your own extras.

Serves: 4


  • 400g chopped tomatoes, tinned
  • 250g cherry tomatoes, halved
  • 90g onion (about 1 medium onion) finely chopped
  • 2 cloves of garlic finely chopped (or 1 tsp garlic granules)
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 tsp dried thyme
  • 1 tsp dried basil
  • 1 tsp dried oregano
  • 1 tsp balsamic vinegar (optional)
  • 0.5 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp ground black pepper
  • 1 tbsp tomato puree


  • Gently heat the olive oil in a medium pan. Leave the lid off for now.
  • Add the onions, garlic and herbs mixing well. Turn the heat right down and pop the lid on. Wait until the onions are soft and start to go translucent.
  • Add the balsamic vinegar, tomatoes, tomato puree, salt and pepper, stirring well. Bring it to the boil then cover and turn the heat right down again to simmer for at least 25 minutes.


That’s all there is to it really. You can serve this with pasta or add your own twist. I like to drop in some spinach sometimes. The night I typed this I added some cooked, vegan ‘meatballs’ to make a meal out of it.

I’ve used some tinned tomatoes because they are cheap and easy to store for a long time. I’ve also used some cherry tomatoes but only halved them instead of chopping finely; this is just to give a bit of texture to the sauce.

Basic tomato sauce with pasta and vegan ‘meatballs’.

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