• 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 small onion, chopped
  • 1 tablespoon garlic, minced
  • 2 cans (28 oz.) diced tomatoes
  • 2 small cans tomato paste
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 1 tablespoon dried basil
  • 1 tablespoon dried parsley
  • 4 to 5 links sweet or hot Italian sausage


Heat a large sauce pan over medium-high heat. Add the olive oil then add the onion. Reduce heat and cook until until the edges of the onion start to carmelize, being careful not to let it burn. Add the garlic, stir once, then add the tomatoes, tomato paste, water, and herbs. If fresh herbs are available, double the amount given. Wait to add the fresh basil until 5 to 10 minutes before the end of cooking instead of at the beginning. Allow the sauce to simmer on low while you prepare the meat to be cooked in the sauce. If not using meat, simmer for at least 45 minutes before serving.
You may leave the sausages in their casing or remove the casings and mash with a fork to seperate the bundles. Either way, brown the sausage in a skillet, drain any fat, then add to the tomato sauce. Allow the sausage to simmer in the sauce at least one hour.

Serve the sauce with spaghetti or the pasta of your choice and top with fresh grated parmesan reggiano. This quantity will feed six hungry people. It's also a good sauce to use between layers of lasagna.

Print this recipe

Submitted 6/13/05.
Source: Family
Submitted By: Terri Burney-Bisett
Tomato Sauce with Italian Sausage