Skip to Content

Who Knew Spaghetti Sauce Was This Easy?

I have very few childhood memories; I have no idea why. My childhood was great – a loving family, a wonderful home, tons of sports, cool friends. Nonetheless, I really don’t have many specific memories. (I’m not sure that bodes well for my future memory capacity). But there is one memory I could never forget. My dad always cooked spaghetti on Sunday nights. I can still smell the meat browning, the onions sauteing, and the garlic and basil wafting through the air. It was his only venture in the kitchen, but he knocked it out of the park. (My parents have since divorced, and to this day my mom says the only thing she misses is my dad’s spaghetti! And I can say that with a laugh because in all honesty, my parents are closer today than they ever were in their 42 year marriage… which I find interesting on many levels).

homemade spaghetti sauce

Use great meats for a great sauce!

My dad always experimented with his spaghetti sauce. There was your standard – ground beef, some Italian sausage, tomatoes (fresh and canned), olive oil, a splash of red wine, some butter on occasion. And then there were the what-were-you-thinking moments – anchovies, crab meat, baby oysters, and I’m sure a number of things he snuck in there that we never knew about. All in all, the sauce was fantastic. I do tend to prefer the traditional, however, so I’ve modeled my sauce after his more “normal” iterations. Feel free to add what you want (although, I’d stay away from anything oyster-like) to make this sauce a memory that will last a lifetime.

Homemade spaghetti sauce

Can’t wait to sink my teeth into this!

Some tips for fail-proof spaghetti:

  • Always always salt your pasta water before you cook the pasta. It should taste like ocean water. If it doesn’t, add more salt!
  • Go for a very firm al dente. Drain the pasta at least a minute before you think you should. It will continue to cook, and there’s nothing worse than a big blob of sticky, squishy pasta. Even the best sauce can’t make up for overdone pasta.

    homemade spaghetti sauce

    Hearty and healthy!

  • When you near the end of the pasta cooking time, dip a measuring cup in the pasta water and reserve 1-2 cups before draining. This pasta water is very useful for ensuring the right consistency of your sauce. If it’s a bit too thick, add some of the pasta water and it will bring the sauce to a wonderful, thick, but not gloppy creation to match your perfectly cooked pasta.
  • Salt each ingredient as you add it to the sauce. This will give you a deeper, richer flavor than if you just dump a bunch of salt in at the end.

    homemade spaghetti sauce

    Ready in 30 minutes!

 

homemade spaghetti sauce
Who Knew Spaghetti Sauce Was This Easy?
Print Recipe
Once you make this easy, delicious homemade spaghetti sauce, you'll never go back to jarred!
Servings Prep Time
8 10 Minutes
Cook Time Passive Time
30 Minutes 1-3 Hours of extra simmering if time permits
Servings Prep Time
8 10 Minutes
Cook Time Passive Time
30 Minutes 1-3 Hours of extra simmering if time permits
homemade spaghetti sauce
Who Knew Spaghetti Sauce Was This Easy?
Print Recipe
Once you make this easy, delicious homemade spaghetti sauce, you'll never go back to jarred!
Servings Prep Time
8 10 Minutes
Cook Time Passive Time
30 Minutes 1-3 Hours of extra simmering if time permits
Servings Prep Time
8 10 Minutes
Cook Time Passive Time
30 Minutes 1-3 Hours of extra simmering if time permits
Ingredients
Servings:
Instructions
  1. Bring 8 quarts of water to a boil in a large pot for the spaghetti.
  2. Heat another large pot over medium high heat. Add the olive oil and heat until shimmering. Add onions and sautee until soft (approximately 7 minutes), then add garlic and stir another minute or two.
  3. Spread the onions and garlic to the edges of the pot. Add the ground beef and ground sausage. Let brown undisturbed for 3 or 4 minutes, then crumble and mix. Continue until cooked through (approximately 10 minutes total). Add two large pinches of salt, pepper, and the oregano and basil. Stir another 2 minutes.
  4. Add the crushed tomatoes, tomato sauce, tomato paste (use the paste can to add two cans of water to the sauce). Mix well and bring to a simmer. Add mustard and simmer on low heat at least 15 minutes, but the longer the better.
  5. While the sauce is simmering, cook the spaghetti according to the package directions. Drain, immediately and return to the pot, then ladle a couple cups of the sauce into the pot with the spaghetti. Stir until well-coated. This will prevent the pasta from sticking together. Serve in individual bowls, topped with more of the delicious sauce that you made from the heart. Happy memories!

Top Recipes of the Year from The Spicy Apron - The Spicy Apron

Monday 21st of March 2016

[…] #3  Who Knew Spaghetti Sauce Was This Easy? […]

Top Recipes of the Year from The Spicy Apron - The Spicy Apron

Monday 21st of March 2016

[…] #3  Who Knew Spaghetti Sauce Was This Easy? […]

Bob Hurt

Thursday 13th of August 2015

Hi Heather, Thanks for your very nice trip down memory lane. It was truly a joy for me to prepare the Sunday evening dinner for you, Cathy, Jenny, Chris and your Mom. You've taken my rather basic attempts and glorified them into what can only be described as a Sauce Supreme. Keep on tickling all our palates with your creative recipes. Love, your Dad

Heather

Monday 17th of August 2015

Thanks, Dad! :)

Jan Glas

Saturday 11th of July 2015

Yum! Mom made THE best spaghetti sauce ever and the recipe is much like your dad's. Just yum!

Heather

Sunday 12th of July 2015

Funny how parents seem to have a lock on the whole spaghetti thing... :)

shares