I just got back from Italy and one of my favorite things to do there is EAT! The food of Italy is based on simple, fresh flavors and this Simple Marinara Sauce reminds me of being in Italy and letting those classic ingredients shine!
Typically when I cook I want strong, bold flavors. This sauce is a little different for me because it is a simple sauce that lets the flavor of the tomato shine.
The sauce definitely tastes better the longer you let it cook, so I try to let it cook for at least an hour. This is also one of my “you can freeze it!” recipes. I will make a large batch on the weekends, portion it into mason jars, and freeze the sauce. It lets me have an amazing dinner just minutes away on those nights when letting a sauce simmer will just not cut it!
I like to freeze a lot of things, and it has gotten to the point where I am “known” for it. I get teased a little for my “you can freeze it!” slogan but I DON’T CARE because it is TRUE! 🙂
This Simple Marinara Sauce is also a great kid-friendly sauce because you can hide all of the vegetables! Just throw the finished sauce into a blender, or use an immersion blender, and puree until the vegetable chunks are gone. Sneaky, sneaky 😉
I love adding in some fresh basil near the end for a little brightness, but if I do not have any laying around I just skip it. The sauce is still amazing without it! Find the recipe for how to make this AMAZING Zucchini Parmesan here!
- In a medium sauce pan, heat the oil over medium heat.
- Add the onion and saute until translucent, approximately 3-5 minutes.
- Add the garlic, celery, and carrots. Also add the bay leaves, salt, and pepper. Cook until fragrant, approximately 1 minute.
- Add in the tomatoes and water. Bring to a simmer and then reduce heat to low.
- Simmer for at least 15 minutes, ideally one hour for the flavors to develop. For a smooth sauce (or to hide the veggies), puree in a blender.