Rome wasn’t built in a day, and great pizza sauce isn’t made in a day either. Well, it can be put together and cooked in a few hours, but in order to really enjoy the flavor, it needs to sit for a couple of days to let all of the seasonings and vegetable flavors to set in. Sure, you can throw the ingredients together, heat everything up, and eat it right away, and it will taste alright. But, if you want it to taste fantastic, you need to have a little bit of patience. Let’s look at how to make easy homemade pizza sauce.
Use Fresh Ingredients
When it comes to making a great pizza sauce, the first thing to do is throw away the bottles and cans. A great sauce is made with fresh ingredients whenever possible. You can always get fresh tomatoes, onions, and garlic, so there is no excuse to not be able to make your own sauce with fresh ingredients. That being said, there are a few seasonings you can get away with using that don’t necessarily need to be fresh, including Italian seasoning.
When using fresh ingredients, unless you want your sauce to be chunky, you will need to break everything down. We suggest using a blender to puree your sauce once you have it prepared, but before you put it into the slow cooker. It is easier to spread pizza sauce when there are no chunks in it; save the chunks for the actual pizza toppings. You want your sauce to be smooth and easy to spread. So, instead of dicing or mincing the onions, cut them into large slices.
Once the sauce is cooked, it is easier to remove onion slices so they aren’t in the way. You can always set the onion slices aside and then use them as pizza toppings once you are ready to put your pizza together.
This sauce tastes great as soon as you make it, but the longer you let it sit in the jar, the better it is going to taste. This is because all of the flavors are going to have time to combine and work together for the ultimate pizza sauce flavor. Generally, it should take about 4-6 hours to cook the sauce in your crock pot, and then it should sit in the refrigerator for a couple of days before being used. Ideally, you will preserve your sauce, so it can last for several months.
Month-old pizza sauce tastes so much better than one-hour old sauce. Just make sure that if you are doing it this way that you use proper canning techniques in order to avoid food poisoning or having your sauce go bad.
Slow Cooker Pizza Sauce
Here is a delicious pizza sauce recipe that takes at least two days to make (four to six hours of cooking time, and then two days of standing time). Believe us, the wait is definitely worth it because the longer it sits, the better it is going to taste. Not only is this a great sauce to use for your next pizza party, it is also delicious with many different pasta dishes. This is an all-purpose sauce that can be used to create all kinds of delicious meals.
- 7-8 large, ripe tomatoes
- 2 C tomato paste
- 2 tbsp soya sauce
- ½ tsp ground black pepper
- 4-5 garlic cloves, crushed
- 1 large onion, sliced
- 2 tbsp white sugar
- ¾ tsp ground cloves
- ½ C red wine
- ½ tsp Italian seasoning *
- ½ tsp chili powder *
- ½ tsp cayenne pepper *
- ½ tsp ground basil *
*This is just a recommendation. You can add more or less seasonings to make it just the way you like it.
Cut the tomatoes in half, and scoop out all of the seeds. They are bitter, and will end up giving your sauce a slightly bitter flavor, which you definitely do not want. Don’t worry about removing the skins. They will cook down in the crock pot anyway, and peeling tomatoes can be a real pain.
Once you have removed the seeds, place the tomatoes in your blender, and hit “puree.” If you don’t have a puree setting, simply blend them until they are more like juice. At this point, the puree will be a very pale color. Don’t worry about this, because the other ingredients will darken the sauce.
Once you have pureed the tomatoes, add the tomato paste, red wine, soya sauce, sugar, and seasonings. Blend until everything is mixed together, and then transfer the mixture to your crock pot. Let it cook for four to six hours on the low setting, and then transfer into a couple of Mason jars. If you aren’t canning the sauce, it should go into the fridge immediately, and it will keep for about a week.
Canning Your Sauce
If you are interested in canning, keep reading. You don’t necessarily need to go out and buy a lot of canning equipment. As long as you have a pot that is big enough to hold a few jars submerged in the water, a pair of oven mitts, a pair of tongs, and a funnel, you have everything you need. Boil some water in a large pot, and add your jars and lids. Let them boil for about five to 10 minutes, and remove from the water, using the tongs. Be sure to have the oven mitts on, because the jars can get pretty hot.
Pour the sauce into the jars, using the funnel to avoid making a mess. If you spill any sauce on the side of the jars, wipe it off with a clean cloth. Cover the jars, closing the lids tightly, and place back into the boiling water for about 10 minutes.
Remove the jars from the water, and let them rest until you hear a popping sound. This is the lids sealing, and you know that you can now place the jars in the cupboard for several months without worrying about your sauce going bad.