The virtues of homemade marinara sauce

I love to make marinara sauce. I have done it routinely for a number of years now, but really started in earnest last year when I decided to give processed foods the boot. I made a HUGE vat of it today. Every time I make marinara sauce I am amazed at how easy it is to make and wonder why I ever used store bought before.

Here is my recipe:

Julie's From Scratch Big Batch Marinara (makes 22 cups)

24 C chopped tomatoes (fresh or no salt added canned*)
3 medium onions, chopped fine
1 large head of garlic, chopped fine
3 T olive oil
1/4 C dried parsley
1 T dried Italian seasoning blend
1 T salt
1 T pepper
1 t red pepper flakes (optional)

Lightly saute onions in olive oil to soften, about 3 minutes. Add garlic and cook one minute more. Add tomatoes and bring to a boil. Turn heat to low and add remaining ingredients. Simmer, covered, for one hour. Puree with hand blender to desired consistency.

I used to buy Hunts Traditional, so I decided to run my recipe thru an analyzer to see how they compare. Hunts contains the following:

Tomato Puree (Water, Tomato Paste), High Fructose Corn Syrup, Salt, Corn Syrup, Soybean Oil, Dehydrated Onions, Sugar, Tomato Fiber, Spices, Citric Acid, Natural Flavor.

My recipe:

Nutrition Facts
Serving Size 125 g
Amount Per Serving
Calories : 36
Calories from Fat : 14
% Daily Value*Total Fat: 1.5g 2%
Cholesterol : 0mg 0%
Sodium : 223mg 9%
Total Carbohydrates : 5.5g 2%
Dietary Fiber : 1.6g 6%
Sugars : 3.4g
Protein : 1.1g
Vitamin A 19%
Vitamin C 26%
Calcium 2%
Iron 2%
Nutrition Grade A
* Based on a 2000 calorie diet


Nutrition Facts
Serving Size 126 g
Amount Per Serving
Calories : 50
Calories from Fat : 10
% Daily Value* Total Fat 1g 2%
Saturated Fat : 0g 0
Trans Fat :0
Cholesterol : 0mg
Sodium : 620mg 26%
Total Carbohydrate : 10g 3%
Dietary Fiber : 2g 8%
Sugars : 8g
Protein : 2g
Vitamin A 8%
Vitamin C 25%
Calcium 2%

My sauce wins on calories, sodium, overall carbs, sugar and vitamins A and C. They win on calories from fat and dietary fiber (only marginally on both counts). I will let you be the judge, but I call mine the winner (and BTW, it tastes really good).

* Use fresh whenever possible. Apparently we now have to worry about BPA in our canned goods and tomatoes, due to their acidic nature, cannot be packaged in a non-BPA can. (BPA has been linked to obesity, infertility, premature puberty, among other things {sounds like these folks have been reading my medical records!}). I am trying to source out non-canned tomatoes for future use.


nessi said...

This looks and sounds great!! I started making my own sauce from scratch last year because I just seemed to always stumble across great tomato buys!! The taste is so much better than Hunt's!!! I like your idea of making a lot at one time. Do you freeze it, can it... Thanks for all the great ideas, the blog is wonderful!!Vanessa

Julie Anne Leggett said...

I freeze it in 2 cups portions in ziplock freezer bags.

Julie Anne Leggett said...

And Vanessa, I am now following your blog. Go forth and write. :-)

Post a Comment