Mary’s “Go To” Marinara Sauce

Mary’s “Go To” Marinara Sauce

Homemade classic marinara sauce is so easy to make. My version is perfect for a quick pasta topping or as part of another recipe like eggplant parmigiana or lasagna. The secret to making the perfect marinara sauce is the tomatoes. You must use whole San Marzano tomatoes. No substitutes!


  • 1 (28-ounce) can whole San Marzano tomatoes, certified D.O.P. if possible
  • 1 cup water
  • 3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 7 garlic cloves, peeled and slivered
  • A pinch of crushed red pepper flakes, to taste
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 2 large fresh basil leaves, cut into slivers
  • ¼ teaspoon dried oregano


  1. Place tomatoes, with juice, into a large bowl. Using your hands, crush the tomatoes. Add 1 cup of water to the can and pour into the bowl. This will get all the tomato pieces and juice into the bowl while giving you a little more liquid.
  2. Place the extra virgin olive oil in a large skillet and heat on medium low. Add the garlic and cook, stirring, until lightly colored, making sure not to burn the garlic. Carefully add the tomatoes with the liquid. Add the crushed red pepper flakes, salt, fresh basil, and dried oregano. Simmer the sauce on medium-low heat until mixture thickens, about 15 to 20 minutes. Taste and adjust seasoning as needed.
Did you make this recipe?
Tag @blameitonbiscotti on instagram and hashtag it # summerrecipe
August 20, 2021 — Mary DiSomma