The Trick To Making An Easy, Yet Badass, Homemade Tomato Sauce

best easy tomato sauce recipe

Francesca Broggini

Sadly, our wallets don’t permit that we eat out at our favorite Italian restaurant every night of the week, but that doesn’t mean that we can’t recreate our go-to Italian dishes at home. Tomato sauce is an essential ingredient for many popular dishes in Italian cuisine — think pasta, pizza and eggplant parm — and it’s also relatively easy to make at home, even for beginner cooks. That’s why we want to share this super simple tomato sauce recipe that’ll make you feel like you’re eating at a cute café in Rome. We enjoy eating this sauce most when it’s accompanied by some penne al dente.

Simple Tomato Sauce Recipe

We love this simple tomato sauce because it’s easy to make. It’s also super flavorful and creamy, without overpowering your pasta. Our two secret ingredients? Butter and sugar. Adding sugar to a red sauce balances out the natural acidity of tomatoes, while the butter adds thickness and fullness. Here’s how to make it.


  • 1 can of diced tomatoes
  • 1 medium-sized garlic clove, crushed
  • 1 small container of cherry tomatoes, halved
  • 3/4 cup chopped onion
  • Olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon of sugar
  • Garlic powder
  • 3 tablespoons of unsalted butter
  • Salt
best easy tomato sauce recipe
Francesca Broggini


  1. Place a 3-quart saucepan over medium-high heat. Coat the pan with olive oil and add the crushed garlic and chopped onion. Let it sit for two to three minutes, stirring occasionally.
  2. After two to three minutes, add the halved cherry tomatoes to the saucepan. Let sit and stir occasionally, adding salt to taste.
  3. Once the cherry tomatoes start to soften, add the can of diced tomatoes and reduce the heat from medium-high to low.
  4. Add 3 tablespoons of unsalted butter, 1 teaspoon of sugar, garlic powder and salt to taste. Let simmer for at least 10 minutes, stirring occasionally. Pro Tip: Taste test the sauce and add more seasoning (like salt, garlic powder and sugar) until the flavor of the sauce suits your specific tastes.
  5. Remove from heat and serve over a bowl of sizzling pasta al dente topped by Parmesan cheese. You can also store it in a sealable container in the refrigerator for later use.


What Your Favorite Pasta Dish Says About Your Personality

10 Delicious Italian Cookies You’re Not Eating (And Where To Find Them)

How To Eat Keto At An Italian Restaurant