This slow cooker marinara sauce is a beautiful red blend of chunky tomatoes, fresh basil and aromatic spices. It’s absolute perfection on spaghetti, and it could be used on a hundred other things, too. That’s the beauty of this slow cooker recipe: it makes a lot, so you can store some in the fridge or freeze it for later use in a lasagna or pasta bake.
Don’t worry, making homemade marinara sauce isn’t complicated or difficult. In fact, it’s so easy, you can put it all the ingredients in the slow cooker and let it simmer all day, just as if you were making it on a stovetop. Need a meat sauce? Just add cooked ground beef, pork, turkey or sausage to the finished sauce, and you’re good to go.
You can always have delicious, homemade marinara sauce on hand, save money on jarred sauces and know what ingredients are in your food when you use this simple and flavorful slow cooker marinara recipe.
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 large onion, chopped
- 6 garlic cloves, minced
- 2 cans (28 ounces each) crushed tomatoes
- 1 can (29 ounces) tomato puree
- 1 can (29 ounces) tomato sauce
- 1 can (14.5 ounces) diced tomatoes
- 1 can (6 ounces) tomato paste
- 2 tablespoons sugar
- 1 tablespoon dried parsley
- 2 1/2 teaspoons dried oregano
- 2 teaspoons salt
- 1 teaspoon dried basil
- 1 teaspoon black pepper
- 1 small bunch (about 1 ounce) fresh basil, leaves only, cut into strips
- In a large saucepot over medium-high heat, heat oil. Add the onion and garlic, and cook until the onion is translucent and garlic is golden, about 4 minutes.
- Stir in crushed tomatoes, tomato puree, tomato sauce, diced tomatoes, tomato paste, sugar, parsley, oregano, salt, dried basil and pepper. Bring to a boil, then pour tomato mixture into the slow cooker crock.
- Cover slow cooker and cook on HIGH for 4 to 5 hours or LOW for 9 to 10 hours. Stir in fresh basil before serving.
- To store, cool and place in air-tight containers. Freeze up to 6 months.
- If you have a slow cooker with stovetop-safe cookware, substitute it for the saucepot in the directions above. After cooking the onions and garlic, add ingredients as listed, place the cookware in base, cover and cook as directed.
- For a meat sauce, add 2 to 2 1/2 pounds of cooked and drained lean ground beef, turkey or sausage to the crock with the other ingredients, then continue to cook as directed.
Try these slow cooker recipes, too
For the cook who is busy all day but wants a home-cooked dinner at night, a slow cooker is the answer. And with the Set & Forget® Programmable Slow Cooker, technology takes a big leap forward from the outdated slow cookers found in yesterday’s kitchens.