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pot of marinara with fresh basil

Homemade Marinara Sauce with Fresh Basil

  • Author: amycaseycooks
  • Total Time: 25 minutes
  • Yield: 3 1/2 cups 1x
  • Diet: Vegan


This Homemade Marinara Sauce with Fresh Basil is quick to make and delicious. Perfect tossed with pasta or use it in your favorite Italian recipes.


  • 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 medium onion, chopped, about 3/4 cup
  • 3 garlic cloves, chopped
  • 1 (28 ounce) can crushed tomatoes
  • 12 teaspoons kosher salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground pepper
  • pinch of red pepper flakes
  • 810 basil leaves, either chopped or left on the stalk


  1. In a medium sized saucepan over medium heat, add the olive oil.
  2. When the oil is heated and begins to shimmer, add the onion. Saute for 4 to 5 minutes or until the onions are translucent.
  3. Add the garlic. Saute for 1 minute.
  4. Add the tomatoes, 1 teaspoon of kosher salt, 1/2 teaspoon pepper, a pinch of red pepper flakes, and the basil.
  5. Stir to combine the ingredients.
  6. Simmer for 15 to 20 minutes.
  7. Season to taste with kosher salt. I add up to 2 teaspoons of salt to the recipe.


  • Chop the onions in small dice. The small pieces will melt into the sauce as it simmers.
  • Garlic cooks quickly. After the onions saute for about 4 to 5 minutes, add the garlic. Give it a quick saute ~ just for a minute. If the garlic overcooks, it tastes bitter and unpleasant.
  • Add the fresh basil either chopped or as the whole stalk. It is a matter of personal preference. If you like marinara sauce with flecks of basil, add it thinly sliced. If you like just the taste of basil without the leaves, pull out the stalk before serving.
  • In a pinch, substitute 1 teaspoon of dried basil for the fresh basil.
  • Make a double batch. Homemade marinara sauce with basil freezes beautifully.
  • Prep Time: 10 minutes
  • Cook Time: 15 minutes
  • Category: side dish
  • Method: stove top
  • Cuisine: Italian


  • Serving Size: 1/2 cup
  • Calories: 88
  • Sugar: 7.0 g
  • Sodium: 552 mg
  • Fat: 4.0 g
  • Saturated Fat: 0.6 g
  • Unsaturated Fat: 0 g
  • Trans Fat: 0 g
  • Carbohydrates: 11.1 g
  • Fiber: 4.0 g
  • Protein: 3.0 g
  • Cholesterol: 0 mg

Keywords: marinara sauce, homemade marinara sauce, basil, italian recipes