Country Living, Organic Living & Recipes

Classic Italian Tomato Sauce

The Farmer’s Market is something I look forward to throughout the year! One whiff of all the locally-grown fruits and vegetables immediately fuels my passion to get in the kitchen and cook — tomato sauce, eggplant dishes, baked zucchini, fresh salsa, fruit salads, and bodacious corn-on-the-cob to name but a few!

farm market

The aroma is so inviting — I can almost smell the cantaloupes and peaches while pulling in to park, and for me, shopping at a farmer’s market is much more fun than picking out my produce at a grocery store!

The girls and I went shopping yesterday and came home with our arms loaded with delicious produce. I have my eye on an eggplant recipe I want to share with you, and the first step was to make homemade Italian tomato sauce this morning! I have been using this recipe for years — it originally came from a wedding gift Jonathan and I received, Betty Crocker’s New Cookbook. Over the years, I have made several variations of this recipe — all are delicious with their slight changes in flavor. That being said, I have to tell you how much I love bell peppers — especially the red or orange ones. However, several years ago, I discovered the bianca bell pepper at our local farmer’s market, and now it is one of my favorites as well! I  have incorporated the bianca bell pepper into my tomato sauce, and I am loving the results!


Italian Tomato Sauce

adapted from Betty Crocker’s New Cookbook

*I prefer to use all organic ingredients

2 Tablespoons olive oil

1 medium yellow onion, chopped

1 large bell pepper, chopped (I used a bianca bell pepper)

4 cloves of garlic, minced

1 (28 oz.) can of diced tomatoes with juice

1 can (6 oz.) tomato paste

1 1/2 cups water

2 Tablespoons dried Italian herbs (or fresh Italian herbs)

1/2 teaspoon salt

1/4 teaspoon freshly-ground black pepper



-In a medium saute pan, heat olive oil and cook onion, bell pepper and garlic for two minutes, or until softened.

-Meanwhile, pour diced tomatoes, tomato paste, water, herbs, salt and pepper into a large saucepan and stir on medium-low.

-Add onion, bell pepper and garlic to the tomato sauce and stir until well blended.

-Simmer on low for approximately 35-45 minutes, stirring occasionally.

Makes approximately 4 cups

So delicious on pasta, eggplant dishes, and meatball sandwiches!


  1. This sounds amazing! I’ve never tried the bianca pepper. I’ll be picking one up for sure. I go crazy at the Farmers Markets and just hate to see the growing season end.

    1. Anna

      Thanks so much, Julie! Yes, I know exactly what you mean about the Farmers Markets — the produce is wonderful and so fresh! I think you’ll enjoy the bianca peppers! 😉

  2. Lovely Anna, just pinned it!

    1. Anna

      Thank you, dear sis! 😀

  3. I love trying out different peppers in tomato sauce. Have you tried freezing it? I’m debating if I want to freeze or jar tomato sauce this year.

    1. Anna

      Hi elliebleu! Yes, I often freeze my tomato sauce, and it works great! Very handy to have extra on hand. 🙂 I would like to try canning it as well.

  4. Aren’t Farmer’s Markets just the best !!! I always come back home loaded with lovely fresh fruits and veggies. 🙂 Just always such a good feeling 🙂
    Your Italian tomato sauce, sounds amazing, so have pinned it. 🙂
    Trust you and your family are well my friend. Have a beautiful weekend. x

    1. Anna

      Thank you, Lynne! 🙂 I absolutely love farmer’s markets, and it is such a wonderful feeling coming home with all that great produce! If we had one within walking distance, I’m sure I’d be there every day! 😉 We are all doing well, thank you! I hope you and your family are all doing well also! Have a wonderful weekend as well, dear Lynne!

    1. Anna

      Thank you so much, Katie! 🙂 One of my favorite sauces!

  5. I love the farmer’s market! And Betty Crocker’s New Cookbook! Lol, it’s a staple… like a good tomato sauce! Thank you Anna 🙂

    1. Anna

      Thank you, Sadie! 😀 Yes, I agree! 😉

  6. You know, Anna, when it comes to pasta sauce they should have a button to push that says “Love” instead of the “like” one. I’m still working on my signature sauce — probably will be the day I die, but in the meantime, I love each recipe I print out, and your recipes are always printed out. Now for a trip to my own Farmer’s Market. Hugs, A. xxx

    1. Anna

      Thank you so much, Angie! You’re so sweet! Hope you had fun at the Farmer’s Market! I love going there! 😉 Hugs! xo

  7. […] -Enjoy in your favorite Italian pasta dish, for meatball sandwiches or with a delicious Italian Tomato Sauce. […]

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