Every time I have to pick up a jar of pasta sauce at the store I think to myself, I really should make this instead. A slow cooker made the process extremely easy. We used it tonight for dinner with a little cream cheese melted in to make it creamy to go with the egg pasta Chris made. The best part is I have enough for 4 more dinner out of the batch. Just freeze it flat in a quart size zip lock bag and take one out the night before you use it. I made mine vegetarian this time and added TVP (Total Vegetable Protein) for additional protein and also to absorb some of the liquid from the additional vegetables I put in there. Free feel to use ground meat or a combination of meat/TVP instead.
Tomato Pasta Sauce
This makes a large batch. I would use it the night of and then freeze it in quart size bags (about 3 - 3 1/2 cup each). The amount of sugar and salt used will depends on the type/brand of tomatoes used.
- 2 can crushed tomatoes, low sodium, 28 oz each
- 1 can diced tomatoes, low sodium, 14 1/2 oz
- 1 can tomato paste, 6 oz
- 2 carrot, peeled and cut into big chunks
- 1 zucchini, trimmed and cut into chunks
- ½ large onion, trimmed and cut into chunks
- 2 celery stalks, trimmed and cut into chunks
- 3 tbsp. minced garlic
- 2 tsp. dried basil
- 1 tsp. dried sage
- 1 tsp. dried thyme
- 2 tbsp. basalmic vinegar
- brown sugar, to taste
- salt, to taste
- ground black pepper, to taste
- 1 cup TVP, leave dry
With a food processor, chopped each vegetables into very small pieces separately. It takes a bit more time, but you will have more uniform pieces if you don't mix all the vegetables together.
Put everything in the slow cooker and cook on slow for 8 hours. Adjust the seasoning with brown sugar, salt and ground black pepper as needed.