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Big Batch, Slow Cooked Spaghetti Sauce

  • Author: Stacey
  • Prep Time: 10 minutes
  • Cook Time: 5 hours
  • Total Time: 5 hours 10 minutes
  • Yield: 2 1/4 - 2 1/2 gallons 1x


This crazy delicious spaghetti sauce is a recipe courtesy of my mom. You will never make another sauce again! My mom always made big batches because we would freeze it all and take it out as needed for spaghetti nights! Perfect sauce for my meatball recipe, chicken parmesan or with pan-cooked Italian sausage.


Units Scale
  • 7 28 ounce cans of Kitchen Ready Ground Tomatoes (I use Pastene's)
  • 7 6 ounce cans of tomato paste (can be regular or garlic & herb)
  • 1 whole head of garlic (or about 9-10 cloves) peeled and finely diced
  • 2 cups of Greek olive oil, divided
  • 1 1/2 cans of water (using the ground tomato cans)
  • 1 tablespoon dried basil
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • pinch of pepper
  • 2 tablespoons of sugar

***NOTE: The yield for this is almost 2 1/2 GALLONS. Make sure you have a large stock pot to cook this in.


  1. Peel and finely dice 9-10 cloves of garlic. I use a mini food processor for this, but if you don’t have that a knife is fine.
  2. Open all the cans of ground tomatoes and tomato paste.
  3. Add a cup of olive oil to a large stock pot and heat on low to medium.
  4. Once oil is heated, add the finely diced garlic and stir for a minute or two until it’s fragrant.
  5. Add all the cans of tomato paste – scrape those cans good! Mix very well until the garlic, oil and tomato paste are well blended.
  6. Add all the cans of kitchen ready ground tomatoes and stir to combine after each can has been added.
  7. Using the large cans add 1 1/2 cans of water to the sauce and stir until well combined.
  8. Add dried oregano, basil, sugar, salt, pepper and stir until well blended.
  9. Let simmer on low to medium heat until it starts to bubble up on the top. This should happen after 15-20 minutes. You basically want to bring it to a high simmer but make sure you stir and scrape the bottom of the pot so nothing gets stuck there and burns.
  10. Then turn your heat to low and let the sauce simmer on low, with lid slightly ajar, for 5-6 hours. You should stir this every 15-20 minutes. You must scrape the bottom of the pot when stirring to make sure no sauce is sticking there. You don’t want the sauce to burn.
  11. After a couple of hours, add the rest of the olive oil and stir. My mom’s tip for this is: you know you’ve added enough olive oil when the oil starts to pool at the top of the pot.
  12. Once the sauce is finished, turn off the heat and let it start to cool for an hour or more.
  13. Get your containers ready and start ladeling the sauce from the pot to your containers. Then let the containers sit out to cool as long as you can before putting the lids on and storing in your refrigerator overnight.
  14. The next day, put your containers in the freezer.


  1. I cannot stress the importance enough to make sure you read the labels carefully when purchasing your ingredients. Even when I *think* I have found the Pastene's Kitchen Ready Ground Tomatoes - I still read the can slowly and carefully. The cans I use are often right next to the cans that have "chucky style" in a tiny circle on the label. NO. Not chunky style! I have accidentally loaded these cans in my grocery cart more times than I should admit. 
  2. You can use plain tomato paste for the recipe OR the kind with garlic and herbs.