Red sauce pasta recipe is a super easy pasta dish that takes 30 minutes, needs only a handful of pantry ingredients and tastes absolutely delicious. This is a simple, kid friendly pasta recipe that you can serve as quick dinner or wholesome after school snack.
The best part is you can make the red sauce or tomato sauce ahead and toss the pasta as required. So easy, quick and yummy! Here is how to make Italian recipe of pasta in red sauce at home easily!
Pasta is a favorite not only with kids but adults as well. Indulging in a bowl of well made flavorful pasta is really a culinary pleasure. We love pasta recipes at home and I often prepare them.
Today I am sharing our family favorite pasta recipe with you all and I hope you will enjoy it too.
About This Recipe
Red sauce pasta is a classic Italian pasta recipe. Perfectly cooked al dente pasta tossed in a flavorful tomato sauce also known as red sauce and finished with some grated cheese.
This is a very popular and most sought after pasta dish in Italian restaurants but surprisingly easy to make at home. Want to know how? Read on 🙂
Making creamy Italian pasta recipes at home is easy and don’t have to be time consuming. For instance this pasta in red sauce takes just 30 minutes from start to finish.
The trick is to make the pasta sauces and cook the pasta simultaneously. To speed up the process you can easily make the red sauce well ahead and bottle it.
My daughter loves pasta and for me it is the best way to add more veggies in her diet. I always add a good chunk of veggies in pasta and I have done the same here also.
The base for this pasta is a flavorful red sauce made with tomatoes and seasoned with mixed Italian herbs.
This tomato sauce recipe is similar to the marinara sauce. Here I have also added some chopped carrots and bell pepper to the sauce.
This Italian red sauce pasta turns out very close to what you get in good restaurants. It is way more economical to make at home, you can control spice level and load it with veggies.
Serve this delicious pasta in red sauce hot or warm with a side of salad and some fruit for a satiating dinner.
This Italian Red Sauce Pasta Recipe Is
100% homemade from scratch
Easy recipe that takes just 30 minutes.
Tastes authentic and very flavor
Moderately spiced kid friendly.
Vegetarian and can be made vegan
To make red sauce for pasta you can fresh or canned tomatoes. Here I have used fresh blanched tomatoes. If using canned tomatoes you can puree them or just crush for a chunky sauce. I sometimes also 2 tablespoons tomato paste for vibrant color.
For seasoning the sauce we are using crushed garlic and mixed Italian herbs. You can also use fresh herbs like basil or thyme.
Perfectly cooked pasta is the key for any best tasting pasta dish. You should cook pasta in such a way that is non sticky as well there is a little bite to it. It is known as cooking the pasta al dente.
You can make this pasta with or without veggies. I have added veggies to the sauce but made the plain this time. If you would like to add vegetables, I have included instructions below.
Italian Red Pasta Sauce- Tomato Sauce Recipe
To make red sauce begin by blanching the tomatoes. Bring a bit pot of water to rolling boil. Add the whole tomatoes and blanch for 3-4 minutes.
Drain excess water and puree the tomatoes. You can also simply crush the tomatoes for a chunky sauce. If using canned tomatoes you can add them directly after crushing.
Heat some olive oil in a sauce pan. Add minced ginger, chopped carrots, onions, capsicums. Saute well for 3-4 minutes.
Add the tomato puree and ix well. Simmer for 12-15 minutes or until the puree thickens. Season with salt, pepper powder, dried herbs and bit of sugar. Mix well and simmer for 5 more minutes. Let the sauce cool thoroughly before storing.
If you feel that the sauce is very tangy with only tomatoes you can add some roasted carrots or red pepper or even onions. Also you can add 2 tablespoons tomato paste for more vibrant color.
Sometimes I add steamed and pureed bees or carrots while making the sauce. Use half the amount of tomatoes and steamed carrot or beetroots. You can also add red pepper. Saute it in olive oil a bit and puree along with tomatoes. This way we can add some bell pepper, carrot or beets in kids diet.
How To Make Red Sauce Pasta Recipe
1. Bring plenty of water to boil in a pot. Add the pasta and cook al dente. Drain the cooked pasta and reserve the stock. Mince the garlic cloves and set aside.
2. Blanch 3 large tomatoes.
3. Peel, let cool to room temperature and puree the tomatoes. You can make a smooth puree or leave some small chunks of tomatoes. If you are using canned tomatoes, just crush them and keep aside.
4. Heat 2 teaspoons olive oil in a pan. Add chopped onions, 3 cloves garlic minced, capsicum and carrots. Saute till they turn soft.
5. Add the pureed tomatoes or crushed tomatoes and mix well. Cook for 3-5 minutes. Add 1/3 cup pasta cooked water and mix well. Cook further for 2 minutes.
6. Add salt and pepper , red pepper flakes and sugar. Mix well. Add dried herbs and mix well. You can avoid red chili flakes when making for kids and add cracked black pepper alone.
6. Cook till the sauce turns thick and smooth.
7. Add cooked pasta and mix well. Top with grated cheese and serve red sauce pasta hot. While serving you also can sprinkle some sea salt flakes. Grated parmesan cheese also tastes good in this dish.
Tomato Sauce Pasta Variations
Veggies – Add 1 cup chopped mixed vegetables like cubed carrots, bell peppers, onion, corn for this recipe. You can steam or sauce the veggies in a bit of oil or butter and toss along with pasta in the sauce. Also you can roast the veggies in oven and add. You can also add mushrooms here.
Cheese– As I have done here a small amount of cheese elevates the taste and feel of this pasta. I have added fresh mozzarella here but you can also add parmesan.
Cream- You can also add 2-3 tablespoons fresh cream along with sauce. It makes this pasta very rich and tasty. Instead of cream you can also add mayonnaise in red sauce pasta.
Wine– When preparing for adults and if you consume wine you can add red or white wine as required. You can also add a bit of vinegar for flavor.
Herbs– You can totally play around with herbs in this recipe. Fresh herbs like parsley, fresh basil leaves, rosemary thyme tastes excellent here and so does dried herbs or Italian seasoning too.
Some Tips For Cooking Pasta In Red Sauce
Variety of pasta– Choose any type of pasta you like for this recipe. I prefer to use penne, rigatoni or macaroni as they are easier to eat and retain shape well.
Cooking pasta perfectly– For any pasta dish, it is important to cook pasta perfectly to get the best taste and texture. Cook pasta in a large pot and always add plenty of water. For 1 cup pasta I add 3.5 cups water. Add 1/4 teaspoon salt and 1/2 teaspoon oil to the boiling water before adding pasta. This will ensure pasta is non sticky on cooking.
To make a creamy and smooth pasta in red sauce that doesn’t turn dry after some time you need to add about 1/2 of pasta cooked water to the sauce. The addition of pasta water ensures that the pasta remains fresh and smooth even after cooling.
Tomatoes– Use ripe red tomatoes for vibrant sauce. If the tomatoes are not ripe enough then the sauce will become very tangy. To cut the acidity of tomatoes you can add roasted carrots or bell peppers or a big pinch of sugar too. Sautéed onion will also cut down the acidity of tomatoes.
For intense tomato flavor and vibrant red color you can add 2 tablespoons tomato paste.
This pasta in red sauce is a very flavorful and delicious dish, when made with whole heat pasta, this will be a very good indulgent meal, you can even pack it in tiffin.
Frequently Asked Questions
What does pasta in red sauce mean?
It simply means al dente pasta tossed in a flavorful tomato sauce also known as red sauce or red pasta sauce.
Are red[sauce and marinara same?
They are both made with tomatoes with minor flavor differences.
How to make vegan pasta in red sauce?
Just skip the cheese or use vegan parmesan cheese
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Red Sauce Pasta- Pasta In Red Sauce
1 CUP = 250 ml
- 1 cup pasta
- 3 large tomatoes blanched and pureed
- 2 tablespoons finely chopped carrots
- 2 tablespoons finely chopped onions
- 2 tablespoons finely chopped bell peppers
- 1/2 teaspoon chilli flakes
- 1/2 teaspoons pepper powder
- 1 teaspoon sugar
- 1/2 teaspoon dried herbs
- 2 teaspoons olive oil
- Cook and drain pasta, reserving the stock.
- Blanch,peel and puree the tomatoes.
- Heat a pan with 2 teaspoons olive oil. Add the finely chopped vegetables and saute till they turn soft.
- Add pureed tomatoes and mix well.
- Add 1/3 cup reserved pasta stock and mix well. Add salt, chilli flakes, dried herbs and salt. Mix well and cook for 5-7 minutes.
- Add sugar and cook till the sauce thickens.
- Add pasta and mix well.
- Serve pasta in red sauce hot with grated cheese.
2. You can grind 1/2 boiled carrot along with blanched tomatoes.