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If you find yourself hauling in pounds of tomatoes from your garden this summer, an easy and flavorful marinara sauce is the perfect way to preserve tomatoes for use all year long. This simple recipe doesn’t require canning to preserve—just freeze it, thaw before serving, and enjoy flavorful pasta or pizza well into the winter. Larger families can double the recipe for more delicious dishes throughout the year.


  • 12 pounds of garden tomatoes (or about 36 medium tomatoes)
  • 2 cups of fresh chopped basil
  • ¼ cup of fresh chopped oregano
  • ¼ cup of fresh chopped thyme
  • ¼ cup of fresh chopped parsley
  • ¼ cup of fresh chopped rosemary
  • 1 teaspoon of ground black pepper
  • 2 tablespoons of salt
  • 1 onion finely chopped
  • 5 cloves of garlic, finely chopped
  • 3 tablespoons of olive oil


1) Bring a large pot of water to a boil and keep a bowl of ice and water on the counter.

2) Score the bottom of each tomato with an “X” and dip the tomatoes into boiling water for 30 seconds before cooling tomatoes in ice water.

3) Peel each tomato starting at the loosened “X” then cut tomatoes into quarters. Squeeze juice and seeds out. Discard the seeds and skins. Use a blender or food processor to chop tomatoes to your desired consistency.

4) In a large pot, cook the finely chopped onion on medium low with olive oil until soft. Add garlic and cook for an additional minute.

5) Add the chopped tomatoes to the onion and bring to a boil. Add salt and pepper to season and cook for 90 minutes or until thickened.

6) Remove the sauce from heat and stir in chopped basil, parsley, rosemary, oregano, and thyme.

Freezing Instructions

For fresh marinara sauce all year long, cool the sauce to room temperature, then ladle into plastic containers or reusable zip-top bags, Freeze 3 cup portions for 6 servings of sauce, or 1 cup portions for small households.

To use the sauce, thaw in the refrigerator overnight, or place the frozen sauce in a pot over medium heat and stir until simmering.

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