Bursting full of tomato flavor, spaghetti with delicious marinara sauce is a wonderfully easy and tasty weeknight meal. It doesn’t matter what time of the year it is, sometimes you just need something easy to eat, spaghetti marinara is our ‘go-to’ easy meal, and we usually end up having a second helping!
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Why you’ll love this recipe
- You can batch-make the sauce, store it in the fridge or freeze it, so you have it whenever you need it.
- You can make it with basic pantry ingredients.
- Kids absolutely love this great marinara pasta dish!
- It’s 100% vegetarian and vegan.
We love the simplicity and flexibility that spaghetti marinara offers you. Eat it just as it is or add your favourite ingredients to make it perfect for you.
How to make spaghetti marinara with step-by-step instructions
Making spaghetti marinara is so simple if you follow our easy instructions.
A full printable recipe and the measurements in both US customary and metric are available in the recipe card below.
Making the marinara sauce (optional)
If you are making our marinara sauce recipe, you must do that first.
In a medium saucepan or Dutch oven, add your San Marzano tomatoes, then add onions and garlic.
Add dried oregano, crushed red pepper flakes, and extra virgin olive oil, and then stir to combine thoroughly.
Bring the pan to a simmer over medium heat, lower the heat, stir, and then leave to simmer for approximately 45 minutes, stirring occasionally.
When cooked, blitz the tomato mixture until you have your preferred consistency.
Making the spaghetti marinara
Using the cooking instructions on your spaghetti packet, bring a large pan of salted water to a boil and immerse the spaghetti.
Stir to ensure the spaghetti doesn’t stick together.
When the spaghetti is cooked, transfer it to the cooked marinara sauce; if you get a little pasta water in the sauce, then that’s fine.
Toss the spaghetti into the marinara sauce and ensure it is fully coated.
Serve in bowls, with a garnish of freshly chopped basil leaves or a sprinkling of vegetarian or vegan Parmesan cheese.
Absolutely delicious – enjoy your easy dinner!
What’s the difference between marinara and spaghetti sauce?
Marinara sauce and spaghetti sauce are different.
In many ways, spaghetti sauce is a generic term used for a thick tomato sauce traditionally mixed with meat, such as ground beef and cheese; being a vegetarian website, we don’t include meat.
Marinara sauce is a thinner tomato sauce, often made with fresh tomatoes and herbs.
Can I use store-bought marinara sauce?
Yes, you can if you want to.
We prefer to use our homemade marinara sauce because it’s such a delicious sauce, but if you’re in a hurry, you can use store marinara sauce.
You can make it much better.
You really can; it’s SO easy to make the best marinara sauce!
What are the best tomatoes to use to make marinara sauce?
In an ideal world, you’d use fresh San Marzano tomatoes for your homemade marinara sauce, but unless you’re living in Italy, it’s unlikely that you’ll be able to get hold of them, as they are grown on the Amalfi coast.
San Marzano tomatoes are deliciously sweet; they are grown in the volcanic soil of Mount Vesuvius; we had them when we visited Italy, and they were so good!
We tend to buy San Marzano canned tomatoes. Naturally, they aren’t as good as fresh tomatoes, but these canned tomatoes are very good and make really delicious tomato sauces.
What can I add to it?
Pasta marinara is a stand-alone meal, but sometimes, you want to add a little extra when feeling especially hungry.
You could add veggie meatballs, cut vegetarian sausages into chunks and cook them in the sauce.
You could add a good coating of vegetarian grated Parmesan cheese
Do I have to use spaghetti?
No, you can use virtually any pasta in your store cupboard and cook pasta you love.
Rigatoni, fusilli, or fettuccine marinara, are all great.
How do I store it?
The Marinara tomato sauce lasts up to 5 days when it’s stored in the fridge in an airtight container.
Our marinara pasta recipe can be stored in the fridge overnight, but it’s so quick and simple that it’s best to make it fresh the next day.
You can also freeze Spaghetti marinara for up to a month.
Recipe notes and expert tips
- Is your sauce too thin?
It shouldn’t be too thin, but if it is, you can add a little tomato paste to thicken it to your preference.
- Storing notes
Store overnight in the fridge in an airtight container or freeze for up to a month.
- Double up the marinara sauce
It’s so easy to make this lovely quick sauce, so double up and freeze the sauce you don’t use.
More easy pasta recipes for you to try
If you love our spaghetti marinara, check out these tasty recipes!
We hope you enjoy making and eating our spaghetti with marinara sauce recipe and we’d love to hear how you got on making it.
Please leave a comment below, or feel free to ask any questions that you may have about it.
Spaghetti marinara recipe
- 2¾ lbs San Maranzo plum tomatoes
- 1½ Onions finely chopped
- 3 Cloves of garlic
- 1½ tsp Dried oregano
- ½ tsp Red pepper flakes
- 3 tbsp Olive oil
- 16 oz Spaghetti
- Fresh basil leaves optional to garnish
- Vegetarian or vegan Parmesan cheese optional to garnish
- If you are making your own marinara sauce, you'll need to do that first. In a medium saucepan or Dutch oven, add your San Marzano tomatoes, then add onions and garlic.2¾ lbs San Maranzo plum tomatoes, 1½ Onions, 3 Cloves of garlic
- Now add dried oregano, red pepper flakes, olive oil, and then stir to combine thoroughly. Bring the pan to a simmer over medium heat, then lower the heat, stir, and then leave to simmer for approximately 45 minutes1½ tsp Dried oregano, ½ tsp Red pepper flakes, 3 tbsp Olive oil
- Using the cooking instructions on your spaghetti packet, bring a large pan of salted water to a boil and then immerse the spaghetti into it. Stir to ensure the spaghetti doesn't stick together. When the spaghetti is cooked, transfer it to the cooked marinara sauce, if you get a little pasta water in the sauce then that's fine. Toss the spaghetti into the marinara sauce and ensure that it is fully coated. Serve in bowls, with a garnish of fresh basil leaves or a sprinkling of vegetarian or vegan Parmesan cheese16 oz Spaghetti, Fresh basil leaves, Vegetarian or vegan Parmesan cheese
- Perfect pasta – enjoy!
- Double up the marinara sauce
It’s so easy to make, so double up and freeze the sauce you don’t use
- Storing notes
Store overnight in the fridge in an airtight container or freeze for up to a month
Please note that nutrient values are estimates only. Variations can occur due to product availability and manner of food preparation. Nutrition may vary based on methods of origin, preparation, freshness of ingredients, and other factors.
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