just a drop of simple sunshine

Meat Sauce – from scratch!


I LOVE this sauce. A few months ago, I realized how much I doctor the sauce that comes in the jar that I decided to just start making the entire thing from scratch. & you know what? I think it was one of the best decisions I ever made. It’s inexpensive, I know exactly what’s going into it, & did I mention it’s delicious? Because it is. YUM.

I make it in a bit of a different order than I think most people do – I start with the herbs & spices, move on to the beef, & add the sauce last. Oh! & I only use one pan. Because let’s face it – no one likes to do dishes, especially after they’ve had such a lovely meal.

Meat sauce

What you need:

  • 1 pound ground meat (beef, chicken, turkey, pork… I don’t care what it is, just make sure it’s meat!)
  • 1 28 ounce can of tomato puree – it should be tomatoes & that’s it!
  • 2 tablespoons or so olive oil
  • Various herbs & spices…
  • 1 tablespoon good balsamic vinegar
  • Bit of salt & pepper
  • 1 cup onion, chopped
  • 1 or 2 cups spinach, fresh or frozen (but thawed first!)
  • 1 or 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 tablespoon or so white vinegar


That sounds like a truly epic list of ingredients, but it’s not. I swear! You probably have nearly everything on hand right now. Go check – I’ll wait. Trust me – you want to make this sauce. & it’s easy, I promise!

How to do it:

  1. Over medium heat, drizzle on some olive oil. Throw on your onions & garlic, & let them cook a bit. Just to get the juices going… if you wanted to add green pepper or mushrooms to your sauce, add them here as well.
  2. Toss on your herbs & spices – whatever is Italian-ish & you like. I use rosemary, tarragon, basil (lots of basil. I LOVE basil), oregano, cilantro, parsley, salt, pepper… swirl them around a bit & let everything mingle for a couple of minutes.
  3. Add your MEAT! Brown it as you normally would.
  4. When it’s about halfway done, I add about a tablespoon of balsamic, & the spinach. Then, the final touch…
  5. Add the sauce! You’ll need to add about a tablespoon or so of white vinegar to play down the sweetness of the tomatoes. I stir in a tablespoon, taste it, then go from there. Sometimes it needs more. I never knew how sweet tomato sauce was until I made sauce from scratch, & the vinegar does a great job cutting through that sweetness. Simmer until the sauce is heated through, & you’re good to go!

From here, it’s your call. I usually throw in a baked spaghetti squash & some mozzarella cheese, and that is definitely enough to feed the two of us for at least two meals. Healthy, delicious, & easy. Let me know what you think if you try it this week!


Author: Sarah

I'm Sarah Amazing: 32. Teen librarian. Feminist. Fangirl. Nerdfighter. Ohioan. Happily entwined.

3 thoughts on “Meat Sauce – from scratch!

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