Easy Roasted Tomato Sauce

By |2018-08-29T13:48:24-04:00October 20th, 2016|Main Dish, Vegetarian|23 Comments

easy-roasted-tomato-sauceEasy Roasted Tomato SauceEasy Roasted Tomato SauceEasy Roasted Tomato Sauce

I promised you an easy idea for topping that spaghetti squash I just posted. There’s a million things you can do with spaghetti squash, but today, we’re going classic and topping it with a deliciously Easy Roasted Tomato Sauce.

Easy Roasted Tomato Sauce. Thick sliced fresh tomatoes are roasted with garlic, onion, olive oil and herbs for a fresh and flavorful tomato sauce.

Roasted? Yes. Roasted. Do you know what that means?!? You can roast your spaghetti squash and your tomatoes and boom! Dinner is done. It’s a two for one deal.

When we were deluged with tomatoes at the end of the summer, I roasted up trays and trays of this stuff. And then I froze the sauce in zip top freezer bags. Now I’ve got tomato sauce ready and waiting for spaghetti squash, pizza, pasta, sandwiches, chicken parm, etc…

Easy Roasted Tomato Sauce. Thick sliced fresh tomatoes are roasted with garlic, onion, olive oil and herbs for a fresh and flavorful tomato sauce.

You might have a favorite jarred sauce. I, too, keep a few jars in my pantry. But there’s something about a homemade sauce that just gets me every time. It doesn’t have to be hard. Yes, some have old family recipes that simmer on the stove top for hours on a Sunday (my mouth is watering now) but I rarely go that lengthy route.

In real life, I feel like I’m cooking all of the time. Honestly, it’s enough to get a healthy home cooked dinner on the table every night. Those long term cooking projects? They’re great…but they’re more of an event that I need to plan for.

I like to engage the whole family in those kinds of cooking projects; it’s quality time together that leaves us with a delicious reward at the end. (I also like to add doing dishes into our “quality time” together mwahahaha :)

There is something, though, about good quality ingredients, prepared simply. That’s what this sauce is.

In fact, I think my favorite tomato sauces are the ones that are the simplest to prepare. And yes, my mouth is watering thinking about this sauce as well. (Um, it must be lunch time.)

Easy Roasted Tomato Sauce. Thick sliced fresh tomatoes are roasted with garlic, onion, olive oil and herbs for a fresh and flavorful tomato sauce.

I start by lining a baking sheet with foil and then drizzle some olive oil on it. Fresh tomatoes are cut into thick slices (so they don’t dry out while roasting.) I swirl them around on the oil drizzled tray to coat them and then flip them over and swirl again.

Throw a few cloves of whole peeled garlic on to the pan along with 1/2 of a medium onion, cut into thick wedges. Coat the onion and garlic in olive oil from the pan, or drizzle a bit more if you need to.

Season with salt, pepper and dried herbs. You can use an Italian herb mix or a combination of dried basil, oregano, marjoram, thyme, rosemary…you get the idea. I made it easy and just used dried Italian seasoning.

You can use fresh herbs too. I love, love, love fresh oregano and basil, but I generally prefer them used fresh instead of roasting them. Plus, dried herbs are what I had on hand and likely a pantry item for you as well. (Actually, I had fresh basil too…but I was saving it to top off the dish at serving.)

Easy Roasted Tomato Sauce. Thick sliced fresh tomatoes are roasted with garlic, onion, olive oil and herbs for a fresh and flavorful tomato sauce.

Once you’ve drizzled and seasoned, you’re ready to pop the tray into the oven. Roast it for 20-30 minutes until the veggies start getting a little charred around the edges and the tomatoes are releasing some juice.

Easy Roasted Tomato Sauce. Thick sliced fresh tomatoes are roasted with garlic, onion, olive oil and herbs for a fresh and flavorful tomato sauce.

You have a few cloves of roasted garlic on your pan. Leave just ONE on the pan and set the others aside. Now everything on the pan goes into a food processor. (Seriously, don’t you want to just take a fork and munch on those tomatoes? The color is insane!)

Easy Roasted Tomato Sauce. Thick sliced fresh tomatoes are roasted with garlic, onion, olive oil and herbs for a fresh and flavorful tomato sauce.

Pulse it a few times until you get your desired smoothness. I like mine to have a little texture  to it. Taste it. If it’s too acidic, add a bit of sugar, honey or baking soda. (Baking soda? Yep, it neutralizes the acid.)

Not enough garlic? Add in another clove. Adjust for salt and pepper and you are good to go. Too thick? Add some chicken or vegetable broth to loosen it up.

For me? One clove of garlic was plenty and I didn’t need to adjust anything. It’s all going to depend on your tomatoes and your taste preferences.

The flavor is out of this world, especially if you’re working with great tomatoes. But I’d also hazard a guess that roasting a less than great tomato probably gives it a hand in the flavor department.

Easy Roasted Tomato Sauce. Thick sliced fresh tomatoes are roasted with garlic, onion, olive oil and herbs for a fresh and flavorful tomato sauce.

I’m just giving you the basics today, but you can really play around with this and add other veggies like peppers or carrots or add some crushed red pepper flakes for some heat. You won’t need a lot to add extra flavor.

I like to keep the tomatoes the star of the show and just add a little bit of flavor with the onion and garlic. The cool thing is that even if you roast up a bunch of things, you can always reserve the final decision for when you get to the food processor step.

Just like the garlic, add a little bit of roasted pepper or whatever veg you want to try. Taste it. You can always add more until you’ve got a balance of flavors you love.

Easy Roasted Tomato Sauce. Thick sliced fresh tomatoes are roasted with garlic, onion, olive oil and herbs for a fresh and flavorful tomato sauce.

Trust me, the flavor is anything but basic. Look at how rich it looks! I love the color and the texture and the freshness of it. It’s so good on top of spaghetti squash! I added some fresh basil and freshly grated Locatelli romano cheese.

Easy Roasted Tomato Sauce. I promised you an easy topping for that spaghetti squash…today that promise is signed, sealed,Easy Roasted Tomato Sauce. Thick sliced fresh tomatoes are roasted with garlic, onion, olive oil and herbs for a fresh and flavorful tomato sauce.

and delivered.


Easy Roasted Tomato Sauce. Thick sliced fresh tomatoes are roasted with garlic, onion, olive oil and herbs for a fresh and flavorful tomato sauce.
5 from 2 votes

Easy Roasted Tomato Sauce

Servings 2 1/2 cups sauce


  • 2 1/2 pounds fresh tomatoes sliced about 1/2" thick
  • 1/2 medium onion cut in thick wedges
  • 2-3 whole cloves of garlic peeled
  • olive oil
  • salt I use kosher salt
  • pepper
  • dried Italian herbs


  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees F. Line a sheet pan with foil (for easy clean up.)
  2. Drizzle the pan with olive oil. Place tomato slices, garlic and onion wedges onto pan swirling and flipping them until they are coated. Drizzle more olive oil on top, if necessary.
  3. Season with salt, pepper and dried Italian herbs.
  4. Roast for 20-30 minutes or until vegetables are getting just a little charred on the edges and the tomatoes have begun to release their juice.
  5. Remove all but one clove of garlic from the tray (reserve the other cloves) and empty the tray into a food processor or blender. Process to desired texture and adjust seasoning to taste. You can add another clove of garlic, if you want a stronger garlic flavor or just adjust for salt and pepper.

Recipe Notes

*If you find your sauce is a little acidic, you can add sugar, honey or baking soda. Start with just a little. You can always add more if it needs it. If it's thicker than you want, add a little chicken broth or vegetable broth. (It's never too thick for me.)

*Experiment with roasting different vegetables like red peppers or carrots. If you use carrots, they may need a little more roasting time than the tomatoes, or cut them into smaller pieces. If you want to add some heat, season the tray with some crushed red pepper flakes.

*If you find that one clove of garlic works for you, then just roast one the next time. Garlic cloves are always different sizes, so I just throw a few onto the sheet so that I have options. Any leftovers can be used for other recipes. You could mash it up with some butter, maybe add some romano cheese, spread it on some great bread, bake/broil and make a delicious garlic bread to go with your pasta :)

*Don't go too crazy with the olive oil. It has a lower smoke point than other oils and we are roasting here at a high heat. I probably used a couple of tablespoons or so. You want to be generous, but you do not want to end up with a lake full of oil on your baking sheet.

*I used 2 1/2 pounds of tomatoes and got 2 1/2 cups of sauce, so you can figure you're getting about a cup of sauce per pound of tomatoes.

*This sauce freezes well. I allow it to cool and then freeze in zip top freezer bags.

The Merchant Baker Copyright © 2016

By |2018-08-29T13:48:24-04:00October 20th, 2016|Main Dish, Vegetarian|23 Comments


  1. Cindy Olszewski October 27, 2016 at 12:40 am - Reply

    Hi Ramona,

    When I saw this post, I couldn’t wait to try it! Luckily for me, there was one week left before the farmer’s market in our town closed down for the winter and I couldn’t wait for the weekend to arrive. I scooped up the last of the season’s beautiful tomatoes and even bought spaghetti squash! Your roasted tomato sauce recipe could not have been easier, and I could not believe the taste! I especially appreciate that you outlined all the steps and included so many helpful notes. What a great recipe– it is so, so much better than the normal tomato sauce I make and freeze every year, and I couldn’t believe I didn’t even have to remove the skins! They just melted as I pulsed them in the blender. Hubby loved it as well, and it is so much healthier than all the butter he normally insists on putting on his squash. This is going to be my new “go to” recipe for tomato sauce. Thank you so much for posting it, the roasting really brings out the flavor!

    • Ramona October 27, 2016 at 8:16 am - Reply

      Cindy, I am so happy that you were able to grab those last great tomatoes and try out the recipe. It’s also really nice to know that the notes are helpful. And I agree…peeling tomatoes is not on the top of my list of things I like to do. When I can create things that are easy and delicious, it’s a win/win for me! I’m so glad to hear it was for you (and your hubby too!) I may have to try roasting some over the winter with the vine ripened tomatoes available in the winter. I’ll be curious to see if the roasting can lift them to a point where they remind me of the delicious tomatoes that we were able to get in the summer. We shall see….

      • Cristal Gibson August 21, 2017 at 9:28 pm - Reply

        I made your pasta sauce and it was so delicious. My family loved it!!! This was just what i was looking for, something simple i could make with my tomatoes. I even used a few yellow tomatoes. I added a little more tomatoes, onion, and garlic to mine so it would make enough. I don’t think my husband will ever want or eat store bought pasta sauce again. Thank you so much, Cristal

        • Ramona August 22, 2017 at 11:10 am - Reply

          Cristal, you are so very welcome! I believe that just simple, good quality ingredients, prepared well, can be so satisfying and delicious. I gave measurements so that there was a guideline to follow, but really, I just take whatever I have and roast it up. I sometimes add other veggies like red bell peppers or carrots or other vegetables. It’s all good!

  2. Nan Lewis October 30, 2016 at 2:51 pm - Reply

    Hi Ramona – Wow! I came across your Blog this morning looking for the best way to cook brown rice, went on to see your easy method for Spaghette Squash, and then landed here on this great way to make tomato sauce and also use an abundance of beautiful ripe tomatoes! I’ve cooked the brown rice this morning, a success, and can’t wait to try this one as well. Thanks very much for your effort and instruction, I will be reading in the future!

    • Ramona October 30, 2016 at 7:11 pm - Reply

      Nan! Thanks for all of your kind words! I’m so excited that you found three easy recipes on your first visit. The brown rice cooking process was a revelation and I love the spaghetti squash and roasted tomato sauce. Welcome to my little corner of the internet! I’ll look forward to hearing from you :)

  3. Easy Roasted Tomato Sauce. Thick sliced fresh tomatoes are roasted with garlic, … – Delectable Salads November 14, 2016 at 6:23 am - Reply

    […] The Recipe can be found HERE […]

  4. […] Easy Tomato Sauce […]

  5. Laura July 19, 2017 at 3:34 pm - Reply


    I just harvested 3 huge tomatoes from the backyard garden and wanted to find something substantial, yet easy and quick, to do with them for dinner tonight. I don’t have time to boil/peel tomatoes or simmer anything on the stove today but some fresh summer “gravy” sounds fantastic! Did one quick pintrest search and along came your blog! SAVED! So thankful for this recipe! Added some yellow squash to the mix to lighten things up and it is all currently roasting. My kitchen smells incredible! My family and I thank you for what I’m sure will become a versatile staple in our home! Thanks again!

    • Ramona July 19, 2017 at 4:13 pm - Reply

      Laura, I hope you enjoy it! Just remember to add the garlic one clove at a time so you get exactly the flavor you want. I’m sure with your just picked garden tomatoes, it will be fantastic!

  6. Happy August | Something Good July 31, 2017 at 5:23 pm - Reply

    […] Easy Roasted Tomato Sauce Ingredients: Yield: 2 1/2 cups sauce 2 1/2 pounds fresh tomatoes, sliced about 1/2″ thick 1/2 medium onion, cut in thick wedges 2-3 whole cloves of garlic, peeled olive oil salt (I use kosher salt) pepper dried Italian herbs (Find the full recipe and ingredients here at The Merchant Baker) […]

  7. Rachel August 8, 2017 at 1:51 pm - Reply

    You think this would work on pizza?

    • Ramona August 8, 2017 at 2:02 pm - Reply

      Rachel, theoretically, it could. I like my pizza sauce to be thick. So after blending, I would probably simmer the sauce to evaporate more of the liquid and thicken it up. I might also add a spoonful of tomato paste. The flavor is there, you just need to thicken it up.

  8. cheryl August 19, 2017 at 4:46 pm - Reply

    can this be put into jars to preserve and how long would you process them to make sure they seal

    • Ramona August 19, 2017 at 5:28 pm - Reply

      I don’t have experience with canning, so you’d have to do research on that. I believe there are issues with canning roasted tomatoes so definitely do your homework before proceeding. I prefer to freeze the mixture in freezer bags, if I need to store additional quantities.

  9. Alicia September 2, 2017 at 8:32 pm - Reply

    I’ve been wanting to make this since I stumbled across the recipe on Pinterest. Well yesterday was a balmy 66 and today an almost warm 70. I loaded up on some beautiful roma tomatoes and headed for home. All I can say is Wow! It was so delicious! I set some aside for lunch tomorrow and popped the rest in the freezer! I can’t wait to have company over so I can make this for them! :)

    • Ramona September 3, 2017 at 10:51 am - Reply

      Alicia, yay! So glad you liked it! It’s one of those recipes that just takes a few simple quality ingredients and makes something wonderful :)

  10. Kay Woodworth September 16, 2017 at 3:29 pm - Reply

    I just put my first tray of beautiful tomatoes, garlic and oions into the oven. I am anxiously awaiting the aroma to fill the house. Thank you for a simple and delicious recipe.

    • Ramona September 16, 2017 at 8:09 pm - Reply

      You are so very welcome, Kay! I hope you enjoy it!

  11. Lynn October 15, 2017 at 6:10 pm - Reply

    I came across this post today as I knew we had a bunch of ripe tomatoes in the garden. I have to say I in a way messed up the first batch only because I think I cut the tomatoes too thin. However, because this was such an easy recipe I simply threw another batch in and then combined the two. This recipe smelt, looked and tasted soooo good! I have since shared it with multiple people! Thank you for sharing such an easy yet delicious recipe!

    • Ramona October 15, 2017 at 8:00 pm - Reply

      You’re so welcome Lynn! It’s crazy when you figure out that such a delicious sauce is so easy to make. Perfect for a garden full of tomatoes! When I have lots of tomatoes, I make extra sauce and freeze it to enjoy later.

  12. Michelle August 26, 2018 at 12:22 am - Reply

    I picked an abundance of Early Girl in my garden today and decided to try out your recipe. I halved the tomatoes, squeezed them gently to remove the seeds and extra liquid. Instead of slicing them I just put them cut side up in half and it worked beautifully. No longer than 5 minutes after I slid them onto the oven rack did my husband miraculously appear from the basement. The smell was divine! I did use all of the garlic because we are a garlicky family and it was the perfect thickness and running it through the blender for a minute or so. Going to try this with La Romas next to see what difference it makes. Never have I had an easier sauce recipe! I was dreading the peeling this year and thought your recipe might be too go to be true. However, I have “taste tested” this by the spoonful before it cooled and made it into the freezer. Thanks for the wonderful recipe.

    • Ramona August 26, 2018 at 11:46 am - Reply

      Michelle, it’s kind of hard to believe how easy and delicious this recipe is. I, too, dread all that peeling, so this is like a little miracle recipe and a great way to keep those delicious summer tomatoes on hand all year round. Sounds like you’ve got an amazing tomato harvest to work with. I’m a little jealous :)

Leave A Comment

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Do NOT follow this link or you will be banned from the site!