Basic Tomato Sauce
Recipe type: Sauce, Vegetarian, Vegan, Gluten-Free
Makes: about 2¼ cups
Did you know that cooked tomatoes are higher in lycopene than raw tomatoes? Lycopene is an antioxidant known to help prevent prostate cancer. However, canned tomato soups and tomato sauces often have lots of added salt, sugar and preservatives. This recipe, adapted from Eating Well magazine, is so easy, you'll wonder why you ever bought pre-made sauce in the first place. Swap in your favourite herbs and spices, like basil or chili pepper flakes to your taste. Use this on pasta or pizza (like the pita pizza in this photo), or thin it out with water or broth for a tomato soup!
  • 1½ tsp (7 mL) olive oil
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 can (28 oz/796 mL) tomatoes, preferably no-salt-added (buy whole or diced tomatoes for a chunkier sauce; crushed tomatoes for a smoother sauce)
  • 2 Tbsp (30 mL) tomato paste
  • 2 tsp (10 mL) fresh chopped oregano, or ½ tsp dried
  • 1 tsp (5 mL) fresh thyme, or ¼ tsp dried
  • Salt & freshly ground pepper to taste
  1. Heat oil in a large saucepan over medium heat. Add garlic and sauté until lightly browned, about 2 minutes.
  2. Add tomatoes, tomato paste, oregano and thyme. Reduce heat to low and simmer, uncovered, stirring occasionally, until thickened, about 30 minutes. Season with salt and pepper.
  3. If using on pizza, cool to room temperature before spreading on dough.
Recipe by Vincci Tsui, RD | Calgary Registered Dietitian at