Spaghetti sauce

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Assistant Cook
Jun 11, 2010
I make a thick sphagetti sauce using ground meat and onions added to a Ragu bottled sauce (plus a little red pepper, Worcester sauce, brown sugar and tomato paste). However, I now find it very bland and eating it is just like spooning down oatmeal. I would like it to have a sharp, biting Marinara taste combined with sweetness, just like the best pizza sauce you've ever tasted - is this possible? What could I add ? If necessary, I would be prepared to start from 'scratch'. Appreciate any help - my taste buds are revolting.
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I would start from scratch. Skip the bottle.

A basic tomato sauce contains onion, garlic, salt, pepper, basil and tomato. What you do beyond that is how you make it into what you are looking for.

I personally don't care for a sweet sauce so I never use any kind of sugar. I do add tomato paste to help counteract the acidity of canned tomatoes.

Worcestershire sauce is a novel addition to pasta sauce. If you like what it brings, then leave it in. Red pepper flakes add that sing you are looking for.

If you're using ground meat, start with that and brown it to a dark brown before adding anything else. I use ground pork.

Bell or cubanelle peppers and crimini mushrooms are a good addition.

Simmer the sauce uncovered or partially uncovered to reduce and thicken it.
certain tomato flavors are definitely brought out by using wine. make sure you give it time to cook through...raw wine in a sauce is not good eats.
I don't use much basil, I like oregano, fennel, and red pepper flakes.
If you combine Andy's, Kayelle's, and Wyogal's suggestions then that would be a perfect sauce from where I sit.
Another thought.......In addition to ground beef, I often add hot Italian sausage, casings removed, crumbled, and saute' with the beef. This gives it an additional texture, and very nice "punch" to the sauce.
I would add that the longer you cook it the deeper the flavour. I do mine on the lowest heat for a minimum of two hours. Five is better. When it gets a little dry while cooking, instead of a splash of water or stock I add half a cup of full fat milk. I find it tenderises the meat wonderfully.
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