Our Paleo Family

Hidden Veggie Tomato Sauce

Here you have my basic tomato sauce recipe. But tomato sauce is not really accurate because it contains tons of different vegetables. Lucky for you though, once you blend it up, it looks like regular tomato sauce, you know, the kind kids will always eat! The flavor in this sauce cannot be beat. It’s very hearty and almost meaty tasting even without the addition of meat.

Yes, it takes a little more effort than opening a jar, but it tastes WAYYY better and is WAYYY better for you.

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Being paleo and all, we naturally add meat to this to make a complete meal. You can serve this over spaghetti squash or other squash or veggie noodles. You can get an entire day’s worth of vegetables in one meal with this sauce served over veggie noodles.

In the notes below, I’ll give instructions on how to bake spaghetti squash. I’m also making this dish live on Facebook.com/KidCasts Thursday, September 15, 2016 at 7:30 EDT.

Here’s the video in case you missed it live and want to watch:

If you’re following the autoimmune protocol (or AIP) and have a hankering for tomato sauce, check out my Hearty Nomato Sauce recipe. It is so amazing you won’t miss the tomato at all!

Once you make this basic tomato sauce, you can add Italian herbs (basil, oregano, parsley) to turn it into sauce for spaghetti or lasagna or chicken cacciatore or chicken parmesan, you get the idea. You could add chili powder, smoked paprika and beef to make a hearty chili.

I also use this same base for beef and vegetable soup. Sometimes I blend the sauce as I did in the video and sometime I leave it all chunky. Then I add a pound of ground beef or chunks of stew beef and about a quart of beef or chicken broth. So tasty and nourishing. Perfect for the cooler weather just around the corner. Oh please say cooler weather is just around the corner.

Hidden Veggie Tomato Sauce
Print Recipe
A veritable vegetable bonanza! And because you blend it all up, your picky kiddos will not even know they're eating tons of veggies!
Servings Prep Time
6-8 servings 15 minutes
Cook Time
60 minutes
Servings Prep Time
6-8 servings 15 minutes
Cook Time
60 minutes
Hidden Veggie Tomato Sauce
Print Recipe
A veritable vegetable bonanza! And because you blend it all up, your picky kiddos will not even know they're eating tons of veggies!
Servings Prep Time
6-8 servings 15 minutes
Cook Time
60 minutes
Servings Prep Time
6-8 servings 15 minutes
Cook Time
60 minutes
Ingredients
Servings: servings
Instructions
  1. Heat a large heavy sauce pan or dutch oven over medium high heat. Add oil and swirl to coat bottom of pan.
  2. Chop onion roughly (don't worry about exact, small sizes because you will be blending later). Add to pan with a little salt and pepper and cook for about 5 minutes, stirring frequently.
  3. Chop celery and carrots and add to pan. Cook, stirring occasionally for 5 minutes then add in the rest of your chopped veggies. Cook and stir until vegetables begin to caramelize (turn brown). Sprinkle in a little more of the salt and pepper. Now add your chopped garlic and stir. Cook 1-2 more minutes. Add tomato paste. Stir in well and allow to brown for 2-3 minutes.
  4. Add one cup of broth and the coconut aminos and scrape up any browned bits from the bottom of the pan. Now add the entire can of crushed tomatoes. Rinse the can with a little water and add that in as well. Taste for seasoning and add more salt and pepper if needed. If your sauce tastes too acidic, add the honey or maple syrup. Tomatoes are a real food and some are more acidic than others. A little sweetener will knock that right out. But it's not always necessary, so taste before you add the sugar.
  5. Now simmer away for 15-20 minutes.
  6. It's time to blend. I use an immersion or stick blender** but you can also transfer your sauce to a blender, blend the sauce until smooth then transfer back to your pot. Taste for seasoning and adjust if necessary. Also adjust thickness if necessary. If your sauce is more runny than you would like, allow it to simmer longer and it will reduce. If it is thicker than you like, add more broth.
  7. Add meat if you so choose. You can serve this right away or allow it to cool slightly and freeze for busy nights down the road. If you are planning to freeze, I suggest doing so before adding meat.
To Bake Spaghetti Squash
  1. Wash the outside of the squash. Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Prick the squash a few times all around with the point of a sharp knife. Place squash on a rimmed baking sheet covered with parchment or foil. Bake 15 minutes.
  2. Carefully, remove squash and cut in half. Remove seeds and membrane from the center of the squash.
  3. Place squash halves on the same pan, cut side down. Bake 30-45 minutes until a knife pierces the flesh easily. Allow to cool until you can handle it.
  4. Using a fork, separate the strands of "spaghetti."
  5. If you want, you can shred the squash into a colander, over a plate or dish, add a little salt to the squash, toss it around, and some of the excess water will be drawn out. This just keeps you from getting a big puddle of water seeping out of the squash on your plate. If that puddle doesn't bother you, you can skip this step.
Recipe Notes

*tomato paste: this tomato paste comes in a tube and makes it really easy to add just a tablespoon or two to your dish. There are many different brands. Find it right alongside the canned tomato products in your grocery store.

**immersion or stick blender: I have this one from Cuisinart. I've had it for years and it still works great. I use it to blend sauces, creamy soups like butternut squash and for making mayonnaise and smoothies. It's easier than getting out the big blender. Clean up is quick and easy. With recipes like this sauce, it's much easier to blend it right in the pot than worry with transferring hot liquid to a blender and then back to the pot. For $20, this is a tool worth adding to your kitchen.

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