Cook Time: 90 minutes

Makes: 2-3 quarts

This tasty tomato sauce is simple to make and uses only ingredients from the garden (plus butter). Serve atop pasta or zucchini noodles, or simply enjoy as a hearty soup.


  • 4 quarts ripe cherry tomatoes (or equivalent volume large tomatoes)
  • 2 medium onions
  • 2 cups fresh basil
  • 3-5 large garlic cloves
  • 1 stick butter
  • salt (for canning)
  • lemon juice (for canning)
  • mason jars (whatever size you’d prefer)


For the Sauce

  • melt the butter on low heat in a 5 or 6 quart pot, covered
  • chop onions and add to pot, let simmer over medium-low heat for 15-20 minutes or until translucent
  • meanwhile, thoroughly rinse all tomatoes 
  • quarter the tomatoes (or chop and core if using large tomatoes) and add to the simmered onions
  • increase heat to medium to reduce volume and thicken sauce, stir frequently
  • chop basil and garlic and add to sauce
  • continue stirring until desired consistency is achieved

For Canning

  • sanitize the mason jars, lids, ladle, and funnel in boiling water or warm water with dish detergent
  • carefully ladle the simmering sauce into the sanitized jars, leaving 1-2 cm of head space
  • add 1 tsp of salt and 1 tbsp lemon juice to each jar
  • stir with a sanitized chop stick/ thin utensil to remove all air bubbles
  • wipe down the rim of each jar with a clean cloth and seal lids
  • turn jars upside-down and cover with a towel for about 5 minutes
  • after 5 minutes, turn jars ride-side-up, add towel to top, and let cool overnight
  • jars should be vacuum sealed (lid popped in) and stable in the pantry for up to one year, any jars that have not sealed should be placed in the fridge and used within 2 weeks
  • if at any point in time a jar that was previously sealed pops out, discard it in the compost immediately, as this is the sign of potentially harmful bacteria producing gasses within the can

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