8 Ways to Elevate Canned Spaghetti Sauce
It’s Buttered Side Up, according to The Pioneer Woman I know what some of you are thinking: “Canned spaghetti sauce?! What are you talking about?” “That’s the work of the Devil!” I’m quite sure we can all agree that the finest spaghetti sauce will always be fresh, homemade spaghetti sauce. The same can be said for practically any handmade cuisine vs store-bought food. The fact is that we all have those days when our schedules are too hectic to devote the necessary time to making a great pasta sauce.
In the meanwhile, we’d want to eat something that genuinely resembles wholesome home-cooked fare.
When it comes to pasta sauces, I’ll be the first to say that the majority of them are rather bland straight from the jar.
My favorite techniques to make bottled spaghetti sauce more interesting are listed below!
1 – Extra virgin olive oil
The Pioneer Woman’s “Buttered Side Up” I understand what some of you are thinking: “Canned spaghetti sauce?! What are you talking about?” The devil himself is behind that! Everyone, I believe, will agree that fresh, homemade spaghetti sauce is the finest thing to eat at any time. This is true of practically any handmade cuisine compared to store-bought food, including baked goods. However, we all have those days when we simply don’t have the time to properly boil a spaghetti sauce till it is ready.
Even yet, we’d want to eat something that genuinely resembles decent home-cooked cuisine as often as possible.
When it comes to pasta sauces, I’ll be the first to confess that the majority of them are somewhat bland right from the jar.
My favorite techniques to make canned spaghetti sauce more appealing are listed below!
2 – Fresh garlic
Yes, I am aware that the ingredients for your bottled spaghetti sauce include garlic. The flavor will be more distinct and intense if you use fresh garlic, and the sauce will taste more homemade if you do it as well as you can.
3 – Meat
I enjoy adding extra protein to bottled spaghetti sauce when I make it from scratch. It enhances the flavor and adds a textural aspect to the dish. Furthermore, it will assist you in keeping your stomach full for a longer period of time! You may use any meat you have on hand, such as ground beef, sausage, meatballs, chicken, or a combination of meats.
Begin by browning the beef in a skillet with the garlic until it is no longer pink. When the meat is just partly done, you may add the sauce and let it to continue cooking in the sauce, which will give additional flavor to the meat.
4 – Hot pepper flakes
Hot pepper flakes are another method to add a little additional spice to your dish. Yes, you could just buy hot Italian sausage for that extra burst of heat, but for those of us who are a little wary of spicy food, it’s good to be able to regulate the amount of heat we’re exposed to. Furthermore, some meats, such as ground beef, do not have a “hot” option. When you add the pepper flakes, it doesn’t really matter when you do it. All you have to do is keep in mind what it is you want spicy: the meat or the sauce?
And, no, I did not use all of the hot pepper flakes—just thinking about it makes me want to start sweating already!
5 – Red wine
Wine dramatically enhances the flavor of your sauce by adding another layer of complexity. Consider this to be similar to vanilla extract. Given the limited time available to cook out the alcohol, you want to use only a small amount, just enough to flavor the sauce without imparting too much of an alcohol flavor. Depending on how much sauce you’re preparing, a few of teaspoons should be plenty.
6 – Fresh or dried herbs
Again, herbs may be included among the components in your sauce, but adding fresh or even dried herbs can assist to enhance the tastes. If you are using dried herbs, you may add them at any point throughout the cooking process. Using fresh herbs, you may wish to add them at the end or as a garnish to ensure that the fresh flavor is not lost in the cooking process.
7 – Cheese
Cheese, cheese, cheese. It may be used to conceal a variety of sins, including monotonous spaghetti sauces. If you don’t have Parmesan on hand, you can easily use cheddar, Colby, mozzarella, or whatever else you have on hand instead. I really prefer to use a blend of cheeses, such as mozzarella, that are more melty and a cheese that has more bite, such as Parmesan, in my dishes.
8 – Cream and/or butter
A buddy of mine taught me how to make a tomato sauce with cream for the first time. A red sauce had been prepared, and towards the end, after plating the pasta and sauce, he drizzled heavy cream on top of the dish. While I was watching, I was little terrified that the acidity of the tomatoes might cause the cream to split. However, after tasting the concoction, I was persuaded otherwise. It was just great. As an added richness, I like to sprinkle a small amount of cream on top of my spaghetti sauce before serving.
Make sure to tell us about your favorite additions in the comments section below!
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How to Make Jarred Tomato Sauce Taste Homemade
Catherine De Orio, a friend of ours, is a chef, national culinary expert, and host of a cooking program. Aren’t we fortunate? When it comes to cooking hints and suggestions, she’s a fantastic resource to have on hand. She shares a few semi-homemade secrets with us in this section. Find out how to make jarred spaghetti sauce taste even better (almost if you prepared it from yourself) by continuing reading. Tomato sauce is one of my favorite foods. The fragrance of tomato sauce, referred to as “gravy” in my family, simmering all day on a Sunday burner brings back happy memories of time spent at home with my family and friends.
Here are ten steps to transforming a jar of store-bought spaghetti sauce into something more like home.
Step 1: Build A Flavorful Foundation
Everything tastes better when the garlic and onions are sautéed together. Finely chopped onions and garlic are sautéed in olive oil until aromatic and golden, then the sauce is added and let to simmer for a few minutes to allow the flavors to blend.
Step 2: Spice It Up
Crushed red pepper can be added to the sauce to give it a little heat.
Step 3: Go Green
Simmer the fresh herbs (basil, oregano, rosemary, bay leaf) for a few minutes until they release their flavorful punch into the dish.
Step 4: Veg Out
Because many prepared sauces contain sugar, I prefer savory veggies such as mushrooms rather than sweet vegetables such as carrots. Make careful to brown the vegetables a little before adding them to the sauce to bring out their natural flavors.
Step 5: Thicken It Up
With a spoonful of Hunt’s tomato paste, you can thicken the sauce a little bit while also adding depth and richness to it.
Step 6: Add Body With Pasta Water
If you’re serving the sauce over pasta, save a small amount of the salty, starchy water (approximately 1/4 cup) aside; it will give the sauce body and help it cover the pasta better.
Step 7: More Cheese, Please
While the sauce is boiling, crumble in the rind of a piece of Parmesan cheese to give it a nutty, salty flavor that will complement the dish. Grated parmesan or pecorino cheese over the meal just before serving is a nice finishing touch. Do you want something a little heartier? Add a couple of tablespoons of ricotta cheese to make a rich and creamy tomato sauce by spooning it in.
Step 8: Carnivore Cravings
Using your preferred ground meat—I enjoy a combination of beef, veal, and pork—make your sandwich. You may also use lamb or neck bones if you choose. Brown the beef and drain off any extra fat before adding it to the sauce and allowing it to simmer. While it is simmering, skim off any fat that has risen to the surface.
Step 9: Wine About It
Take your favorite wine (I like to use a Sangiovese) and deglaze the pan after sautéing meat or vegetables so that all of the delicious brown pieces, known as fond, may be incorporated into your sauce and served over pasta or rice. Pour yourself a drink of wine while you’re doing it, because I always find cooking to be more soothing when I have a bottle of wine in hand!
Step 10: Simmer Down Now
It’s true what they say about not having to cook sauce all day, but it should simmer for a few minutes at the very least.
You can, however, reduce the amount of time required. After a nice 20- to 30-minute simmer, you’ll have a lot richer, more delicious sauce to show for it.
Catherine De Orio is a television personality, chef, and national culinary expert who specializes in fine dining.
10 Easy Tricks to Make Store-Bought Pasta Sauce Taste Homemade
There’s nothing better than fresh, handmade tomato sauce, but in order for the flavors to properly emerge, the sauce should be simmered for several hours. And while it is very worthwhile to do so if you have the time, it is not always possible on some evenings. That is where the pre-made items come into play. Jarred pasta sauce isn’t the same as fresh pasta sauce, but it’s a cinch to spice up when you’re in a hurry and need something delicious. Here are 10 tips for making store-bought spaghetti or marinara sauce taste like you cooked it yourself if you don’t want anybody to find out about your “secret recipe.”
1. Start with Sautéed Vegetables
Prepare the veggies by chopping them up and sautéing them in a little oil before adding the sauce. Onions, peppers, carrots, and garlic are all fantastic additions, but you may use any vegetables you choose. The idea is to include some sort of fresh vegetable to give it the appearance and flavor like a freshly produced homemade sauce.
2. Add Some Meat
Grease a skillet with ground beef, turkey, or sausage to add gobs of flavor to your sauce while also making it heartier and more substantial. However, make sure to drain it well before adding the remaining ingredients because you do not want any excess oil in your sauce.
3. Spice It Up
A few herbs and spices may make a significant difference in the flavor of a pre-made sauce. If you enjoy a little spice, you may add a teaspoon or two of thyme, oregano, basil, or even a little sprinkle of red pepper flakes to the dish. It’s important to realize that some of these components may already be present in your sauce, so don’t go crazy with them. If the sauce appears to be too liquid, thicken it with a few teaspoons of tomato paste to give it a richer tomato flavor while also thickening it.
4. Deglaze Your Pan
Cooking vegetables or meat in a pan before adding the sauce will allow any portions that have adhered to the bottom of the pan to come to the surface and be released more easily. This is referred to as deglazing, and it aids in the incorporation of all the ingredients into your sauce that would otherwise be burned on the surface of the cooking pan.
5. Add a Spoonful of Sugar
Although it may seem unusual, a small amount of sugar may help bring the flavors of a tomato sauce together. It helps to balance out the acidity of the tomatoes while also enhancing their natural sweetness. If your sauce is already acidic, a teaspoon to a tablespoon of vinegar should be plenty, and you may not need any at all. It’s all a question of personal choice.
6. Let It Simmer
Allow your sauce to boil for a few minutes if you have the luxury of time. Even if it’s only for 20 minutes, it will assist to concentrate the flavors and thicken the sauce significantly.
7. Throw in a Handful of Greens
By concealing greens in your spaghetti sauce, you may obtain an additional serving of veggies. Just before serving, add a handful of spinach, chopped kale, or basil strips to make a healthier, heartier sauce by stirring them in just before serving.
8. Save Some Pasta Water
Save some of the cooking water from your pasta and add it to your tomato sauce a few tablespoons at a time after it’s completed cooking, as needed.
The starchiness of the pasta water aids in the binding of the ingredients and the improvement of the texture.
9. Add a Little Dairy
Just before serving, whisk in roughly a half-cup of heavy cream or milk to make the sauce creamy and rich in texture. My personal preference is to use a scoop of ricotta cheese, but you can also use cream cheese, mascarpone cheese, or crème fraîche if you like. It imparts silkiness to the texture and improves the coating of the pasta. If you have any parmesan rind leftover, you may put it in as well while the dish is cooking to add richness to the flavor.
10. Finish with Butter
When the sauce has been cooked through and you’re ready to remove it from the heat, add a pat of butter and whisk well. It may appear unusual, but it is a tactic that expert cooks employ in a variety of sauces. A tablespoon or two increases the flavor depth and smoothness of the texture, while also helping to reduce the acidity of the dish. Are there any ways you use to jazz up canned spaghetti sauce that you would want to share? Please share your thoughts in the comments section. Do you want to learn how to use Microsoft Excel and improve your chances of landing a job working from home?
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Images courtesy of Shutterstock of sautéed onions, Bolognese sauce, jarred sauces, butter, and parmesan cheese
16 Ways to Gussy Up Store-Bought Spaghetti Sauce
My objective for most weekday dinners is to lessen the amount of time that elapses between the time I walk into my apartment and the time I eat pasta. It goes without saying that the ultimate achievement would be to walk through the door while eating pasta (or, if angels have come, to arrive home to a table already laden with macaroni and cheese). Instead, I normally make sauce from scratch in 30-ish minutes, which takes me around 30 minutes total: Boiling water while changing clothes; cooking noodles while sautéing greens with fresh garlic; adding pasta to greens with a splash of cooking liquid and ample quantities of pecorino, olive oil, and fresh herbs; dumping onto a serving dish By using the microwave and the glass jars of marinara sauce that we usually had on hand, my parents, on the other hand, were able to cut down on the time it took from door to pasta.
Cook the pasta and microwave the sauce, then combine the two ingredients and silence your eager crew of youngsters.
It is also quicker than simmering down canned tomatoes, which, despite the warnings, I don’t always keep on hand in my cupboard.
Some jars of tomato sauce are far superior to others in terms of taste and texture.
Look for sauces that are made with whole tomatoes and have no additional sugar. Here are some of Cook’s Illustrated’s favorite places to visit. Here’s how to quickly and simply dress up a jar of spaghetti sauce (even if it’s not fully homemade).
The bare-bones, do-this-one-thing approach:
1.Bring it to a simmer on the stovetop or in the oven. You may concentrate the taste of your sauce by cooking it down until part of the water has evaporated, leaving you with a sauce that is thicker and more tomato-flavored. Allow your sauce to simmer on the stovetop for at least 10 to 20 minutes while your pot of soup is heating up and your noodles are cooking. Alternatively, pour the sauce into a Dutch oven or baking dish and bake it at 300° F for about an hour, stirring occasionally. Yes, this will add a few more minutes to your cooking time, but you’ll need to heat up the sauce before mixing it with your pasta anyhow.
If you really want to go above and beyond (or if you’re an Instant Pot fanatic), try it this way.
Let’s assume you don’t have time to boil your sauce (or you’ve reduced it but it’s still missing flavor), you may add a dollop or two of tomato paste, which is a paste made from tomato paste.
Bonus points if you can extract the maximum amount of flavor from your tomato paste by sautéing it in hot olive oil before incorporating it into the sauce.
For extra credit, take on any—or all—of the following:
3.Explore your spice drawer and condiment cubby: If your sauce is lacking in depth and complexity, open your pantry or refrigerator and begin experimenting with different spices. Depending on your preferences, you may opt for hot (Sriracha, gochujang (Korean chili paste) or smokey (smoked paprika, sliced chipotles in adobo) or fruity (roasted red peppers, Calabrian chiles) and then mix and match until you reach your desired flavor profile. It’s important to taste frequently to avoid becoming overwhelmed by the flavors.
- An often-discarded cheese rind may make a pot of simple beans more salty and delicious, and it can also invigorate a stale tomato sauce by adding salt and savory flavors.
- 5.While we’re on the subject of a saltyje ne sais quoi, how about an anchovy?
- Add a few crushed garlic bulbs if you have them, then pour in your tomato sauce and bring everything to a simmer.
- 6.Make use of the nutritional benefits of sautéed veggies.
- I normally stick to the bare essentials of onion and garlic, although mirepoix or a couple handfuls of sliced mushrooms can make for tasty accompaniments.
- 7.Embrace the flavor of the garlic.Most store-bought sauces contain at least some garlic, but the flavor is typically muted by the time it reaches your table.
- If you want a deeper, sweeter taste, crush a few roasted garlic cloves and toss them into the sauce while it’s simmering to give it a richer, sweeter flavor.
Try apple cider vinegar, red wine vinegar, capers, chopped olives, or lemon juice as a base for your marinade or dressing.
In order to maintain as much vibrant freshness as possible, stir in the dressing at the conclusion of the cooking procedure.
A sprinkle or two of sugar can be used to balance an acidic sauce (it helps the medication to dissolve!).
Continue to cook the sauce while adding granulated sugar a sprinkle or two, stirring and tasting after each addition, until the sauce has reached your desired sweetness.
10.Brighten with a splash of brine.
After heating the sauce for a few minutes, toss in some chopped or whole, pitted olives and/or a handful of drained capers.
The following are examples of “basil leaves” that can be found floating around in store-bought jars.
To rectify the problem, add freshly torn basil towards the conclusion of the cooking process so that the scent of the basil permeates the entire pot of sauce.
Finish your sauce with a pat of butter, a splash of cream or coconut cream, or a tablespoon of yogurt, crème fraîche, or sour cream to make it rich and luscious in texture.
Just before serving, drizzle in a small amount of olive oil to give the sauce the same richness and sheen of butter without adding any dairy.
A spoonful of ricotta or mascarpone lends a little sweetness to the creaminess, while soft goat cheese or simply plain cream cheese adds tangy richness to the bland tomato sauce, bringing it to the next level.
15.Make it hearty and filling.
Tomato sauce goes well with crumbled Italian sausage (mild or hot for the heat-seekers), ground beef, pig, or lamb, all of which can be prepared in a variety of ways.
16.Make use of the pasta water that you have left behind.
Even while you won’t want to add a lot of water to the dish, a good spray of that starchy water will assist the sauce stick to the noodles (butyou knew that already). What are your favorite ways to jazz up store-bought sauce? Please share your thoughts in the comments section.
This Will Make Store-Bought Tomato Sauce Taste So Much Better
Additionally, it takes very little time. Cooking your own tomato sauce is a fantastic thing to do, but it is not always practical to do so throughout the course of a hectic weekday when dinner needs to be put together in a matter of minutes. Alternatively, you may be preparing a time-consuming meal such as lasagna and would like to save some time in the kitchen. Sometimes you simply have to crack open a jar of store-bought tomato sauce and eat it right now. There are several decent types of tomato sauce available at your local supermarket (we prefer Rao’s), but they might all benefit from a little improvement.
Never serve store-bought spaghetti sauce directly from the jar, even if you’re pouring it over something that’s sizzling hot, such as cooked pasta or meatballs, according to the package directions. It just takes a few minutes on the burner to bring all of the components together, which improves the flavor and scent of the finished product significantly. Allow the sauce to reduce on a low heat for 15 to 30 minutes, if you have the luxury of time. Sugar and other substances will be concentrated, resulting in a more intense flavor.
Yes, you are correct. Remove the pan from the heat and stir in a couple tablespoons of butter, letting it melt into the sauce. While using a small amount of butter to make tomato sauce may seem weird to some, it adds richness and smoothness to the sauce while also balancing out excessive acidity, which is prevalent in canned sauces.
Spice it up
If you’re using a simple tomato sauce (marinara), you may add seasonings to it to give it a little more taste. Red pepper flakes, dehydrated or fresh garlic, dried oregano, parsley, or basil, or an Italian seasoning mix are all excellent additions to a dish of roasted vegetables. Dried herbs and spices should be put at the beginning of the cooking period so that they have time to blossom before being cooked further. Fresh herbs, such as basil or oregano, should be added at the conclusion of the cooking process, just before serving the sauce.
In comparison to fresh herbs, the leaves have a slimy feel and don’t provide much flavor to the sauce, whereas fresh herbs do.
Doctored up Spaghetti Sauce (from a jar)
It has been doctored up I prepare spaghetti sauce virtually every single week, and it’s one of my favorite dishes. Beginning with a regular jar of store-bought spaghetti sauce, this method transforms it into a robust meat sauce that can be used in a variety of different meals. Everyone can agree that a red sauce usually tastes better after it has been allowed to sit for a number of days. Using a jar of sauce just adds to the flavor of the meat sauce, which has been simmering all day.
How to doctor up a jar of spaghetti sauce:
It all starts with the addition of vegetables and ground meat. The flavors of onion, bell pepper, and garlic are fantastic! This vegetable combination is the foundation of many of my meals, and for good reason!
I put the veggies in the pan with the meat at the same time and cook everything together until it’s done. It enhances the taste of the meat while also saving time. We often use ground beef, but you may substitute any of the other ingredients listed below.
What other kind of meat can you add to spaghetti sauce?
- Ground beef, ground turkey, Italian sausage (I would only advocate using this for half of your meat), and venison are all good options.
Once the meat and vegetables have been seasoned and cooked, you may add the jar of your favorite sauce, tomato paste, canned tomatoes, and any other ingredients you like. The sauce is then cooked for 20 minutes, after which you may add a handful of parmesan cheese for even more delectable flavor.
Recipes using spaghetti sauce:
- Cheesy Lasagna, Italian Pasta Bake, Stuffed Shells with Spinach, and more dishes are available.
Our favorite way to consume this pork sauce is over a simple spaghetti dish like this one! Simply cook your pasta, combine it with the sauce, then top it with more parmesan cheese to make it delicious! It is not uncommon for us to prepare a double batch of this doctored up spaghetti sauce and keep it in the freezer for a quick weekday supper. Simply defrost in the refrigerator before re-heating over a low heat in a saucepan.
Doctored up Spaghetti Sauce (from a jar)
Preparation time: 15 minutes Cooking Time: 25 minutes Course:dinner American and Italian cuisines are available. Servings:6people
- 2tablespoonsolive oil
- 2poundsground beef(or a mixture of beef and turkey)
- 1small yellow onion(diced)
- 1small green bell pepper(diced)
- 4garlic cloves(minced)
- 1teaspoongarlic powder
- 1teaspoonitalian seasoning
- 24ouncejar of store-bought pasta sauce
- 14.5ouncecan of petite diced tomatoesdrained
- Prepare the vegetables by chopping the onion and pepper, as well as mincing the garlic cloves, before starting. Heat a pan over medium heat and add the olive oil, ground beef, vegetables, and 1 teaspoon of salt
- Cook, stirring, until the ground meat is browned. To finish, cook until the meat is completely browned and the vegetables are tender. (Approximately 7-10 minutes)
- Remove the meat/vegetable combination from the pan and place it back in the pan with the fat
- Add in the spaghetti sauce, drained diced tomatoes, tomato paste, and another 1/2 teaspoon each of salt, garlic powder, and Italian seasoning
- Stir well to combine
- Serve immediately. Stir everything together, cover, and cook on low heat for 20 minutes After 20 minutes, throw in the parmesan cheese and mix well. Stir until the chocolate is melted
- Serve over spaghetti or chill and store in the refrigerator until ready to use.
13 Tips To Make Jarred Pasta Sauce Taste Homemade
How would you want to make that jar of store-bought spaghetti sauce taste more like the genuine thing? Here are some simple techniques for infusing handmade flavor into canned spaghetti sauce. In addition, I’ll share a simple recipe for transforming plain-Jane commercial marinara and spaghetti sauce into a chunky, meaty, spicy, irresistible sauce that’s perfect over your favorite linguini, tossed in your next penne bake, or spooned over roasted spaghetti squash (or any other squash you like).
It is common for me to keep a jar or two of plain marinara sauce on hand for quick and easy dinners, but that does not mean I use the pasta sauce straight out of the jar every time.
Here are some basic techniques and a couple of entertaining tactics for making your store-bought spaghetti sauce taste more like homemade.
1. Choose simple jarred pasta sauce
Buy simple marinara sauce to start with– preferably one that does not contain any sugar or corn syrup– and follow the recipe from there. The store-brandstend has shown to be the most effective for me. They often have the fewest ingredients and have the nicest taste. Also, avoid sauces that contain extra vegetables or are enhanced with cheese, as well as creamy sauces and wine-infused sauces. They don’t have the handmade flavor you’re looking for, yet it’s simple to achieve with a few ingredients from your refrigerator and pantry.
2. Choose the right pan
To doctor the pasta sauce into the pan, use a 10′′-12′′ skillet with 2′′ to 3′′ high edges and a tight-fitting cover. If you try to accomplish this in a 2-3 quart saucepan, it will take an eternity since saucepans are narrow and tall, rather than broad and shallow, and as a result, you will spend an excessive amount of time stirring and boiling down the vegetables, meat, and other components.
I prefer to cook in a large skillet, especially while cooking mushrooms, since it allows them to brown without being crowded. A larger, broader pan will impart more flavor and thicken the sauce more quickly, while also ensuring more equal cooking.
3. Load up on veggies
Fresh vegetables will breathe fresh life into your premade spaghetti sauce, but they must first be sautéed before being added to the sauce. Don’t put raw veggies immediately into the sauce; they’ll either be crunchy or will take an hour to soften depending on how long they’ve been cooking. Cook chopped veggies in a few tablespoons of olive oil, or some rendered fat from sausage or ground beef, until they’re soft and aromatic, about 10 minutes. This gives the spaghetti sauce a chunky handmade taste when combined with it.
Great veggie additions:
For those who like a rich meaty sauce, they can choose for a classic hamburger or experiment with some delectable alternatives. Cook your protein of choice in a skillet until it is browned, then transfer to a large mixing bowl. If there is any fat remaining in the skillet, drain it all except for about 1 tablespoon (which will be used to sauté the vegetables). You will not need as much if you are substituting pancetta, pepperoni, or salami for the bacon. If you’re making a 24-ounce jar of spaghetti sauce, one-half to three-quarter cup should be plenty.
- Ground beef, Italian sausage, ground pork, and leftover chicken are all good options.
- Ground turkey, ground chicken, pulled pork, ground bison
- All of these are options.
5. Raid the pantry
You’d be amazed at how nicely antipasto dishes pair with a classic pasta sauce like Alfredo. With the addition of olives, artichokes, and sweet roasted peppers, tinned tomato sauce will take on a whole new flavor profile. There’s no need to heat canned vegetables; simply drain them thoroughly and chop them finely (if necessary) to create a chunky pasta sauce that’s bursting with Italian flavors.
6. The spice jar
Incorporating dried herbs and spices into pre-made marinara can significantly improve its flavor and/or entirely modify the sauce’s appearance. Yes, the typical herbs such as basil, oregano, marjoram, and bay leaf are OK. However, a dash of cayenne pepper or some crushed red pepper flakes will give this dish a fiery, tempting kick. Also, try chopping up entire fennel seed to bring forth a subtle anise taste that is characteristic of Italy. Sauté the veggies with the spices for a few minutes, until the fragrances begin to fill the room.
It just takes a minute for the garlic to get aromatic, and if the chopped garlic is introduced too soon after the vegetables, it will burn.
7. The wino and I know…
Sauces made from jars benefit from a few sips of wine (red or white) or other types of alcohol to enhance their flavor. When it comes to wine, choose a brand that you enjoy drinking. It does not have to be an expensive bottle of wine; just a quality table wine would suffice. To make the sauce, use around 1/3 to 1/2 cup. Pro Tip: I pour the wine right into the pasta sauce container, screw on the top, then shake it up to mix everything together. The wine will loosen any remaining marinara sauce in the jar, allowing you to pour it directly into the spaghetti sauce together with the wine at the same time, saving you time.
Additionally, fortified wines like as sherry, vermouth, or marsala can be used; however, you’ll want to add them in lesser quantities at first, around 1-2 teaspoons at a time, until you achieve the taste you desire.
8. Moo-ve over
Simple canned spaghetti sauce may be converted into a rich, creamy, and luxurious sauce by adding. you guessed it. cream. Cream. To thicken a store-bought marinara, whisk in heavy whipping cream (or normal) and cook at a moderate boil until the sauce has thickened. When heated, heavy whipping cream is sufficiently stable to ensure that it does not degrade. In comparison to whole milk, half and half has a lower fat level and is less rough; if you want to use half and half, wait until you’ve removed the sauce from the heat before whisking it in.
9. Let’s talk cheese
If you have a leftover rind of parmesan, pecorino romano, or other end-piece remains of hard Italian cheese, you may add them into your sauce to simmer while the rest of the ingredients cook (just be sure to fish it out before serving). Any pasta sauce that includes the rind will have a deeper umami flavor (or soup). Of course, you may always top your spaghetti with more cheese if you like. Consider using grated parmesan and pecorino cheese instead of the more traditional technique and topping your doctored-up spaghetti sauce with pieces of fresh mozzarella or a scoop of ricotta for an authentic flavor of home.
10. Fresh herbs
A parmesan rind, pecorino romano rind, or other end-piece leftovers of hard Italian cheese can be added to your sauce to simmer while the rest of the ingredients are prepared (just be sure to fish it out before serving). Adding the rind to any spaghetti sauce enhances the umami flavor (or soup). On top of that, more cheese may always be added to your pasta dish. Consider using grated parmesan and pecorino cheese instead of the more traditional technique and topping your doctored-up spaghetti sauce with pieces of fresh mozzarella or a scoop of ricotta to give it that home-style flavor.
11. Give it a little time
As soon as you’ve created your sauce, turn the heat down to medium low and allow it to simmer for 20 to 30 minutes to allow the flavors to blend. While cooking, stir the pot regularly, but keep it covered to prevent the contents from burning. That small amount of simmering time will undoubtedly improve your spaghetti sauce and bring out the taste of the chunky handmade ingredients.
12. Sea food? Eat it!
In the mood for seafood? It’s simple to make a store-bought spaghetti sauce more fish-friendly by substituting fresh seafood for the beef. Using your preferred vegetables, spices, and wine, make a canned pasta sauce and then top it with your favorite ingredients (in the shell for clams and mussels, or peeled shrimp). Stir occasionally for 10-12 minutes after covering with the lid. The shells will pop open, and you’ll have a delicious and simple Fruits de Mer on your hands. Canned sardines are my go-to ingredient for infusing marine flavor into any premade pasta sauce recipe.
They disintegrate in the sauce and leave a clean, saline taste that is not overbearing in the least bit. Give it a go. If you’re making a seafood pasta, you may exclude the dairy, cheese, and meat altogether. Add half a cup of clam juice to the mix to give it a more seafood taste (or evenClamato).
Great seafood and shellfish options:
- Clams (fresh or frozen)
- Shrimp (fresh or frozen)
- Bay scallops
- Canned sardines
- Mussels (fresh or canned)
- Clams (canned or fresh)
- Langostinos (fresh or frozen)
- Calamari, lobster tails, fresh or frozen crawfish tails (shelled), and other seafood are available.
13. Pasta water
If your sauce becomes too thick, use this restaurant tip and add roughly 1/2 ladle of pasta cooking water at a time until it thins down again. (In this case, the water in which the spaghetti is being cooked.) Not only will the water thin out the sauce, but the starch from the noodles will also give the sauce a little body and thickness. Grab a jar of marinara the next time you find yourself wondering, “What should I make for dinner?” then go through your refrigerator and pantry for ideas. It’s right there, and you can do it yourself.
What to serve with doctored up pasta sauce:
- Crispy Belgian Endive and Walnut Salad
- Crusty French Bread with Boursin Cheese
- Cheddar Chive Popovers
- Simple Green Leaf Salad with Shallot Vinaigrette Drop Biscuits made with only three ingredients
Cheater’s Spicy Turkey MushroomWine Pasta Sauce
The following is a classic method of enhancing a basic jar of marinara for pasta night. It’s thick, rich, and meaty, and it’s packed with easily recognizable vegetables. It goes well with pasta, zoodles, spaghetti squash, and other similar dishes. Course Course I: The Main Course Cuisines include American and Italian. Spaghetti sauce made by cheaters, spaghetti sauce made by cheaters Preparation time: 15 minutes Preparation time: 20 minutes Time allotted: 35 minutes Servings4
FOR DOCTORED MARINARA SAUCE:
- 2tablespoonssolive oil divided
- 1poundhot italian turkey sausage removed from casings
- 1/2bell pepperchopped
- 1 carrotpeeled and diced
- 1-2large cloves garlicminced
- 1/2taspoondried basil
- 1/2taspoondried oregano
- 1/4taspooncrushed red pepper flakes
- 1/2cupred wine
- 1/2cup Optional: garnish with fresh herbs such as parsley or basil
- Optional: parmesan rind
- In a skillet, heat one tablespoon of olive oil over medium high heat until shimmering. Break up the turkey sausage with the back of a spoon or fork once it has been added. Cook for 3-4 minutes, or until the vegetables are largely cooked. Transfer the meat to a large mixing basin and set it away for later
- Add 1 1/2 teaspoons of olive oil to the skillet and turn it back on to medium heat. Cook the mushrooms in a single layer, tossing them periodically, until they have reduced by approximately half and have browned, about 15 minutes. In a separate bowl, combine the onion, bell pepper, and carrots with the remaining 1 1/2 tablespoons of olive oil. Cook for 3-4 minutes, or until the vegetables are tender. Stir in the garlic, crushed fennel seed, basil, oregano, and red pepper flakes until everything is evenly distributed. Allow the garlic and herbs to cook for one minute, or until they are aromatic. Return the turkey to the stove and whisk in the marinara sauce and wine until well combined. You can boil the sauce with the rind of one or more parmesan cheeses if you have any leftover
- However, you must take the rind out before serving. Cover with a cover, decrease the heat to medium, and cook for 20 minutes, stirring periodically, until the vegetables are tender. If the sauce begins to burn or becomes too thick, you may thin it out by adding a little more wine (approximately 1/4 cup) or half a ladle of pasta water.
345 calories|23 grams of carbohydrates|22 grams of protein|18 grams of fat|5 grams of saturated fat|60 milligrams of cholesterol|1963 milligrams of sodium|1125 milligrams of potassium|6 grams of fiber|15 grams of sugar|3950 international units (IU) of vitamin A|70 milligrams of vitamin C|67 milligrams of calcium|13 milligrams of iron
Pin “13 Tips To Make Jarred Pasta Sauce Taste Homemade” For Later!
The original recipe yields a total of 20 servings. The ingredient list has been updated to match the number of servings stated.
- Melt the butter and olive oil in a small pan over medium-high heat until the butter is melted. Cook and toss the mushrooms in the butter mixture for 2 to 3 minutes, or until they are tender. Cook for about 20 minutes, or until the mushrooms are extremely black and shriveled in size, adding 1/4 cup red wine as needed to keep the liquid from boiling away. Advertisement: Place a large saucepan over medium heat and cook until boiling. Using a large skillet over medium-high heat, cook the ground beef with the onion, diced tomatoes, red pepper, green pepper, and garlic until the meat is thoroughly browned, about 10 minutes
- Season with oregano, basil, and rosemary. Add 3/4 cup red wine and the tomato paste to the meat mixture and stir well. Pour the spaghetti sauce into the saucepan and toss it around. Bring the mixture back to a simmer and cook until the flavors have melded, 10 to 30 minutes.
Per serving: 122 calories; 5.7 grams of protein; 10.2 grams of carbs; 5.7 grams of fat; 17.6 milligrams of cholesterol; 251 milligrams of sodium Nutrition in its entirety
How to Make Jar Pasta Sauce Better
In one serving: 122 calories; 5.7 grams of protein; 10.2 grams of carbs; 5.7 grams of fat; 17.6 milligrams of cholesterol; and 251 milligrams of sodium Complete and wholesome nourishment
7 Ways to Improve the Taste of Jar Pasta Sauce
For further information on how to improve the flavor of that jar of spaghetti sauce lying in your cabinet, consider the following seven suggestions:
1. Sautee Some Veggies
Start by sauteeing some garlic in olive oil on your stovetop before adding it to your container of spaghetti sauce. Even though garlic is listed as an ingredient in the majority of store-bought pasta sauces, adding fresh garlic will enhance the flavor and make it more distinct and robust. Overall, the sauce has a more handmade flavor as a result of this. Add some additional veggies to the pan with the garlic, such as sliced onions, chopped peppers, and carrots, and cook until the vegetables are tender.
In addition to providing an additional source of nutrients, adding fresh vegetables will result in a sauce that is hearty, tasty, and has a handmade taste.
2. Mix in Some Meat
After you’ve finished cooking your vegetables, you may use the same pan to brown some ground beef to add to your sauce at a later time. The addition of meat to your canned pasta sauce will do wonders for the flavor and quality of the sauce. The flavor of your sauce will be enhanced by browning and adding some sausage, turkey, chicken, or ground beef. This will also add more texture to your sauce, give it a heartier flavor, and improve the protein content. To obtain that authentic Italian flavor in your canned pasta sauce, Italian sausage is one of the best meats to use.
When sliced, crushed, or shaped into meatballs, Italian sausage may provide a savory dimension to your pasta dish that it otherwise would lack. As an added plus, including some protein-dense sausage into your spaghetti sauce helps keep your family feeling fuller for extended periods of time.
3. Add a Splash of Red Wine
Pour a small amount of red wine into the pan if you truly want to make restaurant-quality pasta sauce. With the addition of wine, the tastes of the sauce are elevated to a new level of complexity, giving jarred pasta sauce a depth that it would otherwise be lacking. For the same reason that you won’t have enough time to completely cook out the alcohol, you’ll want to use only a small amount of red wine in your sauce to enhance its flavor without imparting too much of an alcohol flavor — similar to baking with vanilla extract — to avoid a strong aftertaste of alcohol.
Then, using a wooden spoon, scrape the bottom of the pan to loosen any pieces of veggies or meat that have adhered to the bottom.
Culinary with the use of this stove tip will allow you to include tastes into your sauce that would otherwise have been burned onto the cooking surface.
4. Spice It Up
To make your canned spaghetti sauce taste like it came directly from the garden, use fresh herbs in addition to dried herbs. Even while the pre-made sauce may already contain certain herbs, adding your own will assist to improve the tastes of the dish overall. Adding strips of basil, a sprig of thyme, or a sprig of oregano to your sauce may elevate it to a whole new level. Although fresh herbs and spices have a stronger flavor, dried herbs and spices can be just as effective. Adding some red pepper flakes, a touch of parsley, and a pinch of salt and pepper to your bottled pasta sauce might help it stand out from the crowd.
If you really want to make your spaghetti sauce stand out, try using a stronger ingredient such as olives, lemon zest, or capers.
Along with these seasonings, you may add a little amount of tomato paste to the sauce to enhance the tomato taste and thicken it if it appears to be too liquid.
5. Get Cheesy
When it comes to cooking pasta, there are no restrictions on the amount of cheese that may be used. Incorporating cheese into your sauce might help to make the flavors of your sauce more complex. You may use a variety of cheeses in your sauces and pasta dishes, ranging from mozzarella to Parmesan, depending on what you’re creating and what you like. A softer cheese may improve the texture of your spaghetti by making it more pliable.
By way of example, topping the dish with a dollop of ricotta before serving it may give the sauce a pleasantly creamy texture. Make the spaghetti sauce smooth and silky by adding a few tablespoons of mascarpone, cream cheese, ricotta, or burrata to the mix.
6. Stir in More Dairy
The amount of cheese that can be used in the preparation of pasta is completely arbitrary. Cheese may help your sauce’s tastes become more nuanced by adding a sprinkle of cheese. You may use a variety of cheeses in your sauce and pasta recipe, ranging from mozzarella to Parmesan, depending on what you’re preparing. The texture of your spaghetti might be improved by using a softer cheese. As an example, placing a dollop of ricotta on top of a dish may give the sauce a deliciously creamy feel. Make the spaghetti sauce smooth and silky by adding a few tablespoons of mascarpone, cream cheese, ricotta, or burrata to the dish.
7. Pop It in the Oven
Using canned spaghetti sauce in a baked pasta dish is a recipe that will never go wrong. Pre-made pasta sauce bakes in the oven as the sugars caramelize as they cook down and deepen as they absorb flavors from other components in the dish as it bakes in the oven. Jarred pasta sauce is an excellent choice for baked pasta meals such as lasagna, meatballs, and baked ziti, among others.
Purchase Premio Italian Sausage at a Store Near You
The greatest ingredients available will ensure that your jarred pasta sauce is a hit with your family and friends. A broad range of Italian sausages are available from Premio Foods, all of which are produced from fresh ingredients with no fillers – just the way sausage should be! Along with traditional Italian sausage items, we also offer a variety of specialized Italian sausage selections that will enhance the flavor of your pasta meals even more. Find a Premio Foods sausage in a shop near you now if you want to transform your bottled spaghetti sauce into something that tastes like it came from a five-star restaurant.
5 Ways to Make Bland Pasta Sauce Taste Better — Home Cook World
The flavor of store-bought spaghetti sauce isn’t usually that impressive. To be sure, it can help you save time on a hectic day or relieve the stress of having to cook when you’re exhausted. It might also have a boring flavor that makes you question why you bought it in the first place. If the jarred pasta sauce that you got at the grocery store seems dull, I’m going to teach you five strategies for improving the flavor of the sauce in this article. You may use any of the techniques I’m going to share with you below to make sauces that are both tomato-based and cream-based.
Build a Base for Your Sauce
Creating a foundation for your sauce will assist you in taking it to the next level. Step 1.Preheat a frying pan over medium heat for 2-3 minutes with 2 tablespoons of olive oil, swirling the pan occasionally. 2.While the oil in the pan is heating, peel and cut one yellow onion into small cubes that are uniform in size. The oil in the pan has reached the proper temperature and is ready to be used for cooking when it begins to move about. Season the onion cubes with salt and freshly ground black pepper before adding them to the pan.
- Step 3.While you’re waiting, peel and mince 2 cloves of garlic.
- Step 4.As soon as you reach the fifth minute, pour the sauce into the pan and simmer it for 2 minutes, stirring constantly.
- If you like your pasta sauce to be more acidic, you may add 1 tablespoon of balsamic vinegar when you pour the canned sauce into the pan.
- Advertisements When it comes to cooking, it’s all about stacking flavors.
- In the case of a beef stew in which the meat and vegetables have been cooked in beef stock, the beef stock is referred to as the “base” of the stew.
- Your food will be unappealing since it will taste as though it lacks salt, is unpleasant, and lacks depth of flavor as a result of these factors.
- Despite the fact that not all food manufacturers get their formulas exactly right, even when they do, some batches might be less palatable than others.
- The sweetness of the onion is balanced by the pungency of the garlic.
The seasonings of salt and pepper help to balance them out. The olive oil, like any other cooking oil or fat, dissolves the flavor and scent components in your food and acts as a vehicle for the flavors and aromas to be carried throughout the rest of your dish. Advertisements
Simmer the Sauce in Pasta Water
Boil your pasta noodles in salted water until they are tender. Pasta water “should taste like the sea,” according to a popular phrase among Italian chefs. To put this into practice, a healthy sprinkle of sea salt should be used while cooking a regular-sized pasta pot of noodles. The proportions are 4 quarts (16 U.S. cups) water seasoned with 1 tablespoon of sea salt per 1 pound pasta if you choose to be more specific. As the pasta noodles rehydrate and cook, the salty water will season them with a salty flavor.
- Unavoidable evaporation and swelling of starch granules on the surface of your pasta will result in the pasta being watery, murky, and thick.
- Before you pour the remainder of it down the sink, save a cup of it for yourself.
- Alternatively, you may blend the two for optimum taste.
- The way it works is as follows.
- In a frying pan, heat 1-2 cooking spoons of salted and starchy pasta water over medium heat.
- Continue to cook the sauce until the liquid has evaporated and the sauce has attained your desired texture and thickness.
- The length of time it takes will vary depending on the stove, frying pan, and temperature.
- If the liquids in your pan escape, the sauce will reduce and thicken as a result of the reduction and thickening.
- As the liquid from the pan evaporates and the sauce thickens, the fragrances and flavors will become more and more concentrated as the sauce cooks.
Add Fresh Herbs to Your Sauce
Fresh herbs, such as basil, bay leaf, rosemary, and oregano, are fantastic sources of scent and flavor for your pasta sauce and may be used in place of dried herbs. Step 1. Finely cut a few of your favorite herbs and set them aside. Step 2.At the conclusion of the warming or cooking process, add them and mix for 10-15 seconds to combine. I prefer to add mine as soon as I’m through cooking and the pan has been removed from the heat source. While reheating or cooking, adding fresh herbs at the end helps them to release their flavors into the sauce without being cooked out of their nutrients.
Fresh herbs emit flavor chemicals that are extremely sensitive to high temperatures and extended cooking, which is why you should use caution while cooking with them.
Toss the Sauce With the Pasta Noodles
It doesn’t matter if you make the ideal sauce; your pasta meal will still taste dull if you don’t perform the following two things:
- Cook the noodles in plenty of salted water until they are tender. Toss the noodles in the sauce until they are well coated.
Are you having a hard time believing me? You can see the difference for yourself if you look at the two photographs below. The shot on the left shows fusilli with store-bought pasta sauce that hasn’t been thrown combined with any other ingredients. You can see fusilli and jarred pasta sauce on the right, which has been combined after being thrown together. When cooking pasta at home, tossing the spaghetti noodles with the sauce may make all the difference in the world in terms of flavor. A comparison between untossed (on the left) and tossed pasta (on the right) (right) Your spaghetti noodles’ surface appears smooth to the human eye, but it is actually riddled with microscopic holes and defects that are difficult to see.
Advertisements This results in the noodles smelling wonderful and tasting fantastic because they have absorbed all of the little fragrant and savory chemicals that have been released onto their surface during cooking.
The highest-quality pasta available in grocery shops is bronze-cut pasta, which is produced in bronze molds, resulting in a rough and porous surface on the noodle.
Grate Hard Cheese on Top of Your Pasta
As soon as you’ve finished plating your pasta meal, grate some hard Italian cheese on top to add a last touch of brininess and pungency to the finished product. Pecorino Romano, a hard cheese from Rome and its neighboring towns in the Lazio area that is made entirely of sheep’s milk and has a distinct fragrance and taste, is one of my favorite ingredients. You might alternatively use a replacement for Pecorino Romano, such as Parmigiano-Reggiano, Grana Padano, or aged Asiago cheese, in place of the original.
It is not necessary for store-bought spaghetti sauce to be bland. Jarred spaghetti sauce may be made to taste pretty darn excellent if you make a few little adjustments while reheating it in a frying pan (and simmer it for a little longer than you had originally planned). However, here’s the rub. Next time, you may just as easily create your own at home with a little olive oil, a couple of cloves of garlic, a can of tomatoes, salt, pepper, and a handful of fresh basil leaves, instead. It will not take you any more time than it would take you to improve the ready-made sauce that you purchased from the shop.
Here’s how to put it in the freezer for longer-term preservation.
Please share your thoughts with me and the rest of the readers of this piece in the comments section below.
Founder and Chief Editor Inventor Jim the Home Cook is the brains behind the Home Cook World concept. He gives his greatest culinary techniques, how- to’s, recipes, and equipment for folks who like cooking and eating at home in this section of his website.