There’s nothing quite like homemade spicy marinara sauce.
It’s fair to say that I’m a pasta sauce snob because I grew up with two grandmothers who both made marinara fresh every week. Both were fantastic home cooks having learned the ropes of the kitchen from their Italian mothers who immigrated to the United States.
Yes… my Italian roots are showing 🙂
When my parents lived with my dad’s family for a few years before going to live in Bologna, Italy, my mom had the opportunity to learn the in’s and out’s of making homemade sauce or gravy or whatever it is that you want to call it.
(My dad’s mother was absolutely an amazing cook, owned a grocery store WAY back in the day, and even cooked at a family-owned restaurant back in the 70s.)
Needless to say, I’ve been spoiled.
I pretty much hate every pre-made jarred pasta sauce on the market (with the rare exception of a few here and there).
And I’ve had the luck of learning how to make even more sauces from a chef here in Philadelphia who is from the Emilia-Romagna region of Italy.
I’m not sure why I’ve literally never shared this spicy marinara sauce before. It’s soooo easy!
How To Make Homemade Spicy Marinara Sauce
One thing I’ve learned to appreciate over the years is spice.
Not as in “there are spices in here”, but rather actual HEAT!
If you don’t like hot spicy food, then just omit the crushed red pepper flakes, and you’ll have a simple marinara.
If you want to add gluten-free meatballs, that’s pretty simple.
Cook them first using THIS meatball recipe.
OR buy them pre-made at the store. Most
varieties are pre-cooked so you simply need to heat them up and add them directly to the sauce.
This spicy marinara sauce is not some sort of thin, watery sauce that lacks flavor.
It’s got body and boldness that I find is often missing from jarred sauces.
It really sticks to (gluten free) pasta.
And you can use it to make any of the following meals or dishes absolutely outstanding:
- Killer pasta dish topping your favorite gluten free noodles
- Or top zucchini noodles or spaghetti squash instead (for low carb options)
- Use this in a homemade gluten free lasagna (Here’s how to make it)
- Topping a homemade pizza crust (or a pre-made one from the store)
- Make meatball sandwiches with it!
- Using as a dip for any sort of breaded and fried Italian appetizers or gluten free focaccia bread
Things You Never Thought To Ask (But Need To Know) About Storing Homemade Marinara Sauce
The general rule is that any fresh marinara could stay in the fridge for about 4 days before you’ve got to use it or freeze it.
Jarred sauces may be able to sit in the fridge longer since they may contain preservatives. That would keep them from getting moldy or going bad quickly.
Typically I’ll make more marinara sauce than what I immediately need and freeze the rest.
No matter whether you store or freeze your spicy marinara sauce, use glass containers over plastic.
The acids in the marinara sauce will discolor and kind of “eat away” at your plastic containers.
You could also consider freezing your homemade sauce in a freezer bag.
Try to push out as much air as possible, then lay it flat in the freezer (like on a baking sheet). This will allow for convenient storage.
No matter how you freeze marinara sauce, mark the container with the date that you made it and use it within 6 months.
Dishes To Pair With Your Spicy Marinara Sauce
Pear & Walnut Salad (that I discovered in a tiny restaurant in Florence, Italy)
Italian Wedding Soup (egg-free & paleo versions too!)
Grilled Veggie Salad (great any time of year and can even be made on an indoor grill)
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