As college students, we often default to pasta and store-bought, canned marinara sauces for an easy meal in. However, after several meals of the same fare, even the traditional flavors start to taste the same. Spoon has a solution for you. Make this easy marinara sauce and store it in the fridge for a lazy, rainy day.

Homemade Marinara Sauce

  • Prep Time:10 minutes
  • Cook Time:30 minutes
  • Total Time:40 minutes
  • Servings:8-10
  • Easy


  • 3 cup tomatoes, chopped
  • 4 mushrooms, sliced
  • 1 onion, sliced
  • 6-8 fresh basil leaves
  • 8 garlic cloves, chopped
  • Salt
  • Pepper
Photo by Jocelyn Hsu
  • Step 1

    Chop the tomatoes and garlic. Slice the mushrooms and onion. You can also dice the onions if you prefer them to be more “invisible.”

    Photo by Jocelyn Hsu
  • Step 2

    Add oil to the pan. Sauté onions with a pinch of salt and pepper.

  • Step 3

    Once the onions start to brown, add garlic and continue cooking for another minute.

    Photo by Jocelyn Hsu
  • Step 4

    Add tomatoes and about one teaspoon each of salt and ground pepper.

    Photo by Jocelyn Hsu
  • Step 5

    Cook on medium heat for about 20 minutes. Be sure to continue stirring every few minutes so nothing sticks to the bottom of the pan.

    Spoon tip: If the sauce looks too watery, add a pinch of flour or corn starch to thicken.

    Photo by Jocelyn Hsu
  • Step 6

    Add mushrooms and cook for another 5 minutes. Season with another pinch of salt.

    Spoon tip: Taste the sauce to see if it’s seasoned the way you like. If not, add more salt and pepper.

    Photo by Jocelyn Hsu
  • Step 7

    Add several leaves of fresh basil. Cook for another minute or two.

    Photo by Jocelyn Hsu
  • Step 8

    Store the sauce in a mason jar or serve with pasta.

    Photo by Jocelyn Hsu