Slow Cooker Marinara Sauce – The Magical Slow Cooker

Slow Cooker Marinara Sauce - The Magical Slow Cooker
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Make a flavorful marinara sauce in your slow cooker. This recipe makes a huge batch, enough for using all week or freezing for later. You won’t want to buy marinara sauce after making this! We use this for spaghetti pizza and more.

You can make just about any sauce in the slow cooker! We also make a meaty spaghetti sauce and veggie-packed spaghetti sauce in our slow cooker.

marinara sauce in slow cooker, done cooking

Why this recipe works

The flavorful sauce simmers all day without needing any extra attention. Cooking on low for eight hours will make enough for 12 servings or eight larger servings, depending on how much marinara sauce you like on your dishes.

This recipe is easy to add to the crockpot so you can start your day and tackle other tasks knowing dinner is handled.

How to make marinara sauce in the crock pot

Ingredients

ingredients for marinara sauce on table
  • Crushed tomatoes -While you can certainly use and cook fresh tomatoes for this recipe, I prefer meals I can quickly prepare. In the interest of quick and easy, we’re using canned tomatoes in our recipe.
  • diced tomatoes – These will add texture to your sauce
  • white onions – Dice your onion small if you have picky eaters.
  • Garlic cloves – minced (add as much as you like! We love lots of garlic)
  • Seasonings – Dried oregano, dried basil, salt, pepper, sugar, and onion powder.

Step by Step Directions

Step 1 – Add everything to a 6-quart slow cooker. Stir.

uncooked ingredients for marinara sauce in slow cooker

Step 2 – Cover and cook on LOW for 8 hours, without opening the lid during the cooking time. You can do 5 hours on high if you are in a hurry.

marinara sauce in slow cooker before cooking

Step 3 – After the sauce is done cooking, uncover and let cool for about an hour before storing.

cooked marinara sauce in slow cooker with spoon

How to freeze

  • Cool the sauce completely before ladling it into storage bags. Freeze for no longer than 3 months for the best taste.
  • You can also store it in plastic or glass jars, leaving room at the top for the sauce to expand. Just remember that not all jars are made for the freezer, so check yours before you use them.
  • When you’re ready to use the frozen sauce, place the bag or jar of sauce in the fridge to thaw the day before it’s needed.
ribbed jar with marinara sauce in it

Recipe Tips and FAQs

Can I use fresh spices instead of dried?

You can always use fresh herbs if you have them on hand. I prefer to stick with dried spices because they store better and are less expensive. Feel free to add up to two teaspoons of your favorite herb or spice such as rosemary, thyme, oregano, or basil at the same time that you add in the onion powder and salt.

How long to cook marinara sauce in the slow cooker

I recommend eight hours on low, this delicious recipe really works best when you give it the whole 8 hours to simmer and let the spices really incorporate with the tomatoes for a rich flavor. You can do five hours on high if you are in a pinch.

Can I water bath can or pressure can this recipe?

Canning tomatoes needs a special formula of acidity. This recipe was not created for canning, it’s great for freezing though!

Meals to use up marinara sauce:

You can put it over anything from a meatball sub sandwich to eggplant parmesan. Use it as a dipping sauce for pizza rolls or garlic bread, or over-baked chicken with a bit of goat cheese on top. I like to use it for homemade pizza and lasagna. It’s also great with spaghetti squash or zoodles if you’re trying to avoid gluten!

With how easy it is to make this marinara sauce, there’s no reason why anyone should be without some delicious tomato sauce in their fridge or freezer. Plus, the peace of mind knowing you can defrost sauce quickly for a night when you need a quick meal is priceless!

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marinara sauce on a spoon coming from slow cooker

Slow Cooker Marinara Sauce

Make a big batch of marinara sauce and freeze the extra for later use!

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Pine
Missed

Race: hand

Kitchen: American

Prep Time: 15 minutes

Cook Time: 8 hours

Total Time: 8 hours 15 minutes

Services: 12 cups

calories: 85calories

Instructions:

  • Add everything to the slow cooker, stir. Cover and cook on LOW for 8 hours or HIGH for 4 hours, without opening the lid during the cooking time.

  • After the sauce is done cooking you can use right away. Or, uncover and let cool for about an hour before ladling into freezer storage bags. Plastic or glass jars can be used, the same way you would with freezer jam, leaving room at the top for the sauce to expand.

  • Freeze for up to 3 months.

  • To use, place the bag of sauce in the fridge to thaw the day before the sauce is needed.

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Recipe Notes:

Can I use fresh herbs?
You can always use fresh herbs if you have them on hand. I prefer to stick with dried spices because they store better and are less expensive. Feel free to add up one teaspoon of your favorite herb or spice such as rosemary, thyme, oregano, or basil at the same time that you add in the onion powder and salt.

Nutrition Information:

calories: 85calories | Carbohydrates: 20g | protein: 4g | Fat: 1g | Saturated Fat: 1g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g | Monounsaturated Fat: 1g | Sodium: 657mg | Potassium: 743mg | fiber: 5g | Sugar: 11g | Vitamin A: 517UI | Vitamin C: 26mg | Calcium: 107mg | Iron: 4mg

Nutrition info is auto-generated. This information is an estimate; if you are on a special diet, please use your own calculations.

Recipes that use marinara sauce:

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