15-Minute Creamy Tomato Sauce – A Beautiful Mess

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In my mind, pasta is a cold-weather food, but for whatever reason, I have been in the mood for pasta all summer long. Ha. I wanted to share a super quick recipe for making your own creamy tomato sauce. The sauce will just about be done in the time it takes to boil the pasta (unless you make gnocchi because gnocchi is FAST).

This tomato sauce recipe uses canned whole peeled tomatoes along with a few fresh ingredients. But since it’s nearly tomato season where I live, I just want to remind you of this zesty tomato and orange sauce recipe I shared a few years ago. If you have fresh tomatoes and are looking for a sauce recipe, this is the one. It’s not nearly as quick as this recipe, but it’s worth the effort if you’re working with all fresh ingredients.

You don’t need much to make this sauce: canned tomatoes, a small onion or shallot, a couple cloves of garlic, and fresh or dried herbs. That plus a little salt and pepper and you’re in business to make this creamy tomato sauce. As the name suggests, I tend to stir a little cream (or half and half, or whole milk, just depending what I have) into the final sauce, but this is optional.

You simply cook all the ingredients together, then remove a few and blend until creamy. Simple but super delicious. You could absolutely change up the herbs; swapping fresh for dried if you need (or simply using a dry bay leaf if all else fails). You can also stir in other dried ingredients like cayenne or a few red pepper flakes if you want to add a little kick. This 15-minute tomato sauce recipe is very versatile and easy to change up slightly based on what you have or what you prefer.

The recipe below will make around 4-5 cups of sauce, so plenty for a big group or you will have leftovers. I love pasta leftovers! Makes a great workday lunch the next day. I also will often use leftover tomato sauce for other meals like this 30-minute sheet pan pizza recipe. Happy pasta boiling, friend! -Emma

15-Minute Creamy Tomato Sauce

  • 28 oz. whole, peeled tomatoes (1 can)
  • 1 shallot
  • 1-2 cloves garlic
  • 1 sprig basil, oregano, or rosemary
  • salt and pepper
  1. Cut the shallot in half, removing the end and papery skin. Peel and cut the garlic clove(s) in half as well.

  2. In a small to medium pot, combine the tomatoes, shallot, garlic, and herb sprig. Season with a little salt and pepper. Cook over high heat, covered, for 12-13 minutes.

  3. Remove the herb sprig and shallot pieces. Then blend until creamy with an immersion blender or in a food processor (or blender).

You can substitute the shallot for a small yellow onion. If you do not have any fresh herbs, you can use a dry bay leaf instead. 

Credits // Author and Photography: Emma Chapman. Photos edited with A Color Story Desktop.



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