Pantry/Freezer Vegetarian Pasta Sauce

serves 4-6

  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 cup frozen chopped onions
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons dried basil
  • 1 tablespoon jarred minced garlic
  • 2 teaspoons dried oregano
  • 1 teaspoon paprika
  • 1/4 teaspoon dried red pepper flakes
  • 1 x 28-ounce can crushed tomatoes
  • 1 x 14-ounce can diced tomatoes, drained
  • 8 ounces frozen pepper strips, or chopped peppers
  • 1 x 4-ounce can mushrooms, drained
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper

***Measure out all your ingredients before you start cooking. You will be a calmer, more focused cook. (This is also known as “mise en place”.)***

  1. Heat the olive oil in a 12-inch skillet over medium heat until it is shimmering.
  2. Add the onions, basil, garlic, oregano, paprika, and red pepper flakes to the skillet, and cook for 2 minutes, stirring to prevent the mixture from burning.
  3. Add both kinds of tomatoes, peppers, and mushrooms to the skillet, stir to combine, and bring to a simmer (small, frequent bubbles). Adjust the heat as needed to maintain a simmer, and cook for 15-20 minutes, stirring frequently, until the sauce is thickened a bit, and the herbs have softened and released their aromas.
  4. Season with salt and pepper and taste. Add a bit more salt and/or pepper if you like. Remove from heat. Serve over hot pasta or polenta.

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