Homemade Pizza Sauce

Here is my friend’s famous pizza sauce recipe, as per yesterday’s  request by “fellow midwesterner”!

First of all, to make pizza sauce, we start with tomato sauce.

Tomato Sauce (taken from the Ball Blue Book of Preserving)

  • 45 lbs of tomatoes (paste tomatoes thicken up the best)
  • bottled lemon juice

Wash tomatoes; drain. Remove core and blossom. Cut into quarters; simmer 20 minutes in a large sauce pot, stirring occasionally. Puree tomatoes in a food processor or food mill.  Strain puree to remove seeds and peels.  Cook pulp in a large, uncovered sauce pot over med-high heat until sauce thickens, stirring to prevent sticking. Reduce volume by one-half. Add 1 TB bottled lemon juice to each pint jar, 2 TB to each quart jar. Ladle hot sauce into hot jars, leaving 1/2 inch headspace. Adjust two-piece caps. Process pints 35 minutes, quarts 40 minutes, in a boiling water canner.

Okay. Once you have your tomato sauce, you can use it to make pizza sauce for the freezer! That recipe follows, but first:

***Be sure to read this paragraph!***

Notice that this pizza sauce recipe can be made with either store-bought tomato sauce plus tomato paste, or home-canned tomato sauce. If you use home-canned, make sure your home-canned sauce is thick by using paste tomatoes, and/or lengthening the time you cook your tomatoes before canning. The longer they cook, the thicker it gets, but your volume is also reduced.  So the following recipe assumes you will use store-bought sauce and tomato paste. If you use home-canned, thicker sauce, then you can eliminate buying tomato paste from the grocery store and use approx. 41 oz of home-canned sauce. If your home-canned sauce is not very thick, you may add the 12 oz can of tomato paste to it to thicken it, and keep to the 29 oz of tomato sauce. Hopefully that was clearer than mud.

Homemade Pizza Sauce

  • 1 can (29 oz) tomato sauce
  • 1 can (12 oz) tomato paste
  • 1 TB Italian seasoning
  • 1 TB dried oregano
  • 1-2 tsp fennel seed, crushed (optional–fennel seed has a unique taste, we don’t like it much)
  • 1 tsp onion powder
  • 1 tsp garlic powder
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • sugar to taste (start tasting at 1-2 tsp)

We also add a little marjoram, basil, thyme–all of these taste good in Italian dishes. Play around with the spices that your family appreciates, and leave out the ones they don’t.  You may also leave the sugar out. We think it plays down the tangy-ness of the sauce.

In a saucepan, over medium heat, combine tomato sauce and paste. Add remaining ingredients; mix well. Bring to a boil, stirring constantly. Reduce heat; cover and simmer for 1 hour, stirring occasionally. Cool. Pour into freezer containers, leaving 1/2 inch headspace. Freeze for up to 12 months.

This recipe also may be canned following the Ball’s Blue Book of Preserving directions for “seasoned tomato sauce” which says to add 1 TB bottled lemon juice to each pint jar, 2 TB bottled lemon juice to each quart jar. Ladle hot sauce into hot jars, leaving 1/2 inch headspace. Adjust two-piece caps. Process pints 35 minutes, quarts 40 minutes in a boiling water canner.

This super yummy pizza sauce is extremely good with the following recipes:

Homemade Pizza Pockets

Homemade Pizza Dough

4 thoughts on “Homemade Pizza Sauce”

  1. Awesome! Thank you so much, Mary!! Will let you know how I fare with it! Have a great week!

  2. Thank you so much for posting this recipe. I have been using this same recipe for years after recieving it from my mother in law. I absolutely love it,but my recipe did not include canning instructions, only freezing instructions. I am an avid canner and like the convenience of not having to that things. I was concerned about canning this in a water bath because of the addition of spices, not knowing the acidity of commercial sauce. I considered pressure cooking, but didn’t know for how long. Thank you again.

  3. You gals are so welcome!

    Heather, I love canning also! And it is SO much more fun with my girls, or friends, or whoever I can drag in on the process! Then to watch those jars line up on my shelves downstairs–there is no feeling of accomplishment that matches when it comes to homemaking! ;O) Have fun with it!

  4. If I am using commercial tomato paste (a 6#15oz. can) as my base for tomato sauce what is the canning processing time? The reason I ask is Ball Canning gives the processing time for pints as 35 minutes for pints but that is with using your own tomatoes. Commercial tomato paste has already been processed so I would think the canning time wouldn’t be as long. Just enough to seal the lids I would think. Any thoughts? Thanks.

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