10 Ways to Make Marinara Sauce Taste Better

Hey there, fellow foodies! Let me spill the beans on how to take your marinara sauce to the next level. Trust me, I’ve got 10 game-changing tricks up my sleeve that will make your taste buds dance with joy.

From using fresh tomatoes to adding a splash of wine, these simple yet effective techniques will have you saying ‘Mamma Mia!’ in no time.

So, grab your apron and get ready to elevate your marinara game like never before!

Marinara Sauce

Use Fresh Tomatoes

Using fresh tomatoes will make your marinara sauce taste much better.

When it comes to making a delicious marinara sauce, the quality of the ingredients is key. Instead of relying on canned tomatoes, opt for ripe, juicy tomatoes straight from the garden or local market. The vibrant flavor and natural sweetness of fresh tomatoes will elevate your sauce to a whole new level.

I love the process of slicing and dicing the tomatoes, feeling the soft flesh and smelling their enticing aroma. As I cook them down, their juices release, creating a rich and robust base for my marinara sauce. The result is a sauce that bursts with freshness and authenticity, making every bite a true delight.

Don’t underestimate the power of using fresh tomatoes in your marinara sauce – it’s a game-changer.

Add Herbs and Spices

By adding herbs and spices, you can enhance the flavor of your marinara sauce. I love experimenting with different combinations to create a burst of flavors in my sauce.

One of my go-to herbs is basil. Its fresh and slightly sweet aroma adds a delightful taste to the sauce. I also like to add oregano for a hint of earthiness and thyme for a touch of warmth. To spice things up, I sprinkle in some crushed red pepper flakes for a subtle kick. Garlic and onion powders are a must for that savory depth. Lastly, a pinch of sugar helps to balance out the acidity of the tomatoes.

Trust me, these herbs and spices will take your marinara sauce to a whole new level of deliciousness.

Roast the Tomatoes

To roast the tomatoes, simply preheat the oven and place them on a baking sheet.

I love roasting tomatoes for my marinara sauce because it adds a depth of flavor that you can’t get from just using fresh tomatoes. The heat from the oven caramelizes the sugars in the tomatoes, intensifying their natural sweetness.

It also gives them a slightly smoky taste, which pairs perfectly with the other ingredients in the sauce. I usually drizzle the tomatoes with olive oil and sprinkle them with salt and pepper before roasting. This helps to enhance the flavors even more.

After about 20-30 minutes in the oven, the tomatoes will be beautifully roasted and ready to be blended into a delicious marinara sauce. Trust me, once you try roasting the tomatoes, you’ll never go back to plain old fresh tomatoes again.

Incorporate Onion and Garlic

When incorporating onion and garlic into your roasted tomato marinara, chop them finely to release their aromatic flavors and sauté them until they become fragrant. This step is crucial in enhancing the taste of your marinara sauce.

As the onion and garlic cook, their flavors infuse into the sauce, adding depth and complexity. Finely chopping the onion and garlic ensures that they distribute evenly throughout the sauce, so every bite is bursting with flavor.

Sautéing them until they become fragrant helps to mellow their sharpness and brings out their natural sweetness. The combination of the caramelized onion and garlic with the roasted tomatoes creates a rich and savory base for your marinara sauce.

Simmer for a Longer Time

For a richer flavor, let the marinara sauce simmer for a longer time, allowing the ingredients to meld together and deepen in taste.

When I make marinara sauce, I always make sure to give it enough time to simmer on the stovetop. This extra time allows all the flavors to come together and creates a more complex and delicious sauce.

As the sauce cooks, the tomatoes break down and release their natural sweetness, while the herbs and spices infuse the liquid with their aromatic notes. The longer the sauce simmers, the more the flavors intensify and develop. It’s like magic happening in the pot!

Use Quality Olive Oil

Using a high-quality olive oil in your recipe can greatly enhance the flavors of your marinara sauce. I learned this when I experimented with different types of oils in my own marinara sauce recipe.

The richness and depth of flavor that a good olive oil brings to the sauce is unmatched. When I used a lower quality oil, the sauce tasted flat and lacked that distinct Mediterranean taste.

But when I switched to a high-quality olive oil, the sauce came alive with a vibrant and robust flavor profile. The oil added a subtle fruitiness and a hint of peppery notes, elevating the overall taste of the sauce.

Add a Splash of Wine

To enhance the flavors of your marinara sauce, try adding a splash of wine. Trust me, it makes a world of difference.

When I first heard about this tip, I was skeptical, but now I can’t imagine making marinara sauce without it. The wine adds a depth and richness that takes the sauce to a whole new level.

I usually opt for a dry red wine like a cabernet sauvignon or a merlot, but you can experiment with different varieties to find your favorite. Just remember to let the alcohol cook off before serving, so the sauce doesn’t taste boozy.

So next time you’re making marinara sauce, don’t forget to pour in that splash of wine for an extra burst of flavor. You won’t regret it.

Incorporate Anchovies or Fish Sauce

I’ve found that incorporating anchovies or fish sauce into my marinara sauce adds a unique umami flavor that takes it to the next level. The salty, savory taste of anchovies or fish sauce enhances the overall taste and depth of the sauce. It adds a richness and complexity that can’t be achieved with other ingredients alone.

When I first tried this combination, I was hesitant because I didn’t want my sauce to taste fishy. However, I was pleasantly surprised by how well the anchovies or fish sauce blended with the other flavors. It gave the marinara sauce a subtle, yet distinct, umami kick that made it stand out.

Whether I’m making a classic spaghetti dish or a flavorful lasagna, incorporating anchovies or fish sauce is now a staple in my marinara sauce recipe.

Sweeten With a Touch of Honey

For a touch of sweetness in your marinara sauce, try incorporating a little bit of honey. I’ve always loved experimenting with different flavors in my cooking, and adding honey to my marinara sauce has been a game-changer.

The honey adds a subtle sweetness that balances out the acidity of the tomatoes, giving the sauce a more well-rounded flavor. To incorporate honey, simply add a teaspoon or two to your sauce while it’s simmering on the stove. Stir it in gently until it’s fully incorporated and taste the sauce to see if you need to add more.

The result is a deliciously sweet and savory marinara sauce that will elevate any pasta dish. Give it a try and see for yourself!

Finish With Freshly Grated Parmesan

Finish off your pasta dish with a sprinkle of freshly grated Parmesan for an added burst of flavor.

There’s something about that nutty, salty, and slightly tangy taste of Parmesan that elevates any marinara sauce to a whole new level.

As I grate the Parmesan over my piping hot plate of spaghetti, I can already anticipate the explosion of flavors that awaits me.

The grated cheese melts into the sauce, creating a rich and creamy texture that perfectly complements the tanginess of the tomatoes.

Each bite becomes a delightful symphony of flavors, with the Parmesan adding a delicious umami kick.

So go ahead and grab that grater, because a little sprinkle of freshly grated Parmesan is all you need to take your marinara sauce from good to absolutely amazing.


In conclusion, I must say that following these 10 ways to make marinara sauce taste better will result in a culinary masterpiece that will blow your taste buds away! Your sauce will be bursting with the freshness of the juiciest tomatoes, enhanced by a symphony of herbs and spices.

The roasted tomatoes will add a depth of flavor that will make you weak in the knees. And let’s not forget the sweetness of honey and the tanginess of Parmesan! Trust me, this marinara sauce will be a taste explosion like no other.

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Ben, a culinary enthusiast and owner of RelishedRecipes.com, shares his passion for food and cooking through delectable recipes and valuable tips. Ben delights in exploring international cuisines and inspiring home cooks on their culinary journeys.

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