Canning Pizza or Spaghetti Sauce from Fresh Tomatoes


This can be used for either pizza sauce or spaghetti sauce. It can be canned or frozen. Store canned tomato sauce in a cool, dark area.

close up view of Spaghetti Sauce from Fresh Tomatoes in a pot with a wooden spoon
Prep Time:
30 mins
Cook Time:
1 hr
Additional Time:
12 hrs
Total Time:
13 hrs 30 mins
8 pints


  • 20 pounds fresh Roma tomatoes

  • 1 tablespoon olive oil

  • 2 cups chopped onion

  • ¼ cup lemon juice

  • ¼ cup red wine

  • 3 cloves garlic, minced

  • 2 tablespoons chopped celery

  • 2 tablespoons minced fresh basil

  • 2 tablespoons chopped red sweet pepper

  • 2 teaspoons salt

  • 2 bay leaves

  • ¼ teaspoon ground black pepper


  1. Fill a large pot with water; bring to a boil. Fill a bowl with ice water. Place tomatoes into the boiling water, working in batches, 30 to 45 seconds. Remove from the boiling water; plunge into ice water. Peel off tomato skins; cut in half. Remove the seeds using your finger or a spoon. Place in a colander to drain.

  2. Heat olive oil in a skillet over medium heat; place onion into the skillet. Cook and stir until the onions become translucent, about 5 minutes.

  3. Combine tomatoes, onion, lemon juice, red wine, garlic, celery, basil, red sweet pepper, salt, bay leaves, and ground black pepper in a large pot over medium heat; cook and stir over until tomatoes break down and sauce thickens, about 10 minutes.

  4. Sterilize 8 pint-size jars and lids in boiling water for at least 5 minutes. Pack tomato sauce into hot, sterilized jars, filling to within 1/4 inch of the top. Top with clean lids and screw on rings.

  5. Fill water bath canner with water according to manufacturer's instructions. Bring to a boil and lower jars into the boiling water using a holder. Pour in more boiling water if necessary to bring the water level to at least 1 inch above the tops of the jars. Process for 35 minutes for pints.

  6. Remove the jars from the water bath canner and place onto a cloth-covered or wood surface, several inches apart, until cool, 8 hours to overnight. Press the top of each lid with a finger, ensuring that the seal is tight (lid does not move up or down at all). Store in a cool, dark area.

Cook's Notes:

Dried basil can be substituted for fresh basil.

If you are using a pressure canner, omit lemon juice.

If your tomatoes are too watery, boil them down before adding the spices, to avoid the sauce becoming too strong. If you like your sauce thick, either boil it down a bit more, add 1 to 2 small cans of tomato paste, or add 1/4 cup of ClearJel(R) starch.

If you want to freeze your sauce instead, just fill your freezer containers (Ziploc(R) quart-size resealable bags) completely, eliminate air pockets, seal them and pop them in the freezer. You're done!

If you are using quart-sized jars, process them for 40 minutes instead of 35 minutes.

Nutrition Facts (per serving)

62 Calories
1g Fat
13g Carbs
3g Protein
Nutrition Facts
Servings Per Recipe 32
Calories 62
% Daily Value *
Total Fat 1g 1%
Saturated Fat 0g 1%
Sodium 161mg 7%
Total Carbohydrate 13g 5%
Dietary Fiber 4g 13%
Total Sugars 8g
Protein 3g
Vitamin C 39mg 193%
Calcium 32mg 2%
Iron 1mg 4%
Potassium 697mg 15%

* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your daily values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.

** Nutrient information is not available for all ingredients. Amount is based on available nutrient data.

(-) Information is not currently available for this nutrient. If you are following a medically restrictive diet, please consult your doctor or registered dietitian before preparing this recipe for personal consumption.

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