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I’ve tried a variety of pasta sauces all the time. However, the Slow Cooker Spaghetti Sauce is undoubtedly one of my favorites. A long simmer that is slow cooks caramelizes the sugars present in the tomatoes, creating an intense flavor that cannot be beaten. What more can you ask for besides throwing a few ingredients in a pan, let simmer for eight hours, and then reap the delicious and decadent sauce? Then, you can split your sauce into portions and freeze it for later use, and you’ll have your own delicious homemade pasta sauce for those quick, busy dinners during the week.


This recipe produces approximately two quarts of sauce; therefore, I suggest using an extra large 3-quart slow cooker. There’s nothing fancy; it’s just a basic slow cooker with essential features like warm, low, high, and friendly. Slow cookers with the thickest ceramic insert (or “crock”) cook much more evenly than steel inserts like those you’d use when using the slow cooker feature in the Instant Pot.


The balsamic vinegar in this recipe gives a slight richness and brightens the sauce. It may seem a bit to be a bit strong initially, but it softens when the sauce is cooked. If you’re not a big fan of balsamic vinegar or do not have it on hand, it will make a fantastic sauce, even if you take the vinegar out.


I’ve previously tried this sauce with ground beef and discovered the cooking time to be too long for ground beef. If you plan to add meat, I recommend cooking it separately and mixing it into the sauce once boiling. Also, look at my easy weeknight pasta Sauce for a simple and delicious meat sauce.


This recipe is around 7 cups. I recommend dividing the sauce into three or two portions before freezing so you can move just enough to make one recipe at a time and then let it thaw. Allow the sauce to completely cool in the refrigerator, and then transfer it into freezer-safe containers that are safe to freeze. The sauce should last when stored in a freezer container for around three months. However, it will vary based on the conditions of your freezer. If you use quart freezer bags and store them on a flat surface, they can be stacked nicely in the freezer without taking up too much space.


One yellow onion ($0.32)

Four cloves of garlic ($0.32)

2 28oz. cans of crushed tomatoes ($2.00)

1 6oz. container tomatoes ($0.69)

1 TBSP dried, chopped basil ($0.30)

1.5 teaspoons dried oregano ($0.15)

1 Tbsp brown sugar ($0.03)

1 Tbsp balsamic vinegar ($0.14)

Butter 4 Tbsp ($0.40)

One teaspoon salt (or to your taste) ($0.05)


Cut the onion in half and mince the garlic. Please put them in a three sizeable slow cooker or a larger one.

Add the tomatoes that have been crushed tomato paste, oregano, basil, balsamic vinegar, brown sugar, and butter into the slow cooker. Combine everything thoroughly.

Cover the lid of your slow cooker, and then cook at high for four hours or on low for 8 hours.

After cooking after cooking, please give it a good stir and then add salt as needed. Start with half a teaspoon of salt. Add more as needed (I added one teaspoon). Serve the sauce immediately, chill, refrigerate, or store it to use later.

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Joseph M. Kay

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