Spaghetti with Fresh Tomato Sauce Recipe

Experience the delightful simplicity of this classic Italian dish, spaghetti with fresh tomato sauce. The recipe uses everyday ingredients to create a dish that's comforting yet sophisticated. The freshness of ripe tomatoes combined with the aroma of garlic and the tanginess of lemon juice creates a sauce that's bursting with flavor. Add a sprinkle of parmesan and fresh basil on top, and you've got a hearty meal that's ready in no time.

Spaghetti with Fresh Tomato Sauce Recipe
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Photos of Spaghetti with Fresh Tomato Sauce Recipe

Most of the ingredients for this recipe are readily available in most pantries. However, it's important to pay attention to the quality of your tomatoes as they are the star of this dish. Opt for ripe, juicy tomatoes for the best results. Whole grain thin spaghetti is a healthier alternative to regular pasta, but if you can't find it, regular spaghetti will do just fine. Fresh basil leaves provide a vibrant, aromatic finishing touch.

Ingredients for Spaghetti with Fresh Tomato Sauce

Tomatoes: The main ingredient of the sauce. Choose ripe, juicy ones for best flavor.

Olive oil: Adds a rich, fruity note to the sauce.

Lemon juice: Enhances the freshness of the sauce.

Salt: Balances out the flavors.

Sugar: A small amount is used to cut down the acidity of the tomatoes.

Black pepper: Adds a bit of heat.

Garlic: Brings depth of flavor to the sauce.

Whole grain thin spaghetti: The base of this dish. Whole grain is a healthier option.

Parmesan: Adds a salty, nutty flavor. Use freshly grated for best results.

Basil: Gives the dish a fresh, aromatic finish.

One reader, Hillel Reynolds says:

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This spaghetti with fresh tomato sauce recipe is a game-changer! The flavors are so fresh and vibrant, and the dish is incredibly easy to make. The combination of ripe tomatoes, garlic, and basil creates a burst of deliciousness. It's a new family favorite in our house!

Hillel Reynolds

Techniques for Making Spaghetti with Fresh Tomato Sauce

Prepare the tomatoes: Core and coarsely chop two-thirds of the tomatoes. Halve the remaining tomatoes down the middle and discard the tough top part where the tomatoes met the stem, if it exists. Rub the cut sides of the tomatoes against the large holes of a box grater set in a large bowl. Leave the tomato pulp in the bowl and discard the skin.

Marinate the tomato sauce: Mix the chopped tomatoes, olive oil, lemon juice, salt, sugar, several twists of freshly ground black pepper, and the pressed garlic in a large bowl. Let the mixture marinate while you cook the pasta.

Cook the pasta: Bring a large pot of salted water to boil and then cook the pasta just until al dente, according to package directions. Reserve about a cup of the pasta cooking water before draining the pasta.

Toss the pasta with the sauce: Drain the pasta, then immediately return it to the pot. Pour in all of the tomato sauce and about ¼ cup of the pasta cooking water. Cook over medium-low heat for about 1 to 2 minutes, tossing often, just long enough for the tomatoes to soften a bit and for the starchy tomato water to coat the pasta.

Finish and serve: Remove from heat and toss with parmesan and basil. Serve immediately.

How To Make Spaghetti with Fresh Tomato Sauce

Any pasta is best eaten with a simple and fresh tomato sauce. In this recipe, fresh tomatoes, basil, and various seasonings all make a tasty classic sauce.

Preparation: 15 minutes
Cooking: 10 minutes
Total: 25 minutes

Serves:

Ingredients

  • lbsripe tomatoes
  • 2tbspolive oil
  • 1tbsplemon juice,fresh
  • ½tspsalt
  • ¼tspsugar,optional
  • ground black pepper,to taste
  • 1clovegarlic,or ½ medium clove, pressed or minced
  • ½lbwhole grain thin spaghetti,or angel-hair pasta, rotini/fusilli, or penne
  • ½cupparmesan,freshly grated, optional but recommended
  • ¼cupfresh basil,chopped

Instructions

  1. Core and coarsely chop two-thirds of the tomatoes. Halve the remaining tomatoes down the middle and discard the tough top part where the tomatoes met the stem, if it exists. Rub the cut sides of the tomatoes against the large holes of a box grater set in a large bowl. Leave the tomato pulp in the bowl and discard the skin.

  2. Add the chopped tomatoes, olive oil, lemon juice, salt, sugar, several twists of freshly ground black pepper and the pressed garlic to the bowl. Mix well. Let the mixture marinate while you cook the pasta.

  3. Bring a large pot of salted water to boil and then cook the pasta just until al dente, according to package directions. Reserve about a cup of the pasta cooking water before draining the pasta.

  4. Drain the pasta, then immediately return it to the pot. Pour in all of the tomato sauce and about ¼ cup of the pasta cooking water. Cook over medium-low heat for about 1 to 2 minutes, tossing often, just long enough for the tomatoes to soften a bit and for the starchy tomato water to coat the pasta.

  5. Remove from heat and toss with Parmesan and basil. Serve immediately.

Nutrition

  • Calories: 378.78kcal
  • Fat: 12.80g
  • Saturated Fat: 4.20g
  • Monounsaturated Fat: 6.48g
  • Polyunsaturated Fat: 1.29g
  • Carbohydrates: 50.86g
  • Fiber: 4.10g
  • Sugar: 6.51g
  • Protein: 15.72g
  • Cholesterol: 12.64mg
  • Sodium: 558.89mg
  • Calcium: 256.94mg
  • Potassium: 568.50mg
  • Iron: 1.53mg
  • Vitamin A: 114.09µg
  • Vitamin C: 25.28mg

Pro Tip for Perfecting Spaghetti with Fresh Tomato Sauce

When preparing your tomatoes, make sure they are ripe and juicy. This will ensure your sauce has a rich, full flavor. If your tomatoes are underripe, they may give the sauce a bitter taste. Additionally, when grating the tomatoes, apply gentle pressure to avoid crushing the seeds, which can also add bitterness to your sauce. Lastly, don't skip the step of marinating the tomatoes in the olive oil, lemon juice, and seasonings. This process helps to deepen the flavors and meld them together for a more robust and flavorful sauce.

Time-Saving Tips for Spaghetti with Fresh Tomato Sauce

Prep ahead: Chop and prepare ingredients in advance to streamline the cooking process.

One-pot wonders: Opt for recipes that allow you to cook everything in a single pot or pan to minimize cleanup.

Time-saving tools: Utilize kitchen gadgets like food processors and immersion blenders to speed up prep work.

Batch cooking: Make larger quantities of sauces or bases and freeze them for quick and easy future meals.

Meal planning: Plan your meals for the week ahead of time to save trips to the grocery store and reduce cooking time.

Substitute Ingredients For Spaghetti with Fresh Tomato Sauce Recipe

  • ripe tomatoes - Substitute with canned tomatoes: Canned tomatoes can be used as a substitute for fresh tomatoes in a tomato sauce recipe. They are convenient and available year-round, and can provide a similar flavor and texture to fresh tomatoes when cooked.

  • olive oil - Substitute with avocado oil: Avocado oil is a healthy substitute for olive oil, with a mild flavor that works well in tomato sauce recipes. It also has a high smoke point, making it suitable for cooking at higher temperatures.

  • lemon juice - Substitute with white wine vinegar: White wine vinegar can add a similar tangy acidity to the sauce, enhancing the flavor without the distinct lemon taste.

  • salt - Substitute with sea salt: Sea salt can be used as a substitute for regular table salt, providing a slightly different flavor profile and texture to the dish.

  • sugar - Substitute with honey: Honey can add a touch of sweetness to the sauce, balancing the acidity of the tomatoes without altering the flavor significantly.

  • garlic - Substitute with garlic powder: Garlic powder can be used as a substitute for fresh garlic, providing a milder and more evenly distributed garlic flavor throughout the sauce.

  • whole grain thin spaghetti - Substitute with zucchini noodles: Zucchini noodles can be a healthy and low-carb alternative to traditional pasta, adding a fresh and light element to the dish.

  • parmesan - Substitute with pecorino: Pecorino cheese can be used as a substitute for Parmesan, providing a similar salty and nutty flavor to the dish.

  • fresh basil - Substitute with dried basil: Dried basil can be used as a substitute for fresh basil, adding a concentrated herbal flavor to the sauce.

Presenting Spaghetti with Fresh Tomato Sauce

  1. Elevate the pasta: Gently twirl the spaghetti into a nest shape using tongs, and place it in the center of the plate. This creates a visually appealing base for the dish.

  2. Garnish with basil leaves: Carefully place fresh basil leaves on top of the pasta, adding a pop of vibrant green color and a hint of freshness to the dish.

  3. Sprinkle with freshly grated parmesan: Generously sprinkle freshly grated parmesan over the pasta, allowing it to cascade down the sides of the nest, creating an elegant and appetizing presentation.

  4. Drizzle with olive oil: Drizzle a small amount of high-quality olive oil around the edge of the plate, adding a glossy finish and enhancing the overall flavor profile of the dish.

  5. Add a touch of cracked black pepper: Sprinkle a pinch of cracked black pepper over the pasta, providing a subtle hint of heat and a visually striking contrast against the bright red tomato sauce.

  6. Serve on a warm plate: Present the dish on a warm plate to ensure that the flavors and aromas are preserved, enhancing the overall dining experience for the esteemed guests.

Essential Tools for Making Spaghetti with Fresh Tomato Sauce

  • Food processor: A food processor is a versatile kitchen appliance that can be used for chopping, slicing, shredding, and pureeing ingredients. It's great for quickly preparing the fresh tomato sauce and chopping the basil for the spaghetti dish.
  • Mixing bowl: A mixing bowl is essential for combining the chopped tomatoes, olive oil, lemon juice, and other ingredients to make the fresh tomato sauce. It's also useful for tossing the cooked pasta with the sauce before serving.
  • Box grater: A box grater is used to grate the tomatoes, extracting their pulp for the fresh tomato sauce. It's an efficient tool for creating a smooth tomato pulp while leaving the skin behind.
  • Large pot: A large pot is necessary for boiling the pasta. It should be large enough to hold the pasta and allow for proper water circulation during cooking.
  • Colander: A colander is used for draining the cooked pasta after it's done boiling. It's essential for removing excess water from the pasta before tossing it with the fresh tomato sauce.
  • Grater: A grater is used for grating the parmesan cheese, adding a savory and salty flavor to the spaghetti dish.
  • Knife: A sharp knife is essential for coring and chopping the ripe tomatoes, as well as for mincing the garlic and slicing the basil.
  • Large bowl: A large bowl is used for marinating the chopped tomatoes with the olive oil, lemon juice, and other seasonings to create the fresh tomato sauce. It's also useful for tossing the pasta with the sauce before serving.

Storing and Freezing Spaghetti with Fresh Tomato Sauce

  • This spaghetti with fresh tomato sauce is best enjoyed immediately after cooking. However, if you have leftovers, store them in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 3 days.
  • To reheat, add a splash of water or olive oil to the pasta and heat it in the microwave or on the stovetop until warmed through. Stir well to distribute the moisture and prevent the pasta from drying out.
  • If you want to freeze the sauce separately, let it cool completely before transferring it to a freezer-safe container or zip-top bag. It can be frozen for up to 3 months.
  • When ready to use the frozen sauce, thaw it overnight in the refrigerator. Reheat it in a saucepan over low heat, stirring occasionally, until it's warmed through. You may need to add a little water or olive oil to thin the sauce if it has thickened during freezing.
  • It's not recommended to freeze the spaghetti together with the sauce, as the pasta can become mushy and lose its texture when thawed. It's best to cook the pasta fresh and toss it with the reheated sauce before serving.

How To Reheat Leftover Spaghetti with Fresh Tomato Sauce

  • Reheat the spaghetti in a large pot of boiling water for 1-2 minutes until heated through. Drain the pasta and return it to the pot. Add the reserved tomato sauce and a splash of pasta water. Toss over medium-low heat until the sauce coats the pasta and everything is warmed through. Serve immediately with a sprinkle of parmesan cheese and fresh basil.

  • For a quick and easy reheat, place the leftover spaghetti and tomato sauce in a microwave-safe dish. Cover the dish with a damp paper towel to prevent the pasta from drying out. Microwave on high for 1-2 minutes, stirring halfway through, until the pasta and sauce are heated through. If needed, add a splash of water to loosen the sauce. Garnish with parmesan cheese and fresh basil before serving.

  • Preheat your oven to 350°F (175°C). Transfer the leftover spaghetti and tomato sauce to an oven-safe dish. Cover the dish tightly with foil and bake for 15-20 minutes, or until the pasta is heated through. Remove the foil and top the pasta with grated parmesan cheese. Return the dish to the oven and bake for an additional 5 minutes, or until the cheese is melted and bubbly. Garnish with fresh basil leaves before serving.

  • For a stovetop reheat, place the leftover spaghetti and tomato sauce in a large skillet over medium heat. Add a splash of water or pasta water to loosen the sauce. Toss the pasta and sauce together, stirring frequently, until heated through. If the sauce becomes too thick, add more water as needed. Once the pasta is warmed, remove the skillet from the heat and stir in some grated parmesan cheese and fresh basil. Serve hot.

Interesting Fact About Spaghetti with Fresh Tomato Sauce

Spaghetti with fresh tomato sauce is a classic Italian dish that is often enjoyed during the summer months when tomatoes are at their peak ripeness.

Is Making Spaghetti with Fresh Tomato Sauce Cost-Effective?

This spaghetti with fresh tomato sauce recipe is highly cost-effective for households. The use of fresh, seasonal tomatoes and simple ingredients makes it budget-friendly. With a few dollars, you can create a delicious meal for a family of four. The overall verdict rating for this recipe is 9/10, considering its affordability, nutritional value, and flavor. The approximate cost for a household of four people is around $10, making it an economical and satisfying choice for home-cooked meals.

Is Spaghetti with Fresh Tomato Sauce Healthy?

The spaghetti with fresh tomato sauce recipe is a relatively healthy dish, thanks to its use of whole grain pasta, fresh tomatoes, and heart-healthy olive oil. The recipe also includes a modest amount of parmesan cheese, which provides calcium and protein. The basil adds a pop of flavor and a dose of antioxidants. However, there are a few areas where the recipe could be improved to boost its nutritional value.

To make this recipe even healthier, consider the following suggestions:

  • Increase the amount of vegetables by adding sautéed spinach, zucchini, or bell peppers to the sauce. This will provide additional fiber, vitamins, and minerals.
  • Reduce the amount of pasta and increase the portion of tomato sauce to create a more balanced meal. This will lower the overall carbohydrate content and increase the intake of beneficial lycopene from the tomatoes.
  • Use a low-fat or fat-free parmesan cheese to reduce the saturated fat content of the dish. Alternatively, you could opt for a sprinkle of nutritional yeast, which is lower in calories and fat but still provides a cheesy flavor.
  • Include a source of lean protein, such as grilled chicken or shrimp, to make the meal more satiating and balanced.
  • Experiment with different types of whole grain pasta, such as quinoa or lentil pasta, to increase the protein and fiber content of the dish.

The Editor's Take on This Spaghetti Recipe

This spaghetti with fresh tomato sauce recipe is a delightful and refreshing take on a classic dish. The use of ripe tomatoes, olive oil, and fresh basil creates a vibrant and flavorful sauce that perfectly complements the whole grain thin spaghetti. The addition of lemon juice adds a subtle tanginess, while the garlic infuses a lovely depth of flavor. The finishing touch of parmesan adds a rich and savory note. Overall, this recipe offers a perfect balance of fresh, wholesome ingredients and is sure to impress with its simplicity and delicious taste.

Enhance Your Spaghetti with Fresh Tomato Sauce Recipe with These Unique Side Dishes:

Garlic Bread: Slices of crusty bread slathered with garlic-infused butter and toasted to perfection
Grilled Vegetables: An assortment of colorful veggies, such as bell peppers, zucchini, and eggplant, grilled to smoky perfection
Tiramisu: Layers of coffee-soaked ladyfingers and creamy mascarpone, dusted with cocoa powder for a decadent dessert

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Butternut Squash Soup with Apple: Warm up with a bowl of this comforting butternut squash soup, featuring the perfect balance of sweetness from apple and savory flavors.

Appetizer and Dessert Pairings for Spaghetti with Fresh Tomato Sauce

Appetizers:
Stuffed Mushrooms: Create a savory and indulgent appetizer by stuffing large mushrooms with a mixture of cream cheese, garlic, and herbs. Bake until golden and serve hot for a delicious start to any meal.
Bruschetta: Elevate the classic bruschetta by topping toasted baguette slices with a flavorful combination of diced tomatoes, fresh basil, garlic, and balsamic glaze. This refreshing and vibrant appetizer is sure to impress your guests.
Desserts:
Chocolate Mousse: Indulge in a rich and velvety chocolate mousse, topped with a dollop of whipped cream and a sprinkle of cocoa powder. The smooth and creamy texture will melt in your mouth, leaving you craving for more.
Strawberry Cheesecake: Savor the luscious combination of creamy cheesecake and sweet, juicy strawberries. Each bite is a perfect balance of tangy and sweet flavors, complemented by a buttery graham cracker crust. It's a delightful treat for any occasion.

Why trust this Spaghetti with Fresh Tomato Sauce Recipe:

This recipe uses only the freshest and highest quality tomatoes, ensuring a burst of flavor in every bite. The combination of olive oil and lemon juice adds a delightful tangy and rich taste to the sauce. The use of whole grain thin spaghetti not only provides a healthier option but also adds a nutty flavor and satisfying texture. The addition of parmesan and fresh basil elevates the dish, providing a perfect balance of savory and herbal notes. With these carefully selected ingredients, this recipe guarantees a delicious and authentic Italian dining experience.

If you enjoyed this Spaghetti with Fresh Tomato Sauce Recipe, head over to the Recipe Sharing section of our forum to discuss your experience making the dish and share any tips or variations you discovered!
FAQ:
Can I use canned tomatoes instead of fresh ones?
Yes, you can use canned tomatoes if fresh ones are not available. Just make sure to use good quality canned tomatoes for the best flavor.
Can I use a different type of pasta for this recipe?
Absolutely! You can use any type of pasta you prefer. The sauce works well with various pasta shapes, so feel free to get creative with your choices.
Can I make the sauce ahead of time?
Yes, you can make the sauce ahead of time. Store it in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 2 days. Just reheat it gently before tossing it with the cooked pasta.
Can I omit the parmesan to make this recipe vegan?
Of course! You can omit the parmesan or use a vegan parmesan alternative to make this recipe vegan-friendly.
Can I freeze the leftover sauce?
Yes, you can freeze the leftover sauce. Store it in a freezer-safe container for up to 3 months. Thaw it in the refrigerator before reheating and using.

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