Slow-Cooker Tomato Sauce

This recipe is an amalgam of my own experience making quick tomato sauce and a few recipes I found online for using the slow-cooker for the task. I wanted a large batch of sauce so that I could use some to cook meatball and still have the majority be plain tomato sauce.

Slow-Cooker Tomato Sauce
Servings: ~8 cups of sauce
Prep time: 20 minutes
Total time: 6.5 hours


  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 cup onion, small dice (this was 2 medium onions for me)
  • 5 cloves garlic, crushed
  • 2 29 oz. can Hunts Tomato Sauce
  • 4 15 oz. cans Hunts diced tomatoes
  • 6 oz. tomato paste
  • 1 Tbsp fresh rosemary
  • 1/2 cup red wine (I used Coppola Rosso Red Table Wine)
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp fine-ground black pepper
  • 2 Tbsp. brown sugar
  • 1/2 tsp. red chili pepper flake
  • 1 Tbsp fresh oregano
  • 2 Tbsp. butter
  • chiffonade of fresh basil


  1. Combine all the ingredients except oregano, butter and basil in your slow cooker insert. I used the wine to thin out the tomato paste, making it easier to incorporate the paste into the sauce.
  2. Cover and cook on low for 3 hours. Stir occasionally. Remove the cover and continue to cook on low for another 3 hours. If the sauce appears to be drying out re-cover. There’s more liquid in there than you realize.
  3. Remove 3 cups of sauce to a blender and puree. Return pureed sauce to the pot. Add oregano and butter, stir to combine.
  4. Add fresh chopped basil to the finished sauce.

I have a pet-peeve around recipes that list a generic item, such as red wine, when they could be more specific. There are only about 3 bazillion different red wines in the world. You could at least give a hint what basic category you used in your version of the recipe. I may not be able to find a “Merriam Vineyards 2008 Windacre Cabernet Franc” but I can at least find a nice Cabernet sauvignon or a basic red table wine if you tell me that is what you used.

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