Are you worried about the amount of sugar in canned and jarred spaghetti sauce? What about salt? Soybean oil?
Chances are, that jar of spaghetti sauce in your cupboard is packed full of fat, salt and sugar that you pour all over your al dente pasta. Make pasta healthy again by making your own spaghetti sauce at home and freezing the leftovers for convenient use in the future.
It’s easier than you think. Here are five tips for making healthy spaghetti sauce from scratch.
1. Use Fresh Tomatoes
Your first ingredient should be fresh tomatoes – lots of them. To get the correct consistency for spaghetti sauce, boil the tomatoes for 5 minutes and then let cool. Peel off the skin and mash up the tomatoes, removing any seeds. Now you’re ready to simmer your fresh tomatoes that will give you a boost of vitamin C, fiber, and potassium while fighting off cancer. The best tomatoes to use are Roma, Amish Paste, or San Marzano, to name a few.
2. Use Virgin Olive Oil
Butter is your enemy when it comes to spaghetti sauce. Instead, use a heart healthy olive oil option to lower the saturated fat content of your sauce. This ingredient also comes with anti-inflammatory properties, antioxidants that fight cancer, and many other health benefits.
3. Add Vegetables
Mmm…broccoli and zucchini are excellent vegetables to add to your sauce, especially if you plan to make lasagna with it. Both have vitamin C, potassium and fiber. Broccoli also contains vitamin K, and fiber while zucchini adds anti-inflammatory properties to your sauce, not to mention it is low in carbs and calories.
4. Add Mushrooms and Black Olives
High in protein but low in fat and calories, mushrooms are a healthy addition to any spaghetti sauce you make from home. They also contain vitamins C and B as well as calcium, minerals, antioxidants and more. Black olives are another gem to add to your sauce since they provide unsaturated fat to your sauce. Add these heart-healthy ingredients in place of meat for extra flavor.
5. Don’t Add Sugar
You don’t need sugar to make your spaghetti sauce sweet. The tomatoes that you carefully choose at the market or grow in your backyard garden are sweet enough. Instead, experiment with fresh herbs to help bring out your sauce’s sweetness. For example, sweet basil is one option that will give your sauce one sweet kick.