Northbridge Recipe – Easy Homemade Marinara

Avita of Wells Culinary Director, Maeghan Corbo, shares her easy homemade marinara recipe with us!


  • 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 cup onion finely diced
  • 3 cloves garlic minced
  • 1/2 cup dry red wine
  • 28 ounces canned whole San Marzano tomatoes
  • 28 ounces canned crushed tomatoes
  • 2 tablespoons tomato paste
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 1/4 cup fresh basil chopped
  • 1/4 teaspoon each salt and black pepper

Optional Ingredients:

  • 1/2 cup shredded carrots, diced zucchini, or diced mushrooms
  • 1/2 cup freshly grated parmesan cheese
  • 1/2-3/4 cup heavy cream if a blush sauce is desired


  1. Heat the olive oil in a large pot over medium heat
  2. Add the finely diced onion (and optional vegetables) and cook until softened. Add the minced garlic.
  3. Add the red wine and let the mixture simmer to cook off the alcohol
  4. Add tomato paste and mix well
  5. Add whole canned tomatoes with juice, break the tomatoes up with a spoon
  6. Mix in crushed tomatoes, dried oregano, and season with salt and pepper, add water
  7. Use an immersion blender or pour the sauce into a blender (if you want a smoother sauce)
  8. Simmer uncovered on low heat for 35-40 minutes, or until thickened to the desired consistency
  9. Add cream and parmesan if you are making a blush sauce and simmer for an additional 10-15 minutes, stirring occasionally so the sauce doesn’t burn
  10. . Stir in fresh basil

Chef’s Tip: Sometimes canned tomatoes can be a little bitter from the acidity. You can add some sugar to balance the bitterness if needed. Start with a pinch of sugar and work your way up to a teaspoon if necessary. Adding cream or parmesan can also help balance the flavors.

At Northbridge we love working with local farms and vendors to make sure our residents enjoy the freshest food. To learn more about our Eat Fresh, Eat Local Signature program click here!

This recipe was shared as part of our blog: Eat This, Not That – 3 Meals & Healthy Eating for Seniors.

Looking for other creative  recipes? Check out some other favorites from our Culinary team:

Blueberry Glazed Breaded Chicken Breast 
Blueberry Oatmeal Cookies
Blueberry Lemon Ricotta Bruschetta 

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