How to Make Red Sauce Pasta | Red Sauce Pasta Recipe

Red sauce pasta, with its rich, savory tomato sauce and perfectly cooked pasta, is a favorite among many households. This classic Italian dish can be as simple or as sophisticated as you wish. Here’s a step-by-step guide to help you make an outstanding red sauce pasta every time at home. So without any farther delay lets gather all the ingredients of red sauce pasta to make pasta in red sauce.

Read More: How To Make Spaghetti At Home

Red Sauce Pasta Recipe

Ingredients to Make Creamy Red Sauce Pasta at Home:

  • Pasta: 500 grams (Preferably Penne or Spaghetti)
  • Olive oil: 2 tablespoons
  • Onion: 1 medium-sized, finely chopped
  • Garlic: 4-5 cloves, minced
  • Canned tomato puree: 400 grams (Alternatively, you can use fresh tomatoes, blanched and pureed)
  • Red chili flakes: 1 teaspoon (Adjust according to your taste)
  • Dried oregano: 1 teaspoon
  • Dried basil: 1 teaspoon
  • Salt: As per taste
  • Black pepper: As per taste
  • Sugar: 1 teaspoon (To balance the acidity of tomatoes)
  • Fresh basil leaves: A handful, chopped
  • Grated Parmesan cheese: For garnishing
  • Water: To boil pasta
  • Salt: A pinch, for boiling pasta

Method to Cook Red Sauce Pasta with Step by Step Guide:

Method to Preparing the Pasta:

Boil the Water: In a large pot, bring water to a rapid boil. The general rule is about 4-6 quarts of water for every pound of pasta.

water boiling

Add Salt: Add a good pinch of salt to the boiling water. This ensures your pasta isn’t bland.

Cook the Pasta: Pour the pasta into the boiling water. Stir it occasionally to prevent sticking. Follow the package instructions for the cooking time, but typically, it’s around 8-12 minutes for al dente texture.

Cook the Pasta

Drain and Set Aside: Once cooked, drain the pasta in a colander and rinse with cold water to stop the cooking process. Drizzle a little olive oil and toss to prevent sticking.

Drain the pasta

Method to Preparing the Red Sauce to Make Pasta in Creamy Red Sauce 

Sauté Onions and Garlic: In a large skillet or pan, heat olive oil over medium heat. Add finely chopped onions, sautéing until translucent. Add the minced garlic and sauté for another 2 minutes until fragrant.

Sauté Onions and Garlic

Add Tomato puree: Pour in the canned tomato puree (or fresh pureed tomatoes). Break down larger pieces with your spatula to achieve a smoother consistency.

Add Tomato puree

Season and Simmer: Add red chili flakes, dried oregano, dried basil, salt, black pepper, and sugar. Mix well. Let the sauce simmer for about 15-20 minutes on low heat, occasionally stirring. This melds the flavors and reduces the sauce to a thicker consistency.

Taste and Adjust: Depending on your preference, you might want to adjust the seasoning. If the sauce is too acidic, a pinch of sugar can balance it out. If too thick, a splash of pasta water can thin it to your desired consistency.

Add Fresh Basil: A couple of minutes before you take the sauce off the heat, add in the chopped fresh basil for an aromatic lift.

Add Fresh Basil

Final Steps of Creamy Red Sauce Pasta Recipe:

Mix Pasta with Sauce: Add the drained pasta into the skillet with the red sauce. Toss gently, ensuring the pasta is well-coated with the sauce. You can taste it to check all the ingredients are well done or not before you stop cooking and add if anything are less or required.

Mix Pasta with Sauce

Serve: Transfer the red sauce pasta to serving dishes. Garnish with freshly grated Parmesan cheese and some additional fresh basil leaves.

Optional Add-ins: If you wish, you can add vegetables like bell peppers, mushrooms, or zucchini to the sauce. For protein, grilled chicken or shrimp makes a wonderful addition.


Making red sauce pasta at home can be a delightful experience, bringing forth the flavors of Italy right to your table. The key to a perfect red sauce pasta lies in the quality of the ingredients and the patience during simmering. Serve it with some garlic bread and a fresh salad on the side, and you’ve got a hearty meal for any day of the week.

Remember, cooking is as much about passion as it is about technique. As you become familiar with the basic recipe, don’t be afraid to experiment and make it your own. Whether you like it spicy, with added proteins, or chock-full of veggies, red sauce pasta is a canvas waiting for your culinary brushstrokes.

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