Slow Roasted Tomato Sauce

Roasting the tomatoes for Slow Roasted Tomato Sauce intensifies their delicious, summery flavour. Make up a big batch when tomatoes are at their best and you’ll have a taste of summer all year round.

Is there anything better than a perfectly ripe, juicy summer tomato? When tomatoes are ripe and in season they are a wonderful reminder of how good simple food can be.

It’s a taste of sunshine that, properly prepared, can last all through the year. In summer when tomatoes are cheap and plentiful I like to buy up big boxes of tomatoes at the markets and make delicious Slow Roasted Tomato Sauce.

Slow Roasted Tomato Sauce

About This Recipe

Slow roasting tomatoes concentrates all their fabulous flavour and can make even the saddest, crunchiest supermarket tomatoes taste divine. It’s so simple too, all you need to do is halve the tomatoes and roast them in the oven together with some garlic, chilli, herbs and olive oil.

After an hour the tomatoes are soft, incredibly fragrant and ready to be blended up into a sauce that is so tasty, I can eat it straight from the jar.

Use bulk tomatoes

It’s best to make this sort of sauce when you can get your hands on cheap tomatoes, either when your own plants are producing their end of season glut, or perhaps from a farmer’s market where you can buy in bulk. It’s a great way of using up bruised or misshapen fruit too, so keep an eye out for bargains.

Slow Roasted Tomato Sauce

How to use Slow Roasted Tomato Sauce

Now the best part, how to use Slow Roasted Tomato Sauce. It’s obviously perfect with pasta and makes an amazing pizza sauce. You can thin it out with a little stock and serve it hot or cold as tomato soup. It’s brilliant for jazzing up some plain chicken breasts and is seriously good in a lasagne. I divide mine up into 500ml (2 cup) jars and freeze it until I need it. Fresh, summery deliciousness all year round.


Can I preserve Slow Roasted Tomato Sauce by canning?

You can, though water bath canning is quite scientific and is specific to your altitude, and you’ll need to add acid to the mixture. I’d suggest checking online guides like this one. I generally freeze mine as I am not preparing it for the whole winter.

Can I add different flavours to my Slow Roasted Tomato Sauce?

Definitely! You can take this sauce in any direction you like. Oregano and rosemary will give a Western Mediterranean flavour, spices like cinnamon and allspice are more Moroccan, while cumin, coriander and lime will give a Mexican flavour to the finished sauce. If you’re not a fan of chilli, leave it out.

Can I double or triple the recipe?

Yes! Set your oven onto fan bake at 180°C / 350°F and use multiple trays.

What canning Jar are you using in the photos?

I use a mixture of jars, but my favourites are the one at the front of the photos – and I’ve had loads of questions about the cute jar that I have the sauce in! I love these jars, they are from a German manufacturer called ‘Weck’ and are known as ‘Weckgläser’. They are very popular here and they are now available online, click here if you are interested.

Slow Roasted Tomato Sauce
Slow Roasted Tomato Sauce


Slow Roasted Tomato Sauce

Slow Roasted Tomato Sauce

Jay Wadams
Roasting the tomatoes for Slow Roasted Tomato Sauce intensifies their delicious, summery flavour. Make up a big batch when tomatoes are at their best and you’ll have a taste of summer all year round.
4.65 from 34 votes
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 1 hour
Total Time 1 hour 10 minutes
Serves 8 (Approx. 1-1.25 litre / 1-1.25 qt.)


  • 2 kg tomatoes
  • 2 red chilli peppers
  • 4 fat cloves garlic, skin on
  • 2 sprigs rosemary
  • fresh oregano
  • 1 tsp sea salt
  • black pepper
  • 100 ml fruity olive oil
  • 1 Tbsp balsamic vinegar
  • 1 bunch fresh basil, optional


  • PREPARE: Heat the oven to 200°C / 400°F / Gas 6. Halve the tomatoes and place them cut side up in one layer on a large baking tray.
  • ADD THE SPICES: Tuck the peppers, garlic, rosemary and oregano around the tomatoes, sprinkle over the salt and plenty of ground black pepper. Drizzle over the olive oil and balsamic vinegar and toss gently to make sure everything is well coated.
  • COOK: Roast in the preheated oven for 1 hour until the tomatoes are soft and beginning to scorch. Remove from the oven and allow to cool for a minute or two. Remove any dried herbs or tomato stems, and squeeze the garlic cloves out of their skins.
  • BLEND: Transfer the mixture and all the juices in the tray to a large saucepan, and use a stick / immersion blender to puree to desired smoothness. Taste and add a little salt or sugar if necessary. Stir through chopped basil, if using.
  • TRANSFER TO JARS: Transfer to clean jars and store in the fridge for 1 week, or freeze in 500ml (2 cup) portions.

Recommended Equipment

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Serving: 0.5 jar | Calories: 155kcal | Carbohydrates: 12g | Protein: 3g | Fat: 12g | Saturated Fat: 2g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g | Monounsaturated Fat: 8g | Sodium: 309mg | Potassium: 640mg | Fiber: 3g | Sugar: 7g | Vitamin A: 2243IU | Vitamin C: 51mg | Calcium: 32mg | Iron: 1mg
Tried this recipe?Leave a review or a star rating and let me know how it was! Use the hashtag #daysofjay on Instagram so I can see your delicious creations.
Course | Preserves
Cuisine | Italian
Ⓒ | Jay Wadams
Jay Wadams
Jay Wadams

Jay Wadams is a cookbook author, food photographer and Le Cordon Bleu Gastronomy and Nutrition graduate. Based in Italy 🇮🇹 Germany 🇩🇪 and Australia 🇦🇺.

Articles: 340


  1. 5 stars
    Just like mum used to do it! Brings up happy memories for me. Keep doing what you are doing Jay!

    Thank you so much Lydia! <3 <3 J.

    • Hi Jim, this is a great question. I usually don’t remove the skins from the tomatoes as they cook down nice and soft in the oven and can be blended smooth. They also scorch a little while roasting which gives a lovely smoky flavour to the finished sauce. If your tomatoes have extremely thick or tough skins it may be worth putting the cooked mixture through a mouli or a food mill, but I haven’t needed to do this so far. Happy cooking! J.

4.65 from 34 votes (33 ratings without comment)

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