Heirloom Tomato Sauce for Canning

  • Yield: 6 quarts 1x


A homemade marinara that is the epitome of summer. Heirloom tomatoes, garlic and white wine make for a killer tomato sauce recipe for canning!


  • 16 lb heirloom tomatoes, picked over and washed in throughly in warm water
  • 1 tablespoon dried thyme
  • 36 small cloves garlic, peeled (about 3 heads)
  • 3 cups olive oil
  • 6 cups chopped yellow onions
  • 6 cups dry white wine
  • 12 stalks fresh basil
  • 1/4 cup lemon juice
  • 1 tablespoon kosher salt
  • 1 teaspoon fresh ground pepper


  1. Preheat oven to 350F degrees.
  2. Cut tomatoes in half and remove core and scoop as many seeds out as you can. Save seeds, cores and any accumulated juice in a separate bowl and save.
  3. Lay tomato halves in two roasting pans, cut side up. Sprinkle half the chopped garlic and dried thyme over the tomatoes and drizzle with half of the olive oil. Roast uncovered for 45 minutes.
  4. Remove tomatoes from oven and let cool until easy to handle.
  5. Remove the tomato skins and add them to the bowl with the seeds and cores. Add tomatoes to a separate bowl.
  6. Heat remaining olive oil in a large stockpot and add onions. Cook over medium-low heat for 15 minutes until nice and soft. Add remaining garlic and cook an additional 5 minutes. Turn heat to medium high and add white wine. Simmer for 20 minutes or so until wine is reduced by just over half.
  7. Meanwhile, mash the roasted tomatoes with your hands and then stir them into the simmering onion mixture. Using a fine mesh sieve, place the tomato seeds, cores and extra juice over the pot and press them so that all the additional tomato juice drips into the pot. Discard the seeds and skins. .
  8. Bring the sauce to a boil add the whole basil stalks (don’t chop the basil!!) and simmer for 30-40 minutes. Remove basil and add a tablespoon of salt and lemon juice. Cook 5 minutes more.
  9. Ladle marinara sauce into 6 quart size sterilized jars leaving 1/4 inch headspace. Wipe the tops of the jars with a clean, wet paper towel. Center a lid on each jar and screw band on just finger tight. Process jars in a hot water bath for 40 minutes.


For each 1000 feet of altitude over 3000 feet, add 5 minutes of processing time. At 7000 feet, I processed my jars for a total of 55 minutes.