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Homemade pizza part 2: Step-by-step instructions for making pizza sauce

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Finding the perfect pizza sauce is just as important as finding the perfect crust. This homemade pizza sauce, shared by the Kitchen Treaty blog, will leave you satisfied just like the homemade pizza dough in part 1 of this step-by-step pizza recipe series.

A great pizza sauce has a good balance among flavors. If you're looking for a fresh tomato taste with nice hits of garlic, oregano, red pepper flakes for some heat, and a pinch of sugar for some sweetness, then this sauce is for you. The essential step to this recipe that allows all the flavors to blend and meld is the 90 minutes it takes to simmer uncovered.

This specific recipe serves as a good starting point to doctor up and add to for future recipes. For instance, you may want to add more sugar for a sweeter taste or remove the red pepper flakes if you prefer no heat. Or, you can add new ingredients such as anchovy paste or dried basil. It's quite appetizing on its own, but nice to know you can put your own spin on it.

Just like the homemade pizza dough recipe from part 1, this sauce is easy to prepare especially since the majority of the time is letting it simmer on its own. Lastly, if you end up making more than needed, freeze the leftover sauce and use for future recipes.

Scroll through the series of pictures below to view the step-by-step instructions. Buon appetito!

Pizza sauce ingredients
Pizza sauce ingredients Julianna Polizze

Pizza sauce ingredients

Step 1: Get all your ingredients out and ready. 

  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon minced garlic (about two or three large cloves)
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano or 1 tablespoon fresh chopped oregano (if using fresh, add at the end of the cooking time)
  • 2 cans (14.5 ounces each) diced tomatoes (undrained) or 2 pounds diced fresh tomatoes
  • 1 teaspoon sugar
  • ½ teaspoon red pepper flakes (this makes for a lot of heat -- start out with ¼ teaspoon or even just a generous pinch if you’re unsure)
  • ½ teaspoon kosher salt
  • Black pepper to taste)

(each ingredient was doubled to make more sauce)

Warm the olive oil, add the garlic and oregano
Warm the olive oil, add the garlic and oregano Julianna Polizze

Warm the olive oil, add the garlic and oregano

Step 2: In a medium saucepan over low heat, warm the olive oil. Add the garlic and cook, stirring, for about a minute. If you’re using dried oregano, add that along with the garlic. If you’re using fresh, add it to the sauce at the end of the cooking time.

Add tomatoes + all other ingredients
Add tomatoes + all other ingredients Julianna Polizze

Add tomatoes + all other ingredients

Step 3: Increase the heat to medium. Add the tomatoes, sugar, red pepper flakes, salt, and black pepper.                                                                                            

All ingredients mixed together
All ingredients mixed together Julianna Polizze

All ingredients mixed together

Here are all the ingredients mixed together. Look at that color!                                                                                                             

Simmer uncovered for 90 minutes
Simmer uncovered for 90 minutes Julianna Polizze

Simmer uncovered for 90 minutes

Step 4: Leave over medium heat, stirring occasionally, until boiling. Reduce heat to low for a nice simmer. Simmer uncovered for 90 minutes.

PS: If using fresh oregano, stir it in after sauce simmers uncovered for 90 minutes. 

Immersion blender
Immersion blender Julianna Polizze

Immersion blender

Step 5: Allow the sauce to cool to a safe temperature. Once cooled, use an immersion blender or work in batches with a blender.                                                                     

Pizza sauce is ready!
Pizza sauce is ready! Julianna Polizze

Pizza sauce is ready!

Step 6: Once you are done blending the sauce with the immersion blender, it should be ready to add to your pizza crust.                                                                         

Spread sauce on pizza crust
Spread sauce on pizza crust Julianna Polizze

Spread sauce on pizza crust

Step 7: Add the pizza sauce on the crust by starting in the middle and spreading it around. Slather on as much as you prefer!                                                                 

Hawaiian pizza (before)
Hawaiian pizza (before) Julianna Polizze

Hawaiian pizza (before)

Step 8: Add your toppings! Fresh pineapple and capicola ham were used to make this a Hawaiian pizza. For the cheese, mozzarella and feta were added.

Baking a pizza varies on size and oven. Preheat oven to 400-450 degrees F. Bake anywhere from 10-20 minutes or until crust is golden brown and cheese has melted.                         

Hawaiian pizza (after)
Hawaiian pizza (after) Julianna Polizze

Hawaiian pizza (after)

Here is the Hawaiian pizza after baking in the oven!                                                                                                                                                       

Pepperoni pizza (before)
Pepperoni pizza (before) Julianna Polizze

Pepperoni pizza (before)

Pepperoni pizza before baking in the oven.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                     

Pepperoni pizza (after)
Pepperoni pizza (after) Julianna Polizze

Pepperoni pizza (after)

Pepperoni pizza after baking. Now it's time to nom!                                                                                                                  

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