Simple Pizza Sauce

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Simple Pizza Sauce

The only pizza sauce you’ll ever need! This is how I make the sauce for 99% of the pizzas I make at home. It’s simple, flavorful and so easy to make!

This sauce is similar to the sauce you would find on a Neapolitan style pizza. It’s made with just tomatoes, olive oil, garlic, salt and dried oregano. A true Neapolitan pizza wouldn’t have the oregano (or garlic) in there, but I love the classic “pizza” flavor it gives to the sauce.

Simple Pizza Sauce

The real key to this sauce is the tomatoes. You need, need, NEED to use good quality tomatoes! I promise it makes a huge difference. I always choose whole tomatoes (I’ll link some faves below!) and break them up by hand. If you don’t want to use your hands, you can add the tomatoes to a food processor and pulse them until you get to the desired consistency. In my opinion, a sauce with a little chunkiness has a better texture for pizza.

Simple Pizza Sauce

So here’s what I do: I place a strainer over a bowl and pour the can of tomatoes, along with their juices, into it. The juices will go into the bowl and you’ll be left with the whole tomatoes in the strainer. Working in the strainer, I crush the tomatoes by hand until I get a bunch of little pieces of tomato. Transfer the hand crushed tomatoes to a separate bowl and then add a few spoonfuls of the strained tomato juice from the other bowl. Separating the whole tomatoes from the juice and then adding the juice back in lets you control the consistency of the sauce.

Simple Pizza Sauce

Simple Pizza Sauce

Once you’ve got the tomato portion of the sauce, you’ll add in one clove of finely minced garlic. Yes, only ONE clove. I know it can be tempting to load up the garlic but this is an uncooked sauce—too much raw garlic will overpower the tomatoes! Then add olive oil, salt and dried oregano.

Simple Pizza Sauce

Even though the sauce is super quick and easy, I like to make it in the beginning of the pizza making process, and let it sit while I pre-heat the oven, shred the cheese and stretch the dough. That way, the flavors will have time to meld. You can make the sauce a day in advance but it will have a much stronger garlic flavor from the raw garlic.

Simple Pizza Sauce

This recipe is also a great base for jazzier pizza sauces! You can make the recipe as stated and then add in chopped Calabrian chiles for a spicier sauce or capers for a Puttanesca-esque sauce. Play around and see what you like! This simple pizza sauce is always a great jumping off point.

You might be wondering what to do with that leftover tomato juice after making this sauce, and to that I say: make a Bloody Mary.

Recipe Summary

  • Simple Pizza Sauce
  • Prep Time
    10 Minutes
    Cook Time
    0 Minutes
    Total Time
    10 Minutes
  • Level: Easy
  • Servings: 2-3 Pizzas
  • Ingredients:
    • 1 (28 ounce) Can whole Italian Tomatoes
    • 1 Clove garlic, finely minced
    • 1 Tablespoon olive oil
    • 1/2 Teaspoon kosher salt
    • 1/4-1/2 Teaspoon dried oregano, to taste
  • Instructions:
    1. Place a strainer over a large bowl and pour the tomatoes into it, separating the whole tomatoes from the juice. Working in the strainer, crush the tomatoes into small chunks by hand. Transfer the crushed tomatoes to a separate bowl. Stir spoonfuls of the strained tomato juice into the crushed tomatoes until you've reached the desired consistency for your sauce. Store the remaining tomato juice for another use. 
    2. Add the olive oil, garlic, salt and oregano to the sauce. Stir and adjust seasoning to taste.
    3. Make a pizza!

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