how to freeze Fresh Tomato Sauce

Freezing Fresh Tomato Sauce

Written by Becky
Among a few other freezer food adventures this fall, slow roasted tomatoes and pesto and canning peach jam, I decided to try making fresh tomato sauce and freezing it for pastas or pizza during the winter months.  This way I can savor the flavors of my garden tomatoes all winter long.
Fresh Tomato Sauce Recipe

I combined a couple of recipes to make one that sounded perfect to me.  I started with the Italian Classics version of fresh tomato sauce and altered the ingredients a bit based on a freezer tomato sauce recipe I found online.  The cookbook’s recipe had lots of great tips on how to make the most flavorful sauce.  So, we laboriously peeled and seeded two huge bowls of tomatoes from my garden in hopes of making perfect, rich Italian sauce.

Read more for step by step instructions with photos on making the perfect Tomato Sauce.

Fresh Tomato Sauce Recipe

Freezer-Fresh Tomato Sauce

Yield: 4 batches or 4 containers of sauce


  • 2 large bowls or 6 pounds ripe tomatoes; peeled, seeded, chopped
  • 1 1/2 cups chopped onion
  • 1/2 cup chopped celery
  • 3 large garlic cloves, minced
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 teaspoons Sugar
  • 1 to 2 teaspoons salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 1 cayenne pepper, seeded and finely chopped OR 1/8 teaspoon ground red pepper
  • 2 teaspoons dried crushed oregano
  • 1-2 tablespoons fresh thyme, snipped OR 1-2 teaspoons dried crushed thyme


  1. Remove the stem and core of each tomato. Then, to easily peel the tomatoes, heat up a large pot of boiling water. Place the tomatoes in the water for about 30 seconds each or until the skin starts to peel around the top. Remove from heat and peel each tomato. After they are peeled, cut into halves or quarters and using your fingers, remove the seeds of the tomato. After all tomatoes are seeded, you can chop up the tomatoes and continue to make your sauce. Peeling and seeding the tomatoes make for a rich, thick and smooth sauce with more robust flavor.
  2. In large pot, cook onions, celery, and garlic in hot oil for about 5 minutes or until tender. Add chopped tomatoes, sugar, salt, black pepper, and cayenne pepper. Bring to boil; reduce heat. Simmer, uncovered, about 45 minutes or until desired consistency is reached, stirring occasionally. Add oregano and thyme.
  3. Simmer, uncovered, for 15 minutes longer. Cool slightly. In food processor, process sauce, about 1/4 of the mixture at a time, to desired texture. Place sauce in a bowl; set in ice water to cool quickly. Fill freezer containers; seal tightly, label, and freeze. Makes 6 to 8 cups of tomato sauce.


adapted from Italian Classics cookbook

1. Peeling the tomatoes
2.  Seeding the tomatoes
3. Chop then cook the tomatoes
4. Straining the excess tomato juice, then add to tomatoes, discarding the seeds
5.  Simmering the tomato sauce with spices

Comments (11)

  1. I love to make tomato sauce and freeze it. This year I had a lot of green and yellow tomatoes though, and I wondered if they work to make sauce because of the color. I ended up making sauce with them but adding a small can of tomato paste, which made all the sauce a lovely red color! I was so happy I didn't have to waste them, and now I need to pick all the rest of the tomatoes and make another batch of sauce.

  2. That looks so good! Next time you should borrow my food mill; it gets out the seeds and skin really easily. (I can hear you groaning, "NOW she tells me…")

  3. A lovely soup! I have been wondering if it is easier to skin and seed the tomatoes first or press the soup through a sieve once it's cooked. I've done it both ways and it is work, I tell you ~ Julia has convinced me that I need to get a food mill!

  4. You don't have to peel and deseed all of the tomatoes if you don't have the time. I've done it both ways and enjoyed it.

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