Homemade Pizza Sauce

Homemade Pizza Sauce is so easy and flavorful, you will never go back to store-bought again. This pizza sauce from scratch with crushed tomatoes, wine, and garlic is the best pizza sauce recipe you will find. Ready in 30 minutes.

uncooked pizza dough with sauce spread on, on a black pizza stone

Welcome to my baby. My gem. The best pizza sauce recipe I have had, lovingly made at home.

Eating healthier was the impetus for me here in making up my own homemade pizza sauce, but now that I have done it, from now on forever, flavor will be the motivator. It just tastes so much better.

ladle scooping up cooked sauce

Pizza sauce vs marinara

So what’s the difference anyway – why go to the trouble of specifically making pizza sauce rather than just opening a jar of leftover spaghetti sauce?

In general, pizza sauce is thicker than a marinara. It has less water content and a bit more tomato paste. We want this for pizza because who wants watery pizza sauce? No you, that’s who. Me neither.

Other than the water content, my pizza sauce is very similar to my Homemade Marinara Sauce in flavor. Wine, garlic, seasoning, tomatoes… hey, if a formula works, it works.

collage of 4 photos showing preparation: upper left, garlic in the pan; upper right, wine pouring into the pan; lower left, wine and garlic combined; lower right; assembled sauce ready to simmer

What makes this sauce the best?

Sure there are all kinds of recipes out there, but THIS one is the best for 2 reasons:

This recipe uses crushed tomatoes as its base, not tomato sauce or tomato paste. We still use a little paste to thicken, but that is a minor thing.

The result is a sauce that is not tomato-pasty-thick as others. Instead, the flavor is light and fresh and real.

A little red wine brings a lot of umami. Funny thing happens when you add a little extra layer of flavor. You deepen the flavor in a perceptible but not obvious way.

Certain ingredients deliver umami to elevate a recipe. A touch of anchovy paste to salad dressing is a perfect example. Mushrooms and sun-dried tomato are ingredients I use a lot for this. And red wine.

marble board on which are 4 small glass bowls showing ingredients: honey, italian seasoning, salt, and crushed red pepper


The ingredients all together for this recipe are EASY.

  • Olive oil. Brings creaminess yumminess, and is also necessary to cook the garlic.
  • Garlic. Lightly sauteéd to take the bite off.
  • Red wine. A key to this recipe as discussed above.
  • Canned crushed tomatoes. Get the best quality tomatoes your budget will allow.
  • Tomato paste. This is our thickener.
  • Seasonings: salt, Italian, and red pepper flakes. Always adjust to taste.
  • Honey. Tomatoes come with a tart/tangy acidity, so sauces typically need at least a little sugar to take that edge off. I used honey for the flavor.
top down view into pan with finished recipe

Steps for preparation

Making homemade sauce is so easy, you have no excuse not to try it once. Promise.

  1. Sauté garlic in the olive oil. (1 minute)
  2. Add the wine and simmer. (1 minute)
  3. Add remaining ingredients and simmer. (20 minutes)

That’s it!

The 20 minute simmer is necessary to blend the flavors and make the magic happen. Yeah, there are “5 minute” recipes out there, but think about it – you are making sauce. It needs a little love, then you will love it all the more.

sauce layered on pizza dough

Last Tips

This sauce can be used immediately or stored in the refrigerator for up to a week. Storage container should be one resistant to staining (such as a mason jar) or you’ll end up with an orange container.

I recommend using a garlic press to make mincing the garlic a snap.

Always simmer tomato sauces on low because they will bubble and splatter. Stir regularly to make sure it does not burn on the bottom either.

This sauce can be frozen for use within a couple months. Cool completely prior to transferring to a storage container.

I have used this recipe to cover 3-4 large pizzas. The recipe yields a little over 2 cups. If you want your sauce thinner and to stretch to 4 pizzas, use 1/2 cup sauce for each. If covering 3 pizzas, you can be more generous.

image for pinterest with text overlay of recipe title

Need pizza ideas to put this sauce to use?

top down view into pan with finished recipe

Homemade Pizza Sauce

Homemade Pizza Sauce is so easy and flavorful, you will never go back to store-bought again.
5 from 2 votes
Prep Time 5 mins
Cook Time 25 mins
Total Time 30 mins
Course Sauce
Cuisine American, Italian
Servings 12 people
Calories 60 kcal


  • 1 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • 2 large cloves garlic minced
  • ¼ cup dry red wine
  • 1 28 oz can crushed tomatoes
  • 2 Tbsp tomato paste
  • ½ tsp kosher salt
  • 1 tsp honey
  • 1 ½ tsp Italian seasoning
  • ¼ tsp crushed red pepper flakes


  • In a medium saucepan, heat the olive oil on medium-high heat. Add the garlic and saute briefly (~1 minute) until lightly golden. Add the wine and simmer a minute to deglaze and boil off the alcohol.
  • Reduce heat to medium-low and add the remaining ingredients. Simmer gently for 20-30 minutes, stirring occasionally, to blend flavors and thicken the sauce.
  • Taste and adjust for salt and sweetness, adding a little sugar if necessary if the sauce is too acidic.
  • Use immediately or refrigerate and keep up to a week. This sauce can also be frozen.


This pizza sauce recipe yields enough for 3-4 large pizzas, depending how thick you layer your sauce.
Calorie estimation is approximate and is based on using all the sauce for 3 pizzas, 8 slices each, 2 slice servings per person.


Calories: 60kcal (3%)

Calorie count is purely an estimate calculated using an online application to serve as a guide and not to be taken as accurate nutritional information. Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet.

Keyword best pizza sauce recipe, homemade pizza sauce, pizza sauce from scratch
Tried this recipe?Leave a comment below and let me know!


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