Pasta sauce is a delicious and easy way to add more vegetables to your family’s meals. Loaded with tomatoes, spinach, zucchini, bell pepper, carrots, and onions, this veggie pasta sauce can be enjoyed chunky or pureed smooth to help even the most selective of eaters enjoy their veggies!
Smoothies were kind of my gateway to our veggie-loaded lifestyle. Once I saw how easy and amazing it was to add veggies into a simple smoothie recipe, I started looking for other innovative ways to get bonus veggies into my little family’s diet. Especially at dinner! I have made so many veggie-loaded dinner recipes since discovering the magic of veggie-loading, and while I have many pasta recipes on rotation, this easy Veggie Pasta Sauce was one of our favorites and remains my go-to recipe for pasta sauce!
This easy vegetable sauce is loaded with 6 different kinds of vegetables and comes together in under 30 minutes. It makes 4 cups of sauce and freezes beautifully, so make some now and save it for a quick and easy veggie-loaded option on a busy night. You can leave it a little chunky or puree it smooth with your immersion blender, whichever your family prefers. It is vegan, gluten free, Paleo, plant based and Whole30 friendly. So, no matter your eating style, this vegetable sauce will fit into your dinner time and effortlessly help you eat more veggies!
Can I add veggies to jarred sauce?
Truth be told, I started veggie-loading my family’s sauce simply by adding pureed or grated veggies to commercially prepared tomato sauce. It was easy and did the trick. And I was utterly dazzled with how my family inhaled their dinner without so much as a wrinkled nose or questioning eye. So, right away, I was SOLD on veggie-loading all the tomato sauce.
How to I store this veggie sauce?
I keep it in an air-tight container (like a mason jar) for about a week in the fridge. Or I portion it out into freezer safe containers and freeze it to use for up to 2 months!
Can I can this sauce?
I honestly haven’t tried and know very little about canning, so I can’t answer that from an expert position. If, however, you are a canning expert…I’d love to hear your thoughts and/or if you do try canning this vegetable sauce!
- Get creative with the veggies! This recipe is just a rough framework of what how you could veggie-load your tomato sauce….but I encourage you to make it your own, omit what you want, and use what you have on hand. I love adding mushrooms and cooked lentils to mine!
- Enjoy it as a pizza sauce. Boom! Pizza night is suddenly veggie-loaded too!
- Puree it smooth or leave it chunky to fit your family’s personal taste.
Use “sneaky veggies” as a stepping stone
If you are hiding veggies from your family, that’s cool. It’s a great first step into getting veggies into their (or your) diets! However, I encourage you not to resort to ONLY hiding the veggies. Maybe after a few rounds of this tomato sauce (that your family will undoubtedly adore), leave a few chunks of veggies in the sauce for them to stumble upon. Or invite them to help you MAKE the sauce so they see how much they have been LOVING all these veggies! Once they realize they have been eating veggies all along and enjoying them, they might be more open to eating them NOT hidden.
Other veggie-loaded recipes you and the family are going to adore.
- Spaghetti Squash Pizza Casserole
- No-Boil Creamy Vegetable Pasta Bake
- Baked Pasta with Eggplant
- Pumpkin Baked Oatmeal
- Veggie-Loaded Turkey Tacos
- Cauliflower Tots (Baked or Air Fryer)
Loving this healthy pasta sauce recipe and hungry for more?
Easy Veggie Pasta Sauce
- 1 Tablespoon oil of choice
- ½ small yellow onion diced
- 1 teaspoon sea salt or to taste
- 1 teaspoon garlic powder or to taste
- 1 Tablespoon Italian seasoning
- 2 cups zucchini grated
- 1 ½ cups carrots grated
- ½ bell pepper deseeded and diced
- 2 cups chopped spinach, loosely packed
- 1 28 ounce can crushed tomatoes
- 2 Tablespoons tomato paste
- ½ cup stock or broth
- 2 bay leaves
- Place a large saucepan over medium heat and heat up the oil. Once the oil is hot, add the onions, garlic powder, salt, and Italian seasoning. Saute for about 4 minutes or until onions are translucent.
- Add zucchini, carrots, bell pepper, and spinach to the pot. Saute the veggies until they are softened, about 5 minutes.
- Add the tomatoes, tomato paste, bay leaves, and stock to the pot. Stir until combined and cover. Once sauce starts to boil, lower heat to a simmer and cook UNCOVERED for 15 minutes.
- Once done cooking, remove bay leaves. Use an immersion blender to puree the sauce to preferred consistency. If you can, use a regular blender to blend this sauce in batches, but transfer it carefully as it will be hot!
- Taste and add extra salt or garlic powder if desired.
- Serve over your favorite pasta or spiralized veggie. Enjoy as is or add cooked ground meat or meatballs.
- Allow leftover sauce to completely cool before transferring it to an air-tight container. Store in fridge for up to 6 days or freeze to have on hand for months to come.
The nutritional information is provided as an estimate only and may vary based on the product type, servings and other factors. If you are following a diet, please consult with a professional nutritionist or your doctor. Stay healthy!