Basic tomato sauce


1 onion

1 clove of garlic

Handful of fresh basil or 1x15ml spoon dried herbs

Spray oil

2 large cans chopped tomatoes

Black pepper

75g dried pasta per person


Knife, chopping board, garlic press, two saucepans, wooden spoon.


1. Prepare the ingredients:

  • peel and finely dice the onion;
  • peel and crush the garlic;
  • chop the basil.

2. Heat the oil and fry the onion and garlic for 5 minutes, until soft.

3. Add the tomatoes, basil and pepper.

4. Allow to simmer gently for 30 minutes (longer if possible).

5. Cook the pasta following the instructions on the packet.

6. Drain and serve with the tomato sauce.

Top tips:

  • Add ½ red chilli, for a sauce with a kick.
  • Add 75g mushrooms and 75g courgette, after stage 2, for a simple veggie sauce.
  • Add and brown lean 200g beef mince after stage 2 for a simple meat sauce.
  • Stir-in black olives and tuna.
  • Pour the basic sauce over white fish, sprinkle with cheese and bake for 20 minutes until golden.


Why not use the Explore Food calculator, the British Nutrition Foundation's free online nutritional analysis programme, to calculate the nutritional information for this and other Food - a fact of life recipes?

Food skills:

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Cut, Chop, Slice, Dice & Trim
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Fry & Sauté
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Melt, simmer and boil

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