I have always made my own sauce . But I was thinking why not throw a couple of them in the pantry for when I’m lazy tired . Any ones you like . I was thinking about trying Lidia’s sauce . I don’t care about the cost . Thanks
Rao’s gets good reviews from many folks.
Dave’s is pretty good. Not overly garlicky are some can be.
I make my own to but in a pinch, don’t laugh, I like Emeril’s Homestyle Marinara. I know, I know, but I like it.
When we’re out of our own I will use Newman’s marinara on a pizza.
Is it better than homemade? Would I serve it to company? . no
Do I have it in the cupboard for exactly the types of occasions you mention - yes. It is my brand of choice for now. I do still experiment with other brands now and again (don’t use jar sauce very often) looking for better options.
Trader joes pesto Genoese is pretty good, but not shelf stable.
As we are getting on in age (and health) I have started to keep a few jars around myself. If I make a whole pot nowadays it mostly goes into the freezer.
My favorite brands are Silver Palate and Vittoria. I’ll get marinara style or one with basil or mushrooms, but also like to have Fra Diablo, Puttanesca and the like on hand too.
I’ve never tried it myself, as I always make my own sauce(s).
I make my own sauce once a year, after a local pick-your-own Romas for .25/lb event. I pick 35-40 lbs,for sauce and paste and freeze it in portions but sometimes we need a change.
We’re big fans of Patsy’s Fra Diavolo sauce. I’ve always got a couple jars of it in the pantry.
A surprising one we like lately is the new Ragu Spicy Italian Style sauce. Their other sauces are on the sweet side, but this one has a nice kick of spices to it. I always add a touch more red pepper flakes and a pinch of fennel seed. My kids prefer thicker sauce as opposed to the more runny sauces so they like this one.
Yeah, I don’t get that; it’s thin, oily and very spendy. I use several, and have found good ones, primarily by eschewing any that contain oils other than olive, or any added sugar.
A while ago I went through a phase where I was trying lots of jarred pasta sauces. Got burned out on doing that and haven’t had a jarred sauce since then. LOL
FWIW, here are my ratings and brief comments(reflecting my preferences.) The 1-10 scale is limited to jarred sauces and only meant for rating jarred sauces against other jarred sauces.
PASTA SAUCE(1-10 scale)
++ Muir Glen–too sour
++++ Bertoli–not too chunky, a bit sweet, not much tomato flavor
++++1/2 Barilla–not too chunky, not too sweet, not much flavor but garlic
+++++ CM/Kroger Private Selection Basilico–smooth texture, nmf
+++++++ Victoria–too chunky, good tomato flavor
+++++++++ Rao’s–good texture, depth of flavor, olive oily
+++++++ Silver Palate–good texture, non-offensive flavor
+++++++1/2 Giada–okay texture, interestng due to butter, decent flavor
+++++++1/2 Aiello’s–good texture, good flavor(long cooked?), slight heat
++++++ Lucini–good tomato flavor but not much flavor overall, too chunky
++++++ Mom’s Tomato Basil Butter Special Marinara–odd flavor, not bad
++++++ Mezzetta–decent, not as winey as some of their varieties
+++++ Coppola–far too chunky & watery
+++++1/2 Two Guys Jersey Tomato Sauce–decent tomato flavor, decent texture
+++++++++ Rao’s --good flavor, good texture, olive oily, no glaring weaknesses
+++++++ Emeril’s --good texture, nothing horrible about it, a little sweet
++++++++ Silver Palate --good texture, nothing horrible, a little sour
+++ Wild Oats --not a lot of flavor, unappetizing papery onion skins in sauce
++++++++ Alessi(Smooth) --good texture, good flavor, bit pricey
++++++++ Victoria --good flavor, a little too chunky
Like others I like Rao’s. I bought his cookbook and the sauce is pretty easy to make (like all marinaras). I now make a big vat and then can them in pint jars. They last for the entire winter in the food cellar.
Wow, thanks for the empirical data. That’s really taking one for the team.
Like most here, I make my sauce these days. I usually use canned tomatoes and use a looooong slow simmer to naturally sweeten the dish without having to use any sugar which I object to merely on “Why?” grounds.
But back in the day…
About twenty-three years ago, I became a single dad after a few years of being a single, (divorced), man. I had always been an occasional cook and usually enjoyed it, but I found myself suddenly having to get a decent dinner down every night. I’ll admit that a lot of Hamburger Helper and jarred pasta sauces found their ways into the rotation. It didn’t take long before I had to start augmenting the HH and pasta sauces with fresh mushrooms, garlic, etc.
From there of course, I did away with the HH altogether, (though to this day I make a comfort food version from scratch I call “Beefy Mushroomy Stuff”), but I still keep a jar of Classico Tomato Sauce in the pantry. I usually wind up using it a few weeks after the expiry just to use it but then I’ll buy another.
It’s cheap, but it’s good for what it is - An ingredient for something better.
I usually make my own sauce. In summer buying a bushel of the best tomatoes I can find. More recently growing my own. But I really like a couple of Rao’s sauces. They are way overpriced at around $9.99, but H Mart usually has it on sale for $6.99, which is still pricey. But it is a 24 oz, 1.5 lb. jar, larger than many sauces.
The only two I like are, the Vodka sauce, which is not one made with cream/milk. A very fresh tomato sauce, with thick chunks of RIPE tomatoes. And my favorite is their Cuore DiPomodoro. A “Filetto sauce with tomato, proscuitto, and onion.” I can eat this cold, from the jar, with a spoon. This is the most difficult of their sauces to find and I have only seen it on a regular basis in H Mart (A Korean supermarket chain), and once at A&P before they went bankrupt.
Classico Spicy Red Pepper. Not spicy at all, according to my taste buds, and not too sweet. Also cheaper than many.
FWIW, I’m well aware that making a good sauce takes little time/expertise, comparatively. But there are multiple reasons why it could be hard for someone to do. That’s why I’m glad for decent “convenience” products that don’t have premium prices.