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4.89 from 202 votes

Slow Cooker Marinara Sauce

A freezer friendly, delicious slow cooked marinara sauce with spices and herbs.
Prep Time5 minutes
Cook Time8 hours
Total Time8 hours 5 minutes
Servings: 10 cups
Author: Star @ the skinny-ish dish


  • 3 cans 28 oz crushed tomatoes preferably a higher quality brand. I use Cento (big yellow can) (you may also use diced or whole tomatoes even tomato sauce if that's all you can find- drain extra liquid if using diced/whole tomatoes)
  • 2 14.5 oz cans fire roasted diced tomatoes drained
  • 8 garlic cloves minced
  • 1 yellow large onion diced
  • 2 tbsp dried oregano
  • 2 tbsp dried basil
  • 1/4 tsp red pepper flakes more or less depending on the level of spice you'd like
  • 1-½ tsp kosher salt
  • 1 teaspoon pepper
  • 1-2 bay leaves (optional)


  • Stir all of your ingredients in a 6 quart slow cooker. Cook on low for 8-10 hours to really get all of those lovely flavors to mingle and fall in love with each other.
    Salt and Pepper to taste when finished.
  • For smoother sauce: use an immersion hand blender, or put in a blender. Blend on low until desired consistency.
    For thicker sauce: tilt the lid off of the crockpot and cook on high for about 30-60 minutes. This will reduce the sauce some so that it's thicker. Depending on the canned tomatoes sometimes the sauce can be a bit more "water-y".
    Reheating after freezing: You can add sauce to your favorite recipe. If you think it seems a bit "water-y" this is normal and can happen depending on the actual tomatoes after they were picked and canned. You can put sauce in a pot on the stove without a cover and heat over medium-low heat reducing it until you reach desired consistency.
    *If using a blender make sure the sauce is cool or blend in small batches*
  • Freezing instructions: Let cool completely. I usually add about 2 cups to each freezer bag, press as much air out as possible, close the bag, and then stack on top of eachother in the freezer to save space.


Makes about 10 cups of sauce. 

60 calories for about 1/2 cup of sauce 

WeightWatchers Points: 0 (any amount)
Note: Not very often, but every once and awhile I get a comment/email saying that this sauce is bitter. Now this may just be your taste buds, but it can also be the quality of the canned tomatoes that were bought. If this happens, you can add a little sugar (which could add points) or some zero calorie sweetener to offset the "bitter" taste. I like to use either Swerve or Whole Earth Sweetener, but use whichever one you enjoy. I would start with just a couple teaspoons then taste and adjust with salt and pepper as well.