A truly thick, meaty tomato sauce for home canning.
You can use this as a pasta sauce, or in casseroles, etc. Good with baked pasta dishes such as manicotti, lasagna, etc.
This appears both in the Ball Blue Book and in the Bernardin Guide.
It calls for canned tomatoes, so you can make this at any time of year. If you prefer a recipe that uses fresh tomatoes, see here: Spaghetti sauce with meat.
Jar size choices: Either half-litre (1 US pint) OR 1 litre (1 US quart)
Processing method: Pressure canning only
Yield: 3 x 1 litre (US quart) jars
Headspace: 3 cm (1 inch)
Processing pressure: 10 lbs (69 kPa) weighted gauge, 11 lbs (76 kpa) dial gauge (adjust pressure for your altitude when over 300 metres / 1000 feet)
Processing time: Half-litres (pints) 60 minutes; litres (quarts) 75 minutes
- 2.5 kg ground beef (extra lean. Or lean ground pork. 5 lbs)
- 300 g onion (chopped. 2 cups / 10 oz. Measurements after prep. 2 medium.)
- 150 g green bell pepper (chopped. 1 cup / 5 oz. Measured after prep. 1 large.)
- 2.5 litres diced tomatoes (canned, with juice. about 10 cups / 85 oz.)
- 650 ml tomato paste (2 ⅔ cups / 22 oz.)
- 10 g parsley (chopped fresh. 4 tablespoons / about 2 sprigs)
- 2 tablespoons brown sugar
- 4 teaspoons salt (or non-bitter, non-clouding salt sub
- 1 tablespoon herbs (dried. Your choice)
- ½ teaspoon ground black pepper
- ½ teaspoon ground ginger
- ½ teaspoon ground allspice
- 2 tablespoons vinegar
- Brown the ground meat in batches in a frying pan. Drain excess fat off each batch, and add to a large pot about 8 litres (quarts) in size.
- Wash, peel, and coarsely chop the onion. Add to pot.
- Wash, stem, seed, and coarsely chop the green pepper. Add to pot.
- Cook stirring frequently until the veg soften a bit.
- Add tomatoes including juice.
- Add all remaining ingredients.
- Stir, bring to a boil, then lower to a simmer.
- Let simmer until mixture thickens a bit.
- Ladle hot sauce into heated jars, either half-litre (pint) OR litre (quart).
- Leave 3 cm (1 inch) headspace.
- Debubble; adjust headspace.
- Wipe jar rims.
- Put lids on.
- Processing pressure: 10 lbs (69 kPa) weighted gauge, 11 lbs (76 kpa) dial gauge (adjust pressure for your altitude when over 300 metres / 1000 feet.)
- Processing time: half-litre (US pint) jars for 60 minutes OR 1 litre (US quart) jars for 75 minutes.
How to pressure can.
When pressure canning, you must adjust the pressure for your altitude.
See also: other pasta sauce recipes.
- You could brown the ground meat by baking it on rimmed baking trays in the oven. (Side rims prevent grease from running off into the oven.) Lining the trays with tin foil will make cleanup easier.
- The canned tomatoes can be purchased, or home-canned. Many manufacturers interpret diced in many different ways; some may be more liquidy than others, so interpret final yield as a rough guide. Bernardin even says just “canned tomatoes” (it’s Ball that specifies diced) so you could use whole, or crushed — again, your final yield may be greater based on your cans of tomatoes. Some manufacturers make crushed tomatoes that are watery; some interpret crushed tomatoes to be a semi-thick sauce. You may even wish to add extra tomatoes — that’s fine. It’s always fine to lower the density in pressure canning recipes.
- Instead of fresh parsley, you can use 4 teaspoons of dried.
- For the 1 tablespoon of dried herbs, you can use all of one herb, or, a mixture of dried herbs such as basil, thyme, oregano, etc. Or, a tablespoon of Italian seasoning.
- The ginger and all-spice might seem odd, and you can leave them out if you wish, but they really do work well in this recipe.
- The vinegar is just here for flavouring to waken the taste of the sauce up a bit, so you can use any vinegar you wish, such as white vinegar, red wine vinegar, sherry vinegar, etc. You could also use 2 tablespoons lemon juice if you wished.
- People have asked: would it be safe to cut the tomato paste in half and the ground beef in half: yes, it would. You are reducing the density. In pressure canning, the big concern is the opposite: increasing the density. So don’t add more tomato paste or meat, or any mushrooms etc. (combine with a jar of your home-canned mushrooms upon opening, if desired.)
Ball Blue Book. Muncie, Indiana: Healthmark LLC / Jarden Home Brands. Edition 37. 2014. Page 106.
Bernardin Guide to Home Preserving. Toronto, Canada: Bernardin Ltd. 2013. Page 98.
Ball says ground beef; Bernardin says ground beef or pork.
- Used extra-lean ground beef instead of just lean to reduce calorie count;
- Added option of salt sub.
Per 1 cup / 250 ml / 8 oz:
- 491 calories, 933 mg sodium
- Weight Watchers PointsPlus®: 12 points
- Weight Watchers SmartPoints®: 14 points
Sodium goes down to 175 mg per cup without the added salt.
* Nutrition info provided by MyFitnessPal
* PointsPlus™ and SmartPoints™ calculated by healthycanning.com. Not endorsed by Weight Watchers® International, Inc, which is the owner of the PointsPlus® and SmartPoints® registered trademarks.