We had spaghetti all the time growing up. Until recently, I’d always assumed that the meat sauce recipe was my grandma’s, but it turns out it was originally my nana’s recipe (dad’s mom). My dad hates the texture of onions, so my nana would mush up the onions in a food processor so her sauce would still have the taste of the onions without the crunch that bothered my dad. My mom makes the sauce in huge batches and freezes it – it’s great when someone (like my brother) stops by unannounced (to do laundry) (at dinner time) (how convenient).
Spaghetti With Meat Sauce

For the meat sauce you will need:

meat sauce

2 cans tomato sauce
2 cans tomato paste
1 large onion
2-8 gloves of garlic (depending on personal preference)
2 lbs ground beef or turkey
1 tbsp sugar
1/2 can water (use empty tomato sauce can)
oregano to taste
salt and pepper to taste

put garlic and onion in food processor

Add peeled garlic gloves (add more if you like lots of garlic) and onion to food processor.




Congrats, your onions and garlic are now practically liquid. Good work, food processor!

cook the meat, drain excess fat

Cook up the meat, drain any excess fat.

put tomato products in a pot

Add tomato sauce and paste to a large pot.

add water

Fill one of your tomato paste cans with 1/2 can water and add it to the tomato sauce.

stir in onion and garlic

Once the meat is cooked, add in the garlic and onion. Cook for four more minutes.

yummy meat

It smells sooooo good.

add meat to the sauce

Add your meat to the sauce. I was too short to do this without a ladle.

add oregano

Sprinkle a layer of oregano over the sauce. Stir, then repeat.

add salt

Add salt and pepper to taste. Be sure to throw some salt over your shoulder for luck.

add sugar

Add my nana’s secret ingredient – sugar.

mix it, mix it real good

Simmer on low heat for 90 minutes, stirring occasionally.

taste test time

My cousin Leah was over for dinner and the taste test!

first bite

I served the meat sauce over spaghetti, but you can pair it with any pasta of your choosing.


Mama mia, that’s a delicious meat sauce!

i'm eating here!

This was not fun to clean up.

Spaghetti With Meat Sauce
Recipe type: Entree
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 12
  • 2 cans of tomato sauce
  • 2 cans tomato paste
  • 1 large onion
  • 2 - 8 gloves of garlic
  • 2 lbs ground beef or turkey
  • 1 tbsp sugar
  • ½ can (tomato paste) of water
  • oregano to taste
  • salt, pepper to taste
  1. Put garlic gloves (approx 2-8, depending on preference) and onion into a food processor and pulverize.
  2. Salt pan and cook meat, spoon off any grease.
  3. When meat is thoroughly cooked, stir in onion and garlic. Cook for about 3-4 more minutes, stirring constantly.
  4. Pour tomato sauce and paste into a large pot.
  5. Add ½ can of water to tomato mix.
  6. Add meat mixture to tomato sauce, stir well.
  7. Sprinkle oregano on top of sauce, enough to coat the top. Stir, then repeat.
  8. Add salt and pepper to sauce, stir.
  9. Add sugar, stir.
  10. Simmer on low for 90 minutes, stirring occasionally.
  11. Serve over your favorite pasta.
Freezes beautifully