From the classic tomato-based marinara sauce to to the surprising Creole sauce to a variety of pestos, here are our easiest (and most delicious!) pasta sauce recipes.
Slow-Cooker Tomato Sauce
Recipe: Slow-Cooker Tomato Sauce
Turn summer tomatoes into a dinnertime star.
Slow-Cooker Bolognese Sauce over Pappardelle Pasta
Traditionally, Bolognese sauce requires hours of babysitting as it simmers on the stove, but our recipe is virtually hands-off. The lean ground beef is flavored with red wine, and onions, garlic, and Italian seasonings really add fullness and depth. A little cream goes a long way to make the sauce rich, and it comes into its own in the slow cooker. Once everything is together, the best approach is to simply leave it alone, to check it occasionally, to make sure its consistency is just right,—and to be ready to spoon it onto your pappardelle and cover it in Parmesan cheese. Serve it hot, and enjoy!
Recipe: Vodka-Cream Sauce with Penne
This is an old-school favorite with sophisticated flair. The vodka perks up the tomatoes, and the cream makes the sauce rich and smooth.
Diablo Farfalle Sauce
Recipe: Diablo Farfalle Sauce
Spicy but not over-the-top, this sauce is family-friendly. Make what Italians call frutti di mare by adding clams, mussels, and shrimp.
Recipe: Creole Sauce
Create a dinner featuring the seasonings of classic Creole cooking: onion, bell pepper, and celery. The sauce is perfect for pasta.
Recipe: Collard-and-Olive Pesto
A perfect pesto for any pasta. It even freezes well, so you can make a large batch and have leftovers!
Recipe: Asparagus Pesto
Need a new idea for asparagus? Parmesan, pine nuts, garlic, and lemon in this pesto make the veggie into a tasty coating for pasta or crostini.
Recipe: Pecan Pesto
Toasted pecans kick up the flavor of ordinary pesto. Use this recipe for homemade pesto, or as a shortcut add toasted pecans (coarsely chopped in a foor processor) to store-bought pesto.
Norman's Spicy Tomato Sauce
Recipe: Norman's Spicy Tomato Sauce
The name says it all. Norman's Spicy Tomato Sauce is perfect with cooked Italian sausage and served over hot linguine with fresh basil and shaved parmesan cheese.
Garden Tomato Sauce
Recipe: Garden Tomato Sauce over Pasta
We love this sauce as a meatless meal over hearty pasta. Make an even faster meal by freezing the sauce in batches so that all you have to do is reheat.