Vegetable Marinara Sauce with Fresh Basil

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Vegetable Marinara Sauce is a delicious way to eat your vegetables without diving into yet another salad. During the fall and winter months, I love a warm and hearty option to my beloved everyday salads.

This Vegetable Marinara Sauce is perfect for lunch or dinner and the whole family loves it.

Vegetable Marinara Sauce with Fresh Basil recipe by Barefeet In The Kitchen

Bell peppers, mushrooms, squash and tomatoes are quickly simmered together to make this simple marinara sauce. The whole meal comes together in about 30 minutes.

The sausage is optional in this sauce and it is delicious when included. However, I really just added it for the benefit of my meat loving family. I’ve made this marinara sauce with only vegetables in the past and it is delicious both ways.

If you have fresh tomatoes at your fingertips, definitely use them. I haven’t had access to nearly as many tomatoes this year as we have had in the past; so for this recipe I used canned tomatoes.

Both kinds of tomatoes work well to create a light and flavorful sauce that is perfect for a vegetarian meal or a meat lover’s sauce.

Vegetable Marinara Sauce with Fresh Basil recipe by Barefeet In The Kitchen

 

For one more great way to get vegetables into your meals, check out this tip for How To Microwave Spaghetti Squash. This Vegetable Marinara sauce is delicious over fresh squash!

Kitchen Tip: I use this skillet to make this recipe. (It’s my favorite!)

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Vegetable Marinara Sauce with Fresh Basil

5 from 1 vote
Loaded with fresh vegetables, this Vegetable Marinara Sauce is a flavorful and delicious way to eat your vegetables!
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Prep Time: 10 mins
Cook Time: 20 mins
Total Time: 30 mins
Servings: 4 1/2 cup servings

Ingredients 

  • Optional: 1/2 lb pork sausage or ground beef
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil only needed if sausage is not included
  • 1 green or red bell pepper chopped into 1/2" pieces
  • 10-12 crimini or button mushrooms quartered
  • 1 Mexican grey squash or Italian zucchini chopped into 1/2" pieces
  • 29 ounce can of petite diced tomatoes or 3 cups fresh tomatoes chopped small
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly cracked black pepper
  • 1 teaspoon granulated garlic or garlic powder
  • 2 teaspoons Italian seasoning mix
  • pinch of red pepper flakes adjust as desired
  • 1/4 cup fresh basil very thinly sliced and then roughly chopped
  • 6-8 ounces pasta I used a brown rice fusilli
  • Optional: freshly grated Parmesan cheese

Instructions

  • Start a pot of water boiling. Cook and drain the pasta according to the directions while making the marinara sauce. In a large skillet or saucepan, over medium to medium high heat, cook and crumble the sausage. If you are making this without the sausage, heat the oil in the empty skillet. Add the bell pepper to the sausage (or to the oil) and cook for a few minutes, stirring occasionally.
  • Add the mushrooms and stir frequently while they cook for a few more minutes. Add the tomatoes, salt, pepper, Italian seasoning and garlic and stir to combine. Reduce the heat to medium low and let the sauce simmer, while stirring occasionally for 5-10 minutes. Taste the sauce at this point and adjust the spices as needed.
  • Add the squash and the fresh basil and stir to combine. Reduce heat to low and let the sauce simmer for a few minutes, just until the squash is barely tender. Top the cooked pasta with the sauce and grate Parmesan on top if desired. Enjoy!

Notes

Nutrition facts are calculated for the Vegetable Marinara Sauce without meat or pasta.

Nutrition

Calories: 128kcal · Carbohydrates: 20g · Protein: 5g · Fat: 4g · Sodium: 862mg · Potassium: 960mg · Fiber: 5g · Sugar: 12g · Vitamin A: 1550IU · Vitamin C: 67mg · Calcium: 80mg · Iron: 3.3mg
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{originally published 9/9/12 – recipe notes and photos updated 12/15/17}

Vegetable Marinara Sauce is a hearty and flavorful way to eat those vegetables! get the recipe at barefeetinthekitchen.com

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Mary Younkin

Mary Younkin

Hi, Iโ€™m Mary. Iโ€™m the author, cook, photographer, and travel lover behind the scenes here at Barefeet In The Kitchen. I'm also the author of three cookbooks dedicated to making cooking from scratch as simple as possible.

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  1. Michela says

    That looks delicious! I love pasta, that veggie sauce must me super yummy! Great recipe!

    I have been following your blog for a while now, but just recently decided to start one myself and comment ๐Ÿ™‚
    I just wanted to let you know that I really like yours, all your recipes look scrumptious ๐Ÿ™‚

  2. Tricia @ saving room for dessert says

    I understand about the meat loving family. My husband thinks ground beef should be in everything – but of course that's the only meat I don't like. I love a vegetarian marinara. Sauteed vegetables and tomatoes are a perfect meal. It has been a disappointing year for our garden as well. Have a great week Mary! 33 days until the wedding – I am so excited you'd think I was getting married ๐Ÿ™‚

  3. Fern says

    I doubled this recipe so I would have some for another me all. Can you believe I got half way through the dinner when I realized: I FORGOT THE BASIL! It was still very tasty. I did use frozen roma tomatoes which made it a bit watery so I added some tomato paste. Perfect! Even without the basil. I’ll add some fresh basil to the remaining sauce and see how different it taste. The reason I picked this recipe was to use up tomatoes in the freezer and some of the fresh basil on my plant. This is a keeper.5 stars