Spaghetti is a classic and comforting dinner option, but what to do with leftover sauce? If you don’t want to toss it, this roundup will provide you with recipes for leftover spaghetti sauce so nothing goes to waste.
I’m pretty sure every American human has childhood memories involving spaghetti. It is such an iconic, easy dinner option, especially for busy families. One thing that took me a while to perfect was nailing the perfect ratios of sauce:noodles.
“What do I do with all of this leftover sauce?” is a common question that plagues me after a pasta dinner.
If this is a common problem for you, as well, do not fret! We have compiled a roundup of delicious recipes for leftover spaghetti sauce. Read on to be inspired!
FAQ About Spaghetti Sauce
Store spaghetti sauce in a baking dish covered with aluminum foil or any sealed container in the fridge for up to 5 days. If there are visible signs of mold, discard the sauce. To extend the shelf life, freeze it! Allow the sauce to cool completely and pour it into an airtight container or freezer bag. Place in the freezer for up to 4 months. When you are ready to use the sauce, remove it from the freezer and allow it to thaw completely. Pour it into a saucepan and simmer over medium heat for 5 minutes before serving.
Pizza sauce is typically made using tomato sauce, tomato paste and seasonings and is cooked briefly on the stovetop. Spaghetti sauce is made using additional ingredients such as onions, bay leaves and crushed tomatoes and simmers for a couple hours to help enhance the flavor.
Spaghetti sauce sauce can be used in place of pizza sauce in a pinch. First, run the sauce through a strainer to get rid of excess liquid. Transfer to a food processor or blender and puree until smooth. Add 1 teaspoon each of fennel seed and Italian seasoning.
Most spaghetti sauce recipes are gluten-free. When looking for gluten-free store-bought varieties, check the label for ingredients that contain wheat.
Unopened spaghetti sauce will typically remain at optimal quality for approximately 1 year, but can be used past that. Opened sauce will remain fresh when stored properly in the fridge for up to 10 days. Discard if visible signs of mold are present.
Pasta Sauce Recipes
- If your pasta is already cooked and you just need a delicious, savory sauce to top your noodles with, consider making this delicious homemade pasta sauce using fresh or frozen tomatoes! This is such a great recipe.
- Instant Pot Pasta Sauce is a super easy recipe and such delicious way to prepare it, too.
- Transform 2 cans of tomato sauce into a batch of delish pasta sauce! Go homemade and prepare a batch of tomato sauce in the Instant Pot using cherry tomatoes for added flavor.
- And if you have paste on hand instead of sauce, try this super easy way to turn tomato paste into spaghetti sauce!
Make The Best Sauce Possible
- If you are searching for a sauce with even more flavor, try adding 1/4 to 1/2 cup red wine!
- To sweeten the end result, add granulated or brown sugar 1 teaspoon at a time.
- A great way to achieve a spicier end result is by adding a pinch of cayenne pepper, hot sauce or red pepper flakes.
- For an extra smooth sauce, run the cooled mixture through a regular or immersion blender or food processor. Reheat and serve. To achieve a thicker sauce, chop the tomatoes to be 1-inch chunks and do not blend.
- Use a sharp knife to cut into your juicy reds in order to work smarter.
- Homemade pasta sauce is even better the next day, so store room temperature leftovers in an airtight container or glass jar in the refrigerator.
- Boost the flavor by adding minced garlic or garlic powder.
- Any ground meat from Italian sausage to lean ground beef will add delicious meaty flavor.
How To Thicken Pasta Sauce
If you make or purchase a batch of pasta sauce and find that is thin and lacks substance, there are ways to fix it! Read on for tips about how to make thick spaghetti sauce. Or use this guide when you don’t have paste on hand.
Marinara vs Spaghetti Sauce
So close in texture, color and flavor that you could call them cousins! Let’s get to the heart of the issue and explore marinara vs spaghetti sauce. What are the differences?!
If you find yourself with a thin batch of marinara, this comprehensive guide will help you thicken it up.
How To Prepare Tomatoes for Freezing
When you have fresh garden tomatoes on your hands, be sure to freeze extras to throw into a sauce later! Prepping them for freezing is super easy. Don’t waste those juicy red morsels that have spent the summer growing in your garden.
Learn the best way to freeze tomatoes so you can use them in the coming winter months.
Recipes For Leftover Spaghetti Sauce
Aside from the obvious reason (the amazing FLAVOR!), my favorite thing about pasta sauce is that it is so versatile. Here are a few ideas for ways to enjoy it!
- Reheat and pour over the top of cooked noodles of any kind.
- Spread over your next meatloaf as a delicious, hearty topping.
- Replace a jar of marinara sauce or alfredo sauce with it in any recipe.
- Use it as a filling for stuffed spaghetti squash.
- Add it to your morning eggs because everything tastes great with eggs.
- Use as a dipping sauce for breadsticks, garlic bread or quesadillas.
- Pile into stuffed bell peppers for a hearty dinner.
- Spread inside your next grilled cheese sandwich (with or without the leftover noodles!).
- Add leftovers to your next batch of lasagna, cheesy manicotti, baked spaghetti, spaghetti pie or baked ziti.
Stuffed Spaghetti Squash with Ground Beef and Cheese
Stuffed Spaghetti Squash with ground beef and cheese are the healthy version of spaghetti. They are SUPER easy to prepare, and done in less than 30 minutes! Use leftover meat sauce as the filling, then sprinkle mozzarella cheese or grated Parmesan cheese and black pepper over the top when finished!
Italian Sloppy Joes Using Leftover Spaghetti Sauce
Recently, we had leftover spaghetti sauce and wanted something different so we came up this little delight, Italian Sloppy Joes Using Leftover Spaghetti Sauce (from Salvage Sister & Mister).
Spaghetti and Meatballs Grilled Cheese Sandwich
Double the comfort by combining spaghetti & meatballs and a gooey grilled cheese sandwich! If you do not have time to prepare spaghetti and meatballs especially for this recipe, wait until you have leftovers!
Leftover Pasta Sauce Moussaka
This recipe for moussaka from leftover spaghetti sauce (from Frugal Cooking) came from my attempt to do something healthy and interesting with leftover spaghetti sauce and some fresh vegetables from the farmers market.
Instant Pot Spaghetti Squash
Instant Pot Spaghetti Squash cooks quickly and tastes great with butter or spaghetti sauce served over top! Enjoy the fast cook time in your Instant Pot.
Crispy garlic french bread topped with spaghetti and mozzarella cheese. These spaghetti boats (from I Heart Naptime) are one of my favorite ways to use leftover spaghetti!
Easy Baked Pasta
Easy baked spaghetti is a hit with the kids! This hearty meal is on the table in less than 45 minutes and every belly will be satisfied. Topped with a gooey layer of cheddar cheese!
Leftover Pasta Frittata
Looking for a brilliant way to get your kids to eat more eggs or vegetables, or even just a new way to use up extra cooked pasta? Pasta frittata (from The Kitchn) delivers on all three, and makes for a breezy breakfast or weeknight dinner.
Pasta Balls with Meat Sauce
These Pasta Balls with Meat Sauce (from I Wash You Dry) is a backwards take to your traditional Spaghetti with Meatballs. They’re quirky, fun and completely delicious! Made with bread crumbs and pesto!