Tag Archives: tomatoes

The Tale of Three San Marzano Sauces – Part I


Once upon a time, a newlywed couple took their honeymoon vacation to Italy, on the the Amalfi Coast. When out to dinner one night, he ordered The Manicotti.

“Manicotti?” She asked in disbelief. “We come all the way to Italy and you order manicotti?!”

But it was the best manicotti they ever had.

She ate her words. And more bites of his manicotti than he would have liked.

One reason?

The Tomatoes.

She always had a fondness for tomatoes. In fact, it was her favorite vegetable. He, however, thought they were, well, “Ewwwww….” He could handle cooked tomatoes, and sometimes, sauces.

While they were exploring the Amalfi coast, menus listed tomatoes as just tomatoes, not as a specific variety. It wasn’t until they returned from their honeymoon that they learned that the local tomatoes they were eating were of the San Marzano variety and grown in the rich, volcanic soil of Mount Vesuvius.

She started to cook with San Marzano tomatoes. {The Italian-grown kind can be found canned. The variety can be grown elsewhere, but they don’t taste the same when they are not grown in volcanic soil. You can read more about that here.} He loved them so much that he’d even eat a San Marzano Pasta without meat!

You see, one of their easy go-to meals was a Spaghetti with Meat Sauce. She liked to make this on a busy weeknight because she didn’t have to think. All it took was a little olive oil, half of a diced onion (optional, if available), a pound of ground beef, a jar of marinara and a half of a box of spaghetti {or angel hair pasta, as he likes}. Dinner. DONE.

Until he found…

Jarred San Marzano Pasta Sauces


I’ve kind of been stuck on my same jar of marinara sauce for ages: Ragu Parmesan and Romano. Now we all know that jarred marinara sauces contain waayyyyyy too much sugar and sodium. My jar has 10 grams of sugar and 590 mg of sodium per serving. Ouch.

I’ve tried to switch. I’ve tried other no-sugar added, low-sodium sauces and even “natural” or “organic” ones. I’ve always reverted back to my same old favorite sauce. When it’s something I like better and I can get it on sale for only a dollar or two per jar, the decision is easy! But not necessarily better.

I’ve even tried making a labor-intensive, all-day sauce that smelled so good. But when all was said and done, I was highly disappointed.

Then, Rob found some San Marzano sauces online! I started to watch for them in the store. One day, I found three different brands – JACKPOT! I bought them all.

photo 1(1)


Stay tuned tomorrow for the reviews!

Now? I’m trying to get better about making my own. I know fresh, homemade marinara sauce is healthier when I can control the ingredients. I’m in search for the best tasting one. Here are a few I will be making in the next coming weeks:

Six Minute Marinara Sauce by Lisa at Snack-Girl
Roasted Vegetable Marinara by Biz at My Bizzy Kitchen
Slow Cooker Marinara Sauce by Kath at In the Kitchen with Kath


This week:

Β planning






So I’ve changed up our Run Streak. I’ve found that my back feels much better when I get a nice walk in during the day. To keep active, my Active Streak will include an hour walk every day up until we leave for Oz this fall. On the days when I feel like I don’t have time to walk or workout, that is when I must run a mile because a mile takes minimal time. There’s no way we can’t fit a mile in! So this is a pretty easily written schedule!

  • Monday – Walk 1 hour OR Run 1 mile
  • Tuesday – Walk 1 hour OR Run 1 mile
  • Wednesday – Walk 1 hour OR Run 1 mile
  • Thursday – Run 1 mile in the am
  • Friday – Walk 1 hour OR Run 1 mile
  • Saturday – Walk 1 hour OR Run 1 mile
  • Sunday – Walk 1 hour OR Run 1 mile

What is your favorite homemade marinara recipe?

I’m looking to try some new ones out in the coming weeks!