Remember last week, when I shared one of my favorite ways to enjoy pasta and still stay on track with your health and fitness goals?? Yeah — zucchini noodles for the win!
Well, that was just the very first installment of our little Meal Prep Series around here — today, I wanted to share the second half of that post — this amazing meaty marinara sauce!
Like I mentioned last week, Nik makes homemade pasta A LOT — and while I DO enjoy it, I don’t always have it. I try to keep it to a “treat meal” or special occasions. But, he also makes homemade pasta sauce to go with his pasta.
We almost ALWAYS have some frozen sauce in the freezer for when we want a quick pasta dinner, and I am usually the one who uses it all up…oops! 😉
I like making it into a simple meat sauce during my meal prep for a super quick, protein packed meal. Once the sauce is made (that’s the somewhat time-consuming part) it literally takes 15 minutes to throw together a meal.
Since we are obviously a make-it-yourself kind of household, we use our homemade sauce — but really, any all-natural, good quality sauce will do the trick — you can find some really good one’s at Whole Foods in a pinch! I also really like Rao’s Homemade for a quick fix.
Once you have the sauce, all you have to do it cook up some ground turkey and then add it to the sauce. Simple as that!
But trust me, when you start making your own pasta sauce — you will never go back to the store bought stuff — it’s just SO good! I promise, that if you take the time to make your own, you will NOT regret it!
And the best part of this little meal prep how-to, is that your can FREEZE it!
Yup, you can freeze the plain tomato sauce OR you can even freeze the prepared meat sauce!
I like freezing the sauce in pint-sized mason jars for convenience — they are the perfect size for 2 servings of sauce, and make reheating a breeze!
Top that on some prepped zoodles and there you have it — making weeknight dinners simple and ridiculously delicious!
- 3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
- 2 yellow onions, diced
- 5 garlic cloves, minced
- 4 medium carrots, diced
- 2 stalks celery, diced
- 2 - 28 ounce cans crushed tomatoes
- 2 tablespoons tomato paste
- 1 tablespoon dried rosemary
- 1 tablespoon dried oregano
- 1 tablespoon dried basil
- 2 teaspoons dried thyme
- 1 cup red wine
- salt & pepper to taste
- 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
- 2 pounds lean ground turkey
- In a large stockpot heat olive oil over a medium heat.
- Sauté the onions for 5-8 minutes until they are a deep golden brown color. Add the garlic and cook for an additional minute.
- Add the carrots and celery and cook another 5-8 minutes, until soft.
- Add the remaining marinara ingredients, and raise the heat to medium-high. Bring it to a boil, and then lower to a simmer for 2 hours, stirring occasionally.
- When the marinara is almost finished, prepare the turkey. Heat the olive oil over a medium-high heat.
- Add the turkey and cook, breaking up the meat with the back of a spoon. Cook for 12-15 minutes, or until no longer pink.
- Once the turkey is cooked, add it to the marinara sauce and stir to mix it in.
- Allow the sauce to cool to room temperature and divide it into individual servings sizes -- I like using pint-sized mason jars so that I can freeze the extra. Store in the refrigerator for up to 5 days, and in the freezer for up to a month.
- Thaw the frozen sauce in the refrigerator overnight and heat normally.
Have you ever made your own tomato sauce?? Let me know in the comments below!