Easy Homemade Tomato Meat Sauce for Pasta

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One of our favourite easy family meals to make is pasta with a tomato meat sauce. It’s quick and easy and tastes richer and more flavoursome than from a jar. PLUS… it only takes 30 minutes max to make and everyone in the family loves it. I like to sprinkle some parmesan cheese on the top of this easy Bolognese Sauce just before serving and serve it with some homemade garlic and cheese bread.

pinterest image for a quick and easy family idea

Quick and Easy Pasta Sauce from Scratch

Although this isn’t a traditional Spaghetti Bolognese sauce as we are missing the vegetables it does make a quick mid-week alternative and my kids now frequently call it Spag Bol instead of meat sauce. With very little ones in the family (or messy husbands) you may want to swap the spaghetti for a less messy pasta alternative.

tomato and meat pasta sauce

We discovered quickly how much money we could save by cooking from scratch. We buy our tins and spices in bulk and then get mince from the butchers and freeze any left over.

Read about our once a week meal prep and family meal planning guide.

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This recipe will make enough for our family of 4 to have 2 – 3 meals depending on whether we serve with a large side salad and reduce the pasta and meat sauce that we use.

spaghetti on a fork with a scoop of homemade pasta meat sauce above a plate with spag bol

Whilst this simmers on the stove around 10 to 15 minutes into cooking and get the garlic bread into the oven at the start and it will be ready all at the same time.

plate of spaghetti with homemade pasta sauce on top a bowl of vegetables in the background

Looking for other easy meal ideas with pasta for weeknight dinners check out this delicious chicken carbonara recipe.

How to Freeze and Make Ahead

As a bonus, you can make this meat sauce in advance (say at the weekend)! Then Freeze in portion containers, then defrost in the middle of the week when you need it and it will take just the time it takes to cook some pasta. Ideal for busy weeknights with clubs and after-school activities.

Yield: 8 portions

Easy Make Ahead Pasta Sauce

pasta sauce on a fork with spaghetti above a plate with tomatoes in the top right corner just peaking through

Quick and easy make-ahead meat sauce for pasta. Rich in tomato flavours and perfect for mid-week family meals. Make at the weekend, freeze this bolognese sauce and defrost as needed.

Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 25 minutes
Total Time 30 minutes


  • 800 g Chopped Tomatoes 2x400g Cans
  • 2 Packets Passata
  • 1 kg lean minced beef browned
  • 1 cup water
  • 1 tablespoon dried oregano
  • 1 tablespoon dried basil
  • 1 tablespoon dried parsley
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1 teaspoon onion powder
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1/4 teaspoon red pepper flakes
  • 2 tablespoons honey


  1. Brown the ground beef in a skillet pan.ground beef in a skillet pan being browned to make a delicious make ahead pasta sauce
  2. Then combine browned ground beef, tomatoes, tomato sauce, water, seasonings.adding herbs and spices as to season a meat pasta sauce
  3. Add the honey for a bit of sweetness.honey added to pasta sauce for a touch of sweetness to bring out the tomato flavour
  4. Stir to combine.pasta sauce cooking on the stove
  5. Cook over medium heat for 20 to 30 minutes, stirring occasionally.pasta sauce ready to freeze or serve for family meal
  6. Serve over pasta (check out our guide for cooking the perfect pasta).tomato and meat pasta sauce


Prepare in Advance:

Prepare as normal then divide into portions in freezable containers. Allow to cool thoroughly. Then place in the freezer.

Take out 24hrs before use and defrost in the fridge and then reheat in a pan on the stove before serving.

Nutrition Information:



Serving Size:


Amount Per Serving: Calories: 380Total Fat: 22gSaturated Fat: 8gTrans Fat: 1gUnsaturated Fat: 10gCholesterol: 111mgSodium: 386mgCarbohydrates: 10gFiber: 2gSugar: 7gProtein: 35g

Did you make this recipe and loved it?

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pinnable image for meat pasta sauce to make ahead of family meals

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