Heart Healthy Pasta Sauce

Prepared pasta sauce is very high in sodium with between 500-600 mg of sodium per serving. We were surprised to learn how much sodium is in prepared pasta sauce and one of the first changes I made when we started a heart healthy diet was to make homemade pasta sauce.   Through trial and error, I came up with a recipe that our family likes.  According to the recipe nutrition calculator at MyFitnessPal.com this recipe has about half the amount of sodium of prepared pasta sauce.

This is just a simple, basic recipe; add vegetables and/or different seasonings to your family's tastes. I like using Furmano's Chunky Crushed Tomatoes in this recipe since it adds a little bit of texture to the sauce and also has the lowest amount of sodium compared to other brands that I found in my local grocery stores.

Note: Some brands have a "no sodium added" crushed tomatoes product available. I haven't been able to find them in my area and I am unsure of the sodium content in these products. Compare sodium amounts among the brands that you find in your area for the best option.

Heart Healthy Pasta Sauce

Servings: approx. 9 (1/2 cup) servings

1/2 cup onion, finely chopped (about 1/2 large onion)
1 tsp. canola oil
1 28 oz. can crushed tomatoes
1 8 oz. can no salt added tomato sauce
1 tbs. light brown sugar
1 tsp. dried basil
1 tsp. garlic powder
1 tsp. dried oregano
1/2 tsp. salt
1/4 tsp. black pepper

1.  Heat canola oil and add onion.  Saute onion over medium-low heat until soft and translucent.
2.  Add crushed tomatoes, tomato sauce, brown sugar, basil, oregano, garlic powder, salt and pepper. 
3.  Simmer for at least 30 minutes over low heat, stirring occasionally.