Adding Leftovers to Jarred Spaghetti Sauce

I use Newman's spaghetti sauce. I doctor it up by adding every thing that Mom used to call "mustgo" (every thing in the fridge must go!) Am I wasting time and should I just heat it and serve it right out of the jar. I like to think that I am "making sauce". What do you think?


By jack sutton from Pensacola, FL

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February 17, 20110 found this helpful

Lazy? Not at all. While you may not actually be making sauce, you are "doctoring it up" as my mom used to say. I personally don't find any brand of jarred sauce that tasty right out of the jar or can, but I keep it on hand for a quick meal, and I surely doctor it up before serving, a little extra garlic and oregano, maybe some ground beef or sausage, mushrooms, etc. I do like my own sauce, but sometimes you just don't have the time!

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February 17, 20110 found this helpful

I never serve just what's in the jar, usually I brown some ground beef and throw in a can of mushrooms. I do, however, think leftovers would make a great sauce.

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February 17, 20110 found this helpful

I can make my own spaghetti sauce from scratch but I don't often do it. Usually I "doctor" a jar of sauce. I like the Classico Tomato and Basil, both for the simple flavor and for the reusable canning jar. :)


I will saute onions, celery and carrots (finely chopped) together, then add in other veggies with the sauce: mushrooms, peppers, spinach, zucchini, whatever I have on hand. Add in garlic, pesto, oregano, or any other Italian seasonings. I will often also add a can of tomato paste and diced tomatoes to stretch it even further.

This gives me a ton of sauce. I let it simmer for as long as possible and it is definitely better than just out of the jar. This makes the best lasagna. You can certainly add Italian sausage or ground beef (or turkey) to make it more hearty but it really doesn't need it.

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February 18, 20110 found this helpful

I think I'd have to ask what the "must go's" are before giving you a helpful answer. There are some things that just wouldn't go with spaghetti sauce.

For instance, I would not add any leftover rice or stuffing or dressing like for turkey or chicken.

Green beans would be OK. Broccoli would be great. Even spinach or a little cabbage would be a good addition, but no creamed vegetables or gravies for meat.


Almost any kind of shredded or grated cheese is fine. You could add cooked yellow or green squash.

Cooked carrots would be fine, and canned dark red kidney beans (chili even) might work. I wouldn't add potato or tuna, chicken or egg salad, and I wouldn't add baked beans or coleslaw.

Any questions about any specific food you have, just ask. There's always someone on Thrifty Fun who is willing to help you.

We use several brands of spaghetti sauce, sometimes whatever is on sale. What the purchased sauces have is the already long cooking time so that a mixture of basic flavors has already developed. You don't have to cook your sauce nearly as long to reach a high level of "married" flavors.

Wishing you the best and kudos for being willing to learn.


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February 20, 20110 found this helpful

It's so easy to make spaghetti sauce from scratch. I just get a couple cans of crushed tomatoes, add a few cans of tomato paste and plenty of water.


I let is simmer slowly, add 5-6 whole garlic cloves, Italian spices, S&P, and let it simmet until it's cooked down to desired consistency. (Optional: also add 1 cup grated Italian cheese while simmering).

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February 20, 20110 found this helpful

My family also loves macaroni (any kind) with broccoli, olive oil, garlic, S&P.

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February 20, 20110 found this helpful

I agree with making sauce from scratch-much healthier as you know what ingredients you are putting in. What's the difference in time between "doctoring up" junk from a jar and making it from scratch and adding "mustgo's"? Maybe 5-10 minutes and the benefit of peace of mind of knowing what is in your food is worth it, IMO.

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