How do you thicken tomato sauce?

In this blog post, we will answer the following question: How do you thicken tomato sauce? We will also tell you how to freeze tomato sauce, which tomatoes to choose for the best sauce and how to flavor the tomato sauce.

How do you thicken tomato sauce?

The fastest way to tighten the tomato sauce is to let the sauce simmer on a low flame until it thickens: bring the sauce to a boil, then lower the heat slightly and let it simmer until completely evaporation of the water with consequent thickening of the sauce, or in any case until the desired consistency is reached. The only precaution is not to cover the pan and stir frequently to prevent the sauce from burning.

Alternatively, if the tomato sauce is too liquid, to thicken it add a tablespoon of Maizena (a very light and very fine flour that can be found in any supermarket) dissolved in a little water to the extent of 1 tablespoon for every 250 ml of sauce. 

As an alternative to cornstarch, you can also use cooking cream or the same amount of cornstarch. Both corn starch and potato starch (Maizena) are tasteless, therefore they will not alter the taste of the sauce, the same can be obtained with rice flour.

Another method, widely used in the Mediterranean cuisine, is to melt the butter in a saucepan and add some flour. This particular sauce, called a roux, is added to the sauce to be thickened a little at a time, so as to avoid the formation of lumps; the sauce is then left to cool for at least half an hour.

How do you thicken tomato sauce without burning it?

To thicken the tomato sauce without burning it, it is good to cook it without a lid, even if it splashes a little, and you have to have a lot of patience. The flame must be kept low to cook everything in the best possible way, and you have to mix to prevent the sauce from burning on the bottom.

One of the kitchen’s fundamental rules for the dishes’ success is to follow them, not stray during cooking, and choose the flame’s right fire and intensity. 

Generally, the flame should be medium and proportionate to the size of the pot or pan. 

Usually, the stoves have a very small fire source (excellent for preparing coffee, cooking meat sauce, or for heating milk), two medium burners (ideal for almost all pot and pan preparations), and a large fire, only necessary for large portions or boiling pasta. 

The most supplied also have a double or triple crown, ideal for having a lot of heat in a short time (always for large preparations or for pasta). I recommend using one of the medium burners, except for large preparations. The sauté must still be cooked over medium-low heat; it must just sizzle. Not only will it not burn, but it will also get even better!

If the sauce dries too much before it has reached the desired consistency, add a little more vegetable broth. Stir from time to time.

How to freeze tomato sauce?

Nothing like an ice cube tray! Pour your cooled tomato sauce into the small compartments and place everything in the freezer. Once the sauce is frozen, unmold your tomato sauce cubes and place them in a freezer bag in one of the freezer drawers. This will allow you to use the amount you need. It’s a great way to avoid food waste!

Other FAQs about Sauces which you may be interested in.

How do you quickly reduce sauce?

Is bechamel sauce the same as lasagne white sauce?

What can be substituted for tomato sauce?

Which tomatoes to choose for its tomato sauce?

For a well-flavored sauce, we advise you to turn to Roma, a plum-shaped tomato with firm flesh. The beef heart and the Marmande are also very suitable for the preparation of sauces. In any case, choose them very ripe, but not too much either.

How to remove the skin from tomatoes easily?

They say we have a tomato. It could not be easier. Bring a large pot of water to the boil and immerse your tomatoes in it for 1 to 2 minutes. When you remove them from the water, the skin peels off on its own.

Our tips for flavoring the sauce and the amazing ingredient for correcting acidity

To make your sauce super tasty, don’t forget to add aromatic herbs (basil, thyme), spices (a mixture of 4 spices), garlic, onions, or even celery. Is your tomato sauce very sour? 

Add one or two lumps of sugar depending on how much sauce you have to neutralize the taste. If you are trying to limit the amount of sugar in your diet, incorporate a carrot (very fresh) or a date in your preparation to rebalance it. If you don’t have this on hand, a spoonful of baking soda will do. This all-purpose powder will also help you correct the acidity of a jam!


We remind you that the best option to thicken tomato sauce is to simmer it under low heat. There are many ways to save a thickened or a too liquid sauce, mentioned in this article. 

Tomato sauces are versatile, and there are many delicious recipes out there, so do not be afraid to experiment! If you have any suggestions, comments, or questions on the content, please let us know!