This delicious slow cooker marinara sauce is super easy to make and is perfect if you’re on a tight budget.

Slow Cooker Marinara Sauce

This sauce is deliciously rich and is perfect just on its own with some pasta. There is also a ton of other dishes that you can use this in such as a sauce for chicken parmesan, sauce for pizza, a sauce for beef meatballs & pasta and so much more.

You will end up with quite a bit of marinara sauce by the time you’re done cooking this recipe. If you find yourself with way too much, then you can freeze some down for later. This frozen sauce comes in handy whenever you’re cooking a dish that needs some homemade marinara sauce quickly.

To make this as easy as possible you’re able to use canned crushed tomatoes. If you want to use fresh tomatoes, then make sure you peel the tomatoes first otherwise you will end up with skins throughout your sauce.

Marinara Sauce in the slow cooker

If you want to see how to do this recipe, then be sure to check out the video below. It takes you through all the steps to making this delicious sauce. Alternatively, you can find the full written recipe underneath the video or in our excellent digital slow cooker cookbook.

Slow Cooker Marinara Sauce Recipe

Prep time
15 Minutes
Cook time
8 Hours
Total time
8 Hours & 15 Minutes


  • 1 onion, diced
  • 2 tsp. garlic, crushed
  • 800g (28 oz.) tomatoes, crushed
  • 170g (6 oz.) tomato paste
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 2 tsp. parsley
  • 2 tsp. basil
  • 1 tsp. oregano
  • 2 tsp. brown sugar
  • 1/2 Tbsp. balsamic vinegar


  1. Add all the ingredients to a slow cooker.
  2. Cook on low for 8-10 hours
  3. Remove the bay leaves from the slow cooker.
  4. Season to taste with salt and pepper.
  5. Serve & Enjoy

Cooking Tips

  • If you want a thin sauce, then make sure you use a blender to blitz it. You can use a handheld blender or a standalone. I find using a handheld blender much easier.
  • Some people love to add wine to their marinara sauce, but it’s important to keep in mind that it might not cook as well in a slow cooker. You may find there is a bitter wine aftertaste to the sauce by the end of cooking. If you decide to add the wine, then leave the balsamic vinegar out of the sauce.
  • The sugar isn’t needed, but it does help remove some of the bitterness from the tomatoes.
  • Using the balsamic vinegar helps add a bit more depth to the sauce. It can be left out if you don’t have any or would prefer not to add it.
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Nutritional Information

As with all the recipes on this website you can find the nutritional information right below. Keep in mind this information is just an estimate but should be good enough to determine if this sauce is ok for your diet.

Nutrition Facts
Serving Size: 185g (6.53 oz)
Servings Per Recipe: 6
Amount Per Serving
Calories 85 Calories from Fat 5.4
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 0.6g 1%
Saturated Fat 0.1g 1%
Trans Fat 0g
Cholesterol 0mg 0%
Sodium 474mg 20%
Total Carbohydrate 20g 7%
Dietary Fiber 4g 16%
Sugars 12g
Protein 4g 8%
*Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your daily values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.

There are so many dishes that you can use this marinara sauce in, including a ton of slow cooker pasta recipes. You can also place this sauce into a jar and keep for later. It will last for up to about a week, perfect if you’re planning a week full of tomato-based meals.

I hope that you enjoy this slow cooker marinara sauce recipe. If you have any feedback, variations, tips, or anything else that you would like to say, then be sure to leave a comment below.

Note: I use a 5.5L (6 Quart) slow cooker for all the recipes that I have on this website unless specified. If you have a smaller or larger slow cooker, then you might need to adjust the ingredients.