How to Thicken Spaghetti Sauce


If you are a fan of spaghetti like I am, you must have run to the problem of the sauce not being thick enough. It’s annoying and devastating. After running into this problem occasionally, I decided to try out several ways to thicken spaghetti sauce. To my amazement, there several ways to do it.

Let’s look at the few guaranteed methods of thickening your spaghetti sauce.

spaghetti with sauce
Spaghetti with sauce

How to Thicken Spaghetti Sauce – Methods

Regulating the Heat

Adjusting the heat when cooking your sauce will allow the extra water to evaporate, leaving your sauce thick and tasty. Reducing the heat is the simplest way to have your sauce thickened without altering the flavor or taste.

The only concern with this method is that it could take longer to achieve the desired results based on the amount of water you wish to evaporate. To avoid the sauce from burning, turn after every five minutes until you are satisfied with the texture.

Add Roux

Roux is a mixture made from butter and flour. Preheat your pan for a few minutes, add a spoonful of butter, and add a cup of flour, and whisk once it melts. Once the mixture is thick enough, add it to your sauce.

Allow the sauce to cook for around forty minutes until you achieve the level of thickness you desire. Take note that this method will give your sauce a flour-like taste.

Add Some Cornstarch

In a separate bowl, mix your cornstarch with water and whisk until you get rid of all crumbs, ensure you are left with a smooth mixture. Add the mixture to your spaghetti sauce in bits as you stir until you get your desired texture.

As you add the mixture, stir continuously, and give it some time to settle to avoid over-thickening the sauce.

The method is most people’s favorite as it doesn’t alter the taste and flavor of the sauce. 

Utilize Mashed Potatoes

Select the potatoes, preferably go for the medium size to save on energy. Peel, and clean them with enough water in a large bowl or running water. Bring your water to a boil and add the potatoes.

Once boiled, drain the excess water retaining only a small amount to make the mashing easy. Add either milk or butter to the potatoes to taste.

Add the mashed potatoes to your sauce a scoop at a time as you stir until it thickens to your desired texture. Before serving taste the salt levels as potatoes are known to reduce saltiness in food.

Add Bread Crumbs 

Get a cupful of breadcrumbs and add it to your spaghetti sauce in bits as you stir until you get the desired thickness. 

The only undoing for this method is altering the taste of your sauce. You will experience the bread crumbs taste as you consume your sauce.

Add Tomato Paste

Tomato paste is the simplest technique of all and the most common method to thicken your spaghetti sauce. Tomato paste has been known as a quick thickness booster, especially if you add it after your sauce is cooked and ready.

Add the tomato paste to the sauce and stir until you get the preferred texture.

I also learned of some proteins you can add to your spaghetti sauce to make it thicker. Some of these include:

Cheese

Once your sauce is hot enough, add a few scoops of your favorite cheese to the sauce and stir.

Lower the heat as you add the cheese since it melts easily. In a few minutes, your spaghetti sauce will have thickened to your desired texture. Take note that the cheese will alter the taste of your sauce.

Ground Beef

Ground beef mixes well with the sauce, and it’s one of the ways you can thicken your spaghetti sauce.

Add the ground beef to your tomato sauce as you cook, and the result will be a thick tasty sauce.

Egg Yolk

Surprised? Well, the truth is, egg yolk is one of the simple ways to thicken your spaghetti sauce.

To use this method, in a separate bowl, add a spoon of pasta, then add the yolks and whisk until they are fully mixed and yield a smooth mix.

Add to your sauce as you stir. The essence of the pasta is to prevent the yolk from getting cooked before you attain your desired thickness.

Surprisingly, it’s also possible to thicken spaghetti sauce with vegetables. Some of the vegetables to help you in this include:

  • Mushrooms
  • Eggplants
  • Carrots

The good thing about using vegetables to thicken your spaghetti sauce is that they will reduce its acidity. They will also provide you with additional vitamins that are essential for your body. 

Another hack to thicken your spaghetti sauce is balancing the amount of water you add. Just add enough to cover the tomatoes as too much water will lead to the sauce taking longer to thicken.

The water used in cooking your spaghetti comes in handy when you use it in thickening the sauce compared to tap water.

Spaghetti Nutritional Value

 Nutritionally spaghetti comprises of:

  • 130 calories
  • Fats 3.5g
  • Protein 3.5g

With this information, it’s important to get a sauce that will balance off the nutritional composition.

Spaghetti is easy to prepare, cook and digest. It’s a meal that also offers the following benefits to your body:

  • With Spaghetti, It’s easy to get a balanced diet by having the right sauce mixture.
  • It offers your body much-needed energy. 
  • Spaghetti being a low cholesterol delicacy, will help you in your weight loss journey.
delicious spaghetti
Delicious spaghetti

Tips to Observe When Thickening Your Spaghetti Sauce

1. If you are using canned tomatoes for your sauce, ensure you drain them properly. When using fresh tomatoes, go for the thick watery ones and ensure that they are well ripened. Half ripened tomatoes take time to thicken.

2. Any additions you make to the sauce, do it in bits as you stir and allow to settle a few minutes. The settling will help you determine the right texture and avoid over-thickening once the sauce settles.

3. Ensure the heat is on low or medium as you thicken the sauce. It will help you avoid hastening the procedure unnecessarily. 

4. To avoid having a watery sauce, ensure you drain the spaghetti properly, place it in a colander to drain fully.

5. If you plan to add meat or vegetables to the sauce, apply some wine to the whole pan. It will prevent the sauce from burning or having some of your flavors settle at the bottom of your pan.

Apply a combination of the highlighted methods to thicken your spaghetti sauce and enjoy. You could do as I did, try all the techniques suggested, each at a time until you settle on a favorite.

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