Linda's Meaty Spaghetti Sauce

Prep Time
Cook Time
4h 25m
Ready In

"My own creation that I started making many moons ago. It's a great sauce, with LOTS of flavor packed into one pan! Peppers and Tabasco give it just a slight kick, but you can adapt it to your liking. You can also add 1 c. good red wine if you like, at the same time you add the tomatoes. I add water 1/2 c. at a time during cooking time, so sauce doesn't get too thick. Depending on how long you decide to cook it, depends on how much water to add. The more you cook it the tastier it is. This makes a huge batch of sauce!"

Original is 10-12 servings


  • Serving Size: 1 (820.7 g)
  • Calories 756.1
  • Total Fat - 29.3 g
  • Saturated Fat - 9.9 g
  • Cholesterol - 107.1 mg
  • Sodium - 1805.4 mg
  • Total Carbohydrate - 97.7 g
  • Dietary Fiber - 10.8 g
  • Sugars - 38.9 g
  • Protein - 40.4 g
  • Calcium - 178.6 mg
  • Iron - 10.4 mg
  • Vitamin C - 79.8 mg
  • Thiamin - 0.5 mg

Step by Step Method

Step 1

In a lg. pot saute onions with basil and Italian seasoning, then add hamburger. Cook until meat is no longer pink in the middle. When done, drain all the grease. Set aside.

Step 2

Cook sausage links separately, and after cooked, cut up into bite size pieces. Set aside. When cool, refrigerate until about 1/2 hour before sauce is done, then add to sauce. (This helps the sauce from becoming greasy).

Step 3

Add tomato puree, tomato paste, mushrooms, hot sauce and peppers to meat mixture. Mix well.

Step 4

Add the Red wine, if using.

Step 5

Add salt to taste, starting with 1 tablespoon.

Step 6

Cook on medium heat until sauce comes to a boil, then cook 4-6 hours covered, on low heat so it will slightly bubble while cooking, or until desired thickness.

Step 7

Stir every once in awhile, so the sauce and meat doesn't stick to the bottom of the pan.

Step 8

A 1/2 hour before serving add sausage from the fridge, and heat until sausage are nice and hot, and sauce is bubbling.

Step 9

Remove Bay Leaves before serving.

Step 10

Serve with your favorite pasta.

Step 11

Sprinkle with freshly grated Parmesan, if desired.


No special items needed.

Editorial Notes

The ingredient tips, suggestions, variations, facts, questions and answers below are not edits to the original author's recipe. They are not meant to imply any change would improve the recipe. They're offered for convenience, alternative ideas, and points of interest. If you have any comments about them, please post in the Help & Ideas forum.

  • If you prefer a spicier sauce, you can add extra chili flakes or Tabasco sauce to your liking.
  • If you don't have ground beef, you can use beef hamburger or Jimmy Dean sausage as a substitute.

  • Substitute ground turkey for ground beef for a leaner option: This substitution will help cut down on fat and cholesterol, while still providing a delicious and flavorful dish.
  • Substitute vegetable broth for the red wine for a vegetarian option: This substitution will make the dish vegetarian-friendly, and will still provide the same depth of flavor as the red wine.

Vegetarian Variation Replace the beef and sausage with 2 pounds of cooked lentils. Follow the same instructions as the original recipe.

Garlic Bread: Garlic bread is the perfect accompaniment to Linda's Meaty Spaghetti Sauce. The crunchy, buttery texture of the bread pairs perfectly with the rich and flavorful sauce. Plus, the garlic adds a nice kick that complements the spices in the sauce.

Garlic Roasted Broccoli: Garlic roasted broccoli is a great accompaniment to Linda's Meaty Spaghetti Sauce. The broccoli is roasted with garlic and olive oil, giving it a delicious and slightly smoky flavor that pairs perfectly with the sauce. The broccoli also adds a nice crunchy texture to the dish that complements the smooth and creamy sauce.


Q: How long should I cook the sauce?

A: Cook the sauce on medium heat until it comes to a boil, then cook 4-6 hours covered, on low heat so it will slightly bubble while cooking, or until desired thickness.

Q: What ingredients do I need to make the sauce?

A: You will need tomato sauce, diced tomatoes, tomato paste, garlic, basil, oregano, sugar, and salt. Optional ingredients include red pepper flakes, onion powder, and black pepper.

11 Reviews


Great tasting sauce with lots of good Italian flavor. I made half the amount and it still made plenty. I used sweet sausage and no Tabasco to keep the heat in check. The sauce is very meaty and thick and so flavorful. I froze the leftovers. Next time I will make the full amount and freeze to last us the winter. Mmmm so good!


review by:
(4 Oct 2019)


This is sooo delicious! It's loaded with flavor and a thick rich sauce. We loved it over fettuccine, and now it is my go to when we feel like having a true Italian meal! Plan to make lasagna using this sauce very soon!


review by:
(11 Apr 2019)


Delicious sauce. I subbed ground turkey for the beef and turkey sweet Italian links, otherwise made as written. I made the whole batch so I could freeze some (it makes a lot!)


review by:
(10 Feb 2016)


I was looking for a thick meaty spaghetti sauce because I had hamburger in the fridge that I had to use. I made a third of the recipe for three. The sauce had great Italian flavors from the spices and hot and sweet sausage I used, and we loved it!


review by:
(20 Mar 2014)


We loved it! Lovely thick sauce that is full of Italian flavors which we loved served over thin spaghetti with some nice Italian bread to go along with it.


review by:
(5 Oct 2013)


Since pasta is one of our all time favs, I made a lot of variations over the winter and this was one of our favorites. The sauce is nice and thick and rich in flavors that we loved! We used hot and mild sausage mix and with the hot sauce and red pepper flakes it added so much flavor but not hot, just added spice which we love. I served mine the first time with egg noodles and then with linguine the next time we had it. This freezes well and it is my go to sauce when I am looking for a full flavored delicious thick sauce to satisfy our Italian tastebuds! This is a 5 star plus for us!


review by:
(30 Apr 2013)

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Fun facts:

This recipe is a variation of the classic Italian 'Sunday Sauce', which is a staple of Italian-American households. It was popularized by celebrity chefs like Mario Batali and Giada De Laurentiis.

The Tabasco sauce used in this recipe was invented in 1868 by Edmund McIlhenny, a former banker from Louisiana. It is now one of the most popular hot sauces in the world.