Instant Pot Tomato Basil Sauce

Learn how to make an easy, no-peel Instant Pot Tomato Basil Sauce perfect for spaghetti or other pasta, as well as marinara sauce to use in stews, sauces and braised dishes. This is a fresh tomato sauce, light, tangy and sweet, with hints of aromatic basil. It’s healthy, low in calories, vegetarian, vegan and gluten-free.


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INSTANT POT TOMATO SAUCE

This Instant Pot tomato sauce is made with fresh tomatoes and fresh basil. It’s easy to make and requires no peeling of tomatoes. This is a great recipe for when you have a surplus of tomatoes or they’re in season and very affordable.

While you can make tomato sauce on the stovetop, it’s more hands-free and quicker in the Instant Pot. You only need a handful of ingredients to make a very delicious spaghetti and pasta sauce from scratch. This way, you don’t have any extra additives or preservatives and you know how much sugar goes in (if any).

This sauce is light in texture and not as saturated in tomato flavor as many store-bought versions. As such, it tastes fresher, more summery and almost sparkling in flavor of tangy, sweet tomato and aromatic basil. You can add extra tomato paste or reduce the sauce after cooking further to make it thicker or more tomato-y.

This sauce can be stored in the fridge, freezer or canned. See storage notes below.

Tomato Pasta Sauce Instant Pot

BEST TOMATOES FOR SAUCE?

Your next question might be “So what kind of tomatoes should I use to make sauce from scratch?”.

There are some varieties that are favored in a tomato sauce like the plum-shaped Roma, San Marzano or Viva Italian or so-called paste tomatoes. These are more fleshy or meaty with less seeds and juice, giving more substance to the sauce.

However, when it comes down to it, the best tomatoes are those that taste good. No matter what shape, the tomatoes should ideally be in season and properly ripened, so that they are sweet and full of flavor. Organic tomatoes always tend to taste better if you can afford them in season.

Best tomatoes for tomato sauce
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INSTANT POT TOMATO SAUCE INGREDIENTS

The ingredients for this homemade tomato sauce recipe are simple and easy to get:

  • Tomatoes – see our note on best tomatoes for tomato sauce above but essentially pick ripe, in-season tomatoes. If they taste good fresh, they will be good in a sauce. Plum-shaped tomatoes tend to make thicker sauce but round ones will work just as well.
  • For flavor– Onion, garlic or garlic powder, olive oil, salt, pepper and a little sugar to enhance the sweetness. We love a little touch of chili but it can me omitted.
  • Basil  – Fresh basil cooked in the tomato sauce adds such an incredible flavor that isn’t too strong or overpowering (as long as you only use a handful of leaves). We find fresh basil is much nicer but if all you have is dried, then use a teaspoon of that instead. Dried oregano or Italian herbs can be used instead too.

HOW TO MAKE TOMATO BASIL SAUCE IN THE INSTANT POT

You will find the full recipe with ingredients and nutritional breakdown in the recipe card below. Here are some handy step-by-step photos of how to make fresh tomato sauce in the Instant Pot. You can use a 6-quart or 8-quart Instant Pot.

Prep. Wash tomatoes well but there is no need to peel or remove seeds for this recipe. The skin will cook down and disintegrate in the sauce and the seeds will get blended. If you don’t like any traces of seeds at all, you can always scoop them out, in which case you will need to add a couple more tomatoes to this recipe. Chop the onions while you’re at it, so you’re all set to go.

PRESSURE COOKING TOMATO SAUCE

Step 1. Press the Saute function key on the Instant Pot (press it more than once to cycle to More mode, which is hotter) and add the oil and onion. Cook for 3-4 minutes, stirring a few times until golden and soft.

Step 2. Add tomatoes, basil leaves, all seasoning, and 1/2 cup of water. Stir through.

Step 3. Secure and lock the lid. Set to Pressure Cook for 5 minutes on HIGH pressure. The Instant Pot will take about 20 minutes to come to pressure and then the timer will start. Once done, let the Instant Pot stand undisturbed for about 10 minutes and then use the quick release to let off the remaining pressure.

REDUCING & BLENDING THE SAUCE

Step 5. Open the lid and stir the sauce.

Step 6. Press the Saute function again on the More setting. Cook the sauce for 10-12 minutes to reduce the liquid in the sauce by about a third. Make sure to stir frequently. Then Cancel the Saute setting and let the sauce sit for a few minutes to cool down.

Step 7. Once cooled a little, blend the sauce with an immersion blender or transfer in batches to a food processor/standing blender. If you like a thicker sauce, put it back on Saute for 5 more minutes.

USING TOMATO BASIL SAUCE

This Instant Pot tomato sauce is like a marinara or spaghetti sauce but you can also use it to add to soups, stews, casseroles, braised dishes or anything that asks for tomato sauce.

We love serving it over all kinds of pasta, especially spaghetti. It’s delicious on its own with some shaved cheese on top. And, it’s great on pizza too.

Oftentimes, you can pan-fry some vegetables or sausage and throw them into the sauce as additional ingredients. Stirring in a little cream or sour cream will give it a more velvety, rich flavor and texture.

Instant Pot Spaghetti Sauce with Fresh Tomatoes & Basil

HOW TO STORE FRESH TOMATO SAUCE

  • Make ahead and store in the fridge in an airtight container for up to 5 days. Make sure to refrigerate within 2 hours of cooking to maximise freshness.
  • Freeze (after cooling) in airtight containers, heavy-duty freezer bags or glass jars for 3-6 months. If using glass jars, choose wider rim ones and cool the sauce in the jars in the fridge for a couple of hours first. Then place in the freezer with the lid slightly unscrewed so that when the sauce expands during freezing, the glass doesn’t break. Once frozen, tighten the lid on the jars. Read more about freezing in glass here.
  • Defrost the sauce in the fridge overnight or pop the jars in a bowl of warm water and keep changing the water once it cools down. You can then transfer the semi-frozen sauce into the pot and continue to thaw it out over heat. Once defrosted, simmer it for 5-10 minutes to evaporate some of the extra water.
  • Reheat to piping hot whether using from the fridge or freezer.
  • Learn how to can homemade tomato sauce here.

MORE INSTANT POT TOMATO RECIPES


FULL RECIPE & NUTRITION

Below is the complete list of ingredients, instructions, notes, tips and nutritional breakdown. Don’t forget to rate this recipe and leave a comment with feedback or any questions.

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Instant Pot Tomato Sauce With Basil

Instant Pot Tomato Basil Sauce

  • Author: Instant Pot Eats
  • Prep Time: 15 minutes
  • Cook Time: 55 minutes
  • Total Time: 1 hour 10 minutes
  • Yield: About 45 cups 1x
  • Category: Sauce
  • Method: Instant Pot
  • Cuisine: Italian
  • Diet: Vegetarian

Description

Easy Instant Pot Tomato Basil Sauce recipe is a fresh tomato sauce, light, tangy and sweet, with hints of aromatic herb, perfect for spaghetti or other pasta, stews and soups. 


Ingredients

Scale
  • 3 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 medium onion, chopped
  • 3 lb / 1.4 kg ripe tomatoes, roughly cut
  • 2 teaspoons garlic powder
  • 0.3 oz / 10 g basil leaves (1 cup loosely packed with leaves)
  • 2 teaspoons salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon pepper
  • 2 teaspoons sugar
  • 1/2 cup water 

Instructions

  • Prep. Wash tomatoes well but there is no need to peel or remove seeds for this recipe. The skin will cook down and disintegrate in the sauce and the seeds will get blended. If you don’t like any traces of seeds at all, you can always scoop them out, in which case you will need to add a couple more tomatoes to this recipe. Chop the onions while you’re at it, so you’re all set to go.
  • Press the Saute function key on the Instant Pot (press it more than once to cycle to More mode, which is hotter) and add the oil and onion. Cook for 3-4 minutes, stirring a few times until golden and soft.
  • Add tomatoes, basil leaves, all seasoning, and 1/2 cup of water. Stir through.
  • Secure and lock the lid. Set to Pressure Cook for 5 minutes on HIGH pressure. The Instant Pot will take about 20 minutes to come to pressure and then the timer will start. Once done, let the Instant Pot stand undisturbed for about 10 minutes and then use the quick release to let off the remaining pressure.
  • Open the lid and stir the sauce.
  • Press the Saute function again on the More setting. Cook the sauce for 10-12 minutes to reduce the liquid in the sauce by about a third. Make sure to stir frequently. Then Cancel the Saute setting and let the sauce sit for a few minutes to cool down.
  • Once cooled a little, blend the sauce with an immersion blender or transfer in batches to a food processor/standing blender. If you like a thicker sauce, put it back on Saute for 5 more minutes.

Nutrition

  • Serving Size: 2/3 cup
  • Calories: 102
  • Sugar: 7.2 g
  • Sodium: 675.7 mg
  • Fat: 6.4 g
  • Carbohydrates: 11.2 g
  • Fiber: 2.8 g
  • Protein: 2.1 g
  • Cholesterol: 0 mg

Keywords: Tomato Recipes, Spaghetti Sauce, Marinara Sauce, Fresh Tomato Sauce, Vegan, Vegetarian,

By Instant Pot Eats

About us: We are a team of Instant Pot enthusiasts, who love good food and cooking. Our blog is dedicated to delicious recipes you can make using your trusted pressure cooker.

PS. This post may contain Amazon affiliate links, which means we receive a small commission for purchases made through these links. 

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Comments

4 Comments
  1. Such a great recipe as I like to make tomato sauce in batches. The recipe was really easy to follow and the sauce is delicious.

  2. I have so many fresh garden tomatoes right now and this sauce looks like the perfect way to use them!!

  3. Such a great instant pot recipe! I love how you made the sauce using fresh tomatoes and basil. Definitely perfect for summer.

  4. I love the flavor of tomato basil so this sauce was a winner for me! Yay for another easy Instant Pot recipe!

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