Zesty Spaghetti Sauce With Sausage

Want more from Genius Kitchen?

Watch on your Apple TV, Roku, or Fire TV and your iOS, Fire, or Android device.

Learn More
“This is a variation of my Grandmother's beloved sauce recipe that adds a bit more flavor to boring spaghetti. Don't let the number of ingredients fool you, it's VERY easy to make. This yields about 2 gallons of sauce, so plan to use it as a OAMC recipe or cut it in half. It freezes well and makes a great sauce for lasagna, baked rigatoni, or served over spaghetti squash. I use a store-bought canned sauce for the base to save time, but you can use your own if you'd prefer. To make a Southwest version, substitute the stewed tomatoes with a jar of salsa, and add a can of corn and a can of black beans. This sauce depends on the sausage for most of its flavor, so it would probably not make a good vegetarian version, but if anyone comes up with something, let me know!”
2hrs 30mins
2 gallons

Ingredients Nutrition

  • 1 lb lean ground beef
  • 1 lb spicy ground pork sausage (Jimmy Dean HOT breakfast sausage works well, or any Italian ground spicy sausage)
  • 2 (29 ounce) cansstore-bought spaghetti sauce (I like Dole Four Cheese blend, but you could use any flavor or brand, or make your own)
  • 4 (14 ounce) cans stewed tomatoes, Italian Style (diced okay, do not drain)
  • 4 stalks celery, coarsely chopped
  • 1 large onion, coarsely chopped (white or yellow)
  • 1 medium red pepper, coarsely chopped
  • 1 medium green pepper, coarsely chopped
  • 2 cups sliced mushrooms (fresh or canned, stems or pieces okay, no need to drain)
  • 4 -6 garlic cloves, minced (to taste, I use minced garlic from a jar)
  • 1 teaspoon oregano
  • 1 teaspoon italian seasoning
  • 1 tablespoon parsley
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 12-1 teaspoon sugar (to taste, some people like a sweeter sauce)
  • 12-1 teaspoon seasoning salt (I prefer Johnny's brand)
  • 12 teaspoon chili powder (to taste)
  • 14 teaspoon red cayenne pepper (optional)
  • 12-1 cup parmesan cheese, grated (or parmesan or Romano blend)


  1. In two separate skillets or pots, brown the sausage and ground beef, and break into bite-sized chunks. Do not brown sausage and beef in the same skillet, or all the meat will taste like sausage. Drain grease well, then combine into a large stew pot and set aside.
  2. While the meat is browning, chop all veggies into coarse pieces. Add to stew pot with all other ingredients except the parmesan cheese.
  3. Simmer sauce over medium heat, stirring occasionally, for about 2 hours or until celery is tender. I recommend covering the pot with splatter guard to prevent splatter, but do not use a lid as the steam needs to escape.
  4. In last 10 minutes of cooking, remove bay leaf, stir in the parmesan cheese to thicken the sauce. Use more or less to desired thickness.

Watch more

Join the Conversation

  • all
  • reviews
  • tweaks
  • q & a