I love a thick and hearty sauce for spaghetti, but sometimes it can be too watery or thin. So if you’re like me and looking for ways to thicken up your spaghetti sauce, this blog post is perfect for you! In this post, I will discuss seven different techniques that will help make the most flavorful, rich pasta sauces of your life.

There are a few different ways to go about this – some more complicated than others.

How to thicken spaghetti sauce? 7 ways to make it thicker

Spaghetti sauce is easy to make, but thickening it can be tricky. There are many different methods for making your sauce thick and delicious! Here are seven sure-fire ways to thicken your spaghetti sauce:

1. Use Cornstarch

Cornstarch can thicken any sauce without disturbing the flavors of the spice. In addition, it is an excellent way to thicken the thin watery sauces.

  • Add 2 tablespoons of cornstarch into a small bowl with 2 tablespoons of water and stir until combined. It will give a milky look when appropriately mixed.
  • Pour mixture into the sauce and mix well while bringing it to a boil over medium heat. It should thicken in several minutes. Don’t add the whole mix together. Instead, try adding half of the mixture and check if you have got the desired consistency.
  • You can add more if the desired results are not achieved after the previous step.

2. Use Roux

You might have heard of thickening the sauce with flour. But, remember, you cannot dump flour as such into your spaghetti sauce. Instead, you have to treat the flour with butter on medium heat. Here is the procedure:

  • Add two tablespoons of butter to a saucepan over medium-low heat, then add in 2 tablespoons of flour and cook for 2 minutes while stirring constantly.
  • Stir until it becomes creamy thick. Add to spaghetti sauce as required.

Pro tip: Add a small amount first and mix well. Check the consistency and add more if required.

3. Tomato paste to thicken spaghetti sauce

Tomato paste is highly concentrated and has a rich flavor that adds depth to your sauce. This method works best when you make a quick spaghetti sauce on the stovetop or a slow-cooker red sauce!

You can quickly thicken your spaghetti sauce by adding tomato paste. The only problem with tomato paste is that it masks the flavors of the sauce. To balance the flavors, add more Italian herbs and garlic powder.

If you don’t want to alter the flavors of the sauce, use other methods to thicken the spaghetti sauce.

4. Add grated cheese

Another excellent way to thicken the spaghetti sauce is to grate cheese in the spaghetti sauce. Mix it and check the consistency. Add more if you still feel you haven’t reached the desired thickness.

You can even combine this method with another to thicken it quickly.

5. Breadcrumbs as a thickener

Breadcrumbs can be easily used to thicken the spaghetti sauce. Flour is a traditional thickener for making gravy, but breadcrumbs work just as well!

  • Make your breadcrumbs by throwing stale bread in the oven at 350 F (~176 C) until completely dry. Then place it in a food processor and grind it up to the consistency you want.
  • Use about ½ a cup of breadcrumbs and add it while constantly stirring to thicken spaghetti sauce.
  • This method works best for thickening gravy and chunky sauces. Since it is not as smooth, this method is used less often than the others listed above.

5. Add mashed vegetables

Add mashed vegetables to thicken the spaghetti sauce. Vegetables add flavors, texture, and more nutrition to the sauce.

6. Simmer for longer

Slow and low heat to cook is the best way to thicken your sauce! You can use a wooden spoon or whisk to stir occasionally. This will prevent the bottom of the pan from scorching and sticking, which could cause your pasta sauce to become too thick/bitter.

7. Add mashed potatoes to thicken spaghetti sauce

Add mashed potatoes to thicken your sauce! It is a great way to use up leftover mashed potatoes.

  • Mix ½ cup of hot, cooked mashed potatoes with 2 tablespoons of butter per 1 cup of water or broth.
  • Bring the mixture to a boil and reduce to a simmer for 5-10 minutes. Then use immediately or refrigerate until ready to serve!
  • This method works best when you are looking for a creamy, smooth sauce that is chunky with bits of potato.

How do you thicken spaghetti sauce in the slow cooker

How long should you simmer the spaghetti

There’s no one-size-fits-all answer to this question, as the simmering time will vary depending on the ingredients and methods used. However, a general rule is to simmer spaghetti sauce for at least 30 minutes. This will allow all of the flavors to meld together and create a delicious sauce that will pair perfectly with your pasta.

If you’re in a hurry, you can always use a quick-simmering method like the one described below. However, I would not recommend simmering spaghetti sauce for less than 15 minutes if using this technique.

How to Quick Simmer Spaghetti Sauce

Pour all ingredients for your spaghetti sauce in a large pot and cover. Bring to a boil over medium-high heat, then reduce the heat to low or medium-low so that it continues simmering gently. Keep an eye on it throughout cooking time to ensure that nothing is burning.

If you’re using this method, I recommend adding tomatoes, tomato paste, and any other ingredients that need to be cooked first. Also, add dried herbs such as basil or oregano at this time, so they have ample time to infuse the sauce with their flavor before you turn off the heat.

How to thicken spaghetti sauce quickly?

To thicken your spaghetti sauce quickly, use a slurry made of Cornstarch mixed with water. Stir this into the sauce and let it cook for a minute or two. The Cornstarch will help to thicken up the sauce while also adding flavor.

How to make spaghetti sauce to stick to spaghetti or pasta?

Cook spaghetti according to package. Boil water in a pot; add salt only when boiling starts. Please do not put the pasta too early into the water, or it will stick together and make it harder for the sauce to stick on later. When you see tiny bubbles start forming around the sides of the pan (or when you put a wooden spoon into the water and it starts to move around), add pasta.

Cook for about eight minutes or until “al dente,” meaning still slightly firm to bite into. Drain but do not rinse (this will eliminate the starch that helps the sauce stick).

One more step is to add a tablespoon of butter to the sauce and mix it. Again, look for the tiny bubbles in the pan. These bubbles make sure the excess moisture has evaporated from the sauce.

Add drained pasta to the sauce and mix in a gentle motion. It will further help the sauce to stick to the pasta. If the pasta is thicker than the required consistency, you can add the saved pasta water before draining.

These small techniques will help the sauce to stick to the pasta.

How to thicken spaghetti sauce?


There are many ways to thicken spaghetti sauce, but each method is best used with specific sauces. Knowing the thickening agent you want to use, how much liquid you need to thicken, and what type of pasta dish you are making will help you choose the best approach!

The slow cook/low-heat approach is the easiest way to thicken spaghetti sauce without altering its flavors.

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