Canning Spaghetti Sauce - with no meat

Spaghetti sauce cooking in pot, pouring into jars, and sitting in canner.

Recipe and pressure canning instructions for canning spaghetti sauce with no meat.

You will need to know how to use a pressure canner.

Go here for a recipe for canning spaghetti sauce with meat.

Yield for this recipe is about 9 pints. For my family, I will double this and do quarts.

This spaghetti sauce must always be processed in a pressure canner.



Remember, safety in canning is all in the acidity levels of your food. High acid is fine for a water bath, but low acid needs the pressure canner.  

This spaghetti sauce has vegetables in it and is only tested for the pressure canner. I like it because it has lots of veggies. It MUST be pressure canned.

There are other spaghetti sauce recipes available that are are created with enough acidity that a water bath is enough to safely store it on the shelf.  

However... this one is not.  :)  

Gather Your Canning Supplies:


  • 30 pounds tomatoes
  • 1 cup chopped onions*
  • 6 cloves garlic (mince garlic or use a garlic press)
  • 1 cup chopped celery or green peppers*
  • 1 lb sliced mushroons (optional, I rarely use them)*
  • 4 tsp canning salt
  • 2 T oregano
  • 2 T minced parsley
  • 2 T basil
  • 2 bay leaves (remove before filling jars)
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar

*For safety reasons, do not increase proportions of onions, peppers, or mushrooms.

Preparing Your Tomato Sauce

The first thing you need to do when home canning spaghetti sauce is to prepare your tomato sauce.

Click here to go to a page that explains how to make and can tomato sauce.

Make your sauce, but do not process. Come back here to complete your spaghetti sauce.

Fresh tomatoes in pot.

Preparing & Canning Spaghetti Sauce

If needed, simmer tomato sauce, uncovered, in large saucepan until thick enough for serving. This might a take 20 minutes to a couple of hours. Stir frequently to avoid burning. The amount of sauce may be reduced by nearly one-half.

  • An easy way to do this is to place sauce in a slow cooker and leave the lid off. Let it cook until thickened.
  • Or bake uncovered in the oven at 350. You will still need to stir often.
Here is my favorite time saving tip

OPTIONAL: Canning this sauce as is, without the cook down time, will simply give you a thinner sauce. Add a can of tomato paste to thicken when you prepare your meal. I have done this when I did not want to spend the time to cook down.

Chop vegetables while you simmer the tomatoes.

Saute chopped onion and chopped bell pepper (or celery) and minced garlic. Cook until veggies are tender.

Add vegetables to sauce. Stir in salt, spices and sugar.

Fill your hot jars, leaving 1-inch headspace. Take out the bay leaves at this point.

Follow pressure canning instructions.

Bell peppers.
Filling jars with sauce.
Jars in canner.


Process pints for 20 minutes.

Process quarts for 25 minutes.  

Adjustments for Pressure Canner
Altitude in Feet Dial Gauge Canner Weighted Gauge Canner
0-1000 11 10
1001-2000 11 15
2001-4000 12 15
4001-6000 13 15
6001-8000 14 15
8000-10,000 15 15

Source for tested recipe here.

Tomatoes & Tomato Products

Tomatoes Whole or Halved
Spaghetti Sauce 
Spaghetti Sauce (Meatless) 
Stewed Tomatoes
Unseasoned Tomato Sauce

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Any statements or claims about the possible health benefits conferred by any foods have not been evaluated by the Food & Drug Administration and are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease. You are encouraged to verify all canning and food preservation advice on the USDA food preservation website. 

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