College Style Cooking / Dinner

Grandma’s Extra Meaty Meat Sauce

Spaghetti Squash with Meat Sauce

Spaghetti Squash with Meat Sauce

Nothing will warm you up better than a big ol’ scoop of Gma’s meat sauce. While my family likes to put it on spaghetti, it also tastes good on spaghetti squash or just on its own. My Grandma makes it the best of course, but with a little love yours will taste just as good too. Also if you don’t have some of the spices feel free to omit and substitute as you feel fit.

Meat Sauce Ingredients

This recipe is fairly simple. All you need is a pound of ground beef, an onion (diced), a can of diced tomatoes, 2 rounded tablespoons of tomato paste, 1/3 cup ketchup, 1 ½ teaspoon of salt, ¼ teaspoon of ground pepper, 1/8 teaspoon cayenne (I use a ¼ teaspoon for an extra kick), ¼ teaspoon thyme, ¾ teaspoon fennel, ½ teaspoon garlic powder, ½ teaspoon oregano, ½ teaspoon paprika.

Brown Beef

Start off by browning the ground beef. Unless you buy 95/5 ground beef, it should have enough fat that you should not need any extra oil. Once the beef is browned, pour off the excess grease.

Sauteeing Onions

In a saucepan start heating a healthy teaspoon of olive oil over medium heat. Add the dice onion and stir it constantly for 15 minutes or until it is translucent. I know this step seems excessive, but sautéing the onion low and slow really helps release its wonderful flavors. Trust me, it’s worth it and your kitchen will smell wonderful afterwards.

Add Tomato sauce

Once the onions are translucent, add back in the beef, the spices, ketchup and tomato paste. Mix everything until the ingredients are well combined. Lastly, add the diced tomatoes and mix again. Bring the sauce to a boil then turn the heat down to medium low and let simmer for 30 minutes stirring occasionally. This is where the magic happens.

Spaghetti Squash with Meat Sauce

After 30 minutes, remove the sauce from the heat and its ready to be served over pasta or anything else in need of a good meat sauce. I topped some spaghetti squash with a large spoonful of meat sauce!


  • 1lb Ground Beef
  • 1 Large Onion (Diced)
  • 28 oz Can of Diced Tomatoes
  • 2 Rounded Tbs of Tomato Paste
  • 1/3 c Ketchup
  • 1/2 tsp Cayenne
  • 1/4 tsp Thyme
  • 1/8 tsp Cayenne
  • 1 1/2 tsp Salt
  • 1/2 tsp Paprika
  • 1/4 tsp Ground Pepper
  • 3/4 tsp Fennel
  • 1/2 tsp Garlic Powder
  • 1/2 tsp Oregano
  • 1 tsp Olive Oil


  1. Brown the beef and drain the grease
  2. Sautee onions for 15 minutes
  3. Add beef, spices and tomato paste to pot and mix well
  4. Add the can of tomatoes and mix again. 
  5. Bring the sauce to a boil then turn the heat down to medium low and let simmer for 30 minutes
  6. Serve over pasta

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