Kay's All Day Spaghetti Sauce

Recipe Rating:
 5 Ratings
Serves: 8-10
Prep Time:
Cook Time:
Cooking Method: Stove Top


2 lb ground chuck
3/4 of a medium sized sweet (vidalia) onion, chopped
2 can(s) 14.5 oz each, petite diced tomatoes
1 can(s) (8 oz) tomato sauce
1 can(s) (6 oz) tomato paste
1 pkg powdered spaghetti sauce spice mix (mccormick's or lawry's)
2 Tbsp balsamic vinegar
2 Tbsp brown sugar
3-4 clove garlic, (medium sized) finely diced or minced
2 tsp basil (dried) or fresh basil leaves finely chopped
1/2 tsp thyme, dried, or approx. 1 tblspn fresh thyme
1/4 tsp oregano, dried, or 1/2 tblspn fresh oregano, finely chopped/minced
3/4 tsp rosemary, dried, or 1/2 tblspn fresh rosemary, finely chopped/minced
1/8 tsp parsley flakes, dried, or 1 tsp fresh parsley, chopped/minced
1/2 tsp tsp garlic salt
1 green bell pepper, medium sized, diced
8-16 oz mushrooms, fresh, sliced
2 green onions, with green stalks, thinly sliced
1 can(s) (2.25 oz) sliced black olives
salt and pepper, to taste
1 pkg (16 oz) thin spaghetti or similar pasta
parmigiano-reggiano, grated or shredded for topping when serving

The Cook

Kay Summitt Lewis Recipe
Well Seasoned
Lexington, VA (pop. 7,042)
Member Since Jun 2012
Kay's notes for this recipe:
For over 30 years I have been making spaghetti on the weekend for my family. Started simple when I was very young, and then my kids just fell in love with it. Gradually I modified it and developed a cooking method and recipe that always makes everyone go for seconds! Now my daughters, their kids and my in-laws have switched to using my all day spaghetti recipe for special events as even the ones that never gave spaghetti a second thought love it and ask for it. So here it is, and I hope you will love it too!

It takes a lot of time, so make it on a rainy day when you are in the house anyway!
Make it Your Way...

Personalize This
Kitchen Crew
What a wonderfully thick sauce! It does, indeed, take all day to procure this delicious pasta topper, but it's well worth the time.


In a skillet, brown the ground chuck over medium-high heat. Add onion, cook until there is no remaining pink color in beef. Drain off any liquids and set beef/onion mixture aside.
In a large pot over medium heat, mix together the canned tomatoes, tomato sauce and paste. (See tip below for flavored tomato products.) Stir until well mixed. Fill tomato paste can with water and then add that water to pot of tomato mixture. Then add in packaged spaghetti sauce spice mix and stir until well mixed. Add balsamic vinegar and brown sugar and stir. Add seasonings, stir well and heat until tomato mixture begins to bubble up/boil lightly. Reduce heat to just above simmer. Add in browned beef and onion mixture, and stir.
Next, add in the sliced mushrooms, diced bell pepper and sliced green onions, including sliced stems. Stir, cover and simmer over low heat 5-7 hours, stirring occasionally... every half hour works best.(You can make this in a crockpot, but it doesn't work as well as the slow simmer and stir method.) When stirring, try and always stir up any sauce that is thickening and sticking to the bottom so it will keep the flavors enriching the whole pot of sauce.
About 45 minutes before you plan to serve the meal:
Add in the can of sliced black olives and stir.
About 15 minutes before you plan to serve the meal:
Turn the heat OFF under the pot, remove the lid and let it sit to thicken.
Meanwhile, (as the sauce is thickening) bring a large pot of water to rapid boil. Boil pasta noodles according to directions on the package until "al dente". Drain and rinse quickly with cool water to stop the cooking process.
Serve pasta with heaping ladles of sauce, top with grated cheese.

Serve with a side salad and garlic bread.

Note: Leftovers reheated in the microwave are even better the next day since the sauce thickens even more! (I like to make this on Saturday so my hubby can have leftovers all weekend while I relax.)
HINT: When selecting the tomato sauce, tomato paste and petite diced tomatoes try using ones that are flavored with roasted garlic or basil or balsamic vinegar if they are available.

About this Recipe


1-5 of 31 comments

Showing OLDEST First
(Switch to Newest First)
user diane Casteel thymeandmarjoram - Jun 27, 2012
Kay, that looks wonderful! What size pot do you use? Will a 4 qt. work?
user Virginia Brogdon Virginia1 - Jun 27, 2012
In #7, is that "heaping" ladles of sauce? Thanks.
user Kay Summitt Lewis Kaythebaker - Jun 28, 2012
Thanks for catching that Virginia! Yes, it is supposed to say "heaping". I will correct it!
user Kay Summitt Lewis Kaythebaker - Jun 28, 2012
Diane that is a great question! I would not recommend using a 4 qt pot even though the sauce will fit in it. The reason I use a 6 qt pot is because I want the "air" above the sauce for the steaming effect when the lid is on it. Also it can be difficult to stir effectively if the sauce is taking up too much of the pot and may spill over sides if stirred other than gently as I do making sure to constantly "scrape" the sauce that may be sticking in the bottom of the pot.
Good luck and enjoy!
user Kay Summitt Lewis Kaythebaker - Jun 28, 2012
Kay Summitt Lewis [Kaythebaker] has shared this recipe with discussion group:

Gift Membership