Stovetop Juliet Tomato Sauce

By Analiese Paik

The finished sauce is orange with a deep tomato flavor and so sweet you'll want to lick the bowl.

The brown paper bags full of petite, deep red Juliet tomatoes sat on my kitchen counter for a few days before I got around to cooking them. I was feeling too lazy to slice them in half for oven roasting, so I decided to make a fresh sauce on the stove top. The result was magnificent – rich, tomatoey, and slightly sweet, with a velvety consistency perfect for coating pasta. Without much effort at all, I had created a tomato sauce that took that evening’s homemade pizza to a whole new level.

Juliets are a hybrid variety of tomato and the last time I went to pick up my CSA at Sport Hill Farm, I tripled up on them, announcing to farmer Patti Popp that I planned to make a vat of Juliet tomato sauce and freeze some. She laughed and said how wonderful sauces made from Juliets were, and how simple. Too bad more people don’t know.

To make a rich and sweet Juliet tomato sauce, don’t bother peeling the tomatoes first. It’s too much work. The sauce probably benefits from being cooked with the skins, and you can remove the pieces of skin and seeds from the pureed sauce at the end with a simple pass through a food mill or heavy duty strainer.

Surprise! This sauce turns orange when you cook it and a deeper orange when it’s pureed. It’s gorgeous!

Stovetop Juliet Tomato Sauce

Ingredients: (double or triple as necessary)

  • 1 pound of Juliet tomatoes, preferably organic
  • 2 cloves garlic, finely chopped
  • 2-3 T olive oil
  • fresh basil, oregano or parsley (optional)


  1. Rinse tomatoes and set aside. Chop garlic while heating a pot large enough to fit the tomatoes on the stove. Add olive oil to the pot and when it shimmers, add the garlic and stir until fragrant over medium heat, a minute or 2.
  2. Add tomatoes to the pot along with 1/4 cup of water so the garlic doesn’t burn. The tomatoes will take at least 5-10 minutes to soften up and begin releasing their juices. I like to put a lid on the pot to speed this up.
  3. Once the tomatoes begin to release their juices and the skins start to burst, remove the lid and simmer for another 10 minutes or so until the tomatoes have all lost their skins or are quite soft.
  4. Use an immersion blender to puree the sauce right in the pot. Add salt to taste and a chopped herb if you’d like. The flavor of the sauce, with the garlic alone, is rich and complex.
  5. Strain the sauce through a large strainer or food mill heavy enough to hold the seeds and skins. Be sure to push down on the solids to release all the sauce. Cool the sauce and store in the refrigerator in glass containers. When making large quantities, be sure to chill in the refrigerator before freezing.




14 thoughts on “Stovetop Juliet Tomato Sauce”

  1. Superb! I have made this twice this season, just used the last of our Juliets. I added oregano, thyme, & basil,freshly cut from our garden. Right now it’s simmering away happily! Thank you for this delicious, easy recipe.

  2. We have a ton of these tomatoes and I found your recipe. Do we hear the pot without water in it except for the little bit of water you called for?

  3. We have a ton of these tomatoes and I found your recipe for this sauce and planning on trying. When you hear the pot I assume you don t put any water in it except for the little bit of water you called for?

  4. This sauce is so good. I made it today with some late season Juliets. I wished I had the recipe at the beginning of the season, I would have made it all summer long. Easiest tomato sauce I’ve ever made.

  5. I made this in about 90 minutes with 3ponds of Juliets! I added fresh basil & oregano & also used my homegrown garlic…. aroma was awesome….. easy….great instructions, yummy results…. even put a cup in a bowl, heated & added some milk…. awesome cup of tomato soup with a piece of cheese toast👏👍❣️Gayle from Texas

    Have two more pounds of juliets on windowsill waiting to become sauce❣️👍💕thanks for recipe 👏

  6. I found this gem of a recipe this year. My one Juliet plant has produced 5# this year! This is the second time making this and it truly is Orange sauce and delish! Thanks!

    • So glad you found it and had success! It’s one of our most popular recipes. And it’s so basic, yet so delicious. Other readers have added their spin so be sure to check out their additions and accompaniments. Love the cheese toast that Gayle added.

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