Two Homemade Tomato Sauces; Garlic and Onion Free (low FODMAPs Friday!)

One of the most difficult parts of being on a low FODMAPS diet is trying to avoid garlic and onion.  Thankfully as the years have passed my tolerance for both of these spices (both of which are found in just about everything, literally.  They are almost as ubiquitous as salt.) has increased. It’s definitely not fun being an Italian women, married to an Italian man, and having to avoid garlic and onion as much as possible.  Thankfully I’m finding ways to get around the whole sauce issue.  First, Rao’s Homemade “Sensitive Formula” Marinara Sauce is a great find at the grocery store.  Most stores carry it, which is nice.  If you still miss that Tuscan flavor, mix in some garlic or Tuscan olive oil to boost the authentic flavor (by the way, did you know that authentic Tuscan bread doesn’t contain salt?  Yeah, Google that).
Another option is to make your own sauce.  I know, I know, that takes forever, right?  Well you know me, I hate taking a lot of time making something, so I’ve got two great options for you today. One takes no longer than about 5 minutes, and the other takes about 1.5 hours, but most of that time is just sitting around and waiting (with a few stirs here and there).

Simple, Simple, Simple Sauce

Serves: 2

Recipe from Clean Eating Magazine


1.5 cups cherry or grape tomatoes

2 Tbsp. extra-virgin olive oil

1/2 Medjool date, pitted **

1/2 tsp ground oregano

1/2 tsp. salt

1/4 tsp. dried rosemary

Directions: Add to a food processor or blender, and blend well.

**Note: The Medjool dates will contain FODMAPS , but this 1/2 date really shouldn’t cause any problems.

Option number two is slightly more difficult, but still quite easy!  ….

Stovetop Tomato Sauce (low FODMAPs)
Serves: 3-4
  • 4 large tomatoes (or ~ 20 Romas)
  • 2 red bell peppers, diced fairly small, ~ 1inch
  • 1 bay leaf
  • ¼ cup fresh basil, packed
  • ½ Tbsp. sugar
  • 1 tsp. dried oregano
  • ~1/2 tsp. sea salt
  • 3 tsp. Tuscan or garlic olive oil, divided
  • Fresh ground pepper, to taste
  • Dash of cinnamon
  1. Boil the tomatoes in a large saucepan until the skins are loose and begin to break away from the flesh.  Allow the tomatoes to cool, then peel off the skins.
  2. In a skillet saute the red peppers with 1 tsp. olive oil until they are slightly browned (~5 minutes)
  3. In a large sauce pan add all the ingredients (the boiled tomatoes, with the skins removed, the sauteed red peppers, and all the remaining ingredients).  With your spoon try to break the tomatoes apart so they aren't in large chunks.
  4. Bring the sauce to a boil and then allow to simmer on low for ~40-60 minutes.  Be sure to stir your sauce every 15 minutes, or so.
  5. Once the sauce has simmered for about an hour, allow to cool slightly then add to a blender.  Blend until the sauce is nice and smooth.
** The Medjool dates will contain FODMAPS , but this ½ date really shouldn't cause any problems.
This is what the sauce looked like when it was simmering, at first. I tried to break up the tomatoes as much as possible, but the peppers (I used green and red, actually, but I suggest just using red) were still large chunks. That’s ok.  They will eventually get blended).
Serve over your favorite pasta, spaghetti squash, or pizza crust.  Smile when your Italian-Stallion husband loves this sauce just as much as you do :)
Seriously, this sauce was amazing. I’ve made it two more times since making it that first time.  We have too many tomatoes growing in our garden, what else am I supposed to do?! I’m thinking of bottling it and selling it like Screech from Saved by the Bell. But, of course, I didn’t steal this recipe from anyone. It was mine!  Stay tuned for two great recipes coming up, using these sauces; oat bran pizza and zucchini pizza.
Thanks for reading!
The Candid Rd


  1. says

    Loved that you shared all these options Gina, including the store bought Rao’s. I had not seen that one, but will definitely share it, and these recipes, with my FODMAPs clients. Have fun with your new job!!

  2. Fiona says

    I need some help re Fodmaps. I know garlic and onion are banned but can I cook with them and then discard?? Can you reply to my email please? Seems rather old-fashioned now with tweets and instagrams etc. but works for me!
    Thank you, Fiona

    • Gina says

      Onion and garlic contain the water soluble fodmaps; oligosaccharides. Do not use them in water-based dishes, and then discard, because you will still get the offending oligos. I would just say leave them out of most recipes, but replace their flavor with a Tuscan or garlic-based olive oil (the oligos are NOT fat soluble, so this words well!).

  3. Lauren says

    Gina, the second sauce looks really good but my husband (who has FODMAP issues) also doesn’t do well with bell peppers. What would you suggest I substitute? Carrots maybe?

    • Gina says

      Hi Lauren. Has your husband had issues with other colors of bell peppers; like red and yellow? Some people handle those better. If not, yes, carrots would work just fine!

      • Lauren says

        Great, thanks! All bell peppers seem to be “out” for now, so I’ll try it with the carrots! I’m looking forward to it! If you come up with a dairy-free Bolognese (a real one that tastes like it has cream in it!) I’d love to hear about it. :)

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