Food & Nutrition

The Best Spaghetti Sauce, According to a Taste Test

Want the best brands for your pantry? The Taste of Home Test Kitchen put them to the test—this time trying 11 pasta sauces. Find out which brand is best!

spaghetti sauceTaste of Home, via

About Best Loved Brands

When you’re looking for the absolute best, grocery shopping can be quite the ordeal. With dozens of brands, and hundreds of choices, from bacon to brownies, meatballs to mozzarella, it can be daunting to make the picks that will make your recipes sing. That’s where our sister site, Taste of Home comes in. Their culinary and editorial experts put 100+ products to the test. After undergoing a thorough review, their Best Loved Brands emerged.

Finding the Best Spaghetti Sauce

When it comes to pasta sauce, we all enjoy the homemade stuff complete with the best secret ingredient, but we don’t always have the time. That’s why knowing a good store-bought brand is so crucial. A good jar of marinara can make weeknight dinners easy and delicious. During Taste of Home’s Best Love Brands Spaghetti Sauce test, 11 brands were tested—some standards and a few that were totally new to the team. Each pasta sauce was tested blindly and judged according to these criteria:

  • Flavor
  • Texture
  • Appearance

Taste of Home

The right combination of tomato, garlic, herbs and olive oil is what makes a marinara sauce so satisfying. When ladled over your favorite pasta or used in a tasty baked pasta dish, the sauce can make the dish. After testing 11 brands, our team can confidently say that we’ve found our best-loved brand, the one that’ll make that spaghetti bake (and your lasagna, manicotti, chicken parmesan and more) really come to life. Check out our picks for what to stock in your pantry. When you’re ready to get cooking, try our favorite hack to make cooking pasta much easier.

First Place: Rao’s

The marinara that testers most wanted topping their plate of spaghetti and meatballs came from Rao’s. This sauce has great tomato flavor—very fresh and bright. Combined with the right balance of onion, garlic, pepper, basil, and oregano, it gave this sauce an authentic Italian taste. What made this sauce the top pick, though, was its spot-on texture—absolutely perfect for coating any pasta.

$ 7.99 for a 24-oz. jar; available at grocers nationwide and on Amazon.


Second Place: Frescorti

Garlic-lovers, this is the sauce for you. Frescorti offered a garlic-packed sauce with a good helping of onion and black pepper as well. The thicker texture was also notable—great for spooning over your favorite chicken parmesan.

$ 3.79 for a 26-oz. jar; available at select grocers nationwide.


Third Place: Francesco Rinaldi

For folks looking for an herb-filled sauce, be sure to grab a jar of Francesco Rinaldi sauce (bonus points: it’s less than $ 2.00 a jar!). This sauce had good basil and oregano flavor. Plus, the good texture—not too thick or thin—make it a good all-purpose sauce perfect for keeping in the pantry for quick dinners.

$ 1.99 for a 24-oz. jar; available at select grocers nationwide.

What to Make with Spaghetti Sauce

When it comes to a jar of pasta sauce, the options are vast. Want a quick dinner? Just stir in your favorite pasta and add a sprinkle of cheese. Whether you choose to go simple or elevated with your Italian dishes, we’re confident in recommending any of these sauces. Don’t stop with just the best spaghetti sauce! Stock your pantry and home with 40 of the most trusted brands in America.

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