After almost a month away from this blog, tackling my post-holiday blues, I’ve been a cooking fool making all kinds of things for Valentine’s Day. Some successful and some not so much, but my Fire Roasted Slow Cooker Arrabbiata Sauce is a keeper. Just a bit of work at the beginning, this sauce bubbles in a slow cooker for 4 hours and then is ready for all kinds of wonderful Italian-style meals.
Here’s the back story: I made turkey meatballs in the shape of hearts and after going to all that trouble, realized I didn’t have any bottled pasta sauce in the house. Yes, I’m confessing that my go-to choice of marinara-type sauce is jarred. After all, I’m just like everyone else – crazy busy with little time! But, since I live “in the country” and the nearest store is 20 minutes away, a round-trip to town easily translates to more than an hour. Not wanting to go to town just to get pasta sauce, I decided to make my own.
This isn’t a vegetarian or vegan recipe! With a bit of bacon, Fire Roasted Slow Cooker Arrabbiata Sauce is savory and delicious! After all, who doesn’t like bacon. I even had a vegetarian friend of mine confess to me, once, that she’s a “bacon-tarian”, meaning she practices vegetarianism except for her weakness for bacon. I get it – bacon is hard to resist!
Do you like my cute little bowl? It says “eat your heart out” on the inside edge. I tried very hard not to slop sauce all over this bowl so that you could see the inside. I’m sure it’s supposed to be used as a candy dish, but I filled it with Fire Roasted Slow Cooker Arrabbiata Sauce instead. Both the bowl and the kitchen towel came from Target. I went onto their site to see it I could share a link with readers, but they don’t have the bowl or the kitchen towel on their website. I also checked on Amazon for readers, and while they have lots of cute heart-shaped bowls on Amazon, they didn’t have this one.
But, what they did have was a slow cooker. I used my trusty 4-quart Crock Pot to make this recipe and if you don’t already have one, here’s a link to one on Amazon (click on the photo):
Mine is round and is this size, but it doesn’t have these cute vegetable decals all over it. What I like about this crock pot is that it’s a good size (not too big), tried-and-true and only 2 controls: low or high! Don’t have to over-think about it too much except to check back later. This one is $30 on Amazon. Here’s a link: 4-Quart Round Crock Pot.
Another 4-Quart option is this oval Crock Pot, available on Amazon for $20.00. Again, it has simple controls, but has the added feature of “Warm”. Here’s a link: 4-Quart Oval Crock Pot.
Disclaimer: I was not compensated to write this post, but this post does contain affiliate links to the products listed above, which will take you directly to these products on Amazon. Toot Sweet 4 Two is an Amazon affiliate and receives a small commission if a product is purchased through these links. If you click on the link and purchase a product, I will receive a commission of approximately 5% on the sale. If you don’t want me to receive any commission, you could just open a new browser window and search for the product on your own. But, if you do use the links to purchase products, THANK YOU! This does not change the cost to you; thanks for helping to keep content on this site free!
In any case, Fire Roasted Slow Cooker Arrabbiata Sauce cooks perfectly in this small slow cooker, so if you have a large 6 or 7-Quart slow cooker, just double the recipe. You’ll use all that delicious sauce up in no time (stay tuned for a bunch of recipes using this sauce!).
Here’s a collage for your Pinterest board…thanks for sharing:
And, here’s the recipe for Fire Roasted Slow Cooker Arrabbiata Sauce:
- 4 slices of bacon
- 1 medium yellow onion, peeled and chopped
- 2 cloves garlic, peeled and minced
- 2 - 14.5 ounce cans dice Fire Roasted tomatoes
- 2 - 8 ounce cans tomato sauce (or one 14.5 can)
- 1 tablespoon Italian seasoning
- 1 teaspoon balsamic vinegar
- ½ teaspoon crushed red pepper
- ¼ cup red wine
- Salt to taste
- Fresh parsley, chopped, for garnish (optional)
- Fry bacon in skillet on stove top over medium heat until crispy.
- Remove bacon to paper towel-lined plate to drain; once cool enough to touch, crumble bacon and set aside.
- Add chopped onion to bacon grease in skillet and saute' a few minutes.
- Add garlic and continue to saute' until onions are translucent and lightly browned.
- Add crumbled bacon to onions and garlic and stir to combine; remove from heat.
- Add diced tomatoes, tomato sauce, Italian seasoning, balsamic vinegar, crushed red pepper, wine and onion/garlic/bacon mixture to 4-quart slow cooker and stir to combine.
- Taste and add salt, if necessary.
- Cover and turn slow cooker on high and simmer for 4 hours.
- Serve over favorite pasta and sprinkle with fresh parsley (optional).
Don’t want to wait for my special Valentine’s Day turkey meatball recipe to try this sauce? Here are a few Italian recipes from Toot Sweet 4 Two’s archives (you could substitute this sauce in the 2 lasagna recipes, if you don’t have bottled sauce handy!):