Hearty Vegetarian Spaghetti Sauce with Tofu and Mushrooms

(1 vote)
21 Comments
3 minutes
January 28, 2023
Andi GleesonJump to Recipe

If you are looking for a hearty vegetarian spaghetti sauce, this is it! Loaded with tofu, mushrooms, and tomatoes, you will never miss the meat.

Vegetarian Spaghetti Sauce with Tofu and Mushrooms Recipe

I have had slow cooker spaghetti sauce in my recipe drafts for months. I thought it would be a good recipe, but I know it has been done before. I wasn’t sure what I could do with it that would be new, so the idea just sat there. Since we are trying to cut back a bit on our meat intake, I decided to try my hand at vegetarian spaghetti sauce instead of slow cooker, although you could definitely transfer this sauce to your slow cooker if you wanted to cook it all day. This sauce turned out to be hearty, flavorful, and fresh tasting! The crumbled tofu gave it the texture and protein of meat, and the sliced mushrooms added great texture too.

The key to getting a rich flavor in this vegetarian spaghetti sauce is letting it cook as long as you can. The longer it cooks, the more the flavors can develop and permeate the tofu and mushrooms. When I’ve tried making spaghetti sauce in the past, it always tasted like canned tomatoes because I didn’t cook it long enough. I let this one simmer for over two hours, and it was so much better!

Vegetarian Spaghetti Sauce with Tofu and Mushrooms

I used super firm sprouted tofu instead of regular tofu, but either one will work. Just make sure you get the firmest tofu you can find to make sure it holds up to all that cooking. If you don’t want tofu at all, you could make this recipe exactly with ground beef or turkey instead, but of course then it won’t be vegetarian anymore!

Vegetarian Spaghetti Sauce Recipe

Not only is this vegetarian spaghetti sauce good for your body and tastebuds, it’s good for your wallet too! Lean meats are pretty expensive, but tofu is under $5 per package. Buy loose mushrooms and store-brand tomatoes and pasta, and you’ve got a wholesome, tasty dinner to feed a big family for well under $20!

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Vegetarian Spaghetti Sauce Recipe

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5 from 1 review

  • Total Time: 2 hours 5 minutes
  • Yield: 6 1x

Ingredients

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Instructions

  1. Heat olive oil dutch oven over medium-high heat. Add onion, and stir to coat with oil. Crumble tofu into very small pieces over the onion. Stir and cook 10-15 minutes until the onion is very tender. A black crust will form on the bottom of the pan as the tofu cooks. This is a good thing! It will add flavor to the finished sauce.
  2. Stir in mushrooms, garlic, salt, Italian herbs, and red pepper flakes. Cook another 1-2 minutes.
  3. Reduce heat to medium. stir in diced and crushed tomatoes. Bring to a low boil, stirring often. Cover pot not quite tightly to allow some steam to escape. (You want the liquid to burn off a bit to thicken up the sauce.) Reduce heat to low, and simmer for at least two hours, stirring occasionally. Adjust salt to taste, and serve over your favorite pasta.
  • Author: Andi Gleeson
  • Prep Time: 5
  • Cook Time: 120
  • Category: Dinner, Pasta and Noodles
  • Cuisine: Italian

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Andi Gleeson, food blogger

Andi Gleeson

Andi Gleeson is a passionate blogger and mom based in San Francisco who focuses on easy and delicious dinner recipes.

21 comments

Anne N.
1 year ago

Delicious! I didn’t even have mushrooms, but it still came out great! I also didn’t see the part where it cooks for two hours. I let it simmer for about 20 minutes. I was so happy to be eating this, while my family was having their spaghetti and meatballs.

Briana
7 years ago

I didn’t realize this has to cook for 2 hours and I have more like 20 mins ha. Will it still work?

Linda
7 years ago

Could you do this in the slow cooker? Kids with dairy allergies + busy schedule would make this a hit?

Andi Gleeson
7 years ago

Hi! Yes, I think it will do well in the slow cooker, but I would still do the skillet step. Then transfer it to the slow cooker to cook on low until you are ready to eat it. Hope that will work out for you :)

Michele
8 years ago

When do you add the mushrooms?

Andi Gleeson
8 years ago

Hi, Michele. Sorry for that omission in the recipe instructions! You can add the mushrooms with the garlic in step two, and I’ve corrected the recipe. Thank you!

Heather barker
8 years ago

Hi Andi!

I was wondering if this would work without the tofu and also if it could be made in the slow cooker? I’m not a vegetarian but I’m looking for a good hearty spaghetti sauce.

Thanks!

Andi Gleeson
8 years ago

Hi, Heather! So sorry I missed your question before now! I would just use ground beef or turkey instead of the tofu. You’ll still need to brown the meat in a skillet, but then you could put everything in the slow cooker and cook it on low all day. Thanks!

Maris (In Good Taste)
8 years ago

Looks delicious! Perfect for a worknight. I’d love to have this over zoodles, too.

Andi Gleeson
8 years ago

That would be the healthiest meal EVER. I still need to try zoodles.

eat good 4 life
8 years ago

OMG this looks to die for. I thought this had meat in it. What a genius recipe. Love it!

Andi Gleeson
8 years ago

Thank you so much, Miryam!

FRANCIS BERNARDITA ULLOA
8 years ago

Soy Chilena ciudad Santiago, me encanta la cocina, todas tus recetas son bastante agradables y fáciles de hacer, mi familia dice que cocino bien y todo queda de buen sabor, yo disfruto cocinando me encantaría hacer un curso de cocina gourmet, gracias por enviar tus recetas las fotografías dan ganas de hacerlo de inmediato.

Saludos muchos cariños.

Meg @ With Salt and Wit
8 years ago

I just tried cooking with tofu for the first time last week as I am looking for way s to increase my protein intake and this is next up on my list! It looks and sounds so tasty!

Andi Gleeson
8 years ago

Thanks so much, Meg! I’m trying to increase my protein too, which sounds easy but can be hard especially when we’re just making something in a hurry!

Kimberly @ The Daring Gourmet
8 years ago

Oooh, that looks so rich and delicious!

Andi Gleeson
8 years ago

Thank you, Kimberly!

Liz
8 years ago

Sounds nice Andi. Thank you.

Andi Gleeson
8 years ago

Thanks so much, Liz! Do you cook vegetarian very often? I’m trying to do it more.

Kacey @ The Cookie Writer
8 years ago

Andi, my vegetarian heart loves this sauce! What a great job! I always tell people how amazing tofu is (it takes on whatever flavours it cooks with!)

Andi Gleeson
8 years ago

I’m glad I could make something just for you, Kacey :D

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