I made this gluten free sausage pasta sauce recently as a bit of an experiment and MY GOODNESS did it turn out well! The sauce is packed with flavour and tasted absolutely gorgeous on our gluten free spaghetti for dinner.

A tasty tomato base, little meatballs made from sausages and lots of extras to really boost the flavour. It’s a rich, vibrant, proper juicy pasta sauce and reminded us on being on holiday in Italy, eating big bowls of gluten free pasta in the sunshine!

This sauce has a couple of hidden veggies worked into it, making it a brilliant family meal if you have vegetable-dodging kids. My toddler wolfed the whole thing down and was even asking for more! She likes olives, but simply omit those if you or your kids are not a fan.

The onion-carrot-celery base is what really boosts the flavours in this sauce. I always used to think this was a cheffy thing that us normal cooks wouldn’t really bother with at home, but I’ve got to say those chefs are right and this makes SUCH a difference. The sauce will still taste good without carort and onion, but it won’t have as much depth in flavour.

A handy tip is that you can batch prepare these and freeze in portions to save you having to buy a whole bunch of celery/bag of carrots/onions each time. You can cook them direct from frozen, you’ll simply need to add an extra 5 minutes onto the initial cooking time to allow them to defrost in the pan.

The slightly rogue ingredient I have used in this sausage meatball pasta sauce recipe is roasted red pepper from a jar. I really enjoy the gentle sharp flavour it lends the sauce, contrasting nicely with the sweet tomatoes, carrots and onions. You can skip this addition if you don’t have any in your cupboard, but they work so well and once you’ve opened a jar it’ll keep well in the fridge until next needed.

Oh and if you do want ideas on how to use up the other red peppers, you’ll need to try my baked arancini with red pepper dipping sauce! Recipe for that one coming very soon.

Speaking of recipes, I had better crack on with this one :). Scroll down for details on how to make this yummy gluten free sausage meatball and tomato pasta sauce.

Sausage Meatball & Tomato Pasta Sauce (Serves 4)

Sausage Meatball & Tomato Pasta Sauce
Yield: Serves 4

Sausage Meatball & Tomato Pasta Sauce

Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: 45 minutes
Total Time: 50 minutes


  • 1 large/2 small red onion(s)
  • A stick of celery
  • 2 carrots
  • Small spring fresh thyme/0.5 tsp dried thyme
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 12 gluten free chipolata pork sausages (I used Tesco Finest - you can use bigger sausages too, the meatballs will simply be a bit larger and you'll need to cook for an extra 5 minutes)
  • 3 sundried tomatoes, chopped, or 1 tsp sundried tomato paste
  • 100g roasted red pepper from a jar, sliced thinly (not essential, but these really add an extra element to the sauce flavour and are a way of sneaking another veggie into the dish - if you skip them, please add 0.5 tsp balsamic or white wine vinegar to the sauce)
  • 100ml white wine
  • 500g passata
  • 50g green olives, sliced
  • 1 tsp smoked paprika (optional)


  1. Finely dice the red onion, celery and carrots. Place them into a lidded-frying pan with a tbsp olive oil and allow them to "sweat" (cook slowly over a medium-low heat with the lid on the pan) for 10 minutes until soft, then give them a good stir.
  2. Now remove the thyme leaves from the stems (no need for this is you are using dried thyme) and add to pan, along with finely minced garlic. Don't stir, just let them sit on top of the onions/carrot/celery, but place the lid back on the pan and allow to sweat for a further 5 minutes over a low heat.
  3. Next add the chopped sundried tomatoes and sliced red pepper to the pan, along with the white wine. Simmer gently for 5 minutes until the wine has reduced, then tip these contents of the pan onto a plate and set aside while you cook the sausage meatballs.
  4. Heat 1 tbsp olive oil in the frying pan, over a medium heat. To make the little sausage meatballs, you'll be squeezing the sausage meat out of the skins - you should get 4 mini meatballs from each chipolata. No shaping is needed (unless you really want to :D), just gently pinch and squeeze a quarter of the sausage meat out and into the pan. Once you have done this with all the sausages cook them for 10 minutes, stirring regularly, until they are lightly browned on the outside cooked through.
  5. Add the plateful of veg and onions back into the pan with the sausages, along with the passata, smoked paprika, olives and some salt and pepper. Stir well to combine all the ingredients into the sauce.
  6. Cook for 15 mins over a medium heat (it should be simmering very gently only) then serve the sausage meatball sauce with gluten free spaghetti and grated cheese for the best pasta dinner EVER!
gluten free meatball pasta

Yummy yummy, writing this gluten free sausage meatball pasta recipe has made me want it all over again! I have lots of other tasty recipes for you to discover too, so have a browse on my website or check out one of these gluten free meals:

Enjoy! x