Can You Use Pizza Sauce for Pasta?[Easy way to do it!]

I often wondered why two types of sauce are needed for pizza and pasta. Can the two sauces be interchanged due to the unavailability of one? Just like me, many are confused between the two. Then, there are products in the market that sell one packaged sauce to be used for both. Thus, digging into it a bit deeper. I found.

You can generally use pizza sauce for pasta, as both are tomato-based sauces. Pizza sauce is an uncooked sauce with the addition of essential ingredients. Hence, pizza sauce has to be cooked further with the addition of herbs and other ingredients to get a flavorful sauce for your pasta. 

Although many people substitute the two sauces for one another. Understanding them will make a huge difference to the dish. In both, the dishes mastering the sauce is the fine line between an average cook and an expert. Let us dwell a little further and understand the two sauces better.

Is pizza sauce the same as pasta sauce?

Pizza sauce differs from Pasta sauce as the latter is made with cooked tomatoes, herbs, and spices. Pizza sauce is made from uncooked tomatoes. The ingredients that go in both the sauces also differ. Pizza sauce is a simple sauce made with tomato paste, herbs, vinegar, olive oil, sugar, and a pinch of salt. 

Pasta sauce is a tomato-based sauce but has different versions and styles and includes or excludes ingredients. The most basic pasta sauce is marinara.

Other popular varieties of tomato-based pasta sauce are Italian prego sauce, Bolognese sauce, Vodka sauce, Sugo di Pomodoro, Arrabbiata, Puttanesca, Amatriciana, Alla Norma, and Ragu sauce. 

Pizza Sauce v/s Pasta Sauce

Although it is easy to get confused between pizza and pasta sauce, the table below will help you to understand the key differences in detail.

Pizza SaucePasta Sauce
It is uncooked and cooked while the pizza is cooking.The pasta sauce is cooked.
Basic herbs are added to the pizza sauce, such as salt, pepper, oregano, basil, and garlic. Meat and eggs are not added to a pizza sauce.More herbs are added to the sauce, such as oregano, rosemary, thyme, basil, and chili flakes. Meat and eggs are also added to make a few varieties of pasta sauce.
It is thick so that it sticks to the pizza base and thus does not fall off or so that it does not make the pizza base soggy.Pasta sauce is thinner than pizza sauce, and the consistency varies. It is made liquid by adding pasta water. Ideally, the sauce consistency should be such that it coats the pasta.
Pizza sauce has a smooth consistency.Pasta sauce has a chunky consistency as well as bits of tomato.

Can you substitute pizza sauce for tomato sauce?

Pizza sauce can not be substituted for tomato sauce in your various pasta recipes although they are very similar to each other. However, there are a few key differences.

Pizza sauce and tomato sauce for pasta differ in the following ways:

  1. pizza sauce is uncooked whereas pasta sauce is cooked.
  2. pasta sauce is runnier than pizza sauce.
  3. Although, the ingredients that go on both are the same, because of the above two differences they taste different from each other.

Considering the obsession of Americans as to how their pizza sauce is made, It wouldn’t be ideal to interchange the two.

Can I use pizza sauce as marinara?

Pizza sauce can be used interchangeably with pasta sauce as both are very similar. It’s easy to turn a marinara into pizza sauce but adding herbs such as sugar, salt, oregano, rosemary, thyme, garlic( freshly minced or powdered), and basil. This mix is simmered gently by putting it on the stovetop to thicken. 

Marinara is thinner compared to pizza sauce this it needs to thicken. As a runny pizza sauce will not hold well on the pizza bread and make it soggy and run the crispiness of a freshly baked pizza. 

How to use pizza sauce for pasta? 

Generally, pizza sauce is a thick tomato-based sauce that will impart flavor to the bread and firm a thin layer between the bread and cheese. Pizza sauce can be used as a Pasta sauce with some minor modifications. 

Here’s how you can do it quickly. 

  1. Cook your pasta. 
  2. In a pan as the pizza sauce with some pasta water. It is recommended to use pasta water as it has the starch from the pasta this will prevent the sauce from being too runny as well as stick to the pasta. 
  3. Bring the sauce to a simmer. 
  4. Adjust the seasonings.

Can you use pizza sauce for lasagna?

pizza sauce can be used for lasagna. Since pizza sauce is an uncooked sauce it is suggested to reduce the sauce a little and adjust the seasonings. This will make a pasta sauce that is thick and flavourful and will stick to the lasagna sheets.

However, if you are making some common variations for lasagna sauce such as bolognese which has a ragu sauce with meat, milk, and thick tomato sauce, substituting a pizza sauce will not work as it will be runny and not hold the flavors well also. Hence, the lasagna will turn out to be bland and mushy.

Can you substitute Pizza sauce for Spaghetti sauce?

Pizza Sauce cannot be substituted for spaghetti sauce as the latter is made with cooked tomatoes and the former is made with uncooked tomatoes. Also, pizza sauce is thicker and does not have meat in it. Although, spaghetti sauce is a thicker sauce so a meatless version may be used to sauce your pizza.

There are two variations of spaghetti sauce with meat and without meat. Homemade spaghetti sauce is made with a lot of variations and there is no one recipe for the same. Each one has its recipe they swear by.

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