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How to make the best homemade tomato sauce for pasta, meatballs and more

Because a great red sauce isn't just for Sundays.
/ Source: TODAY

Sauce isn't just for Sunday supper. A big pot of rich tomato sauce (or gravy!) can easily become the base for a variety of different dinners throughout the week. Culinary producer and TOODAY Food's "Saucy" host Anthony Contrino stirs up his favorite big-batch tomato sauce and uses it to make two more comforting meals: penne alla vodka and eggs in purgatory.

Everyday Tomato Sauce

Like many Italian-Americans, my family has pasta pretty much every Sunday. When I was younger, my parents would make a vat of sauce every month and freeze it so that we always had it ready to go. They would even take quarts of it with us on vacation! Not only is this delicious when served with pasta, it's a versatile sauce that can be used on pizza, served with mozzarella sticks or transformed into a creamy vodka sauce.

Penne alla Vodka

Vodka sauce is one of my all-time favorites. If you have some really good tomato sauce on hand, it comes together in less than 30 minutes. If it's the only thing I'm making for dinner, I like to bulk up the dish with some grilled chicken and mozzarella, or pan-seared shrimp.

Eggs in Purgatory with Garlic Bread

Eggs in purgatory, or uova in purgatorio, is the Neapolitan version of shakshuka. The spicy, bright red tomato sauce and fast-cooking eggs make for a quick, light dinner. I like to serve it with a simple side salad.

Ready to put your homemade tomato sauce to good use? Smother it over my famous meatballs! Check out the latest episode of "Saucy" to learn how to make them.