Classic Nomato Meat Sauce

No tomatoes or nightshades were harmed in the making of this Nomato Meat Sauce from! This AIP version of your favorite slow simmered meat sauce will stand up to Nanas & the pickiest of eaters.

5 from 3 reviews




  1. SOFTEN: Pour the oil into a dutch oven on the stove top over low-medium heat. Add the diced onion & peeled garlic, cooking until the onion is translucent but not browned, stirring often, about 8 minutes. Add the grated carrots, 1 tsp / 5 g of the fine sea salt, the wine and broth, making sure the carrots are completely covered with liquid. Bring the liquid to a gentle simmer, and cover the dutch oven with the lid, while leaving some space for steam to escape. Cook until the carrots are softened, about 20 minutes.
  2. BROWN: While the vegetables are simmering, brown the ground meat. Season the meat with the remaining 1 tsp / 5 g of fine sea salt and, working in batches as needed in a large skillet, cook the meat through until the fat has rendered and the meat is just beginning to brown. Transfer the browned meat to a bowl lined with a few layers of paper towel. Reserve for later.
  3. BLEND: Once the carrots are softened, remove the dutch oven from the heat and transfer it to a trivet. Add the canned beets, butternut squash puree, black olives, red wine vinegar and lemon juice to the dutch oven, along with the cooked vegetables and cooking liquid. Use an immersion blender to blend until everything is combined into a smooth sauce.
  4. SIMMER: Return the dutch oven to the stove top over low heat. Add the browned meat, dried basil, Italian seasoning and nutritional yeast. Stir through and bring the meat sauce to a very gentle simmer, not enough for the sauce to spit or splatter. Simmer the sauce until the meat breaks down and combines with the sauce and the liquid reduces and thickens, about 1 hour.
  5. COLOR: If you like a richer color, you can add the reserved liquid from the canned beets, up to 1/2 cup / 120 ml, a little at a time until the color deepens to your liking. Taste often as you add the beet juice to make sure that the beet flavor doesn’t overpower the sauce.


If you’d like a redder sauce that looks closer to traditional tomato sauce, you can add extra beet juice (reserved from the can) a tablespoon or so at a time until the color is deeper. Please note that the more beet juice you add, the stronger the beet flavor will become. Personally, I prefer a less pretty color with less of the beet flavor, but the choice is yours! To get the color you see here, I added a total 1/2 cup / 120 ml of additional beet juice.