The Lucky Mom’s Red Gravy – Prepared with Love

Seasoning Pouch:

Seasoning Pouch

  • Basil (3 stems with 3-4 leaves on each)
  • Italian Parsley (3-4 stems with leaves on)
  • Thyme (3-4 stems)
  • 3 Bay Leaves
  • About 10 whole peppercorns

Wrap these items up in a tied cheesecloth pouch for easy removal later.


  • Olive oil
  • 2 carrots, diced
  • 5 stalks of celery, diced
  • 2 large yellow onions, diced
  • 8 cloves of garlic, diced
  • 4 26-oz boxes of chicken stock
  • 2 12-oz cans of tomato paste
  • 1 gi-normous (6 lb.) can of crushed tomatoes
  • Salt
  • Italian seasoning blend (I like Frank Davis’ N’Awlins Sicilian Seasoning)
  • 1 tsp. sugar
  • 3 glasses of wine (1 for the sauce, 2 for the cook)

Pour a glass of wine and set aside.  Look up the words to an Italian song to sing intermittently while cooking.


Add seasoning pouch and simmer.

Sauté onions, celery, carrots and garlic in olive oil until lightly browned.  Sip wine while stirring.  When lightly browned, add tomatoes, tomato paste, wine, and chicken stock.  Stir.  Add seasoning pouch.

Simmer for about 30 minutes and then start tasting.  Add more stock if it’s too thick, more tomato paste if it’s too thin.  Add salt and Italian seasoning to taste.  Add sugar to balance the acidity according to your taste.

Continue simmering til it gets the way you like it, while sipping the second glass of wine.  Sing the Italian song to bring out the fullness of the flavors.

 My kids don’t like chunky veggies, so I cooked mine a long time (about 2 ½ hours) to get the veggies soft enough to “disappear.”  Then I used Chef Rob’s trick: use an immersion blender to puree the chunky veggies.  This will disguise them for the kids and speed up cooking time.  (Read the instructions if you’re not familiar with using an immersion blender.  Trust me on this.)

This recipe made enough sauce for me to have about 4 meals for my family of 5.  I freeze it in small containers (about 3 cups) so I can take out the amount I need.

Enjoy!  And if you try it out, I’d love to hear how it goes!


11 thoughts on “The Lucky Mom’s Red Gravy – Prepared with Love

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  3. Karen

    I must say I have made many a pot of sauce ( or red gravy as you call it) in the 33 years I have been married to my very Italian husband and I have never known any one of those Italian ladies in his family to put chicken stock in their sauce!!! Interesting!!! I might have to try it!
    Loved reading all your most recent blog entries!!

    1. The Lucky Mom Post author

      I think it’s just a way to get a richer flavor. Probably takes the place of other spices that are added in. The proof here was in the yummy sounds my family was making last night!

  4. lifestyleideas

    This looks like a very tasty recipe. Thanks for sharing, I really enjoyed reading today’s post.

    I love sharing recipes also. I believe everyone can enjoy them. Also you can get our recipes on Twitter

  5. Kay Thornton Swanson

    Thank you, thank you, thank you! I’ve been searching for a good red gravy recipe. Have you ever made lasagna with this? Spaghetti and meatballs next week–I’ll let you know how it comes out.

    1. The Lucky Mom Post author

      I use the same sauce for everything! My culinary advisor/nephew calls it “Mother Sauce.” Spaghetti with meatballs (last night’s meal), Spaghetti with chicken (my kids’ fav!), Lasagna, Bracioloni. For lasagna, I’d thin it out a little, because the liquid is absorbed. Can’t wait to hear how it comes out!

      1. Kay Thornton Swanson

        Make the sauce Monday and meatballs yesterday–dinner for 14 tonight at my house. The kid termed it “really good,” which is about the highest praise you can get in this house. (She had a meatball poboy last night.) I followed the recipe pretty closely, ad libbing only occasionally. I did add much more sugar–about 1/4 cup–to cut the acidity. And I dispensed with the seasoning packet and just left everything but the bay leaves to the stick blender. And I cut step one (wine for the cook) since I was making it in the morning. 🙂 Thanks again. This will become my regular sauce recipe from now on.


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