Spaghetti with fresh tomato and basil sauce

This is a great way to introduce your children to pasta as it contains loads of fun to eat and a brilliant base for adding all kinds of other fresh ingredients. As you perfect this recipe, you can add vegetables to make it healthier.

Spaghetti with fresh tomato and basil sauce


1 bunch of fresh basil

1 medium onion

2 cloves of garlic

1 kg ripe tomatoes or 2 x 400g tins of chopped tomatoes

olive oil

1 tablespoon red wine or balsamic vinegar

480 g dried wholewheat spaghetti

15 g Parmesan cheese


Pick the basil leaves (reserving a few baby leaves to garnish), then roughly chop the remaining leaves.
Peel and thinly slice the onion and garlic. If using fresh, cut the tomatoes in half, then roughly chop them or open the cans of tomatoes.
Put a saucepan on a medium heat and add 1 tablespoon of oil and the onion, then cook for around 7 minutes, or until soft and lightly golden.
Stir in the garlic and basil stalks for a few minutes, then add the fresh or canned tomatoes and the vinegar. If using canned tomatoes, break them up with the back of a wooden spoon.

Season with a pinch of sea salt and black pepper, then continue Stir in the chopped basil leaves, then reduce to low and leave to tick away.


Bring a large pot of salted water up to a boil, then add the spaghetti and cook following the package instructions – you want to cook your pasta until it is al dente.

Once the pasta is done, ladle out and reserve a cup of the cooking water and keep it to one side, then drain in a colander or sieve over the sink.

Add a splash of pasta water to the sauce if it’s a bit thick. Tip in the spaghetti and use tongs to toss well, adding a splash of the pasta water to loosen, if needed.

Serve with the reserved basil leaves sprinkled over the top and grate over the Parmesan cheese.