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Macaroni and Tomatoes

Macaroni and tomatoes is a comfort food dish and a family favorite meal. Vine ripened tomatoes are used to create the homemade tomato sauce for this easy pasta recipe.

Do you have any recipes from your childhood that you still enjoy just as much now that you are an adult? I do. Macaroni and tomatoes happens to be one of them. It’s simple. It’s quick. It showcases the wonderful sweetness of tomatoes. One small problem: Ryan does not like it. Like at all. This, along with tuna casserole topped with potato chips, are meals that I reserve for myself when Ryan isn’t going to be home for dinner.

However, I was bound and determined to get him to love this macaroni dish, so I decided to use the vine ripened tomatoes that I bought to make Macaroni with Fresh Tomatoes. I threw in a little basil for good measure and voila! He ate 2 bowls full of it.

I have always wanted to make tomato sauce from scratch, but it always seemed too complicated. Boiling the tomatoes, tossing them in an ice bath and then peeling them just seemed like too much work. But like I said, I was determined to get Ryan to like this dish, so I bit the bullet and tried it. And guess what? It is really super easy. It only takes about 10 minutes from the time the water is placed on the stove to boil.

And the results leave me wondering why I waited so long to make macaroni and tomatoes with homemade tomato sauce.

Serve the pasta and tomatoes with a fresh garden salad and some garlic bread sticks.

Now, do you have any suggestions on how can I get him to go for the tuna casserole? Please come over to my Facebook page and share your ideas with me!

macaroni and tomatoes in white bowl.

Macaroni and Tomatoes

Macaroni and tomatoes is a comfort food dish and a family favorite meal. Fresh tomatoes are used to create homemade tomato sauce for this easy pasta recipe.
Prep Time 15 mins
Cook Time 40 mins
Total Time 55 mins
Course Main Dishes
Cuisine American
Servings 4 Servings



  • Ice
  • 2 pounds vine ripened tomatoes
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 2 cloves garlic minced
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1/2 pound dried elbow macaroni
  • 5 basil leaves


  • Bring a large pot of water to a boil.
  • Fill a large bowl with cold water and some ice cubes to make an ice bath.
  • Using a paring knife, make an "X" on the bottom of the tomatoes. Do not cut too deep, just through the skin.
  • Once the water starts boiling add the tomatoes and cook for 30 - 60 seconds or until the skin starts to fall off of the tomatoes. Use a slotted spoon to transfer tomatoes to the ice bath.
  • Once tomatoes are cool enough to handle remove skin. Slice tomatoes in half and remove the seeds inside. Reserve 1/2 cup of tomato seeds and juices. Dice tomatoes
  • Heat olive oil in a pot over medium heat. Add garlic and cook just until fragrant. Stir in diced tomatoes, reserved tomato juices, salt and pepper. Bring to a boil and reduce heat. Simmer for 30 minutes.
  • After 30 minutes, begin cooking your pasta according to package directions. At this time you can also chose to leave the sauce as is for a chunky version or use an immersion blender to make it a little more sauce like. It's up to you.
  • Transfer cooked pasta to the tomato sauce. Stir to combine. Adjust salt and pepper if needed. Transfer to serving dish.
  • Roll basil leaves together and chop. Sprinkle over the pasta and serve.


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Keywords: basil, Food, fresh tomatoes, italian, macaroni, pasta, Recipe, tomato sauce, tomatoes, vine ripened tomatoes

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Recipe Rating

  • Reply
    December 30, 2010 at 11:46 am

    This was the third dish we have tried and it was so delicious! I have 2 others I am looking at trying this weekend. It is so amazing the different flavors you come up with. I thoroughly enjoy getting emails of the new recipes you have! You have a knack for cooking! Wow!!!

  • Reply
    October 4, 2010 at 6:14 pm

    This is my new FAVORITE meal. It’s a great alternative to spaghetti (which i never enjoyed because i could never get the sauced seasoned just right) and super HEALTHY. The first time i cooked this it took a bit of time to do considering i too had never cooked fresh tomatoes, but really it wasnt difficult at all and then the second time i prepared this i didnt even need to refer to the recipe at all and it only took a few minutes (minus cooking time). Love it, Love it, Love it!!!

  • Reply
    September 15, 2010 at 4:46 am

    Hi, I’m an Italian girl! Good idea your pasta!
    Only ine thing these are not macaroni but Eliche!
    Nice to meet you! :)

  • Reply
    September 6, 2010 at 7:36 am

    I’ve been wracking my brain for the name of the pasta you used. Finally came to me this morning: cavatappi. I love the texture achieved from a combination of the ridges and the funky little double twist. If you can ever find them, strozzapreti (strangled priest) is a cool shape. Can’t begin to describe it to you, but maybe Google can help if you’re interested.

  • Reply
    September 5, 2010 at 7:50 pm

    Jeanne, I had no idea there was a recipe for this dish! How cute..Red macaroni and green beans!

  • Reply
    September 5, 2010 at 3:46 pm

    Interesting…this is what the women in my family make for ourselves when the men are not around to ask why there is no meat included…. I am so glad you shared it as a post!

  • Reply
    September 3, 2010 at 8:47 pm

    Sometimes it is the most simple ingredients that make such a perfect dish.

  • Reply
    Jenn's Food Journey
    September 3, 2010 at 5:09 pm

    Beautiful! I love that you got Ryan to eat it…. I’ve yet to get my picky eater to eat certain foods I love!

  • Reply
    September 3, 2010 at 7:04 am

    I’m pretty sure Ryan is really missing something here. What a pretty dish!

  • Reply
    Beau @
    September 3, 2010 at 6:58 am

    My s.o. ate a lot of macaroni and tomato sauce as a kid too. I had no idea there was a following (I just figured her for weird).
    When we’ve got nothing planned for dinner she’ll make it every so often. I gotta say, It might be the most blah/boring stuff I’ve ever tasted. I’ve always thought that if she just added a few things it’d be a whole lot better. I’m gonna show her your post and hope hope for the best!

  • Des

    Hey! I'm Des!

    Welcome to Life’s Ambrosia where Dinner is served and memories are made. Here you will find over 1000 tried and true recipes for every possible occasion. In the last 10 years, this blog has helped millions of families put dinner on the table and create food memories. Let me help you too.

    Read more »

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