Nomato Sauce

This nomato sauce is a nightshade-free marinara sauce that’s made without tomatoes and other nightshade ingredients. It’s an ideal replacer for all your tomato based dishes like spaghetti Bolognese, casseroles, stews and pasta sauces. 

If you haven’t come across ‘nightshades’ before, you’d be forgiven to confuse yourself with a bedside lamp or glasses!

But when it comes to foods, nightshades are a category of vegetables and fruits belonging to the Solanaceae family. What all nightshade foods have in common are alkaloids, nitrogen-containing substances that are found in the leaves, stems and edible parts of the plants.

While nightshades offer a lot of beneficial nutrients, including antioxidants, some health professionals believe they contribute to inflammation in the body to those who appear sensitive, and therefore, advise limiting or avoiding nightshades in the diet to reduce inflammation (to reduce symptoms).

Like lectins found in beans and grains, alkaloids are toxic in high amounts. But simply cooking these foods can significantly reduce their concentration.

Like any elimination diet, it’s best to seek a professional and keep a food and symptom diary at home to ensure you’re just cutting out foods that are essential for a limited period of time, while building up gut health.

This nomato sauce got a big thumbs up from my eldest son who is currently doing 4 weeks without nightshades to see if it helps his mild hayfever symptoms of red, itchy eyes as well as his mild asthma. After just one week of going nightshade free and removing all gluten and dairy we are seeing exciting improvements but it’s still too early to determine what’s helping the most.

I’ve also got my son on a range of supplements to support his gut and liver health while we’re doing this elimination diet.

If you’d like more nightshade free recipes as well as low histamine, salicylates and other allergy-friendly (gluten and dairy free) meal plans and recipes remember to check out my much loved Allergy Free Club. We’ve got hundreds of allergy-friendly delicious recipes inside waiting for you!

3.4/5 (79 Reviews)

Prep Time

10 minutes

Cook Time

20 minutes


5 cups


  • 1 Tbs olive oil
  • 2 cloves garlic, chopped
  • 1 onion, diced
  • 3 large carrots, chopped
  • 2 celery stalks, chopped
  • 1 small beet, peeled and chopped
  • 1 Tbs fresh basil, chopped
  • 1 tsp dried oregano
  • 1 tsp dried parsley
  • 1 Tbs maple syrup (or raw sugar)
  • 1 tsp salt 
  • 1 – 2 cups vegetable stock, chicken broth or water 
  • 2 Tbs lemon juice or balsamic vinegar


  1. Heat oil in a large saucepan over medium heat and roughly chop the veggies. Even though everything gets blitzed together I still like to chop everything fairly small so the flavours disperse better.
  2. Add onions first and allow to cook until translucent for 5 minutes while chopping the rest of the vegetables.
  3. Add the remaining vegetables and dried herbs and stir to combine and cook until tender (another 5 or so minutes). Stirring to avoid any burnt bits!
  4. Add the lemon juice, maple syrup (or other sweetener) seasoning and broth (stock or water). Use enough liquid to just cover the veggies and cook for a further 10 minutes until the veggies are soft.
  5. Once ready, pop in the fresh basil, give it a good mix and use a hand stick blender to pulse until you achieve a nice thick red sauce. Alternatively pop into a food processor until you have the desired consistency.
  6. Store in the fridge for up to 5 days or freeze in batches for up to 3 months.

Recipe Notes

  • Some recipes call for pumpkin puree. I wasn’t a fan as I found it didn’t really enhance flavour and it also changed the texture of meals like spaghetti Bolognese making it appear more mushy. However you can add this in and I’d suggest half a cup of pumpkin or sweet potato puree.
  • Another flavour option is to add 5-10 pitted kalamata olives and I suspect that would be rather delicious. 

share the love



  1. Sheryl Lamb on May 19, 2021 at 7:52 pm

    Made this yesterday for my little boy who has recently started a low histamine diet. He said it was yummy . Win! . Cant wait to experiment with adding it different dishes as replacement for tomato sauce. Thanks Sharon 🙂

    • Sharon Selby on May 25, 2021 at 3:18 pm

      Thanks Sheryl, Really appreciate the review and feedback. Im starting to add this to everything. Its been a game changer in my cooking while we experiment being nightshade free. Sharon xx

  2. Katy Shotton on August 9, 2022 at 9:44 pm

    Can I use oregano for this or is oregano inflammatory

    • Sharon Selby on August 10, 2022 at 9:15 am

      Yes absolutely. Sharon xx

      • Nichelle on June 8, 2023 at 4:51 pm

        Thanks for the recipe. I am allergic to tomatoes. I’ve been experimenting with a blend of beets carrots and spices but couldn’t get the right color. I bet this works better.

        • Sharon Selby on June 8, 2023 at 8:43 pm

          You’re very welcome. It’s challenging not to cook with tomatoes but this has been a firm staple in our family when we’ve needed it. Thank you! Sharon xx

  3. Maryrose on June 5, 2024 at 10:05 pm

    I have to live nightshade-free and gluten free and I’m so excited to try this!

    • Sharon Selby on June 6, 2024 at 10:07 am

      So happy to hear this will help Maryrose. It’s also so good for you. When we focus on healing our gut with nourishing food that benefits good bacteria you’d be amazed how you can tolerate more foods that were once an issue. Sharon xx

  4. Lynn on June 18, 2024 at 11:49 am

    This is awesome. Of course I had to make a few personal tweaks to fit my dietary needs and personal tastes, but it’s just so perfect. I could not be happier. It’s rich and hardy! It’s just good spaghetti sauce. I don’t think anyone could tell it has no tomatoes. Thank you for sharing this.

    • Sharon Selby on June 18, 2024 at 12:12 pm

      Lynn thats awesome feedback and so appreciated. I also love your comment that you made adjustments. Recipes like this are so versatile to suit different needs and that’s what makes them so great. Thank you for taking the time to share. Sharon xx

Leave a Comment