Roasted Roma Marinara

Roasted Roma Marinara: the ultimate weeknight dinner 

Roma, roasting in the oven’s heat. The smell of sweet tomatoes and garlic fills the house. A drizzle of olive oil on top before serving over pasta or fresh bread. This is a dish that has been enjoyed for generations- it warms you up from the inside out! In this post I will share my Roasted Roma Marinara recipe, as well as give some tips to make your own dish come together even faster! 

Get to know the process to make the perfect Roasted Roma Marinara  

What are Roma tomatoes?

Roasted Roma Marinara recipe

Roma tomatoes, also called plum or Italian tomatoes, have a meatier texture and less water content than other varieties of tomato. They are often used in canning recipes because they stay whole during cooking and don’t break down into the soup quite as much. The flavor is very sweet with little acidity. 


  • 1 1/2- 2 lbs of Roma tomatoes 
  • 2 cloves of garlic 
  • 1 small sweet onion 
  • 1/4 cup chopped basil 
  • 2 Tbsp of tomato paste 
  • 1/4-1/3 cup olive oil 
  • salt and pepper to taste. 
  • Pinch of sugar (optional) 
  • I substituted date sugar ( could do coconut sugar) in place of processed white sugar. 

Step by step Cooking Instructions 

How to make Roasted Roma Marinara

  1. -Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper or aluminum foil. Slice tomatoes in half the long way and place cut side down on the baking sheets, leaving space between each tomato for heat circulation. (I used two large roasting pans) 
  2. Peel garlic cloves and chop finely, peel onion, cut into quarters and then slice thinly lengthwise so you have thin strips of onion that are about an inch wide. Chop basil leaves coarsely but not too small – this is easy since they’re already chopped up from when you rough-chopped them earlier! Combine all three ingredients together in a bowl along with olive oil and seasonings like salt & pepper to taste plus sugar if desired; mix well until the veggies are evenly coated. 
  3. Spoon the mixture over each tomato slice and then sprinkle a little cheese on top if desired; bake 15 minutes, rotating pans halfway through. Watch carefully so not to let them burn! 

Tips and tricks 

  • When roasting vegetables, make sure they are cut thinly so that everything cooks quickly and thoroughly without getting too soft on top while still staying crisp underneath – this often means slicing lengthwise rather than crosswise as we would do with onions for instance.
  • This works well when using a rimmed baking sheet or a thick-bottomed skillet. 
  • If you like your vegetables softer in the middle than on top, let them cook for less time face down and then rotate them so that they can finish cooking from above.
  • Pile up any of these roasted veggies with pasta (gluten free if needed), whole grains, beans, lentils – anything! It’s all good as long as it is made to suit your needs.
  • Speaking of grain dishes: think about adding some cheese before serving for extra flavor and texture.


Roasted Roma Marinara on table

Your love of Italian cuisine will never be the same again after you’ve tried this recipe for Roasted Roma Marinara. I know it sounds like a lot of work, but trust me when I say that your taste buds are in store for an absolute feast! Check out my blog to find more ketchup recipes just like this one and others from around the world – all with a food blogger twist. If you have any questions about how to make these dishes at home or if you need help finding ingredients, don’t hesitate to reach out anytime. Bon appetit! 

Jennifer Glover