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5 Tips for Adding Flavor to Your Sauces

  • When making red sauces, lemon juice and vinegar are two ingredients that brighten sauce that may seem dull or missing that “something” you cannot put your finger on. Red wine, balsamic or cider vinegar work too.
  • If your tomato sauce seems too acidic, add granulated sugar a teaspoon at a time to balance the flavor.
  • While sugar can heal most sauce ills, other sweeteners can also do the trick while imparting a different kind of taste. Try agave, brown sugar, molasses, maple syrup, or even barbeque sauce for different flavor notes. For a non-sugar option, adding pureed carrots present a natural sweetness.
  • Whether preparing homemade or a pre-made sauce, a little red wine makes red sauces robust, especially ones with meat in them. Typically, a quarter-cup is all that is needed, but add to your preference.
  • Making a cream or cheese-based sauce? A few grates of fresh nutmeg (or even shaken from a jar) will add a flavor that will make your diners take note.