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Puttanesca Sauce: An Easy Way to Dress Up Dinner

By February 12, 2017Recipes
Reading Time: 2 minutes
The next Whole Life Challenge starts in:

Don’t you just love it when a few simple ingredients come together to give you an amazing burst of flavor? That’s how I feel about puttanesca sauce.

With only about six ingredients (plus a few spices), you can create a meal that is incredibly flavorful, and perhaps best of all, it only takes a few minutes to put together. It’s the perfect meal for the family any night of the week, especially if you are starved for time or aren’t the biggest fan of cooking!

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Puttanesca Sauce

With only about six ingredients (plus a few spices), you can create a meal that is incredibly flavorful, and perhaps best of all, it only takes a few minutes to put together.

Category Dinner, Paleo, Vegetarian
Compliance Level Kickstart, Lifestyle, Performance
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 50 minutes
Total Time 1 hour 5 minutes
Servings 4
Author Lauren Lobley


  • 4 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 medium sized onion chopped medium dice
  • 4 cloves garlic minced
  • 4 medium sized tomatoes chopped medium dice
  • 1 cup fresh basil roughly chopped
  • 12 Kalamata olives roughly chopped
  • 1/2 tsp dried oregano
  • 1/8 tsp red pepper flakes
  • 1/2 tsp sea salt
  • 1/2 tsp ground black pepper
  • 2 cups of fresh spinach


  1. Heat up your extra virgin olive oil in a skillet over medium heat.
  2. Add your onions and let them caramelize and brown for about 20 minutes.
  3. Add in the garlic. Toss and let it saute for about 30 seconds, just until you can smell the garlic.
  4. Then add in your spices, chopped tomatoes, and olives. Toss to combine and let the tomatoes cook down for about 20 minutes.
  5. Once the tomatoes are cooked down, add in your spinach. Toss until wilted down.
  6. Turn off the heat and add in your fresh basil. Toss to combine, adjust the seasoning, and serve over spaghetti squash, quinoa, or whatever your heart desires (and is compliant on your chosen Whole Life Challenge nutrition level). Note: You can also use puttanesca sauce to spice up meat, fish, or your favorite protein of choice.

Recipe Notes

This recipe is compliant on all levels — Kickstart, Lifestyle, and Performance — just remember if you’re currently in the Challenge, pasta is not compliant. Instead try quinoa, zoodles, spaghetti squash, or something similar.

Watch the video to see how simple it is to create this puttanesca sauce:

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Lauren Lobley
Former pastry chef turned certified Integrative Nutrition Health Coach and healthy chef, Lauren is now in the throes of her most challenging work to date: motherhood. When she’s not mushing up food for her daughter, her goal is to not only create recipes for healthy food that taste good, but also to help people create a recipe for their own, unique healthy life. One that’s designed specifically to suit their needs, wants, and of course, taste buds!

You can check out her recipes for both food and for life at Delectable You. There you will also find over ninety cooking videos for your viewing pleasure.

Lauren lives in Malibu, California with her adventurer husband, Ted. Together they own a yoga studio called 5 Point Yoga, as well as an Adventure Yoga Retreats company that takes people all over the world doing yoga and, well, having adventures! Think skiing, yoga, and P90X in Jackson Hole, Mammoth, and Chamonix, surfing and yoga in Costa Rica, hiking Machu Piccu in Peru — you know, that kind of thing.

When she’s not cooking, recipe testing, and living and breathing health and wellness (and now chasing after her infant), she’s writing about it all on her blog. She’s also been published on The Good Men Project, Babble, Beyond Yoga, and The Elephant Journal, and has been regularly writing for a health and wellness PR firm for the last three years.