Taste test: pizza sauce
||7g / 1g
||3g / 1g
||1g / 1g
||2g / 360mg
||2g / 210mg
||5g / 320mg
||3g / 1g
||4g / 1g
||7g / 1g
When the troops come home from school, work or sports practices they want to eat right away. Weeknights are not the best time to try out a new recipe or anything slow-roasted. Having a jar of pizza sauce handy is one way to get something on the table in a hurry. Our panelists tried 16 brands of pizza sauces. Today, we'll share their comments about half of them. Next week, we will review the other eight. Judges were looking for sauces that have a little more acidity than regular tomato sauces so they would hold up when paired with cheeses or other toppings.
Kathy Saunders, Times correspondent
© 2013 Tampa Bay Times
(out of 100)
|Rao's Homemade 80||Del Grosso 72||Classico 69|
|Rao's sauce wasn't as red as some of the competition, but it had its own rich color that appealed to panelists. The flavor was just as deep. "This would be really great with a hint of cheese on a pizza crust, bagel or pita bread," said one. Another liked the lingering taste of oregano and the other "black flecks" in the sauce. A couple of panelists described the sauce as "festive."||Great balance between sweet and tangy flavors made this sauce a favorite. Judges liked the chunky texture, fresh tomato flavor and rich color. "This would make a lively pizza," said one judge. Another said it would be a good base to a homemade pasta sauce because of its sprinkling of herbs.||A bright orange-red color gave this sauce its edge. "It has great tomato, garlic, basil and oregano flavors," said one judge. "I like that the herbs are not overwhelming, but the sauce is robust enough to hold cheese, vegetables or meat," she said. "This is delicious," said another, adding that she liked the "subtleness" of the flavors.|
|Three of the four judges said yes.||Three of the four judges said yes.||Three of the four judges said yes.|
|Shopping information||$4.99 for a 13-ounce jar from Publix.||$3.49 for a 13.5-ounce jar from Publix.||$1.79 for a 14-ounce jar from Publix.|
L.E. Roselli's ($3.95 for a 15.5-ounce jar from Publix, 68 points); Enrico's ($2.75 for a 15.5-ounce jar from Publix, 50 points); Trader Giotto's ($1.99 for a 16-ounce jar from Trader Joe's, 47 points); Great Value ($1.14 for a 14-ounce jar from Walmart, 47 points); and Prego ($1.79 for a 14-ounce jar from Publix, 67 points).
Panelists: Nan Jensen, registered dietitian; Bob Devin Jones, artistic director of Studio@620; John Hehn, foodie and owner of All Brite Lighting & Power Design Inc.; and Laura Reiley, Times food critic. All foods were tasted blind.
Send suggestions for product testing to: Taste section, Tampa Bay Times, P.O. Box 1121, St. Petersburg, FL 33731 or email them to email@example.com. Please put TEST SUGGESTION in the subject line. To read past Taster's Choice columns, go to food.tampabay.com.