Calories in can of tomato sauce?

Ah, tomato sauce. Whether you are using it as a dip for your fries or smothering it all over your pasta, there is no denying that this versatile sauce is both delicious and nutritious. But have you ever wondered how many calories are in a can of tomato sauce? Fear not my fellow foodies; we are about to unearth the mysteries behind those red cans sitting innocently on our pantry shelves.

What Exactly Is Tomato Sauce?

Before we dive into calorie counting, let’s take a moment to appreciate what tomato sauce actually is. Contrary to popular belief, tomato sauce is not just mushed-up tomatoes mixed with herbs and spices. It is much more complex than that!

Tomato sauces typically contain:

  • Tomatoes (duh!)
  • Onion
  • Garlic
  • Olive oil
  • Salt
  • Pepper
  • Basil
  • Oregano

Many variations also include sugar and other vegetables such as carrots and celery.

Serving Size Matters

Okay, so now onto the crucial information – how many calories does a can of tomato sauce contain? Well, before answering that question we need to look at something called ‘serving size.’ Because let’s face it – nobody just eats an entire can of tomato sauce in one go (unless you’re some kind of spaghetti monster). So peruse the table below which displays various serving sizes.

Serving Size Calories
1 tbsp 5
1/4 cup 20
1/2 cup 40
Full can (28 oz.) 500

So if I use half a cup (which I definitely do) then I’m taking in around 40 calories from good ol’ Tommy Sauce right off the bat.

The Nitty Gritty on Calories

Okay, now let’s talk about calories. The number of calories in tomato sauce will vary depending on the brand and any additional ingredients added to it. However, a general rule of thumb is that there are approximately 30-40 calories per 100g of tomato sauce.

So what does this mean for our can o’ saucy goodness?

A standard-sized (28 oz) can contains roughly 793g of tomato sauce. Therefore, we can estimate that an entire can has around 250-320 calories – much more than I anticipated!

Watch Out for Added Sugar!

Now before you go frisbee-ing your beloved cans of tomato sauce out the window, remember that not all tomatoes sauces are created equal. Some brands may add sugar or other sweeteners to their products to make them taste better (and leave us wanting more), and therefore contain MORE CALORIES.

Be sure to check the label when purchasing a can or jar of tomato sauce; some sneaky companies will try anything to bring you back for seconds!

Low-Carb Tomato Sauces Do Exist

But wait! What about carb content? Low-carb dieters rejoice! An added bonus is that most varieties have between four and eight grams per one-half-cup serving size so indulge without guilt (in moderation obviously).

Another tip: If someone were trying keto or low-carb while still craving something sweeter then they could also consider making their own custom-tailored low-sugar recipe at home with no artificial or processed ingredients using fresh ripe tomatoes straight from the garden!!


So there you have it folks! Although many variables contribute towards actual caloric intake such as serving size(s) & ingredient variations in flavoring but we typically see anywhere between 250-320 calories inside every average sized canned delight.

It’s important to stay mindful during our time spent in the culinary universe and weigh our options before caving to that impulse purchase. Next time we have an umami revelation let’s take closer inspection at what we’re actually digesting!

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