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Homemade Spaghetti O’s

I grew up loving spaghetti O's, but this homemade spaghetti o's tastes so much better and it’s much healthier. Both kids chose this over the can & it's cheaper too! :: DontWastetheCrumbs.com

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4.9 from 16 reviews

I grew up loving spaghetti O’s, but this homemade spaghetti o’s tastes so much better & is much healthier. My kids chose this over the can & it’s cheaper!


  • 16 oz tomato sauce*
  • 2 Tbsp tomato paste
  • 1/4 tsp garlic powder
  • 1/4 tsp paprika
  • 1/4 tsp onion powder
  • 1/8 tsp dried thyme (optional)
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1 Tbsp honey (optional)
  • 6 Tbsp milk
  • 2 Tbsp butter
  • 1 cup packed cheddar cheese, shredded (about 5 oz)
  • 2 cups small pasta, about 8 oz (ditalini if you’re shopping in store, or anelletti for the traditional O-shaped noodles)*
  • additional salt, to taste


  1. Start with the pasta and cook, on medium-high, al dente, according to the directions on the package, stirring occasionally.
  2. Meanwhile, combine tomato sauce, tomato paste, spices, milk and butter in a saucepan and bring to a simmer. The honey is optional but adds the signature “sweet” taste that you’re used to in spaghetti O’s. If you add it, add it with the milk and butter.
  3. Add cheese and stir until melted. Turn heat to low until pasta is done.
  4. Strain pasta when done and portion into serving bowls.
  5. Ladle finished sauce over pasta, adding more sauce for those who like it saucy!


* You can substitute fresh tomatoes, canned whole tomatoes or canned diced tomatoes for the tomato sauce. You can even use leftover tomato basil soup or pizza sauce. If you’re using whole or diced tomatoes, puree first and then measure.
* If you use another pasta that is slightly larger, like small shells or macaroni, you might need to increase the quantity.