There was a time not too long ago, that I would not be caught dead, with a jar of tomato sauce. I guess I was an Italian cooking snob. lol. Those sauces used to be horrible, but honestly today, I do use them, they are great in an emergency, most times when I do use them, I will use it as a base and add my own on top of it. Ragu with onions and garlic is a pretty good one, even the store brands that are plain are pretty good.
If I am in a hurry to make sauce, I will open the jar put it in a pot and add to it what ever I have, in the pantry such as diced tomatoes, tomato sauce, paste and some water. I also add my own seasonings, oregano, basil, fresh garlic and chopped onions. This really cooks up quicker than just starting from scratch.
You could also add fresh or canned mushroom, wine, or what ever you have that you might like.
If you want to make meat sauce using one of these sauces, it is simple and easy. Take your ground beef at least a pound or more, and brown it in a frying pan. Drain some of the fat that comes out from the meat, and add the sauce. If you like you can add some of the spices and vegetables we mentioned before, maybe some grated cheese. Pour over your choice of cooked pasta, 1 lb and you have a very inexpensive and fairly quick dinner.
Serve with salad and some Italian bread or rolls.
The cost of this meal is including salad and bread will be about $3.00 per person.