Quarantine Kitchen

Canned Sardines in Garlic, Shallot, Tomato Sauce

Canned food has been a lifesaver for families going into fall and winter for over a century. While normally we think of canned vegetables as a pantry item we can’t live without, canned seafood tends to be an afterthought,  if not downright dismissed. 

These canned sardines are packed with protein and, stewed with shallots, garlic, onions, tomatoes, and fresh herbs they will suddenly become your new favorite dinner entree. Coming together in just thirty minutes, this is the perfect dinner entree for when you want to cook something comforting but don’t want to spend three hours in the kitchen.

Canned Sardines in Garlic, Shallot, and Tomato Sauce

1 can sardines, packed in olive oil

1 (16 oz) can diced tomatoes

1/2 shallot, finely diced

1/2 sweet onion, finely diced

5 cloves garlic, roughly chopped

1/4 cup vegetable stock

1 tbsp white wine

1 lemon, zested

1 tbsp olive oil


1 tsp Red Pepper Flake

1 tsp Oregano

Fresh Thyme, to taste

  1. Heat oil over medium heat and allow to warm in the pan for about 1 minute.
  2. Add onion and shallot to the oil and cook until translucent, about 3 minutes. Add garlic and thyme sprigs, sautéing until fragrant, about 45 seconds.
  3. Drain the oil from the can of sardines and reserve for later. Add sardines to the pan and stir into the onion/garlic mixture, coating the sardine pieces in garlic and oil.
  4. Deglaze the pan with the wine and scrape any charred bits at the bottom of the pan into the fish and onions.
  5. Add tomatoes, sardine oil, and stock to the pan with the fish. Bring mixture to a simmer and cook, covered, for about 10 minutes until the sauce has thickened, stirring often.
  6. Remove the lid and reduce to low heat. Stir in lemon zest, oregano, and red pepper. Season with salt and pepper to taste.

Serve with warm, crusty bread, a crisp green salad, and a glass of Italian wine such as Barbera or Grillo.

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