Aurora Sauce

Seafood croquettes with aurora sauce

CC BY-SA 2.0) by [puamelia]

Prep: 5 mins
Cook: 5 mins
Total: 10 mins
Servings: 4 servings
Nutrition Facts (per serving)
228 Calories
11g Fat
23g Carbs
10g Protein
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Nutrition Facts
Servings: 4
Amount per serving
Calories 228
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 11g 14%
Saturated Fat 7g 35%
Cholesterol 35mg 12%
Sodium 272mg 12%
Total Carbohydrate 23g 8%
Dietary Fiber 1g 5%
Total Sugars 16g
Protein 10g
Vitamin C 7mg 35%
Calcium 322mg 25%
Iron 2mg 8%
Potassium 662mg 14%
*The % Daily Value (DV) tells you how much a nutrient in a food serving contributes to a daily diet. 2,000 calories a day is used for general nutrition advice.
(Nutrition information is calculated using an ingredient database and should be considered an estimate.)

Aurora sauce is a creamy tomato sauce for eggs, vegetables, fish, chicken, and pasta dishes. It's made by adding tomato purée to a basic béchamel sauce or velouté sauce or compound sauces such as ​suprême sauce, or ​Allemande (German) sauce.

The sauce also is known as aurore, the French word for "sunrise," which is the gorgeous pinkish-red color the sauce becomes after adding the tomato product to a classic French sauce of your choosing.

We have made this aurora with a béchamel, one of the five mother sauces, as its base so that it is suitable for vegetarians, but you also can try it with 1 quart of velouté, another mother sauce, or any of the other compound sauces mentioned for a change of pace.


For the Béchamel Sauce:

  • 3 tablespoons butter

  • 1/2 small white onion, cut into 1/2-inch dice

  • Kosher salt

  • 3 heaping tablespoons all-purpose flour

  • 1 quart milk

  • Pinch grated nutmeg

  • 1 bay leaf

For the Aurora Sauce:

  • 1 cup tomato puree

Steps to Make It

Make the Béchamel Sauce

  1. Gather the ingredients.

  2. Add the butter and onion to a large saucepan over medium heat. Season the onions with salt, to taste, and cook until they become translucent and very aromatic.

  3. Add the flour and cook until the flour and butter resemble wet sand, about 3 to 4 minutes.

  4. Gradually, whisk in the milk until incorporated. Add the nutmeg and bay leaf and season with salt, to taste. Slowly bring the milk-flour mixture to a boil, stirring frequently to prevent scorching on the bottom. Be sure that the milk comes to a boil so the raw flour taste will cook out.       

Make the Aurora Sauce

  1. Once the béchamel sauce has come to a boil and has thickened, remove it from the heat.

  2. Stir in the tomato purée, simmer for another minute, Discard the bay leaf and serve.

  3. Use right away or refrigerate, covered, until ready to use.      

Note: If desired, you can add 1/2 cup grated Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese once the tomato purée has been added and the sauce is off the heat. Simply stir in the cheese until it is melted. This is not traditionally part of an aurora sauce, but it is a very tasty addition.

Try This Pasta Dish With Aurora Sauce

For a delicious baked casserole using aurora sauce, heat the oven to 425 F. Butter a casserole dish. Cook 1 pound of rigatoni or rotini pasta until al dente. Drain and mix well with hot aurora sauce and 3/4 cup Parmesan cheese. Turn into the buttered dish. Top the casserole with 3/4 cup Parmesan cheese mixed with 3 tablespoons toasted breadcrumbs and dot with 2 tablespoons of sliced cold butter. Bake for 10 minutes and serve hot.

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