Yes, we do eat meat! And we love a good spaghetti bolognese, particularly in cooler weather. Of course, our sauce is big on veggies so you don’t miss out on the important stuff while enjoying the meat fest.

This bolognese is a hit with kids and adults alike. Make a batch at the weekend and store in the freezer for when you are short on time and everyone is ravenous. If you’re able to leave it in the fridge overnight, it tastes even better the next day.

This recipe takes a little longer some of our others but you can put in the slow cooker or let it bubble away on low heat while you get on with other things. Just give it the occasional stir.

Note we sometimes (always) cheat and chop the veggies in the food processor.

The following serves 8-10.

It seems everyone has a trick or special ingredient that makes their bolognese sauce a winner so tell us readers, do you have one?

You will need

  • 1kg of minced pork and veal
  • Olive oil
  • 5-6 medium-sized carrots diced into small cubes
  • 3 onions diced into small cubes
  • 4 celery sticks diced into small cubes
  • 4 garlic cloves minced
  • Large pinch of sugar
  • 2 x 400g tin of crushed tomatoes
  • 3 Tbsp tomato puree
  • 1 Tbsp of Worcestershire sauce
  • 250ml red wine (can use white wine if that’s all you have)
  • Juice and zest of 1 lemon
  • 3-4 bay leaves
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • 0.8-1kg spaghetti
  • Parmesan cheese grated

What you do

Heat 2-3 Tbsp of olive oil in a large heavy-based saucepan with a lid (we use a Le Creuset for this), add the carrots, onions and celery and sweat over a low heat for 10 minutes, giving the occasional stir. Stir in the sugar and garlic and cook for another few minutes. Remove the vegetables from the pan then heat 1 tbsp olive oil in the same pan and add in the mince. Once the meat has browned and separated, stir through the tomato puree and wine, then bring to the boil until the liquid has reduced by half.

Stir the cooked vegetables into the meat sauce then add in the tomatoes, Worcestershire sauce, bay leaves, lemon zest, half the lemon juice, salt and pepper to taste and 500ml water. Bring to the boil then simmer on a low heat partially covered with a lid for the next 3-4 hours. Give the occasional stir and add more water if drying out.

Finally, when you have a nice thick rich sauce, add lemon juice, salt and pepper to taste and serve over al dente spaghetti with lots of grated parmesan and a crisp green side salad.

Join the conversation! 6 Comments

  1. […] We think you’ll love it but if you prefer your bolognese meaty, try our best bolognese sauce recipe. […]


  2. […] few things we always try and have stocked in the freezer are our bolognese sauce, chilli sin carne to put over rice or nachos, and this carrot, lentil and coconut soup. Though we […]


  3. […] as wholemeal or spelt, it really does come back to what you’re putting on it. Try it with our bolognese sauce or other vegetables and aim to serve with a green […]


  4. […] we love a good bolognese sauce on our pasta, often we feel like something a little lighter. This simple and healthy smoky pasta […]


  5. My secret ingredient is a can of salt reduced condensed tomato soup.



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beef, Dinner, Lunchbox, Meat, One Pot, Pasta & Noodles


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