Tell your Italian grandmother to look away because this Bolognese sauce is not the labor intensive version her family has crafted for centuries. No this is a Quick Healthy Bolognese recipe. It’s the kind of Bolognese working Mom’s and Dad’s will appreciate. It’s less heavy, perfectly freezable and the kids will love it.
What is Bolognese?
Bolognese is from the Bologna region of Italy. The original recipe uses a mix of beef and pork. It’s starts with carrot, onion and celery. Bolognese is finished with heavy cream or milk for a rich a velvety texture.
Bolognese is best when left to slow cook for a long period of time. This makes the meat very tender and marries all the flavors together.
How do you make Quick Healthy Bolognese?
In this recipe we trade the fat in beef and pork for a lean ground beef. The slow simmering keeps the meat tender and flavorful. You really don’t need the extra fat.
You could add in a half cup of milk at the end of cooking, but the recipe is delicious without it. The carrot, onion and garlic add tons of flavor.
This recipe also takes some help from store bought pasta sauce. While the crushed tomatoes with basil add fresh homemade flavor
Can you freeze Bolognese?
Yes! Absolutely. If you’re going to freeze it don’t add in any cream or milk. You can add that when it’s reheated. My favorite way to freeze bolognese is to make a big batch and let it cool.
I then scoop it into heavy duty freezer bags and freeze it flat. This makes thawing very easy and it doesn’t take much room in the freezer.
What meat can I use in Bolognese?
This recipe uses all ground beef, but a combo of ground beef and turkey or chicken sausage would be delicious. You could also replace the ground beef with ground turkey or chicken.
Ground pork is also good and more traditional. Just be aware that pork will add additional fat to the recipe.
What vegetables can I use in Bolognese?
Bolognese is traditionally made with a mirepoix of celery carrot and onion. I start this one with carrot, onion and garlic. I would stick to some combo of that.
However, if you have extra vegetables like zucchini, mushrooms or spinach in the crisper drawer I’d recommend simmering them in the sauce as well. More vegetables can’t hurt this sauce. They only make it better.
What Pasta is best to serve with Bolognese?
Traditionally bolognese is served with tagliatelle. Tagliatelle is a wide noodle that resembles fettuccine. Fettuccine would work just fine as would any kind of spaghetti. I’ve even served it with shells or penne. It’s truly an all purpose sauce.
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Quick Healthy Bolognese Recipe
- 2 lbs. Lean Ground Beef I use 93% lean ground beef.
- 1 cup Onion Chopped
- 1 cup Carrot Chopped
- 2 tbsp. Garlic Finely Minced
- 2 tsp. Dried Basil
- 2 tsp. Dried Oregano
- 28 Ounces Crushed Tomatoes I use the ones with Basil.
- 24 Ounces Pasta Sauce I like Lucini brand. Use the one you love.
- 1 tbsp Salt More or less to taste.
- 1/2 tbsp. Pepper More or less to taste.
- In a large pot over medium heat add a coating of olive oil. Add in the carrot, onion, garlic, ground beef, basil, oregano salt and pepper.
- Once the ground beef is browned and the vegetables are translucent, pour in the sauce and tomatoes. Stir together and allow to simmer for at least 2 hours on low.
- Serve over your favorite pasta or zoodles. Use it to make lasagna and baked ziti.