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+ servings
Bolognese sauce served with pasta on white plate

Bolognese Sauce Recipe

Steven Pennington
This recipe for Authentic Bolognese sauce or Ragu alla Bolognese will garner rave reviews from even the most discerning of palates! The slow simmering of the rich tomato base makes all the difference, and your guests will be begging for seconds!
5 from 5 votes
Prep Time 5 mins
Cook Time 30 mins
Total Time 35 mins
Course Sauce
Cuisine Italian

Suggested Equipment

Food Processor
Chef Knife
Large Skillet

Ingredients
 

  • Ground Beef 1 pound
  • Cremini Mushrooms 12
  • Portobello Mushroom 2
  • High-Quality Butter 1 tablespoon
  • Vidalia Onion 1 medium
  • Carrot 1 large
  • Celery 1 stalk
  • Red Wine ½ cup
  • Tomato Paste 4 tablespoon
  • Tomatoes (Use whole tomatoes and break them up by hand.) 1 can
  • Dried Thyme ½ teaspoon

Chiles & Fresh Peppers

  • Jalapeno Pepper 1
  • Serrano Pepper 1
  • Dried Ancho Chile 1
  • Guajillo Pepper (Dried) 1
  • Thai Chiles (Cut in half lengthwise. No seed or rib) 3
  • Habanero Pepper (Cut in half lengthwise. No seed or rib) ½
  • Red Bell Pepper 1

Instructions
 

Making The Sauce

  • Prepare the Mushrooms
    Rinse/wash the mushroom off under cold water. Do this quickly as mushrooms will absorb some water.
    Using a spoon, clean off the spores from underneath the mushrooms. If not, you'll impart a more earthly flavor profile most will not enjoy. Almost dirty flavor. Remove the spores.
    Next, chop the mushrooms into small sizes. We will be sauteing. Cut the mushrooms the same size for even cooking and appearance. No big chunks.
    Option: 
    If preparing the vegetarian version, some large chunks would be a nice touch for additional texture. 
    Be sure to double the number of mushrooms to use that amounts to what you like. I would suggest mixing in a few different types of mushrooms. 
    Idea: Try using some dried mushrooms. Place them into warm water to soften. Be sure to add some of the liquid to add big flavor. I would suggest tasting the dried mushroom liquid before adding it to make sure you think it will work with the recipe. 
    cleaning the mushroom for texas bolognese sauce
  • Cooking The Mushrooms
    Add butter to a large skillet over medium heat, then add the mushrooms. But only add half of them at this point.
    Add a small pinch of salt and dried thyme at this time.
    Cook until they have shrunk in size and caramelized, then add the second half and cook them alongside the cooked mushrooms. This ensures the mushrooms get caramelized for maximum flavor. Otherwise, there would be too much mushroom in the skillet and likey just steam.

Preparing The Vegetables

  • Set up your food processor close to a cutting board.
    Chop the onion, carrot, celery, jalapeno, serrano, guajillo, habanero, Thai chile, ancho, and bell pepper, into a size that helps the food processor do its job. Do not add large chunks to a food processor or risk uneven blending.
    I used half of each pepper, and it turned out great,t but not very hot. If you watch the video, you can see how to cut the peppers, i.e., how much is used exactly.
    Add each ingredient one at a time to the food processor until everything is smooth/purred.
    Next, add the "base" to the cooked mushrooms and start reducing the liquid. We want to cook off some of the liquid and tighten the sauce up a bit.
  • Simmering Every Ingredient Together
    Now add in the ground beef. Add salt and pepper and cook the meat through.
    Next, add a few tablespoon of tomato paste and stir it in. Then add in the red wine and cook off the alcohol.
    Lastly, I like to add something fresh. I like adding a whole tomato from the can. The canned tomatoes will be soft and have the right texture to add quickly.
    Next, add a few tablespoon of tomato paste and stir it in. Then add in the red wine and cook off the alcohol.
    Lastly, I like to add something fresh. I like adding a whole tomato from the can. The canned tomatoes will be soft and have the right texture to add easily.
    After a few minutes and the red wine has cooked into the bolognese sauce
    TSA: Taste - Season - Adjust
    Does it need more tomato paste? Salt? Does the color look good? Add in more tomato paste for a deeper color.
  • Finishing The Sauce
    Cook until the flavor has come together. About 15 minutes on low. Longer if you like, up to 4 hours. Thirty minutes to an hour is plenty of time to develop the flavor.
    Adding a cream element is still within the classic bolognese sauce technique. Use heavy cream or half-&-half.
    Topping the sauce with a fresh herb like parsley helps round out the over-heaviness of the meat sauce.
    Spicy meat sauce with Italian

Notes

Bolognese sauce is a classic Italian sauce made with ground beef, carrots, celery, onions, garlic, and crushed tomatoes. The sauce is simmered for several hours to allow the flavors to blend together.
While the sauce originates from Italy, it has become a popular dish worldwide. In America, bolognese sauce is often served with spaghetti or other long noodles. It can also be used as a filling for lasagna or baked pasta dishes.
Bolognese sauce is a hearty and flavorful sauce that is perfect for a winter meal. Serve it with your favorite pasta or use it as a filling for lasagna or baked pasta dishes. Enjoy!

Nutrition

Nutrition Facts
Bolognese Sauce Recipe
Amount per Serving
Calories
301
% Daily Value*
Fat
 
18
g
28
%
Saturated Fat
 
7
g
44
%
Polyunsaturated Fat
 
1
g
Monounsaturated Fat
 
7
g
Cholesterol
 
59
mg
20
%
Sodium
 
181
mg
8
%
Potassium
 
920
mg
26
%
Carbohydrates
 
17
g
6
%
Fiber
 
4
g
17
%
Sugar
 
10
g
11
%
Protein
 
17
g
34
%
Vitamin A
 
4642
IU
93
%
Vitamin C
 
41
mg
50
%
Calcium
 
52
mg
5
%
Iron
 
3
mg
17
%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.
Keyword Bolognese Sauce
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