This Easy Spaghetti Bolognese Sauce Recipe is a simple take on an authentic and traditional Italian meal. Loaded with ground beef and spices and laced with Merlot wine, this quick tomato-based sauce is bound to be a wholesome family favorite.
This delicious Meat Sauce recipe is perfect when served over pasta with a side of Garlic Bread!
Pasta lovers, listen up: this rich, meaty recipe for Spaghetti Bolognese Sauce recipe will be your new favorite way to eat those twirl-able noodles this fall!
Ragù alla Bolognese is a traditional Italian dish that calls for a homemade tomato sauce that’s loaded with ground beef, onions, garlic, Merlot, and lots of other flavorings and spices.
If you don’t have a go-to Bolognese sauce recipe already — or maybe you’re looking for a new one — try this zesty version.
I love topping pasta with a hearty Bolognese sauce because it adds tons of protein to an otherwise carb-heavy dish.
Serve it with steamed veggies or a side salad, and you’ll have a complete balanced meal.
This Bolognese recipe is so thick and hearty on its own, you might be tempted just to eat it with a piece of buttered crusty bread.
Some might even argue that scooping up the saucy meat at the bottom of your bowl is the best part of the meal!
Is It Italian?
Yes and no. The dish is definitely Italian Inspired, but you won’t find it on the menu in Italy.
Bolognese is a Ragù, which is a tomato and meat cooked over low heat for an extended period of time. The name, Bolognese, comes from the area of origin, Bologna Italy.
Wait, so you just explained that this IS Italian…
Yes, Bolognese Sauce is an authentic Italian recipe, but Spaghetti Bolognese is not. In Italy, you’ll find this delicious sauce served with thicker kinds of pasta like gnocchi or tortellini.
Each Bolognese Sauce recipe will probably vary slightly based on who made it, but it should always have tomatoes and minced meat.
A Bolognese Sauce made with pieces of whole meat such as chunks of steak is actually a Neapolitan ragù. Spaghetti Bolognese as a whole dish is more commonly found in other parts of the world like the United States.
What’s The Difference Between Bolognese Sauce And Spaghetti Sauce?
The primary difference between these two sauces is meat. A spaghetti or marinara sauce is simply a tomato-based sauce without meat whereas Bolognese is a meat sauce by design.
How To Make It:
Step 1: Begin by adding a bit of olive oil and the ground beef to a large saucepan and browning the meat over medium heat, stirring regularly until no longer pink.
Step 2: Once the meat is browned, drained the fat and add more olive oil and the finely chopped onions and cook for about 5 minutes or until the onions become translucent.
Step 3: Next, add in the minced garlic cloves and cook for 1 minute, stirring regularly to ensure that the garlic does not burn.
Step 4: Add in the remaining ingredients and stir to combine. Reduce heat and simmer over medium-low heat for 30 to 40 minutes until sauce reaches the desired thickness, stirring occasionally. Season with salt and pepper to taste.
How To Make Turkey Bolognese:
Simply replace this ground beef with ground turkey in this recipe! You could also substitute with ground chicken, veal, or pork.
It should go without saying that a homemade Bolognese Sauce is WAY better than store-bought! There’s no need to settle for a jarred Bolognese when you can make this recipe for your family — and they’ll probably thank you for it!
With “back to school season” just around the corner, this simple sauce is perfect for inspiring home-cooked weeknight dinners. It’s also the perfect way to get everyone around the table for a cozy Sunday afternoon meal with company and conversation.
Make a big batch of Bolognese Sauce, and you can have leftovers for the next couple of days. Just pour it over fresh spaghetti (or any other pasta), top it with cheese, and enjoy!
Spaghetti Bolognese is a traditional family favorite that’s wholesome and totally delicious. This simple version is perfect to have on hand when you’re looking for a comforting recipe to share with the family. And if you’d prefer a vegetarian option, try my Homemade Marinara Sauce!
More Delicious Recipes!
- Best Alfredo Sauce Recipe
- American Chop Suey
- Buttermilk Panna Cotta
- Hungarian Goulash
- Rosemary Focaccia Bread
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Spaghetti Bolognese Sauce
- 3 tablespoons olive oil, divided
- 1 lb ground beef
- 1 large white onion, finely chopped
- 6 cloves garlic, minced
- 16 ounces tomato sauce
- 16 ounces diced tomatoes
- 12 ounces tomato paste
- 2/3 cup Merlot wine*
- 2 tablespoon light brown sugar
- 2 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
- 1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar
- 2 teaspoon dried oregano
- 2 teaspoon dried basil
- 1 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1 teaspoon ground pepper
- Add 1 tablespoon of olive oil and the ground beef to a large saucepan and brown the meat over medium heat, stirring regularly.
- Once the meat is browned, drained the fat and add in the remaining olive oil and the onions and cook for about 5 minutes or until the onions become translucent.
- Add in the minced garlic and cook for 1 minute, stirring regularly to ensure that the garlic does not burn.
- Add in the remaining ingredients and stir to combine, simmer over medium-low heat for 30 to 40 minutes until sauce reaches desired thickness.
- Serve over pasta, with bread, or whatever else you feel like.
- Merlot wine can be substituted for beef broth.
- Ground turkey, chicken, veal, or pork can be used instead of ground beef.
- Adapted from Hey, Let’s Make Stuff.