Spaghetti Bolognese : An authentic Italian recipe

Spaghetti Bolognese is a classic Italian dish that has gained popularity worldwide for its rich flavors and hearty appeal. Originating from the city of Bologna in Northern Italy, this dish is a true representation of traditional Italian cuisine. This recipe will bring you back to the very authentic Italian recipe for Spaghetti Bolognese.

spaghetti bolognese


The key to a delicious Spaghetti Bolognese lies in the careful selection and combination of ingredients.

  • Onion or Red onion: Chopped onions add a savory and slightly sweet taste to the Bolognese sauce.
  • Celery: Chopped celery lends a refreshing and aromatic note to the sauce
  • Carrots: Chopped carrots contribute a touch of natural sweetness to the sauce.
spaghetti bolognese
Onion, carrots, celery
  • Ground Pork, Beef, and Veal (or full Ground Beef): The combination of pork, beef, and veal (or solely beef) creates a well-rounded and flavorful meat base for the Bolognese sauce. The choice between a combination of meat and only beef depends on personal preference and availability.
  • Tomato and Passata: Tomato passata is a smooth, thick sauce made from fresh, ripe strained tomatoes.
  • Peeled Tomatoes: Provide texture and bursts of fresh tomato flavor to the sauce. You can easily peel tomatoes by blanching them in boiling water, then cut into small cubes.
  • Tomato Paste: Different from tomato passata, tomato paste is made by cooking down tomatoes and reducing them to a thick paste. Tomato paste adds concentrated tomato flavor and helps thicken the sauce.
  • Extra Virgin Olive Oil, Salt and Pepper: it adds richness of the sauce and helps bind and enhance the flavors together.
  • Red Wine: Red wine contributes complexity and depth to the Bolognese sauce. It imparts a rich, robust flavor and helps tenderize the meat.
  • Full Cream Milk: Full cream milk is an unexpected but crucial ingredient in Spaghetti Bolognese. It adds a subtle creaminess to the sauce and helps balance the acidity of the tomatoes.
  • Water: Add if needed during the simmering process to prevent the sauce from becoming too thick or burning.

By combining these carefully chosen ingredients, you can create a flavorful and authentic Spaghetti Bolognese that captures the essence of traditional Italian cuisine.

spaghetti bolognese

How to Make Spaghetti Bolognese

  • Making a delicious Spaghetti Bolognese is a labor of love that involves a few key steps. Begin by sautéing the onions, celery, and carrots in a pan until they turn beautifully browned, releasing their aromatic flavors. This process forms the flavorful base of the Bolognese sauce.
  • Once the vegetables are nicely browned, it’s time to add the minced meats. Cook them until they are beautifully browned as well, allowing the flavors to develop and intensify. Next, mix in the red wine and let it simmer gently until it evaporates, infusing the sauce with its delightful undertones.
spaghetti bolognese
  • Smash peeled tomatoes, ready for the next steps.
spaghetti bolognese
  • Now, it’s time to incorporate the tomato passata, peeled tomatoes, and tomato paste into the sauce. Stir well to ensure that all the ingredients are combined and distributed evenly.
spaghetti bolognese
  • Once everything is well combined, it’s time to let the sauce simmer low and slow for an extended period, typically 3-5 hours. This slow simmering allows the flavors to meld together and develop into a rich and hearty sauce. Stir occasionally and add boiled water as needed to maintain the desired consistency.
spaghetti bolognese

Your homemade Bolognese sauce is ready to be enjoyed. Finally, toss the cooked spaghetti in the sauce, ensuring that every strand is coated with the rich flavors. Serve hot and garnish with grated Parmesan cheese and fresh herbs for an added touch of elegance.

By following these instructions and giving each step the time and attention which it deserves, you can create a mouthwatering Spaghetti Bolognese that will transport you to the heart of Italy.

Tips and Tricks

Here are some helpful tips and tricks to enhance your Spaghetti Bolognese cooking experience:

  • For a deeper flavor, allow the sauce to simmer for a longer time, as this helps the ingredients meld together and develop a rich taste.
  • If you prefer a thicker sauce, reduce the amount of boiled water added during the simmering process.
  • To store leftover Spaghetti Bolognese in the refrigerator, transfer it to an airtight container and place it in the fridge within two hours of cooking. It can be stored for up to three to four days. Remember to cool the sauce completely before refrigeration to prevent bacteria growth.
  • To save time, prepare a larger batch of Bolognese sauce and store it in the freezer for later use. Use a silicone ice mold to form small cubes of the sauce, then transfer them to a large bag for easy storage and portioning.
  • To reheat leftover Spaghetti Bolognese, unlike lasagna which should be heated by oven, it is best to do so on the stovetop. Simply heat a pan over medium heat, add a little olive oil, and warm the sauce gently until heated through. Stir occasionally to ensure even heating.

By following this authentic recipe, using quality ingredients, and employing some tips and tricks, you can create a delicious homemade version of this beloved pasta dish. Enjoy the rich and savory Bolognese sauce paired with perfectly cooked spaghetti for a comforting and satisfying meal.

spaghetti bolognese

Authentic Italian Spaghetti Bolognese Recipe

Yield: 5
Prep Time: 30 minutes
Cook Time: 20 minutes
Additional Time: 4 hours
Total Time: 4 hours 50 minutes

Rich flavors and hearty appeal, this recipe will bring you back to the very authentic Italian recipe for Spaghetti Bolognese.


  • 1 chopped Onion or Red onion
  • 3 stalks of Celery, chopped
  • 3 Carrots, chopped
  • 500g (17.6oz) of Ground Pork, 300g (10oz) of Ground Beef, 200g (7oz) of Ground Veal (or 1kg (35oz) of Minced Beef)
  • 1 litre Tomato Passata
  • 400g (14oz) of Peeled Tomatoes
  • 150g (6oz) of Tomato Paste
  • A bit extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 glass of Red wine
  • 250g (1 cup) of Full cream milk
  • Salt and pepper
  • 1-2 litre Water (to be boiled using the kettle)


  • Step 1. In a pan, sauté the chopped onion, celery, and carrots for 4-5 minutes until they turn brown. Stir frequently to avoid burning.
  • Step 2. Add a glass of red wine to the pan and let it simmer until it evaporates, infusing the vegetables with its flavors.
  • Step 3. Next, add the minced pork, beef, and veal (or beef mince, if using) to the pan. Stir often and cook until the meat is browned.spaghetti bolognese
  • Step 4. Mix in the remaining half glass of red wine and simmer until it evaporates once again. This step helps deepen the flavors.
  • Step 5. Add the tomato passata, peeled tomatoes, and tomato paste to the pan. Stir well to combine.spaghetti bolognesespaghetti bolognese
  • Step 6. Let the sauce simmer for 3-5 hours, stirring occasionally. If the sauce becomes too thick, add boiled water from the kettle to maintain the desired consistency and prevent burning.spaghetti bolognese
  • Step 7. Optionally, hand-crush or use a blender to crush the peeled tomatoes for a smoother sauce texture.
  • Step 8. The Bolognese sauce can be used not only for Spaghetti Bolognese but also for lasagna or other pasta dishes. It's a versatile base that adds a burst of flavor to various recipes.spaghetti bolognese


- Remember to cool the sauce completely before refrigerating or freezing.
- Reheat the leftover sauce on the stovetop for best results.

Nutrition Information:
Yield: 5 Serving Size: 1
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 686Saturated Fat: 6.5gCholesterol: 62mgSodium: 637mgCarbohydrates: 84gFiber: 11gSugar: 14gProtein: 35g

Did you make this recipe?

Please leave a comment on the blog or share a photo on Pinterest

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Skip to Recipe