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Italian Bolognese Sauce

Italian bolognese sauce

This bolognese sauce recipe is a variation of the classic Italian sauce.

It’s not complicated at all.

This Italian tomato sauce is perfect dinner served over pasta with just a side salad to complete the meal.

This sauce itself is gluten free but of course regular pasta is not. Serve the sauce over gluten free pasta, or try a healthy alternative like cooked quinoa.

Bolognese sauce is different than the usual Italian tomato sauce. It has very little tomato in it at all. It is definitely worth making as it is quite delicious.

This sauce recipe adds a touch of nutmeg and lemon peel for a different flavor, plus 1/4 cup of whipping cream.

The whipping cream adds a lovely richness and smooth texture to the sauce. You can however cut some fat from the recipe by using a lighter cream. You can also cut the butter to 1/4 cup instead of 1/3 cup.

Bolognese sauces can take hours to cook. This recipe cuts it down somewhat. Just sauté the first few ingredients, then add the rest and let it cook for an hour.

Of course, buttery garlic bread served with it would round out the meal perfectly.

Italian bolognese sauce

Italian Bolognese Sauce

This bolognese sauce recipe is a variation of the classic Italian sauce. It's not complicated at all and is perfect dinner served over pasta with just a side salad to complete the meal.
Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 1 hour
Total Time 1 hour 20 minutes
Course Main Course, Main or Side
Cuisine Italian
Servings 4 Servings
Calories 220 kcal


  • 1/3 cup butter
  • 1/4 cup Italian pancetta, or Canadian bacon
  • 1/4 cup carrot, finely chopped
  • 1/4 cup onion, finely chopped
  • 1/4 cup lean beef, chopped, or ground beef
  • 2 tablespoons tomato paste
  • 1 strip lemon peel
  • 1 pinch nutmeg
  • 1 cup beef stock
  • 1/2 cup dry white wine, optional
  • 1/4 cup whipping cream


  • Melt the butter in a large saucepan. Add the pancetta, carrots and onions. Stir and cook for 1-2 minutes. Add the beef and brown it over medium heat, stirring occasionally. Add the tomato paste, lemon peel, nutmeg and stock and wine. Partially cover and simmer slowly for 1 hour.
  • Remove from the heat, take out the lemon peel and stir in the whipping cream just before serving.
  • Serve over hot cooked pasta.
  • Makes 2 cups, enough for about 4 servings.
  • Serve this delectable Italian sauce recipe on your favorite pasta with a large salad and some garlic bread.


Calories: 220kcalCarbohydrates: 7gProtein: 7gFat: 16gSaturated Fat: 7gTrans Fat: 1gCholesterol: 45mgSodium: 339mgPotassium: 378mgFiber: 1gSugar: 4gVitamin A: 1808IUVitamin C: 4mgCalcium: 55mgIron: 1mg
Tried this recipe?Let us know how it was!


  • The directions call for chopped lean beef, which means beef cut into small cubes, but you can substitute ground lean beef as well.
  • Use red wine if you prefer. It will result in a somewhat heartier taste.
  • You can omit the wine altogether if you want and substitute and extra 1/2 cup of beef stock. Keep in mind though that the wine adds a distinctive taste that will be missing if you omit it.

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If you like this bolognese sauce, you may also want to try another of our Italian pasta sauces with a twist, our oven roasted tomato sauce recipe.

If you like this recipe, I would really appreciate it if you share it on social media and add a comment below. Thanks.

Bolognese Sauce

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