Spaghetti Bolognese

Spaghetti Bolognese is a classic Italian dish that has gained worldwide popularity. It’s a hearty pasta dish made primarily with spaghetti and a sauce consisting of ground meat, tomatoes, onion, garlic, and a variety of herbs and spices. Although there are countless variations of this dish, the traditional Bolognese sauce, known as β€œragΓΉ alla bolognese” in Italy, originates from Bologna, a city in Northern Italy.

Here’s a basic recipe for Spaghetti Bolognese:


  • 400g (14 oz) of spaghetti
  • 500g (1.1 lbs) of ground beef or a mix of beef and pork
  • 800g (28 oz) of canned tomatoes or tomato sauce
  • 1 large onion, finely chopped
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 carrot, finely chopped
  • 1 celery stalk, finely chopped
  • 100ml (3.4 fl oz) of red wine (optional)
  • Olive oil
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • A handful of fresh basil or oregano, chopped (optional)
  • Grated Parmesan cheese, to serve


  1. Preparation of the Sauce:
    • Heat a large pan over medium heat. Add a splash of olive oil.
    • Add the chopped onion, carrot, and celery to the pan. SautΓ© until the onion is translucent and the vegetables start to soften.
    • Add the minced garlic and sautΓ© for another minute.
    • Increase the heat to medium-high and add the ground meat, breaking it apart with a spoon. Cook until the meat is browned and no longer pink.
    • If using, pour in the red wine and let it reduce for a few minutes.
    • Add the canned tomatoes or tomato sauce, salt, and pepper. If the sauce is too thick, you can add a little water or broth to reach your desired consistency.
    • Reduce the heat to low and let the sauce simmer gently for at least 30 minutes to an hour, stirring occasionally. The longer it cooks, the better the flavors will meld together.
    • Just before serving, stir in the fresh herbs if using.
  2. Cooking the Spaghetti:
    • While the sauce is simmering, bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Add the spaghetti and cook according to the package instructions until al dente.
    • Drain the spaghetti, reserving a little of the pasta water.
  3. Combining and Serving:
    • Toss the cooked spaghetti with the Bolognese sauce, adding a bit of the reserved pasta water if needed to help the sauce coat the pasta evenly.
    • Serve hot, topped with grated Parmesan cheese and additional fresh herbs if desired.

Enjoy your meal! This recipe is just a starting point, and you can customize it by adding other ingredients like mushrooms, bell peppers, or bacon to suit your taste.

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