Bolognese meat sauce


  • Prep Time35 mins
  • Total Time1 hr 20 mins
  • Makes8 cups
Bolognese meat sauce

Photo, Erik Putz.

Chatelaine Triple Tested

In Northern Italy, butter is used just as much as olive oil. Butter and milk magically make this sauce luxurious and creamy. It freezes well and can also be served simply with spaghetti.


  • 2 tbsp butter

  • 1 small onion, finely chopped

  • 1 large carrot, finely chopped

  • 2 stalks celery, finely chopped

  • 500 g lean ground beef

  • 1 garlic clove, minced

  • 1/4 tsp salt

  • 1 cup milk

  • 1 cup white wine

  • 2 660-mL jars tomato passata


  • MELT butter in a large heavy pot over medium. Add onion, carrot and celery. Cook, stirring occasionally, until soft, 5 to 7 min. Increase heat to medium-high. Add beef, garlic and salt. Cook, stirring to break up meat, until no pink remains, 3 to 4 min. Add milk and cook until almost all liquid has evaporated, 7 to 8 min. Add wine and cook until almost all liquid has evaporated, 6 to 7 min. Stir in passata. Boil, then reduce heat to low and simmer, stirring bolognese occasionally, until slightly thickened, 45 min.

Storage tip

Use 4 1/2 cups bolognese for our Classic Lasagna, and refrigerate remaining sauce in an airtight container for 2 days, or freeze up to 1 month.

Nutrition (per cup)

Calories 229, Protein 14g, Carbohydrates 12g, Fat 12g, Fibre 1g, Sodium 503mg.