Bolognese is a versatile meat-based sauce that’s very easy to make. Cook this cleaned up version in your slow cooker or electric pressure cooker.
What Is Bolognese
Bolognese is a meat-based sauce that originated in Bologna, Italy. From what I’ve been able to gather, ‘authentic’ bolognese is debatable. Main ingredients in bolognese usually include ground meat, pork, onions, celery, carrots, and tomatoes. The amount of tomatoes is up for debate. So use more, some swear only a small amount should be used. I use 28 ounces of crushed or diced tomatoes. For my pork, I used whole30-compliant bacon.
How To Serve This
What you serve this over will depend on your dietary needs. When most people hear bolognese, they think spaghetti bolognese. While not authentic Italian, it’s wildly popular. A good low-carb, paleo, and whole30 substitute for spaghetti noodles are zoodles (zucchini noodles) or even spaghetti squash. As you can see here, I like to serve this over sauteed zoodles.
- 2 lbs ground beef
- 4 ounces bacon
- 28-ounces crushed tomatoes
- 1 cup broth low-sodium beef or chicken broth
- 1 cup onion, diced
- 2 celery stalks, diced
- 2 carrots, peeled & diced
- 3 garlic cloves, crushed
- 1 bay leaf
- 2 teaspoon oregano
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1 teaspoon thyme
- 1 teaspoon basil
- 1/2 teaspoon pepper
- 1/4 teaspoon red pepper flakes
- Cook & crumble bacon. In a large skillet, add ground beef and cook over medium-high heat until browned. Drain grease. Add ground beef to the slow cooker along with the bacon.
- Add all remaining ingredients to the slow cooker. Stir to mix well.
- Cook HIGH 3-4 hours or low 6-8.
- Remove bay leaf & stir before serving.
Electric Pressure Cooker
- Turn on the pressure cooker and select Sauté. Add bacon and cook a few minutes until browned. Add carrots and onions and cook a few minutes more.
- Add ground beef and cook until browned, crumbling the ground meat as it cooks. Add garlic and cook an additional minute. Drain excess grease from the pressure cooker if needed.
- Add oregano, salt, thyme, basil, pepper, and red pepper flakes. Stir to mix well.
- Pour diced tomatoes on top. DO NOT STIR.
- Close lid and seal valve. Cook high pressure for 20 minutes. Natural release pressure for 5 minutes then quick release any remaining pressure.
- Remove bay leaf & stir.
The bolognese sauce will thicken as it cools
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