Fast Bolognese


Here’s a recipe for delicious bolognese: start with a stick of butter, simmer some pork and beef in wine, and end with pasta. While that might sound like a lot of butter, it actually comes out to just a tablespoon per serving, and this rendition of Bolognese skips heavy cream added at the end, so it’s rich without leaving you feeling heavy. It may be a big batch, but with a sauce this tasty, you’ll go through it quickly, promise. The straightforward approach is, of course, to mix it with pasta, but there are so many amazing ways to eat Bolognese—treat it like shakshuka and poach eggs into some sauce, dollop onto buttered brown rice, or use it to top a steaming hot baked potato.

Hands On Time:
2 hrs
Total Time:
2 hrs
12 servings


  • ½ cup (1 stick) unsalted butter

  • 2 yellow onions, chopped

  • 6 carrots, chopped

  • 12 cloves garlic, thinly sliced

  • 1 ½ pounds ground sirloin

  • 1 ½ pounds ground pork

  • 1 cup dry white wine

  • 1 28-oz. can tomato puree

  • 1 28-oz. can whole peeled tomatoes

  • 12 fresh basil leaves

  • 2 dried bay leaves

  • 1 ½ tablespoons kosher salt

  • ½ teaspoon crushed red pepper

  • 2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar


  1. Melt butter in a large Dutch oven or pot over medium-high. Add onions, carrots, and garlic and cook, stirring occasionally, until softened, 7 to 8 minutes. Add beef and pork and cook, stirring and breaking up with a wooden spoon, until no longer pink and just cooked through, 8 to 10 minutes.

  2. Add wine and increase heat to high. Bring to a boil and cook until liquid reduces by half, 6 to 8 minutes. Add tomato puree, whole tomatoes and their juices, basil, bay leaves, salt, and crushed red pepper, breaking up tomatoes with a spoon. Reduce heat to low; cover and simmer, stirring often, until thickened and reduced to 8 cups, about 1½ hours. Discard bay leaves and stir in vinegar. Store tightly covered in the refrigerator for up to 5 days or freeze for up to 3 months.

    Fast Bolognese
    Victor Protasio
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