Recipe: Basic Bolognese Sauce

Every cook needs a Basic Bolognese Sauce in their repertoire. It such a staple. Spaghetti Bolognese is possibly my favourite family meal. We eat it pretty much weekly in our house.

Plus – a basic bolognese sauce is not just about Spaghetti Bolognese. A basic bolognese sauce also makes a lasagne, a pasta bake, even a yummy variation for shepherds pie.

This is also a freezer meal staple. It is rare that I do not have a couple of bags of this basic bolognese sauce stashed in my freezer. All I then need to do is cook some pasta, defrost and heat the sauce – and dinner is on the table in around 15 minutes. A healthy, homemade dinner in 15 minutes – an awesome trick to have in your freezer.

A basic bolognese recipe - perfect for spaghetti bolognese or lasagne. Freezer friendly too!

Sure, you could buy a jar of pasta sauce from the supermarket. It will cost you a few dollars and it is quick and easy. BUT – take a look at the ingredients. Take a look at the sugar. Can you pronounce the other ingredients on the label? Do you know what they are?

This recipe is all about making a sauce from scratch. The flavour comes from vegetables – the amazing golden trio of carrot, celery and onion. The result is a rich, flavourful tomato sauce – deliciously tasty and full of wholesome, homemade goodness. Who can resist?

A basic bolognese recipe - perfect for spaghetti bolognese or lasagne. Freezer friendly too!

The below recipe for basic bolognese sauce will make a lot of sauce. But it is meant to be something that you make once, and then freeze. I will usually make this batch – and eat a serve for dinner – and freeze the rest.

I portion it into 2-3 cup servings and I freeze in snaplock bags. Don’t forget to label and date them – not that the sauce will hang around in your freezer for long! Trust me!

So the below recipe will make you around 4 meals – that is, 4 snaplock bags of 2-3 cups serves.

Go ahead – give this a go. Let me know what you think in the comments below. Do you love spaghetti bolognese as much as I do?

Basic Bolognese Sauce

A basic bolognese sauce recipe for spaghetti bolognese, lasagne or more. Freezer friendly too!

  • 2-4 tbsp olive oil
  • 4 sticks of celery diced
  • 4 carrots diced
  • 2 medium or 1 large onion diced
  • 4 cloves of garlic finely chopped
  • 3 tsp oregano
  • 1 kg beef mince the best you can afford
  • 4 x canned tomato preferably whole but diced is fine
  1. Heat the olive oil in a large casserole pot on the stove top - medium high heat. Use as much olive oil as you think will be needed to coat your vegetables.
  2. Add the diced carrot, celery and onion. Season generously with salt. Give this a good stir so that everything is well coated with the olive oil and salt.
  3. Allow this to cook for 10 minutes or so - stirring occasionally so that it doesn’t stick. You want the vegies to be nice and soft but not brown.
  4. Add the garlic and oregano, and stir for a few minutes.
  5. Next, add the beef mince and break up any big chunks. There’s no need to brown the beef mince completely here - just make sure it’s broken up.
  6. Now add the canned tomatoes. Break up the tomatoes slightly and give everything a good stir.
  7. Now comes the important part. You’ll need to simmer this for about an hour. Keep the lid slightly askew. Stir occasionally to ensure it doesn’t stick to the bottom of the pot.
  8. After about half an hour, if the sauce is still quite liquid - remove the lid and simmer for the next half an hour uncovered. This will allow the sauce to thicken.
  9. Once you’re happy with the consistency, taste and season as you like.
  10. Allow to cool slightly and then package up for the freezer (or serve for dinner!)
Recipe Notes

Serve with cooked pasta, or for something different, serve over cooked vegies (I love this sauce served over sauteed kale).

This recipe is completely freezer friendly. Portion and store in the freezer for up to 3 months. 

To use from frozen, you can simply pop the frozen sauce in a pot with a splash of water and a drizzle of olive oil. Pop a lid on the pot and reheat over a low heat - stirring frequently. 

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