Best Ever Bolognese

I think everyone on the planet has their own recipe for pasta Bolognese.

But in saying that, a few of you have messaged me asking how to make it without using jars of sauces or packets, which are loaded with sugar. This Bolognese is the best ever because the longer you cook Bolognese, the sweeter it tastes.

If you don’t have the time to cook it for 2 hours, just try cooking it for 50 mins on a simmer with the lid on.

This tastes great chunky or smooth. I’ve given directions for both here in case you want to be sneaky and hide a few veggies.



  • 500 g extra lean mince beef
  • 1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
  • 1 large carrot
  • 1 onion
  • 2 celery stalks
  • 2 garlic cloves
  • 2 peppers, 1 green, 1 red
  • 200 ml chicken stock
  •  400 g passata
  • 2 tablespoon tomato puree
  • 1 heaped teaspoon basil
  • 1 heaped teaspoon oregano

    best ever bolognase

    for a smooth sauce follow the red directions

  • 40 g Parmesan cheese



In a large pan, soften your chopped carrot, celery and onion for 5 minutes.

Add in the lean mince and cook for another 5 minutes, draining off any excess fat when browned.

If you would like your sauce to have hidden vegetables and a smooth texture, cook your mince separately.

Chuck in the chopped red and green peppers then add the balsamic vinegar and tomato puree.

Give a good mix and throw in your chopped garlic, chicken stock and passata. Let the whole mixture bubble for a minute.

Simmer for 2 hours on a medium heat with no lid. The flavour really intensifies the longer it cooks. If you don’t have 2 hours, 50 minutes will do on a low simmer with the lid on.

After 2 hours, grate in the Parmesan cheese. This really sweetens the dish up without adding sugar or sweetener.

Finally, stir in the dried herbs. I use a tablespoon of oregano and basil but you can build that up a good pinch at a time, tasting as you go.

If you’re looking for a smooth Bolognese, blend the sauce well with a hand blender and then add in your cooked mince.


Jolene x 


4 thoughts on “Best Ever Bolognese

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