Easy Weeknight Pasta Bolognese – ready in about an hour, this pasta sauce tastes like it’s been simmering all day! Onions, carrots, garlic, celery, ground beef, crushed tomatoes, parsley and basil. Everyone loves this easy weeknight bolognese!
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Pasta Bolognese gets it’s name because it’s a pasta sauce that originated in Bologna, Italy. Which I’m guessing must also be where bologna comes from.
The classic bolognese sauce can several kinds of meat, usually beef, veal and pork. It can have wine or heavy cream. Depending on the recipe you find it cooks anywhere from 2 hours to 4 1/2 hours.
It’s a bit of an ordeal. A worthy ordeal, but still an ordeal. Not something I want to tackle on a Monday or a Tuesday.
Weeknight Pasta Bolognese
What if I told you that you could have an easy Weeknight Pasta Bolognese, ready in about an hour? You can, and it’s so good!
I found this recipe for Simple Bolognese in Everyday Italian: 125 Simple and Delicious Recipes from Giada De Laurentiis. Giada talks about loving bolognese sauce so much that her mother had to come up with an easy bolognese recipe that was quicker than the traditional.
I so envy a childhood filled with pasta like this. The pasta of my childhood came in a blue box, with a foil packet of bright orange cheese powder.
How to Make Easy Weeknight Pasta Bolognese
The secret to making an easy weeknight bolognese sauce is a food processor. The bolognese sauce calls for minced onion, garlic, celery and carrots. I’ve minced it by hand and I’ve minced it with a food processor and it’s so much easier. Just cut the onion, celery and carrots into about 2 inch pieces and toss them and the garlic into the food processor.
Pulse until they are finely minced – you want pieces that are about 1/4 inch to 1/8 of inch.
You then brown the vegetables with the ground beef. Add the tomatoes, parsley, basil, and salt and pepper and cook for 30 minutes to allow the sauce to thicken.
Stir in the cheese and serve over your favorite pasta.
Smile and accept all the compliments.
Looking for more simple pasta recipes:
This light and healthy Tuna and Tomato Pasta is a regular around our house!
Pasta with Tuna, Chile, and Arugula – simple, delicious and ready in under 30 minutes!
This Sicilian Style Spaghetti is so delicious and is ready in about 30 minutes!
Weeknight Pasta Bolognese
A yummy bowl of comfort food easy enough for a weeknight!
- 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
- 1 onion minced
- 2 cloves garlic minced
- 1 stalk celery minced
- 1 carrot peeled and minced
- 1 pound ground chuck
- 28 ounce crushed tomatoes canned
- 1/4 cup flat leaf parsley chopped
- 8 basil leaves chopped
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 teaspoon fresh ground black pepper
- 1/4 cup Pecorino Romano cheese freshly grated
- 1/2 pound dried pasta
Over medium heat, heat the oil in a medium skillet. When almost smoking, add the onion and garlic and sauté for about 8 minutes.
Add the celery and carrot and sauté for about 5 more minutes.
Increase the heat to high and add the ground chuck. Brown the meat, breaking up large clumps for about 10 minutes or until meat is no longer pink.
Add the tomatoes, parsley, basil, 1/2 teaspoon each of salt and pepper. Reduce the heat to medium-low and simmer for about 30 minutes.
While sauce is simmering, cook pasta according to directions. Drain.
Add pasta to sauce and stir in the Pecorino Romano cheese and adjust salt and pepper to taste.
This recipe uses 1/2 pound of pasta for 4 people, which is a more calorie friendly serving size. For more generous servings use a pound of pasta.
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Update Notes: This was originally published in 2012 and has been updated for 2018.