Slow-Cooked Bolognese Sauce

Slow-Cooked Bolognese Sauce

I made this recipe a few times and soon realized that it needed to be put on the blog. For one, I really want to share the goodness with all of you! And second, the piece of recipe paper that I am using to create this is getting pretty gross; full of food droppings, crumpled edges and smudged words. It’s time to type out the slow-cooked bolognese sauce!

slow-cooked bolognese

If you are looking for a quick and easy sauce to make, this isn’t the recipe for you. I have other pasta recipes that don’t require as much time or prep. This recipe takes a bit of prep work and also has to slow cook in the oven for 3 – 4 hours. But it is so amazing, you’ll never want to make a quick sauce again! Especially if you have enough left over to freeze batches! 

slow-cooked bolognese

Slow-Cooked Bolognese Sauce

I adapted this recipe from J. Kenzi Lopez-Alt’s version from The Food Lab. This cook book is awesome! I picked up mine used from a library sale for $5! He outlines so many different methods of cooking, and tested them all out to show you the differences in each method! A food geek’s bible, that’s for sure!

Anyways, back to the slow-cooked bolognese sauce. A large part of the prep is gathering the ingredients. I altered the recipe that Kenzi does by using ground turkey instead, and I didn’t add in gelatin or fish sauce. Plus I used skim milk and 33% cream. 

slow-cooked bolognese

Preheat the oven to 300 degrees. 

In a large, oven safe Dutch oven, heat the oil over high heat and add in the ground turkey, seasoned with salt and pepper, and cook while breaking up with a wooden spoon, until no longer pink. Add in the pureed chicken livers and continue to cook until everything is combined and cooked thoroughly, about 10 – 15 mins. Set aside. You don’t have to add in chicken liver to your version if that kind of stuff grosses you out; but it does add in a layer of meaty depth to the dish. I did this slow-cooked bolognese sauce recipe twice before without the liver and with the liver I noticed a big difference in the richness of it. 

slow-cooked bolognese

Heat butter in Dutch oven and add in pancetta and cook, stirring frequently until most of the fat from the pancetta has rendered, about 12 – 15 minutes. Add in the onion, carrot, celery, garlic, sage and half the parsley and cook while stirring for about 8 minutes. 

slow-cooked bolognese

Add back the cooked meat mixture to the Dutch oven and cook until most of the liquid has evaporated, about 10 – 15  minutes. 

Add in the wine and cook while stirring until mostly evaporated, about 20 – 40 minutes. Add chicken broth, pureed tomatoes, half of the milk and cream, bay leaves and half of the parmesan cheese. Bring sauce to a simmer and then transfer to the preheated oven with no lid. 

slow-cooked bolognese

Cook, stirring and scraping down the sides occasionally (I did this every 30 minutes), until sauce is thick, rich and liquid is almost completely reduced. 

slow-cooked bolognese

Add in remaining parsley, milk, cream and parmesan cheese and stir. Serve slow-cooked bolognese with your favourite pasta!

slow-cooked bolognese

Cool the slow-cooked bolognese leftovers and store in sealed containers in the fridge for up to one week or freeze. 

slow-cooked bolognese

Slow-Cooked Bolognese Sauce

Slowly cooked to perfection, this bolognese will have your friends and family coming back for more!
Prep Time 1 hour 30 minutes
Cook Time 4 hours
Author Chews and Brews

Ingredients

  • 1 L homemade or store-bought chicken stock
  • 1 28-ounce; 800g can pureed tomatoes, preferably San Marzano
  • 1/2 pound pureed chicken livers
  • 1/4 cup avocado oil
  • 2 pound ground turkey
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 4 tablespoons butter
  • 1/2 pound finely diced pancetta
  • 1 large onion finely minced
  • 2 large carrots finely chopped
  • 4 ribs celery finely chopped
  • 8 medium cloves garlic minced
  • 1/4 cup minced fresh sage leaves
  • 1/2 cup minced fresh parsley leaves divided
  • 2 cups dry red wine
  • 1 cup skim milk divided
  • 1 cup 33% cream divided
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 1/4 cup finely grated Parmesan cheese divided

To Serve

  • Dried or fresh pasta of your choice

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 300 degrees Fahrenheit.
  2. In a large, oven safe Dutch oven, heat the oil over high heat and add in the ground turkey, seasoned with salt and pepper, and cook while breaking up with a wooden spoon, until no longer pink. Add in the pureed chicken livers and continue to cook until everything is combined and cooked thoroughly, about 10 - 15 mins. Set aside.
  3. Heat butter in Dutch oven and add in pancetta and cook, stirring frequently until most of the fat from the pancetta has rendered, about 12 - 15 minutes. Add in the onion, carrot, celery, garlic, sage and half the parsley and cook while stirring for about 8 minutes.
  4. Add back the cooked meat mixture to the Dutch oven and cook until most of the liquid has evaporated, about 10 - 15 minutes.
  5. Add in the wine and cook while stirring until mostly evaporated, about 20 - 40 minutes. Add chicken broth, pureed tomatoes, half of the milk and cream, bay leaves and half of the parmesan cheese. Bring sauce to a simmer and then transfer to the preheated oven with no lid.
  6. Cook, stirring and scraping down the sides occasionally (I did this every 30 minutes), until sauce is thick, rich and liquid is almost completely reduced.
  7. Add in remaining parsley, milk, cream and parmesan cheese and stir. Serve slow-cooked bolognese with your favourite pasta!

Recipe Notes

Adapted from The Food Lab

slow-cooked bolognese

3 thoughts on “Slow-Cooked Bolognese Sauce

  1. Hi!
    Eating chicken liver would be ok, but I don’t want to purée them! Can you buy chicken livers already puréed?

    1. Oh I am not sure exactly! Might be able to ask the butcher to do it for you or if you cut in small enough chunks it’d be fine too.

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