If Heaven smells even half as good as this Ragu Bolognese (homemade spaghetti sauce) then dying won’t be so bad! The rich and delicious flavors of this Italian meat sauce (secretly loaded with hidden vegetables) will have your belly feeling happy.
Homemade Spaghetti Sauce
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Originally posted 2019. Reposted for easy finding!
Veggie-packed Ragu Bolognese (Italian meat sauce)!!! My favorite recipe on the blog to date.⠀
It’s one of those “small amount of work with a long cooking time equals your house smelling like heaven, your family having a memory making meal, and everyone sleeping good because you just ate better than on Thanksgiving” kind of dishes.⠀
I know, I just promised a lot for one spaghetti sauce recipe. But it really is that good… Sometimes I just sit with a bowl of this Veggie-laden Ragu Bolognese and eat it like soup! Haha! True story though.
How to make spaghetti sauce better
In this sauce there are a myriad of things that make the flavors so rich and deep, plus the long cooking time doesn’t hurt a thing! A few ingredients you might be tempted to skip or change but absolutely should not, are:
- Tomato Paste: If you’re allergic to tomato then skip it. Actually if you’re allergic then skip this whole recipe and why in the world or you looking at a spaghetti sauce to begin with? Haha! I’m so sorry for your allergy and highly suggest you check out this amazing recipe for creme brûlée because you probably need some in your life right about now.
- Now that that tangent is over, let’s discuss skipping or replacing the Tomato Paste: don’t do it. Do not use tomato sauce or tomato chunks or anything else tomato in place of your tomato paste! This stuff is key here. Trust me and don’t go knowing better on this one!
- Nutmeg: If you’re allergic then skip it, but I’m sorry because the nutmeg takes this spaghetti sauce next level. You wont taste the nutmeg! It just enhances certain other flavors and will make the entire dish that much better.
- Spicy sausage: friends, don’t go with hamburger meat unless you absolutely have to. And stick with the spicy, it’s really isn’t spicy in the midst of this sauce.
Authentic Italian Style Pasta Sauce Recipe
Growing up my dad would make the most amazing old world Italian meat sauce. it would cook all day and night and then it would be gone way too soon.
Last year I put my own version of that sauce to recipe and you can find it here on the blog. It is my kid’s absolute favorite thing I make and mine as well. Except sometime in the past year I started adding a lot of vegetables to the recipe. ALOT y’all. I mince them very small and my kids are clueless to them b being in the recipe.
Sneaky mama… Haha!
Wine in spaghetti sauce
I know some are against using alcohol in cooking. Let me explain why I use it in this dish: boiling down wine concentrates the flavor, including acidity and sweetness. This small quantity of wine greatly enhances the flavor of the pasta sauce. The alcohol in the wine evaporates while the food is cooking, and then only the flavor remains.
If you’d like to replace the wine with grape juice, you can. Know that it may alter the flavor slightly, but should still be delicious!
Recipe for Amazing Homemade Spaghetti Sauce:
- 4 Carrots, peeled and minced
- 1 cup Green Zucchini, minced
- 1 cup Yellow Zucchini, minced
- 1 cup Mushroom, minced
- 1/2 Onion, minced
- 1 Tablespoon Butter
- 2 TBS Olive Oil
- 2-3 TBS Minced Garlic
- 6 strips Bacon
- 1 16oz package Spicy Sausage
- 1 6-8oz can Tomato Paste
- 3 dashes of Nutmeg
- 1.5 cup Red Wine
- 3.5 cups Water
- 4 cubes Chicken Bullion
- 1 tsp dried Oregano
- 1 tsp dried Basil
- 1 and 1/4 c Milk (preferably whole milk for richest flavor)
- 1 TBS Fresh Basil, chopped fine
- Combine Carrots, Zucchini, Mushrooms, Onion, Butter, and olive oil and season generously with salt and pepper; in a Large Sauce pan on med-low for 15 minutes, stirring when needed and adding 1 TBS of water here and there as needed to keep the vegetables from browning. This is a quick Soffritto.
- In a food processor combine garlic and bacon and pulse until it has ALMOST become a paste.
- Add garlic-bacon mixture to the soffritto and stir all ingredients together.
- Cook for 5 minutes, then push the vegetale bacon mixture out toward the edges of the pan.
- In the now vacant center of your saucepan, add the tomato paste and nutmeg. Let it sit on the heat until it has warmed through, then stir it into the other ingredients already in the pot.
- Cook for 2 minutes, then add the Spicy sausage, and up the temperature to medium.
- Cook for ten minutes, stirring often to keep anything from browning.
- Now add your wine and increase the heat to med-high-high. Let everything cook until the wine is almost entirely evaporated (about 8 minutes).
- Add the water, Bullion, and dry seasonings to the pot and bring to a simmer.
- Reduce heat to med-low-low and cover pot with a lid.
- Cook like this for 2.5 hours, stirring every thirty minutes or so to keep anything from cooking to the bottom of your pot.
- Turn heat up to med-high and add your milk.
- Once the sauce begins to simmer, reduce heat down to low again.
- Let cook another hour then stir in fresh basil.
- Serve over pasta noodles, and ENJOY!!!