Ragu Bolognese

Total Time:
1 hr 45 min
15 min
1 hr 30 min

4 servings

  • 5 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 3 tablespoons butter
  • 1 carrot, finely, diced
  • 1 medium onion, diced
  • 1 rib celery, finely diced
  • 1 clove garlic, sliced
  • 1 pound veal, ground
  • 1 pound pork, ground
  • 1/4 pound pancetta or slab bacon, ground
  • 1/2 tube tomato paste
  • 1 cup milk
  • 1 cup dry white wine
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • Parmigiano-Reggiano, for grating

In a 6 to 8-quart, heavy-bottomed saucepan, heat the olive oil and butter over medium heat. Add the onions, celery, and garlic and sweat over medium heat until the vegetables are translucent and soft but not browned, about 10 to 15 minutes. Add the veal, pork, and pancetta and stir into the vegetables. Add the meat over high heat, stirring to keep the meat from sticking together until browned. Add the tomato paste, milk, and wine and simmer over medium-low heat for 1 to 1 1/2 hours. Season with salt and pepper, to taste, and remove from the heat.

When ready to use, the cooked pasta should be added to a saucepan with the appropriate amount of hot ragu Bolognese, and tosses so that the pasta is evenly coated by the ragu.

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4.3 59
I actually made this recipe from one of Mario's cookbooks, so it was SLIGHTLY different. The cookbook version is exactly the same EXCEPT: it calls for no butter, 1/4 cup olive oil (instead of 5 T), 2 medium onions (finely diced), 4 ribs celery (finely diced), 2 carrots (finely diced), 5 cloves garlic (sliced), & one 6oz can tomato paste (instead of 1/2 tube). Otherwise, it's exactly the same. I simmered the ragu for 1.5 hours (stirring every 15 mins), and served it with my grandma's homemade gnocchi recipe. I loved it, my husband loved it, and we ate so much we are both stuffed. For those who say this is "bland" or "lacking depth of flavor", I would encourage you to either (1) try the measurements in Mario's cookbook version (I listed them above), or (2) add more salt! Many recipes just require more salt than most people are willing to put into the dish, and many times it's the salt that brings out the flavor. This was phenomenal, and I will definitely make it again and again! item not reviewed by moderator and published
Fantastico! I had a delicious ragu bolognese with pappardelle at a great little Italian cafe recently and wondered if I could make something as good at home. This recipe was perfect. I followed it closely, the only real change was I used "meatloaf mix" (veal, pork, and beef) in stead of just veal and pork. I also used a 4 oz. package of pre-diced thick pancetta. I diced the carrots, onions, celery, and garlic very finely, and sautéed them slowly until just soft and translucent (20+ minutes). I used a whole small can of tomato paste because we don't get it in "tubes" where I live. Couldn't find pappardelle and didn't have time to make fresh pasta so I used fettuccine. Results were outstanding, a home run, as good as the Italian cafe, thank you Mario Batali! p.s. I cannot believe some of the low ratings on this, maybe people were expecting a marinara? item not reviewed by moderator and published
The best ever. And I sent the recipe to my mother in law, who is such an amazing cook I normally wouldn't dare make a suggestion, but even she might appreciate it. My husband was thrilled with this (so was I) and this is a permanent part of my arsenal. I did replace the broth with red wine, but I do that a lot. If you use the freshest and best ingredients, this will be beautiful. My suggestion is to use real Parm, not the green can, and fresh vegetables and herbs. This recipe = a happy marriage. Seriously, thanks, Mario! item not reviewed by moderator and published
This was delicious! Such an easy way to do it with great tasty benefits. I usually have Pancetta - but didn't today - Served hot and fresh - it was very much like the real deal. Can't wait to see how it freezes. item not reviewed by moderator and published
Sooo delicious! Had terrible stomach cramps from the high amount of fat in the recipe. Since fat rendering is part of the recipe, you can't really drain it. Reducing butter and lower fat meat can help those who find high fat food difficult to digest. item not reviewed by moderator and published
It's all in the browning..brown the veggies, brown the meat then brown it some more. Scrap the bottom and brown some more. Add tomato sauce and a cinnamon stick..then add your water and reduce 3 times. This is not an instant recipe..but OMG it's the best you will ever wrap your month around item not reviewed by moderator and published
Significantly different recipe then the ragu recipe in "Molto Italiano". The meat and liquids are on par BUT the original recipe calls for 2 onions, 4 celery ribs, 2 carrots, 5 garlic cloves, no butter, 1/2 cup evoo, 1tsp thyme leaves and more tomato paste. It is AWESOME! item not reviewed by moderator and published
Amazing recipe! I have made this at least 7 times since watching it on the Chew! People say there isn't flavor they are not making it correctly ! Add salt and pepper to taste! People need to read! So delicious thanks Mario! item not reviewed by moderator and published
Saw Mario make this dish on The Chew a couple of weeks ago and had to make it. Based on the reviews I read, I made some changes and the bolognese was awesome. I used ground pork and lamb instead of veal. I also used a whole small can of tomato paste and a small can of tomato sauce. Since some reviewers also commented that it did not have much flavor, I add my own herbs - rosemary, basil and a little bit of Thyme. The recipe makes a lot particularly when you consider it has 2 lbs of meat, but I know we will enjoy eating the leftovers and also sharing with my family. Thanks Mario, another winner in my books. item not reviewed by moderator and published
I made this tonight and it was a lot of work for not much flavor. I have to figure out how to transform the leftovers into something more flavorful. The lack of spices is what ruins this dish. Disappointed. item not reviewed by moderator and published
Forgot to add one more thing...in the cookbook version, Mario also has you add one tsp fresh thyme leaves at the same time you add the milk and wine... item not reviewed by moderator and published
What spices would you add? Do you smoke? This dish doesn't need any spices. It has a wonderful depth to the flavors that doesn't require an advanced pallet to enjoy or sense. item not reviewed by moderator and published

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Ragu Bolognese

Recipe courtesy of Mario Batali