Bolognese Sauce

We got a good deal on Johnsonville Italian Sausage at Walmart (come on give us a break it is the only large supermarket within 40 miles). Last night we made spaghetti with Bolognese Sauce and it was particularly good (I know I ate too much). This is a great recipe and requires little time to make and only one pot (not counting the pasta). In my opinion, the longer you cook it the better it tastes.

Author: Jim Kirkley

This is a family favorite and an easy-to-do one-pot sauce. Our son, James & mother-in-laws’ most requested meal.

Always serve with a high-quality Parmesan cheese, freshly grated of course, and a grind of black pepper.

Serves: 4

Bolognese Sauce


1 pound, Italian Sausage
1/2 cup, milk
1/4 cup, robust extra virgin olive oil
1 medium, onion – diced fine
4 carrots – peeled and diced fine
4 stalks, celery with tops – diced fine
1 14 1/2 ounce can, diced tomatoes – with juice
1 14 1/2 ounce can, tomato sauce
1 cup, dry red wine
1/4 cup, Italian flat leaf parsley – chopped (optional)
kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper &
sugar – to taste
1 pound, spaghetti – cooked al dente in salted water


  1. In a large frying pan or Dutch oven, over medium high heat, heat olive oil and add sausage. Slit the casing and squeeze out the meat.
  2. Break up pieces of sausage as it cooks. Continue to cook and break apart until brown all over, about 5 minutes.
  3. Add milk and cook until almost all the milk has been absorbed into the meat.
  4. Add onions, carrots, and celery and cook for 5 minutes.
  5. Add wine and cook until reduced by half.
  6. Add diced tomatoes and tomato sauce, bring to a boil and reduce heat to a simmer.
  7. Cook for at least 30 minutes, stirring occasionally. It is important that the sauce gets thicker so it coats the pasta.
  8. Because some sausages are saltier than others, add salt and ground pepper as desired.
  9. Taste again for acidity. If it is too acidic, add a bit of sugar; a little goes a long way so be careful not to make it too sweet
  10. At this point you can serve it with pasta, garnished with some chopped Italian parsley, or refrigerate it for up to a week. You may also freeze for up to a month or two.

Even if you have fresh tomatoes available in the store, use canned. Canned tomatoes are superior for cooked dishes because the tomatoes are picked when ripe and seeded. You may, of course use fresh tomatoes from your garden if you are lucky enough to have some. If you are in a rush you may substitute 2 cups of prepared pasta sauce (not tomato sauce please) for the canned tomatoes, but do not leave out the wine. Prepared pasta sauce is quite sweet as is, so no additional sugar is usually needed. At home we call this “Faux Bo”. You may also add a bit of minced garlic while the sausage is cooking. For a bit of a kick substitute hot sausage for the sweet, or add some dried red pepper flakes while the sausage is frying. And finally, if you can stand the calories, adding 1/2 cup of cream at the end makes the sauce luxuriously rich.


Just wanted to show you the way we are growing our fresh herbs. Parsley was used in the dish and as a garnish. These herbs are growing like crazy.


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