I so wish I could take credit for this recipe, because it’s by far the best, and the easiest Bolognese I’ve ever made! This recipe comes from my beautiful friend, and former boss, Dana. She used to make it for her kids (who I adore) all the time, and I was lucky enough to get to try it! I was instantly hooked, and I couldn’t use any other Bolognese recipe ever again. That’s why I have to share it with you!
This makes a huge batch of Bolognese, so feel free to either cut the recipe in half, or freeze some of it to use at a later date, which is what I do! This is one of those dishes you just can’t mess up. It’s made in the slow cooker, which does all the work for you, and is pretty much the best invention ever. I use 3lbs of grassfed ground beef, because I love a really meaty sauce, but again, that’s totally up to you! Happy cooking!
- 1-3 lbs of ground beef (depending how meaty you like your sauce, preferably grassfed)
- 3 – 28oz cans of crushed or diced tomatoes
- 3 – 6oz cans of tomato paste
- 2 medium onions, diced
- 6-8 garlic cloves, minced
- 2 bay leaves
- Italian seasoning (enough to cover the top really well, about ¼ cup)
- Salt & pepper to taste
- 1 pork chop or pork bone (optional)
- 1/3 cup fresh basil, torn into small pieces (optional)
1. Place the tomatoes, tomato paste, onions, garlic, bay leaves, and pork chop/bone (if using) into your slow cooker. Break the ground beef up with your hands, into large chunks, and add to the slow cooker. Cover the top well with Italian seasoning, salt & pepper. Cook on low for 8-9 hours.
2. Just before you serve, stir in the basil (if using) and taste, adding more seasoning if needed. Break up the meat a bit if you’d like. Remove the bay leaves and pork bone.
1. During the last half hour of cooking, prepare the zoodles to get the moisture out. No one likes watery pasta! It’s totally up to you, and what you want to do with your zoodles, but I typically prefer the salting method. This gets the moisture out, so that they don’t become a watery mess when heated with the sauce. To do this, place your zoodles on top of paper towels and salt them generously. Set aside for at least 20 minutes, while they release their moisture.
2. Gently squeeze the salted zoodles between dry paper towels, or a clean dishrag, to remove the excess moisture. Pour the sauce over the zoodles and eat up!
** I find that pouring the sauce over the zoodles heats them up enough, but you’re always welcome to sauté them in a pan on the stove until they’re heated to your liking 🙂 Just be sure that you salt and “sweat” them first so you don’t end up with soggy zoodles!