Warm Sauces

Last Editorial Review: 11/7/2007


Ragu Bolognese

This sauce tastes even better the day after you make it. Just keep it in a covered container in the refrigerator and warm it up to serve over hot noodles. You can even make the noodles ahead of time and warm both up together when the time is right.


  • 1 1/2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 3/4 cup minced onion
  • 1/2 cup minced celery
  • 1/3 cup minced carrot
  • 1 pound extra-lean ground beef
  • 2 ounces pancetta bacon, finely chopped
  • 1/2 cup fat-free half-and-half or whole or low-fat milk
  • 1 1/2 cups tomato sauce (or bottled marinara sauce)
  • 1 1/2 cups beef broth
  • 5 cups cooked and drained whole-grain blend spaghetti noodles


  1. Heat olive oil in a large, nonstick saucepan over medium-high heat. Add onion, celery and carrots and saute until soft. Add beef and pancetta, stir, and cook the vegetable-meat mixture until meat is nicely brown (about 15 minutes). While it's cooking, break the beef up into smaller pieces with spatula or spoon.
  2. Pour in the half-and-half or milk, and cook until most of the milk has evaporated (about 5 minutes).
  3. Add to slow cooker and stir in tomato sauce and beef broth. Cook on LOW for at least 3 hours (but will be fine for 8-10 hours). Or, stir the tomato sauce and broth into the large saucepan with the meat and vegetable mixture, cover, and simmer for 30 minutes.
  4. Meanwhile, start boiling water for the pasta. Add noodles and boil until al dente (just barely tender) and drain well. Serve meat sauce over cooked and drained noodles.

5 servings

Nutritional Information:
Per serving: 399 calories, 27 g protein, 47 g carbohydrate, 12 g fat, 3.5 g saturated fat, 33 mg cholesterol, 7 g fiber, 930 mg sodium. Calories from fat: 28%.

© 2007 Elaine Magee
© 2007 WebMD Inc.

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