Recipe: Slow Cooker Beef Bolognese

Slow Cooker Beef Bolognese

One of the meals I really fell in love with when we were in Italy was beef bolognese over pasta. If you think of the typical spaghetti beef sauce we find here in America, this is its grown-up, way more delicious cousin. So when the hubs got me a KitchenAid mixer for Christmas, complete with pasta-making attachments, I knew the sauce we’d try over our first homemade noodles would be beef bolognese.

The below is a combination of two different recipes I found. I basically took the parts that sounded good from each and left out the parts I wasn’t interested in. We’ve made this twice now, and it is SO GOOD. Like, starving-all-day-because-I-can-smell-this-cooking-in-the-kitchen good.
 

Slow Cooker Beef Bolognese

Ingredients

  • 2 lbs. extra lean ground beef
  • 2 celery stalks
  • 1 small package baby carrots
  • 1 med white onion
  • 6 cloves garlic
  • 1 cup milk
  • ½ cup red wine
  • 6oz. can of tomato paste
  • 14oz. can of diced tomatoes
  • 3 tsp. mushroom salt*
  • ½ tsp. nutmeg
  • Salt & pepper to taste
  • 2 bay leaves

*We use this one because it adds a little bit of earthiness. But really, regular salt would work fine, too, or a different flavored salt if you prefer.
 

Directions

  1. Brown ground beef in a skillet with salt and pepper to taste. Add milk. Cook over high heat until milk has evaporated.
  2. Dice celery, carrots & onion. Add to bottom of slow cooker. Mince garlic and add on top. Add 1 bay leaf.
  3. Layer meat on top of veggies in slow cooker (including any juices/drippings still in pan). Add mushroom salt and nutmeg. Add tomato paste. Add red wine. Add diced tomato. Top with remaining bay leaf.
  4. Cook on high heat for 5 hours (or on low for 10 hours), stirring/mixing occasionally.
  5. Remove bay leaves. Serve over fresh pasta.

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What’s your favorite pasta sauce?

The triangle of bread visible in the top picture is fresh focaccia bread, also homemade. Would you guys be interested in that recipe as well?
 

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