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


  • 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.


  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.


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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Recipe: Apple Cider Beef Stew

Apple Cider Beef Stew

If you’re looking for more perfect-for-fall recipes, I’ve got one for you right here. I originally found this on a recipe card from Taste of Home magazine, but modified it for the size of my slow cooker (2.5 qt.) and specific veggie preferences (the original called for mushrooms – ew). We tried this out last night, and it was delicious! The apple cider and cinnamon give it a really nice flavor, and the long cook time makes the beef fall-apart tender. Plus it made the house smell AMAZING while it cooked. I’ve tried a few different beef stew recipes in […]

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Recipe: Beefed Up Ramen

Beefed Up Ramen

  Another recipe that doesn’t really yield pretty pictures, but I promise it’s yummy. Like most 20-somethings I know, one of the items that can generally be found in our pantry is Ramen noodles. Usually beef flavor, occasionally chicken. And while I enjoy a good bowl of just plain noodles & broth, sometimes it’s nice to add a bit more heft and variety to the dish. Enter this recipe, courtesy of Ian.   Beefed Up Ramen (ha ha, I’m so punny) Ingredients 1 lb. lean stir fry beef* 1 large crown of broccoli 3 packets of beef flavored Ramen noodles […]

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Recipe: Beef Picadillo Tacos

I tried to get a picture of the taco all folded up nice, but then you couldn’t see anything/it just kept flopping open. So open-face taco picture for you all! We had this for dinner last night (and I had for lunch today – woo leftovers!). If you’re wanting to jazz up your normal taco routine, this is the recipe for you. It’s a bit more of a time investment, but oh so tasty. It’s also great for empanada filling (though we’ve yet to get the dough right for those) or over plain white rice. Beef Picadillo Tacos   Ingredients […]

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Recipe: Round Steak Sauerbraten

This originally appeared as a guest post over at This Enchanted Pixie. Slow cookers are one of the easiest ways to make a tasty meal, and are especially handy for those days when you know you’re going to have a jam-packed evening with no time to cook dinner. This particular recipe is very low on prep time in the morning, but ends up delicious by the evening. Round Steak Sauerbraten   Ingredients 1 envelope brown gravy mix 2 Tbsp plus 1.5 tsp brown sugar 2.5 cups cold water, divided 1 cup chopped onion 2 Tbsp white vinegar 2 tsp Worcestershire […]

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Friday Favorites: Mmmchiladas

Today’s recipe brought to you by my Mexican-food-loving boyfriend, Ian, who has gotten me addicted to it as well (probably a good thing, since we are in Texas and all). He’s the stud you’ll see assembling things in the pics below. These are simple and delicious. And I call them Mmmchiladas instead of plain enchiladas because they are that yummy. Just a warning, declaring it to be Mmmchilada night may inspire silly dancing and co-opting of show tunes with lyrics replaced by Mmmchiladas and talk of beef and cheese. Or at least that’s been my experience. Ahem. Enjoy! Mmmchiladas (Beef […]

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