Slow Cooker Bolognese Sauce

August 12, 2013

With the kids heading back to school and your crazy schedule, this slow cooker Bolognese sauce is a definite life saver.  By allowing the ingredients to cook low and slow, the the flavor of the sauce becomes developed and complex.  Toss with pasta at the last minutes and serve with a side salad and garlic bread.

Slow Cooker Fettuccine Bolognese
Recipe Courtesy of Nestle


2 tablespoons butter or extra-virgin olive oil
1 small onion, finely chopped
1 large carrot, finely chopped
1 celery stalk, finely chopped
4 cloves garlic, finely chopped
1 tablespoon chopped fresh thyme (optional)
Kosher salt and ground black pepper
3 ounces thinly sliced pancetta, chopped
1 ½ pounds ground meat (blend of beef chuck, veal and/or pork)
2 tablespoons tomato paste
1 cup dry white wine
1 can (28 ounces) diced tomatoes, undrained
2/3 cup (5 fluid-ounce can) NESTLÉ CARNATION Evaporated Milk
½ cup water
1 teaspoon MAGGI Beef or Chicken Flavor Instant Bouillon OR 1/3 MAGGI Beef or Chicken Flavor Bouillon Tablet
2 packages (9 ounces each) BUITONI Refrigerated All Natural Fettuccine
¾ cup BUITONI Refrigerated Freshly Shredded Parmesan cheese (optional)
Fresh thyme sprigs for garnish


Melt butter in large saucepan over medium heat. Add onion, carrot, celery, garlic, chopped thyme, pinch of salt and pepper; cook, stirring frequently, for 5 to 10 minutes or until tender but not browned.

Increase heat to medium-high; add the pancetta. Cook, stirring frequently, for 5 minutes or until pancetta is golden.  Add the meat a third at a time, stirring and breaking lumps with a spoon between each addition. Cook for about 15 minutes total (this is where this recipe develops so much flavor, so let it cook the full 15 minutes).

Stir in tomato paste; cook for about 2 minutes. Add wine; bring to a boil. With a wooden spoon, scrape all the brown bits stuck to the bottom of the pan and cook for 3 to 4 minutes or until wine has almost evaporated.

Transfer mixture to slow cooker along with tomatoes with juice, evaporated milk, water and bouillon; stir to combine. Cover; cook on HIGH for 4 hours or LOW for 6 hours.

Prepare pasta according to package directions. Serve sauce over pasta. Top with cheese; garnish with thyme sprigs.

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