This Authentic Ragu Bolognese Sauce is unbelievably rich, has tremendous depth of flavor, and has a sublime, natural sweetness to it, that is amazing!

Authentic Ragu Bolognese Sauce topped with parmesan cheese on a plate

Ragu Bolognese is one of my all-time favorite ways to adorn pasta.  When I eat at a good Italian restaurant, I almost always order it.  When I travel abroad to Italy, I seek out tutorials that have Ragu Bolognese featured on the menu.  I love this thick, rich, meaty sauce.

Now, what I’m going to tell you about the recipe I’m sharing with you today, may strike you as, shall we say, a wee bit sensational.  How many blogs have you read that claim whatever recipe they’re sharing is, “The Worlds Best,”  “The Ultimate…..,”  “Greatest Ever.”  I mean Come ON!!! But this recipe……

Authentic Ragu Bolognese Sauce scooped out from a big pot

So, all that said, I don’t even want to try and assign a title to it.  You heard every expletive in the world to describe the “Best Ragu Bolognese Sauce In The World” so you probably are immune to the words.  Let me just say………Please try this recipe!  It’s so different, in my experience, from any other Ragu Bolognese Sauce I’ve ever had.  It has an unbelievable richness, tremendous depth of flavor, and a sublime, natural sweetness to it, that is beyond amazing!

Authentic Ragu Bolognese Sauce topped with parmesan cheese on a plate

The ingredients are the same as those you’d find in other Ragu Bolognese but the quantities are slightly different from most recipes.  For instance, there’s more milk in this recipe than any other recipe I’ve ever made or had. The technique of cooking the sauce, while very simple, is a bit different.  The results………..a sauce unlike any other I’ve ever tasted.


Authentic Ragu Bolognese

This Authentic Ragu Bolognese Sauce is unbelievably rich, has tremendous depth of flavor, and has a sublime, natural sweetness to it, that is amazing!

Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 4 hours
Total Time 1 hour 10 minutes
Servings 8 servings
Calories 766 kcal
Author Kathleen


  • 2 Tablespoons Olive Oil
  • 8 Tablespoons Unsalted butter
  • 1 Cup Onion Chopped
  • 1 1/3 Cup Celery Chopped
  • 1 1/3 Cup Carrots Chopped
  • 1 Pound Ground Beef Chuck
  • 1/2 Cup Ground Pork
  • Salt
  • Black Pepper
  • 2 Cups Whole Milk
  • 1/8 Teaspoon Grated Nutmeg
  • 2 Cups Dry White Wine
  • 1 28-Ounce Can Crushed Tomatoes Including All Liquid
  • 1--1 1/2 Pound Dry Measure Spagetti or Like Shaped Pasta,


  1. In a large, very heavy bottom 5 quart pan heat the olive oil and butter over medium heat and stir until combined.  Cook onion, stirring often, until onion is soft, about 5 minutes.

  2. Add celery and carrot to the pan and cook for 2 minutes, stirring to coat all the veggies well with oil mixture.

  3. Add the ground beef and pork and 1 1/2 teaspoons salt and 1/2 teaspoon black pepper, breaking up the meat with a wooden spoon and cooking until the meat are no longer red or raw.

  4. Turn the heat down to medium-low and add the milk and nutmeg. Simmer gently, adjusting heat lower as needed to maintain a gentle simmer, stirring frequently, until most of the milk has evaporated, about 1 hour. (Hazan says until the milk is completely gone but I simmered it until the meat was still moist and there was a little bit of liquid left in the pan.)

  5. Add the wine to the pan and continue to gently simmer as before, stirring often for about 1 1/4 hours. (Again, Hazan says until the milk is completely gone but I simmered it until the meat was still moist and there was a little bit of liquid left in the pan.)

  6. Pour in the crushed tomatoes and stir well to combine. Adjust heat as necessary to maintain the"laziest of simmers, with just an intermittent bubble breaking through the surface."

  7. Continue to cook, uncovered for 3 hours, stirring as needed.  If sauce begins to dry out,  the fat will separate from the meat.  Add 1/2 cup of water as needed to keep the sauce from scorching and sticking to the bottom of the pan. Taste for seasoning and add salt and pepper to taste.

  8. Add remaining 2 tablespoons of butter to hot, just cooked and drained pasta and toss with the sauce. Serve.

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Nutritional Information

Nutrition information will vary based on the specific products. To be safe, check the nutrition facts labels of your products. Optional object listed above have been left out of nutritional data.

Nutrition Facts
Authentic Ragu Bolognese
Amount Per Serving (1 /8 of the recipe)
Calories 766 Calories from Fat 297
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 33g 51%
Saturated Fat 15g 75%
Cholesterol 87mg 29%
Sodium 111mg 5%
Potassium 647mg 18%
Total Carbohydrates 80g 27%
Dietary Fiber 6g 24%
Sugars 12g
Protein 27g 54%
Vitamin A 83%
Vitamin C 14%
Calcium 15%
Iron 22%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.

Recipe Notes For Authentic Ragu Bolognese Sauce :

This recipe requires a significantly slow cooking process. As new ingredients are added, they’re simmered until they’re mostly evaporated, concentrating their essence and creating a flavor that isn’t achieved any other way.  This is the key to this amazing sauce. Time is an element that can’t be cut or rushed.  If you don’t have the time required, pick another ragu recipe. Because of this long cooking time, the sauce is best made in an enamel cast iron dutch oven. This type of cooking pot helps to diffuse the heat so the sauce won’t stick or scorch as easily.  You will still need to be on hand to stir the sauce with regularity to make the sauce on a day you can hang out!

More Italian Pasta Recipes…..

  • Sunday Gravy- will get your family to the table like nothing else – the smell of a rich, hearty tomato sauce spiked with red wine, succulent cuts of pork and meatballs and the promise of a flavorful evening feast. The sound of this classic Italian dish bubbling away on the stove will only be drowned out by the chorus of hungry mouths – “Is it ready yet?”
  • Italian Baked Meatballs This go-to, foolproof basic baked meatballs recipe will quickly become a family favorite. Beautifully browned on the outside and tender and juicy on the inside, they are super versatile, with or without sauce.
  • Cannelloni-  Think you can’t pull together a successful stuffed pasta dinner without hours in the kitchen? You can Cannelloni! One simple shortcut makes this is an attainable, impressive Italian feast.
  • Olive Garden Five Cheese Ziti Al Forno   is a delicious version of this wonderful meal. Uber Cheesy, warm and comforting – truly delightful!
  • Cavatappi-  Savor the flavors of Florence in my Cavatappi with Creamy Tomato Sauce. No passport required!
  • Baked Mostaccioli – This easy Baked Mostaccioli is loaded with ooey gooey cheese and yummy Italian sausage all smothered in a creamy tomato sauce.
  • Baked Ziti With Mini Meatballs – Imagine a hot, bubbly pan of delicious baked ziti with homemade mini meatballs!!! This is the BEST Ziti I’ve ever had!

More More Pasta Recipes!

  • Crock Pot Spaghetti  Super yummy and easy to make ~the pasta cooks in the crockpot in the sauce! How’s that for convenience!
  • Crock Pot Lasagna – Delicious, hearty, easy to make Crock Pot Lasagna. This recipe is loaded with yummy layers of pasta, creamy cheese, sausage, and fresh basil.
  • Beefaroni  Easy Homemade Beefaroni is perfect for the simplified flavor palates of kids. So much better than anything from a can! Quick and Easy–Ready in less than 30 minutes!
  • Million Dollar Spaghetti  This Million Dollar Spaghetti Casserole is super easy to put together and has a center layer of creamy, gooey cheese. This is one of my favorite ways to serve spaghetti and people just can’t get enough of it!

Source: Adapted from Essentials of Classic Italian Cooking