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Best Ever Bolognese

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This will literally be the only Bolgense recipe you will ever make. It’s that good.

Everything you see I owe to spaghetti…Sophia Loren

And I have to agree with Sophia. It’s my all-time favorite pasta dish and takes me back to my childhood. In fact, I usually judge an Italian restaurant by their Bolognese. And I have eaten and tried many over my lifetime.

I have experimented and tweaked it changing up the meat, herbs, and ratio of veggies. And finally, after years of practice, my family voted this recipe the BEST BOLOGNESE EVER. Seriously it’s amazing.

The carrots give it some sweetness and it is bursting with flavor from all the spices.

Buon appetito xxx Chef MM


Best Ever Bolognese

  • Author: Melissa Mayo


  • 3 brown onions
  • 6 carrots
  • 4 stalks celery
  • 3 lbs/ 1.5 Kg lean ground beef
  • 1 TBS dried basil
  • 1 TBS dried oregano
  • 1 TBS dried dill
  • 1 TBS dried rosemary
  • 1 TBS of Nandos chilli
  • 1 x 28 oz/800 g tin crushed San Marzano Tomatoes
  • 1 x 28 oz/800 g tin water
  • 3 TBS tomato paste
  • 1 TBS brown sugar
  • Olive oil
  • Coarse salt & black pepper to taste
  • 1 pack spaghetti pasta
  • Parmesan cheese shavings to serve- optional
  • Fresh basil to garnish


Heat olive oil in the bottom of a heavy pot. Finely chop the onions in a food processor or with a knife. Cook on medium heat till caramelize. Finely chop the carrots and celery in a food processor or with a knife and add to the onions. Cook till caramelized.

Add the meat with a ½ cup of water. Break it up with a wooden spoon and cook till all liquid evaporates from the pot and meat is nicely browned.

Add the basil, oregano, dill, rosemary, and Nandos chilli. Add the tinned tomatoes, water, tomato paste, and sugar.

Bring to a boil and reduce to a simmer. Cook uncovered for 3 to 4 hours until all water has evaporated. You might need to add water if it becomes dry. Season with salt and pepper to taste.

Cook spaghetti according to package instructions. Drain pasta and toss with good olive oil.

Arrange hot spaghetti in individual bowls. Top with sauce, parmesan shavings, and fresh basil.


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I'm Melissa, your host & tour guide.

A Food Network chef, author, mamma, eternal optimist, wannabe-mermaid, spice mixologist, and “dough therapist” (yep, it’s a thing)—

I'm also the founder of Susina Cucina, the gorgeous, Italian cooking school I manifested into my reality. I’m obsessed with Aperol spritzes, travel, and mouthwatering food… especially pizza and pasta.

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