This hearty and comforting beef bolognese recipe is made with ground sirloin, fragrant aromatics, carrots, and red wine. Always a family favorite, this easy pasta sauce is ideal for prepping ahead or freezing for later!
It can be hard to stay active and go outside during the cold winter months, but something my family has always enjoyed is skiing. We’ve taken our boys since they were small, and they’ve gotten really good! But after a day of hitting the slopes, everyone is usually very hungry, and that’s when I like to make a hearty dish like my Beef Bolognese. Captûre Wines is harvested at high altitudes in the Mayacamas Mountains of California, so when in the mountains myself, it’s the first bottle I reach for. This dish uses their merlot, which is harvested and made following classic French winemaking tradition.
- Onion: Yellow or white will work well to add flavor to this sauce.
- Carrots: With the tomatoes, gives the sauce substance and texture.
- Garlic: Nutty, aromatic, pungent flavor that’s essential in this sauce.
- Ground sirloin: You could you ground beef chuck or even turkey or pork, but ground sirloin is my go-to.
- Herbs: I love using fresh herbs whenever possible in cooking, and this dish uses rosemary, oregano, and basil.
- Tomato paste: Thick paste to help create the base for the sauce.
- Captûre Merlot: Blueberry, cherry, some dried herbs like sage, allspice, and a hint of cinnamon. Silky smooth tannins that linger, all framed in balanced acid with just a hint of fine oak.
- Beef stock: Adds body and flavor to the sauce, as well as keeping the consistency from being too thick.
- Peeled tomatoes: With the carrots and beef, it adds substance, making it the hearty sauce you want and expect from a Bolognese.
- Red chili flakes: Adds just a bit of heat and a kick to the dish.
How to Make Beef Bolognese
Start your Beef Bolognese by dicing your carrots and onion.
Then add your onion and carrot to a pan, with a sprinkle of salt.
Use a microplane to grate in your garlic, and sauté until veggies are soft and caramelized.
Then add the fresh rosemary and oregano.
Along with the ground sirloin and another sprinkle of salt and pepper. Break it up with a wooden spoon and cook until browned, almost to the point of forming a crust.
Next add the tomato paste, and stir until aromatic.
Then you’ll pop open your Captûre Merlot and use it to deglaze your pan, using a wooden spoon to scrape up any bits stuck to the bottom.
Then stir in the beef broth.
And add the peeled tomatoes.
Carefully cut the tomatoes into smaller, bite-sized pieces using kitchen scissors or a knife. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat and simmer for about 20 minutes.
Pour your sauce over your favorite pasta, then top with basil and shredded parmesan cheese.
Serve alongside some toasted French bread, and enjoy your Beef Bolognese!
Frequently Asked Questions:
Can kids eat food with wine in it?
The alcohol burns off, leaving the delicious flavors and acidity that cuts through the rich pasta sauce. So it’s totally fine to serve this dish to adults and kids alike! If you’re worried at all, just use additional beef stock to deglaze the pan.
What’s the difference between Bolognese and meat sauce?
Bolognese is a type of meat sauce, still Italian in nature, that comes form Bologna, Italy.
What can I put in Bolognese instead of meat?
You could add lentils or mushrooms instead of ground beef to still get good texture and protein.
Good Pairings with Merlot
- Grilled Chicken with Fresh Tomato Basil Salsa
- Sausage and Kale Gnocchi Pasta
- Easy Pan Seared Salmon
- Grilled Vegetable Pasta
- Grilled Chicken Parmesan
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Cozy up with family and friends and enjoy this delicious Beef Bolognese. Be sure to pour yourself a glass of Captûre Merlot along with it.
Your fork is waiting.
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 medium onion (diced)
- salt and pepper (to taste)
- 3 cloves garlic (grated)
- 1 medium carrot (diced)
- 1 pound ground sirloin
- 1 tablespoon fresh rosemary (minced)
- 1 teaspoon oregano
- 2 tablespoons tomato paste
- ½ cup Captûre Merlot
- 2 cups beef or chicken stock
- 32 ounces whole peeled tomatoes
- pinch red chili flakes
- romano cheese and fresh basil (optional garnish)
- cooked pasta (optional, to serve)
- Heat a large, deep skillet over medium high heat and drizzle with olive oil. Stir in onions, garlic and carrots along with a pinch of salt and pepper. Sauté until veggies are tender, about 6-7 minutes.
- Add sirloin to the pan along with a pinch of salt and pepper then begin breaking up with a wooden spoon. Sprinkle in the rosemary and oregano then continue cooking until beef is browned almost to the point of forming a crust.
- Stir in tomato paste and heat until fragrant, about 45 seconds before stirring in the Captûre Merlot to deglaze the pan. Use a wooden spoon to scrape up any browned bits from the bottom of the pan.
- Add broth to the pan and stir well then add in the whole peeled tomatoes. Using scissors, carefully begin breaking down the tomatoes in to bite-sized chunks. Bring pan to a boil then reduce heat to low. Season with a pinch more salt and pepper then simmer for 20 minutes before serving over cooked pasta. Garnish with cheese and basil if you wish. Serve over pasta if you wish.
Disclosure: This recipe was developed in partnership with Captûre Wines. Thank you for supporting the brands that make The Lemon Bowl possible. All thoughts are my own.