Weeknight Bolognese


Preparation info

  • Servings:


    • Difficulty


    • Ready in

      50 min

Appears in

Love Your Leftovers

Love Your Leftovers

By Nick Evans

Published 2014

  • About

Italian grandmothers around the world might think this is sacrilege, but I’ll say it anyway: You don’t necessarily need to spend an entire day of your life to make a good bolognese. Heck, you’ve already spent a day of your life making a great marinara sauce!

Is this sauce as succulent and wonderful as a pot of meat sauce that has been simmering all day? No. I won’t claim that. But it’s close, takes a fraction of the time, and is a perfect meal for a Tuesday!


  • 6 ounces bacon (about 5 thick strips), diced
  • 1 pound ground beef
  • ½ cup red wine
  • 3 cups marinara sauce
  • 1 pound pasta (spaghetti)
  • ½ cup pasta water
  • Salt and pepper
  • Parmesan cheese, grated


    1. Add diced bacon to a large pot over medium-low heat. Cook until most of the fat has rendered out and the bacon is getting browned, about 8 minutes.
    2. Add ground beef to the pan and turn up heat to medium-high. Let meat brown well. Try not to stir it too much, letting it sear. But every few minutes you can give it a stir so it doesn’t burn. Cook until it’s well browned all around, probably 10 minutes.
    3. Add red wine to the pan, using the liquid to scrape up any bits of beef or bacon stuck to the pan. Then add marinara sauce and bring to a simmer. Turn heat down to medium-low.
    4. Cook pasta according to package while sauce simmers.
    5. When pasta is done, scoop out ½ cup pasta water and add it to the sauce, then taste and adjust for salt and pepper. It might need a pinch of both.
    6. Drain the pasta and pour it right into the Bolognese sauce. Mix it around well with tongs so the pasta is coated with the sauce. Serve immediately with grated Parmesan cheese.