Ragu Bolognese (Authentic)

Total Time
4hrs 25mins
Prep 25 mins
Cook 4 hrs

Bolognese is one of the most legendary dishes in Italy. However, outside of Bologna, where can one eat a true Ragù? Well, if you follow this recipe any kitchen you choose. My parents came from Italy back in the 60’s, and settled in Brooklyn. As a result, My family and friends had the pleasure of eating some of the best homemade Italian food. These dishes of course, prepared by my Mom and sometimes Dad. Now, I share my fortune with you. Mangiare! (eat)

Ingredients Nutrition


  1. Prepping makes the whole experience more enjoyable.
  2. Finely chop pancetta.
  3. Finely dice carrots, onions and celery.
  4. Wash livers carefully, then flatten livers and chop.
  5. Warm milk and chicken stock.
  6. Peel Garlic.
  7. In a Dutch oven over medium heat add 2 tbsp oil with 2 tbsp butter. Add the onions and sauté until the onions are soft, 8 – 10 minute. Do not brown.
  8. Add the remaining butter and olive oil.
  9. Add carrots and celery, increase heat to med-high, sauté until they start to brown.
  10. Add pancetta, prosciutto, mortadella or your choice of any combo of meats and sauté one to two minutes.
  11. Remove mixture from pan to a bowl and reserve.
  12. Add chicken liver and stir frequently 1 to 2 minutes.
  13. Add ground beef or meat blend and brown (do not stew meat, if you need to, do so in stages)
  14. Return vegetable mix to Dutch oven.
  15. Add tomato paste to meat and vegetable mix and brown paste for about 10-15 minute important step, develops deep flavor.
  16. Add wine to deglaze, allow it to evaporate 4 - 7 minutes.
  17. Add 1 cup warm milk and pinch nutmeg, allow it to come to a boil, carefully reduce milk for 3 - 5 minutes.
  18. Add passata or whole tomatoes crushed my hand or potato masher.
  19. Add chicken stock and whole garlic cloves stir. Cover and continue to cook for 3 to 4 hours over very low heat or place into oven at 275 for 3 to 4 hours, stirring occasionally.
  20. Several minutes before serving mash garlic cloves against wall of Dutch oven and add remaining milk continue to cook 10 minutes.
Most Helpful

Long time to make but well worth it. My DH was in Bologna on business and said it was just like what he had in a trattoria. I was afraid to use the liver, but you could tell it added depth without the livery taste. Keeper!!!

Ellen1love September 11, 2011

This is incredible. I didn't add the liver, but followed everything else, delicious!

HeidiSue November 21, 2010

I am raven about this lasagna. I made it for my office party it was a hit. I used the pancetta and the meatloaf mix from publix. It really was OUTSTANDING. Thank you Mr. Rabor and your Mom too

braven July 11, 2010