Slow Cooker Beef Bolognese

Slow Cooker Beef Bolognese

We are snowed in over here, and if you are too, you might be looking for that perfect comfort winter dish that will warm you right up. This recipe is one  all three of my children happily eat, and I call that a win at my house. I made this dish up because I had bought beef chuck to make stew and my husband reminded me that he does not like stew, and because he is a meat snob, he pointed out that it is “not good” beef. I took that as a challenge, and made it into something he loves.

Here is my recipe for slow cooker beef bolognese:

You’ll need:

1 Cup mirepoix (chopped onion, carrot and celery)

3 Large cloves garlic

1 Tbsp butter

1 Tbsp Olive oil

1.5-2 lbs lean beef chuck meat*

1 Cup beef or chicken stock

1/2 cup red wine

2-3 Large tomatoes, chopped

Kalamata olive juice

1/3 Cup milk (low fat or whole)

Fresh parsley, chopped

Fresh basil

Fresh thyme

Kosher salt


*you can also make this with ground beef or ground turkey. I’ve made it with both, and it only needs about 6 hours to cook and you can skip step 7 if you go that route.

  1. Set your slow cooker to on low for 8 hours or more. Chop your garlic and mirepoix. In a large cast iron skillet, add your olive oil and sautee your veggies for about 5 minutes on medium heat. Add them to your slow cooker along with your broth, a 3 second pour of kalamata olive juice, and your chopped veggies.Slow Cooker Beef Bolognese
  2. Salt and pepper the beef to taste, turn the skillet up to medium high heat. Add the butter to the skillet and brown the beef quickly on most sides and set aside on a plate.
  3. Leaving the pan on high, deglase your pan with the red wine then pour it into the slow cooker.
  4. Add a few leaves of basil. If you have an immersion blender, run it on low through the veggies and broth just for a minute.
  5. Nestle your beef into the sauce. Add a few sprigs of thyme and a sprinkling of parsley.Slow Cooker Beef Bolognese
  6. Let cook on low for at least 8 hours
  7. Remove the beef and set aside.
  8. Remove the sprigs of thyme and skim fat from the top of the broth.
  9. Add the milk.
  10. Shred the meat and discard any excess fat. It will fall apart easily.
  11. Return the beef to the crock pot.
  12. Serve over pasta and garnish with fresh parsley and / or parmesan.Slow Cooker Beef Bolognese

It’s even better leftover.

Bon appetit!




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