Fettuccine Bolognese or should we be fancy again and call it fettuccine alla bolognese (😉) is a quick and easy family friendly dinner recipe! With a hearty beef and tomato flavoured meat sauce this bolognese takes a step away from spaghetti to another pasta type. Perfect any night of the week and freezer friendly fettucine bolognese or bolognese with fettucine is fuss free almost effortless and all kinds of yum!
🤍 Recipe Highlights
I have summarised everything that you will come to know and love (LOVE ❤) about the recipe in the points below:
- Freezer friendly: there are few recipes that freeze as well as meaty sauce. Either purchase and freeze the mince in advance (thaw when ready to use) or meal prep a batch with only needing to reheat and cook the pasta on a busy week night!
- Simple ingredients: I have been intentional about keeping the ingredients short and sweet. The best thing is that they are all pantry staples and there is no chopping or dicing involved!
- Back to basics: yes, I could share with you a long simmering 2 to 3 hour bolognese sauce recipe but who has time for that! This gets a busy weeknight dinner sorted quick smart with maximum flavour and you can still put your feet up at the end of the day!
- No chopping: there is no peeling, chopping or dicing involved in this bolognese with fettuccine. Nor is there any milk, wine, stock or long and involved steps. The dried onion comes from a jar and the tomatoes from a tin - I have literally made it too easy for you 😉👍.
- Family favorite: everyone from little kids to big ones will enjoy a hearty bowl of this bolognese. It is a great recipe that works for all ages!
The photo below is to show you everything you need to make the recipe. Please refer to the printable recipe card for specific ingredient measurements as well as detailed instructions.
As you can see the recipe calls for:
- Fettuccine:(sometimes misspelt as fettucine or fettuccini) is a long pasta that has a flat rather than round shape. It has great texture and a little bite to it when cooked al dente!
- Beef mince (ground beef): you have a lean beef option or regular beef mince option. If using the regular beef mince, you can use a little less oil (1 tablespoon will be fine) as this type is more fatty than the leaner version.
- Garlic: crushed or finely chopped cloves, whichever you have on hand will be perfect to use 😉👍. If you are not a huge fan of garlic, you can reduce the amount specified in the recipe card.
- Olive oil: we use this in the pan to start with, helping to cook the garlic and brown the ground beef mince.
- Salt and pepper: a little of each of these to season the beef as it cooks.
Tasty Tip: Ground beef mince freezes exceptionally well. So if you ever see it on special at the supermarket, grab some for the freezer.
🍜 Fettuccine Bolognese Sauce
- Passata: also known as tomato puree in some countries. It is smooth and rich in tomato flavour. It is an excellent ingredient to form the base of any bolognese sauce.
- Diced tomatoes: chunky and robust, opt for the ones that don't have additional flavour or 'Italian style' as we are adding our own herbs to the recipe.
- Tomato paste: sometimes used as a pizza sauce, it is thick and full of flavour. We only need a small amount of this for the recipe.
- Worcestershire sauce: (each time I type it I have to mentally write it out!) a great alternative to using wine or stock in recipes. This is a condiment that will be easy to get your hands on in the sauces section of the supermarket.
- Dried onion: saving time and tears, this ingredient allows us to use the onion flavour but not cry our eyes out in the preparation. Plus is is super easy as you simply open the jar and spoon it in as opposed to using a knife and chopping board to peel and finely dice an onion, win, win, I say!!
- Italian herbs: a common dried herb combination that you will find in every supermarket from Walmart to Tesco, Aldi, Safeway, Woolies and Coles. This will be found in the herbs and spices section of the supermarket.
Here are the step by step instructions to make the recipe. We start by cooking the ground beef mince with some olive oil, garlic, salt and pepper.
- Add oil, garlic, beef mince, salt and pepper to pan (Photo 1)
- Cook for 5 to 8 mins to brown the beef (Photo 2)
- Add sauce ingredients (Photo 3)
- Cook then drain fettuccine (Photo 4)
👩🍳 How to Make Fettuccine Bolognese
Start by placing a large sauté pan on the stove, adding olive oil and turning the heat to high. Add the ground beef mince, garlic, salt and pepper. Cook till the meat browns which will take around 5 to 8 minutes.
During this time you will need to break up any clumps of meat, which you can easily do with a wooden spoon or silicon flexible turner.
Once the meat is cooked, it is time to add the sauce ingredients.
Pour in the passata, followed by the diced tomatoes, tomato paste, Worcestershire sauce, dried onion and Italian herbs. Use a wooden spoon to stir to combine these ingredients then turn the heat down to low.
Simmer (let it bubble away on low heat) the bolognese sauce for 15 minutes and use this time to cook the fettuccine on a seperate element.
Read and follow the instructions on the packet to cook the fettuccine in a large pot of boiling salted water. Reserve a little bit of the water if you want to toss the combine or follow the next step as written below.
Once the pasta is cooked, drain and discard the water. Then portion on to plates. When the 15 minutes is up dollop spoonful's of the bolognese over the fettuccine. Garnish with as much taste and textural delight as your heart desires 😊👍.
🍽 Serving Suggestions
When serving be sure to provide ample amounts of grated parmesan cheese or pecoroni romano. Sprinkle cracked black pepper over the top of the dish and finely chop either curly parsley or flat leaf for a pop of herby colour to finish it off.
Getting your fork stuck into this dish is one of the many highlights!
👍 How to Guide
How to Store
Store leftovers of the fettuccine in a sealed, air tight container or on a plate in the fridge with cling wrap. They will last for 3 days.
How to Freeze
Allow the dish to fully cool before portioning into containers. A good option is to freeze the bolognese sauce separately and then cook fresh fettuccine to go with it the night you want to eat or serve it. Thaw the dish completely before reheating.
How to Reheat
Refrigerated leftovers can be reheated in the microwave, on a plate with cling wrap over the top. They will only take 2 to 3 minutes to heat through. You can also add a couple of drops (teaspoon) to a saucepan and add the leftover bolognese sauce. Turn the heat to medium and stir till heated through.
😉 Substitutions and Variations
Here are my sub ins and outs that you might be thinking about as you read the post and I will tell you if I think they will work or why they won't:
- If you want more veggies in the dish you can add sliced mushrooms, diced carrot, finely chopped onion or diced eggplant. These will all need to be cooked and can be added after cooking the beef mince, before adding the sauce ingredients.
- You can use an alternative protein to the beef with another ground meat. Be it ground turkey, chicken or pork, there are many options that will work.
- For alternative pasta types try linguine, rigatoni, angel hair pasta, spaghetti or penne pasta. You can pretty much use any type of pasta you like!
- If you prefer to mix the pasta and sauce together (not sauce on top), use ½ cup of reserved pasta water (scooped out moments before draining) and use that to stir and toss the sauce and pasta together.
- Use freshly diced garlic cloves in place of the minced garlic if you prefer.
- Oregano can be used as an alternative to the combined dried Italian herbs.
- Parmesan cheese is great but pecorino romano (made using sheep's milk) is almost (in my opinion) greater!!
- Fresh basil leaves are a great substitute for the parsley if you want to make that switch.
💡 Tasty Tips
Here are my top tips and tricks that I want to share with you so that you master the recipe from the get go:
- When cooking the beef mince, ensure that you break up any clumps of mince with a slotted turner as you go.
- The heat will be high to cook the beef mince yet turned to low when simmering the bolognese sauce. This helps to develop the flavours in the sauce.
- To save waiting for a pot of cold water to boil when cooking the fettuccine, boil the kettle and pour that hot water into the sauce pan. It will heat much faster than room temperature water.
- Your either going to be a bolognese on top of the pasta or a bolognese mixed into the pasta person. If you want to mix the pasta into the sauce, reserve some of the pasta water and pour this in as you combine. It emulsifies together in sensational slickness and helps to bind the sauce and cooked fettuccine.
🤓 Frequently Asked Questions
Do you drain the fat when making bolognese?
No, you don't need to drain the fat when making bolognese. However, it is important to not use too much oil when cooking the meat. Generally beef mince will need less oil than lighter proteins like chicken or turkey mince.
How do you pimp a bolognese?
Here are 7 ways that you can pimp your bolognese sauce:
- Add sliced carrots
- Add sliced mushrooms
- Drizzle in a little red wine
- Alternatively use white wine
- Add bay leaves when adding the sauce ingredients
- Garnish liberally with cheese, pepper and parsley
- Serve with a dollop or 2 of fresh ricotta cheese
Should I put garlic in bolognese?
Using garlic in bolognese might be going against the traditions of where bologense originated from, however, it adds a lovely depth of flavour and is a great ingredient to cook with the ground beef mince.
😍 More Easy Dinner Recipes
Let's get dinner sorted any and every night of the week with easy recipes that offer diversity in protein, taste and texture. I know you will love these recipes:
- Chicken Spaghetti Bolognese
- Fusilli Alfredo
- Linguine Al Pesto
- Turkey Mince Bolognese
- Instant Pot Chicken Spaghetti
- BBQ Lamb Ribs
- Fusilli Al Pesto
- Pork Bolognese
- Lamb Bolognese
- Oven Baked Pork Ribs
Get your fork ready for the twirl my friend and if interested you can find all of my pasta recipes in the one carby carb spot 😉.
- 1 Large saute pan
- 1 Sauce pan
- 1 Wooden spoon
- 1 Colander
- 1 tablespoon olive oil Note 1
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- ¼ teaspoon cracked black pepper
- 500 grams/ 16 oz beef mince
- 2 tablespoons tomato paste
- 700 grams/24.5 oz passata (tomato puree) Note 2
- 400 grams/14 oz diced tomatoes
- 2 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce
- 2 tablespoon dried onion
- 1 teaspoon dried Italian herbs
- cracked black pepper
- parmesan cheese
- parsely finely chopped
- Cook the beef mince: heat 1 tablespoons of olive oil in a large heavy based pan at high heat. Add the garlic, beef mince, salt and pepper. Cook till browned (5 to 8 mins) and use a wooden spoon to stir and break up any clumps of meat as you go. The mince will turn a medium brown colour as it cooks.
- Add the sauce ingredients: pour in the passata (tomato puree), diced tomatoes, tomato paste, Worcestershire sauce, dried onion and dried Italian herbs. Stir to combine.
- Simmer: turn the heat to low, place a lid over the pan (optional, not essential) and simmer for 15 minutes, stirring occasionally.
- Cook fettuccine: bring to the boil a medium sized saucepan with a teaspoon of salt. Cook the linguine according the the instructions on the packet. Then drain and discard the pasta water.
- Serve: portion the cooked fettuccine onto serving plates. Top with spoonful's of the bolognese sauce. Generously garnish with freshly grated cheese, cracked black pepper and finely chopped parsley.
- Note 1 - Olive oil: if using lean beef mince use 1 ½ tablespoons. If using regular beef mince use 1 tablespoon of olive oil.
- Note 2 - Tomato passata (tomato puree): this might seem like a weird amount. It is the full amount of the standard sized bottle of this sauce.