Empty your Fridge Bolognese,

Beef Bolognaise

Are you looking for a simple and delicious way to use up those leftover vegetables in your fridge? Well, you’re in luck! Today, we’re sharing a straightforward beef bolognese recipe that not only makes the most of your excess veggies but also serves as a versatile base for a variety of weeknight meals.

Before we dive into the recipe, it’s worth noting that the quality of your meat can make a big difference in the final dish. If you’re in Miranda, NSW, you have access to some great local butcheries that offer high-quality meats.

Now, let’s focus on the star of the show: our beef bolognese. This recipe is all about turning simple pantry ingredients and those leftover vegetables into a flavorful and satisfying meal that your whole family will love.

As we explore this recipe, keep in mind that you can adapt it to suit your tastes and dietary preferences. Whether you’re a fan of classic spaghetti bolognese, want to stuff some capsicums, stuffed baked potatoes or dream of indulging in a comforting lasagna, this bolognese sauce has got you covered.

So, let’s roll up our sleeves, raid the fridge for those veggies, and get ready to create a delicious beef bolognese that’s not only easy but also incredibly versatile.


Any good sauce starts off with a few basics from which we can build on.

  • Beef Mince
  • Onions
  • Celery
  • Carrots
  • Can of Tomatoes

Next I went and raided the fridge to find that I had a number of green capsicum, some other old carrots, tomatoes, milk, cream and anchovies.

As I was making a large batch, a food processor made short work of chopping up all the veggies.

Beef Bolognese

A simple and versatile recipe for Beef Bolognese that you can prepare using old vegetables in the fridge
Course Dinner
Cuisine Italian


  • 500 g beef mince
  • 1 1/2 tbsp olive oil
  • 2 garlic cloves minced
  • 1 onion finely chopped (brown, yellow or white)
  • 2 carrots
  • 2 stalks celery
  • 1/2 cup 125 ml dry red wine (sub water or beef broth/stock)
  • 2 beef bouillon cubes crumbled OR granulated beef bouillon (Note 2)
  • 800 g can crushed tomato or tomato passata
  • 2 tbsp tomato paste
  • 2 tsp white sugar optional
  • 2 tsp Worcestershire sauce
  • 2 dried bay leaves
  • Salt and pepper
  • 1/2 cup milk see notes


  • Heat oil in a large pot or deep skillet over medium high heat. Add onion, carrots, celery and garlic, cook for 3 minutes or until light golden and softened.
  • Turn heat up to high and add beef. Cook, breaking it up as your go, until browned.
  • Add red wine. Bring to simmer and cook for 1 minute, scraping the bottom of the pot, until the alcohol smell is gone.
  • Add remaining ingredients except salt and pepper. Stir, bring to a simmer then turn down to medium so it bubbles gently. Cook for 20 – 30 minutes (no lid), adding water if the sauce gets too thick for your taste. Stir occasionally.
  • Add the milk and stir in throughly.
  • Slow simmer option: really takes this to another level, if you have the time! Add 3/4 cup of water, cover with lid and simmer on very low for 2 – 2.5 hours, stirring every 30 minutes or so. Uncover, simmer 20 minutes to thicken sauce.
  • Adjust salt and pepper to taste right at the end.


While it may seem an item ingredient not only does milk add a rich flavour to the bolognese, but it also helps cut through the acidity of the tomatoes and red wine. It also makes the mince meat nice and tender, creating that melt-in-your-mouth deliciousness
Tried this recipe?Let us know how it was!
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