This orecchiette bolognese is a deliciously hearty and comforting dish that will no doubt fill your home with an amazing and cozy aroma! 

It’s that time of year. The excitement of the holidays is over. Target has out the bathing suits, Valentine’s Day stuff and I’m sure Easter decorations aren’t too far off and it’s still January.

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And I don’t know about you, but here in the mitten it’s bitter cold. Like double up on your socks in your boots with multiple layers under your coat kind of cold. And I want to keep me warm is this Orecchiette Bolognese.

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I can’t think of anything better than a pot of a meaty, flavorful bolognese sauce bubbling on the stove top to warm me up. Just the scent alone is amazing, but a forkful of saucy pasta washed down with a glass of wine is the ultimate. Insta-cozy.

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I’ve already made this bolognese recipe a handful of times and it has quickly become a family favorite. I’ve made it with spaghetti, mini ziti and I have to say, I like the orecchiette best. Probably because they’re like little sauce cups and they collect the sauce beautifully, plus they’re cute. #letsbereal

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I could not wait to share this on Tasty Kitchen. Nam from The Culinary Chronicles is a genius and this sauce is absolutely amazing! I hope you give this sauce a whirl and if you do please let me know! We can virtually high-five or something.

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Yield: 6 servings

Orecchiette Bolognese

This orecchiette bolognese is a deliciously hearty and comforting dish that will no doubt fill your home with an amazing and cozy aroma!


  • 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 cup white onion, finely minced
  • 1 cup carrots, finely minced
  • 1 cup celery, finely minced
  • 3 cloves garlic, finely minced
  • 1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes
  • 1 pound ground beef
  • 1/2 pound ground veal
  • 1 tablespoon minced fresh thyme
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 2 tablespoons tomato paste
  • 1 cup heavy cream, or whole milk
  • 1 cup dry red wine, like merlot, chianti or malbec
  • 1 (28 ounce) can crushed tomatoes
  • kosher salt
  • freshly ground black pepper
  • 16 ounces orecchiette pasta, cooked al dente
  • parmesan cheese, freshly grated, for serving
  • parsley, minced


  • Heat olive oil in a large dutch oven. Add the onions, carrots, celery, and garlic. Sautéed until soft and translucent.
  • Then add in the red pepper flakes sauté for an additional minute.
  • Add beef, veal, and 1/2 teaspoon of kosher salt. Use a wooden spoon, breaking up the meat into small pieces.
  • Once the meat is no longer pink, add thyme and bay leaves. Add tomato paste and cook for an additional 2-3 minutes.
  • Add the milk and bring to a simmer. Continue simmering until all the milk has evaporated and only clear juices remain, about 10 minutes. 
  • Add the wine and bring to a simmer. Continue simmering until all the wine has evaporated, about 10 minutes.
  • Add tomatoes with their juices and bring to a boil, then place the heat at the lowest setting. Continue on this very low simmer for 2 – 2 ½ hours, stirring every 20 minutes until you get a rich, thick meaty sauce. 
  • Check for seasonings and add kosher salt and pepper accordingly.
  • Toss the cooked orecchiette in the bolognese sauce and serve topped with parmesan cheese. Garnish with Italian parsley and enjoy!
Serving: 1g, Calories: 833kcal, Carbohydrates: 75g, Protein: 34g, Fat: 41g, Saturated Fat: 17g, Polyunsaturated Fat: 3g, Monounsaturated Fat: 17g, Trans Fat: 1g, Cholesterol: 139mg, Sodium: 351mg, Potassium: 1132mg, Fiber: 7g, Sugar: 11g, Vitamin A: 4715IU, Vitamin C: 20mg, Calcium: 139mg, Iron: 5mg