This crockpot bolognese is an easy, kid friendly gluten free meal. Packed with real, whole foods, it's a savory, hearty, weeknight meal that is perfect for chilly winter nights. The pre-crockpot prep and cook time takes about 30 minutes, and the suggested time in the crock pot is 8 hours on low.
Course Main Dish, Sauce
Cuisine Gluten Free, Grain Free, Italian
Prep Time 10minutes
Cook Time 8hours25minutes
Total Time 8hours35minutes
1largesweet onionfinely diced to 1/4"
2mediumcarrotsfinely diced to 1/4"
2mediumcelery stalksfinely diced to 1/4"
2c.dry red wine
128-oz canwhole peeled tomatoescrushed by hand
1tspfresh cracked pepper
pinchdried red pepper flakesor more to taste
1/4cfresh parsleychopped, plus extra for garnish
1/2cgrated parmesan cheeseoptional
Heat a cast iron skillet over high heat. Add 1 tbsp of oil to the pan and heat until shimmering. Add the ground beef and cook, stirring with a wooden spoon to break up the meat, until browned and no longer pink, 7-8 mins. While the ground beef is cooking, dice the onion, carrots and celery, and mince the garlic.
Remove the ground beef from the skillet and transfer to the crockpot with a slotted spoon and discard the rendered fat (keeping it will make the sauce too oily).
Return the skillet to the burner over high heat, and add the second tablespoon of oil; heat until shimmering. Add the diced onions, carrots, and celery to the skillet and cook, stirring occasionally, until softened, 8 mins. Add the garlic and saute 1-2 minutes more until fragrant.
Add the wine to the vegetables, scraping up any bits from the bottom of the pan. Continue to cook, stirring frequently, until the wine stops bubbling, another 1-2 minutes. Remove the skillet from heat and transfer the vegetables and liquid to the crockpot.
To the crockpot, add the tomatoes, cream, salt, pepper, and spices and give everything a good stir. Cover the crockpot and cook on low, 6-8 hours.
Optional: In the last hour, check the bolognese for consistency. If the sauce looks soupy, unlock the lid and set it slightly ajar to allow excess liquid to evaporate and the sauce to thicken up.
Stir in the fresh parsley and spoon over roasted spaghetti squash noodles or another base (pappardelle and polenta are excellent options). Garnish with additional fresh parsley and grated parmesan cheese.
Locally Sourced Ingredients: Local grass fed ground beef processed by Wagner's Meats, LLC Locally sourced onions, carrots, celery, garlic, and parsley sourced from The Common Market Heavy whipping cream from Seven Stars FarmOther Recommended Products: Muir Glen organic whole peeled tomatoesAdvanced Preparation: This recipe can be prepared in the evening through Step 4 and then transferred to the fridge. In the morning, continue with Step 5 for a less-than-5-minute of prep, easy weeknight dinner.