i have a problem.
i am officially obsessed…
obsessed with my slow cooker.
since we got a new slow cooker from our dear friend tammy, i have made a ton of different crockpot recipes. it makes cooking soooooo much easier! i can make a big batch of whatever it is and have some for a couple of meals through the week, plus a bit to freeze for later. i have made everything from meatballs to black beans. i’ll be posting all of the recipes slowly but surely and first up is this absolutely divine, crockpot bolognese sauce.
although it’s not a completely authentic bolognese sauce, it is completely delicious and perfect over a bowl of rigatoni pasta topped with a sprinkle of parmesan cheese. i also used this sauce to make stuffed shells which i will post about soon. plus i saved a few cups and froze it so we can enjoy a quick meal in the future.
this sauce is full of vegetables, ground turkey, tomatoes, and even some bacon. really, you can’t go wrong. so bust out your slow cooker and whip up a batch of this crockpot bolognese sauce!
first up, the vegetables. i used my small handy dandy food processor/hand blender to mince a bit of onion, carrot, and celery.
next cook some pancetta… i used bacon because i didn’t have any pancetta on hand. be sure to cook it until it’s nice and crisp. i failed to do this and there were still bits of bacon fat even after being in the slow cooker for hours. boo. oh well you live and you learn.
then add the vegetables and about a tablespoon of chopped garlic and cook for a few more minutes until the vegetables are tender.
now add the lean ground beef or turkey. i used turkey because i happened to have a bunch in the freezer. also sprinkle on some italian seasoning.
cook until the turkey/beef is browned and then drain off the excess fat. i actually used a baster to do this which worked really really well.
then add some red or white wine and cook until it reduces down a bit.
finally, the meat and vegetable mixture is ready to go into the slow cooker.
pour the crushed tomatoes on top of the meat and also add the bay leaves and some salt and pepper.
mix everything together and set your slow cooker to low.
cook for 6 hours. p.s. i just love the fact that my slow cooker has a way to program it to cook at a certain setting for a certain amount of time. when the time is done, it automatically switches to warm. amazing!
once it’s done, add some basil. i used my good ol’ tube of basil…
and a bit of half and half and some parsley.
mix it all together…
and it’s ready to eat!
since i didn’t make a ton of drastic changes to the recipe, i’m going to send you over to one of my new favorite blogs, skinny taste for the recipe. just be sure to add about 1 tablespoon of chopped garlic to the pancetta/bacon and vegetable mixture, 1 teaspoon of italian seasoning to your ground beef/turkey, and about 1 tablespoon of chopped basil to the finished sauce.