The slow cooker saves my sanity on a weekly, and sometimes daily basis. One of the favorite ways to use my slow cooker is for making double batches of sauces, like this Bolognese sauce. My large 7-quart All Clad slow cooker allows me to make big ole batches of our family’s favorite recipes. I can serve a portion of the batch for dinner that night, and let the rest cool so I can package it up for the freezer. This particular bolognese sauce is perfect for just this...eat some, freeze some for later. To make it super quick to load up in the morning, I recommend browning the ground beef and cooking the bacon the night before, ideally when you’re prepping dinner. If you really want to get ahead (so it will take you less than 5 minutes to load up in the slow cooker), you can chop the onion, celery and carrots too. If you can manage all of that prep the night before, dinner will be a cinch to get going in the slow cooker on a frantic weekday morning. Here’s my favorite doubled up version of bolognese sauce recipe for the slow cooker…
Slow Cooker Bolognese Sauce
- Yield: 8 servings
- Prep Time: 10 min
- Cooking Time: 8 hr
- 2 lb. ground beef, browned
- 8 slices bacon, cooked and crumbled
- 2 - 28 oz. cans crushed tomatoes
- 2 Tbsp Italian seasoning blend
- 2 tsp minced garlic
- 2 tsp minced onion
- 4 carrot sticks, peeled and finely chopped or shredded
- 2 celery stalks, finely chopped
- 1 small white onion, finely chopped
- Salt and pepper to taste
- 12 to 16 oz. pasta, for every 4 servings
- Fresh veggies or side salad, as side dish
- Brown the ground beef, ideally the night before.
- Cook and crumble the bacon, ideally the night before.
- To a 6-qt. or larger slow cooker, combine the browned ground beef, cooked bacon, crushed tomatoes, Italian seasoning, minced garlic, minced onion, the chopped carrots, celery and onion. Mix together in the slow cooker insert.
- Set on low and cook for 8 hours. Season with salt and pepper to taste, when the sauce is finished cooking.
- Just before dinner, prepare the pasta and veggies.
- Serve Slow Cooker Bolognese over pasta with side of veggies or salad.
To Freeze Remaining Sauce: Let cool completely before adding to plastic freezer baggie or container. Thaw in the fridge overnight and reheat in skillet or small saucepan.