One pan pasta that’s light and summery and full of fresh bursting cherry tomatoes. This farmhouse style easy bolognese is exactly what summer cooking is all about. One pan, fresh ingredients, and only 30 minutes.
When I create any recipe the first thing I think about is seasonality, and summertime means recipes that are light and easy and full of fresh produce and herbs. Lots of herbs… Enter this easy bolognese. This one-pot pasta situation is my summer evening dream dinner. Served right from the skillet in the center of the table with some bread and some wine, if that’s your thing!
The best features of this pasta?
- Like I mentioned – 1 pot
- This only takes 30 minutes start to finish.
- Meal prep dream. That sauce will love you all week long!
- Makes the best of a glut of summer tomatoes.
Besides all the convenience of this recipe, it’s light and fresh for summer but still has some carbs going on. Because yes, even at the height of summer I still sometimes crave pasta and carbs. But a lighter, healthier, fresher version of bolognese. So, this recipe will be in heavy rotation all summer.
Easy Bolognese Step by Step
- Use a red onion and some garlic and get it golden and soft. This is a lighter bolognese, but it still needs some colour and some deep flavour happening. So, don’t be afraid of getting a golden brown on the bottom of the pan. We’ll take care of that.
Once you’ve sauteed your onions, you can add the fresh cherry tomatoes and chicken broth. We’re totally skipping anything canned with this recipe. There’s so much fresh stuff available that we’re saving tinned tomatoes for emergency use only.
Toss it all with some fresh pasta and you’re done. It’s the perfect summer dinner.
Because of my professional chef background, I get a lot of cooking questions. And one of the most popular is about bolognese. So I’m answering some of the most common ones here hoping that they’ll help you customize your own easy bolognese sauce.
Easy Bolognese FAQ
Q: What kinds of herbs do you use for bolognese?
A: Because bolognese is usually a rich thick sauce it’s full of herbs and flavours that give it a really punchy flavour with some attitude. So, these are the flavours that you want to be using. And don’t skimp on any of them. More is definitely more in your bolognese career.
- Bay leaves
- Red Chilli
Q: How do you make a simple and quick bolognese?
A: In the summer you make the recipe below. In the winter you make this one! But it’s usually a slow-cooked affair with a sofrito, beef and some red wine, tinned San Marzano tomatoes and a splash of milk. But for this version, we’re into summertime vibes and fresh heirloom cherry tomatoes.
Q: Is bolognese healthy and good for you?
A: It sure is! Especially this easy summer bolognese. It’s packed with fresh tomatoes, and herbs and has lean protein from the beef.
As with any recipe that has a long-standing heritage, there are a million variations and ideas about what a simple bolognese sauce is. You can read more about its history here. But let’s just say that this recipe carves it’s own path and shrugs off some of the purviews of a traditional bolognese.
Thank you one pan easy bolognese for making Monday night feel like Friday night!
Farmhouse Tuscan Easy Bolognese
- 1 pound of fresh spaghetti
- 2 Tablespoons olive oil
- 1 pound lean ground beef
- 1 red onion thinly sliced
- 2 cloves garlic minced
- 1 1/2 pints heirloom cherry tomatoes divided
- 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 1 bay leaf
- 1/4 cup mixed herbs (oregano, basil, parsley) chopped
- 1 1/2 cups chicken or vegetable broth
- 1/2 cup grated parmesan
- extra herbs for serving optional
- 3 Tbsp olive oil extra virgin
- 1 tsp dried red chilli flakes
- Cook the pasta according to the package directions and set aside.
- In a nonstick sauce pan over a medium heat, brown the ground beef well, about 6-10 minutes. Once it’s cooked through, place in a bowl and set aside. Add the sliced onion and garlic to the pan and cook until the onions are golden, soft, and fragrant, about 3 minutes.
- Toss 3/4 of the cherry tomatoes into the pan and let gently roast until they start to burst and release their juices, about 5 minutes. Add the chicken broth to the pan and bring to a simmer.
- Add the fresh herbs and the ground beef back to the pot.
- Toss the pasta with the sauce and top with extra herbs, the remaining cherry tomatoes, and the grated parmesan. Drizzle with some chilli oil