Gennaro Contaldo's Classic Italian Ragu Bolognese | Citalia

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One of Italy’s most versatile sauces is the ragu Bolognese. Originating in the Emilia-Romagna region, this rich and delicious sauce can be used for a variety of dishes.

There are many versions of this recipe but Gennaro Contaldo’s authentic recipe shows you how to make a simple and flavoursome sauce, using far fewer ingredients than you may have been expecting. You will see that instead of tins of tomatoes, for example, Gennaro uses a small amount of concentrated tomato puree, diluted in stock, making the sauce lovely and rich but not overly tomato-y. In fact, it is the good quality mince used in the recipe which is the star of the show.

Gennaro’s recipe is simple to make and as it is slow-cooked over a gentle heat for at least two hours, it is a relatively effortless recipe to pull together, allowing you to get on with other things as the house fills with the delicious smell of Italian cooking.

Gennaro’s top tip is to make more than you need and then freeze the excess in batches, ready to be used another time in a tagliatelle Bolognese or hearty lasagne.


4 x servings

45ml extra virgin olive oil
25g butter
1 x onion, finely chopped
1 x celery stalk, finely chopped
1 x carrot, finely chopped
150g pancetta, cubed
200g minced beef
200g minced pork
200ml red wine
2 x tablespoons double-concentrated tomato puree’
200ml stock


Heat the extra virgin olive oil and butter in a pan, add the onion, celery, carrot and pancetta and sweat on a gentle heat for about 10 minutes until the onion has softened. Add the meat and brown all over. Increase the heat, add the wine and allow to evaporate. Dilute the tomato puree in a little of the stock and stir into the meat.

Reduce the heat to low, cover with a lid and cook on a gentle heat for 2 hours, checking and adding a little extra stock from time to time to avoid the sauce from drying out.


شهيوات الأخوات chhiwat l2akhawat ش says:

Rinio GR says:

one of my favorite sauce. I make lasagna with this recipe or spaghetti bolognese. If u like you can store the sauce in the freezer in portions (as i do) defrost at the microwave and in a few minutes you have food at your table.Also if you dont like celery (like me) you can replace it with leek. I do that all the time and it is still yummy!

Bobert says:

Loved the recipe, I added 17 cloves of garlic to mine for a little background kick.

170Funky says:

Can someone please explain, why do you wait, until the wine and water is evaporated before you close the pot? Is it because of the stock or is there some other reason im missing out?

Opener says:

The Godfather of pasta !!!

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I cooked it, absolutely amazing, in future I will make my spaghetti bolognese with this sauce and also the lasagna, so much better !!!

Tyfon 44 says:

0:30 You need….
To clean that pan or buy a new one. 🌸
Because butter turning brown is okay, but the greyisch black you have inside there is a no no no no….
Because 0:54 ⚠️ is not. A lovely color 😳
2:32 still frame.
No. 🇮🇹

Arno Nym says:

So simple but good, thanks Gennaro

Conny6000 says:

Why isnt he putting any herbs in?

s z says:

This is my fifth time coming back to this video, today i'm getting compliments again. Thanks

Константин Акульшин says:


Mitja Košuta says:

Oil? Butter? …

Jon Abrahams says:

"chicken stock…beef stock…maker youreh own stocke!"

andrew prettyquick says:

the oil coats the tomato concentrate – keeps it tangy.. otherwise teverything just ends up tomato flavour… instead of little explosions of tangy…

Pedro Branco says:

Mr. Contaldo is responsible for my first date with my wife being successful. And second. And the third.

Thank you, sir.

Nick Starz says:

Some Italian Nona from Bologna is losing her eye sight and hearing this . Aint authentic but Italian

Wolfpack Productions says:

I free handed the quantity but followed via eye . Came out good rolled out some egg pasta made tagliette. Its is hearty! I cooked it 2 hours and 30 mins .

Gordon Freeman says:

I don’t even know John Abruzzi has cook show 2:17

Dill 84 says:

Too much heat while cooking the pancetta, and use plant oil, the olive oil kills the taste of the pancetta. Where is the milk?

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