Why Your Bolognese Sauce Doesn’t Taste Like an Authentic Italian Restaurant

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If you are wondering why your Bolognese doesn’t have the same sumptuous taste as it does in all Italian restaurants, then there might be a crucial ingredient that you are missing out on. But what exactly is it? One of the secrets to making a good Bolognese sauce lies in the quality of the meat used for its preparation.

The best cuts of beef and pork should be used for this recipe. You can also use fake mince meat if you want to make a vegetarian version of the dish. 

Another reason might be that you have not added milk. You might find that this is a strange ingredient to put into Bolognese, but trust us when we say that this dairy ingredient will really elevate your Bolognese. Keep reading to find out how.

What Is Bolognese?

Bolognese is essentially a thick, rich tomato-based sauce with minced meat (usually beef) simmered slowly until tender. It is one of those classic dishes that has been around forever, and it’s always served over pasta. This hearty meal is perfect for cold winter nights because it warms you up from head to toe.

The name “Bolognese” comes from the city of Bologna, Italy, where this traditional sauce originated. It was originally made with cured meats such as ham and salami, but nowadays it usually contains ground beef.

Can You Get A Decent Bolognese In An Italian Restaurant?

Yes, you can get a decent bolognese at any Italian restaurant. Some places may add more ingredients than others, but the main thing is that you get a satisfyingly delicious result.

You can always specify if you want to add ingredients, but some authentic restaurants might refuse to tamper with their menu.

Why Does My Bolognese Not Taste As It Does In The Restaurant?

If your Bolognese tastes different from the ones served in restaurants, it could be due to the fact that you haven’t added enough milk. Milk adds richness and body to sauces, so adding too little of it can leave your sauce tasting bland.

You can also try using a higher percentage of red wine instead of white wine. Red wines tend to bring out the flavor of foods better than white wines do.

Why Does Milk Improve A Bolognese?

Adding milk to your bolognese sauce will give it a richer, creamier taste.

This is especially true if you use whole milk rather than skimmed milk powder. Whole milk gives off a stronger aroma than skimmed milk does.

How To Make A Good Bolognese Sauce At Home

So now that you know what makes a good bolognese sauce, here’s a step-by-step guide to help you create the ultimate homemade version.


  • Choice of Meat

  • Garlic

  • Onions

  • Carrots

  • Celery

  • Tomatoes

  • Herbs

  • Salt and Pepper

  • Olive Oil

  • Red Wine

  • Water


  • First, you need to buy the right type of meat for your sauce. Beef is traditionally used, but you can also use lamb or even chicken.
  • Start by browning your meat in a large skillet over medium heat. Once the meat starts to turn golden, remove it from the pan and set it aside.
  • Add the vegetables to the same pan and sauté them for about 5 minutes. Then add the garlic and stir everything together.
  • Add the herbs and spices to the pan and mix well. Next, pour in the red wine and let it reduce slightly.
  • Now comes the hard part – simmering the sauce for hours! Start by setting the pot on low heat and letting it simmer for 30 minutes.
    After that time, increase the heat to high and continue to simmer the sauce for another hour.
  • When the sauce has simmered long enough, take it off the heat and add cheese. Stir until it melts into the sauce.
    If you don’t have any cheese on hand, you can just sprinkle some Parmesan cheese over the top.
  • Serve the sauce on pasta, rice, or polenta.

What Is The Difference Between Bolognese And Carbonara?

Bolognese and carbonara are two popular types of bolognese sauces. They both feature beef as the main ingredient, but they differ in how they’re cooked.

Bolognese is typically made with ground beef and tomato purée. It’s usually seasoned with basil, oregano, parsley, and garlic.

Carbonara is made with either bacon or pancetta (a cured pork product). It’s then mixed with eggs, parmesan cheese, and pecorino romano cheese.

How Else Can I Improve My Bolognese?

There are many ways you can improve your bolognese recipe. Here are some ideas to get you started:

  • Use more herbs and spices. Try adding rosemary, thyme, sage, nutmeg, cinnamon, paprika, cayenne pepper, and black pepper.
  • Use less tomato paste. Instead of using tomato paste, try using diced fresh tomatoes instead.
  • Try different meats. You could make this sauce with chicken or veal instead of beef.
  • Make it vegetarian. Use vegetable stock instead of beef stock.
  • Make it vegan. Replace the egg yolks with tofu.
  • Make it gluten-free. Swap out the flour for cornstarch.
  • Make it dairy-free. Use non-dairy milk instead of regular milk.

What Are The Best Herbs For Bolognese?

The best herbs for bolognese include basil, oregano, and thyme. Basil provides a nice flavor while oregano adds a bit of complexity. Thyme is often added at the end of cooking so its flavor won’t be too strong.

What Do People Eat In Italy?

People in Italy eat a lot of food. They love their pizza, pasta, bread, salad, and desserts. They also enjoy drinking wine and having espresso after dinner.

Will I Find Bolognese In Italy?

No, you will not find Bolognese in Italy and the mayor of Bologna Italy has claimed that this sauce does not exist in the city itself.

What Are The Nutritional Values Of Bolognese?

One serving of Bolognese contains around 300 calories, 15 grams of fat, 70 milligrams of sodium, and 14 grams of carbs.

What Does Bolognese Taste Like?

If you’ve never had bolognese before, you’ll probably think it tastes similar to spaghetti and meatballs. However, there are several differences between these two dishes.

Spaghetti And Meatballs

While bolognese is traditionally served over pasta, spaghetti and meatballs are normally eaten without any kind of pasta. This dish consists of ground-up meat and vegetables combined with tomato sauce.


Pasta is the most common way people eat bolognese. It’s usually served over noodles such as linguine, fusilli, or pappardelle.


Pizza is another traditional way to serve bolognese. Pizza dough is used to create crusts that cover the bottom of pans. Then, toppings are placed on top of the crust.

Where Can I Buy Bolognese?

You can buy bolognese online from Amazon.com. There are other places where you can purchase bolognese including Whole Foods Market, Trader Joe’s, and Costco.

What Is A Carbonara Sauce And How To Make It?

Carbonara is a type of Italian sauce that was originally created by combining bacon and Parmesan cheese.

It’s typically served over pasta but it can also be used as a dip for breadsticks.

To make carbonara, start by frying bacon until crisp. Remove the bacon from the pan and set it aside.

Add butter to the same pan and cook onions until soft. Stir in garlic and crushed red pepper flakes. Cook for about 3 minutes.

Add heavy cream and stir well. Let simmer for 5 minutes. Add half and half and continue to let simmer for 10 more minutes.

Add grated parmesan cheese and stir well. Keep warm until ready to use.

How Long Will My Bolognese Last?

Bolognese should last for 2 days if refrigerated properly. If stored in the refrigerator, keep the sauce covered and away from direct sunlight.

How Much Should I Serve At Dinner?

A typical serving size is 1/4 cup per person. You can easily double or triple this amount depending on how many people you’re feeding.

Can I Freeze Bolognese?

Yes, you can freeze bolognese. Simply place the sauce into freezer bags and store them in the freezer. When you need some bolognese, simply thaw it in the fridge overnight.

Does Sugar Go In Bolognese?

Sugar can go in bolognese because it gives the sauce its rich flavor. However, it is not recommended that you put any more than a teaspoon in.

Is Bolognese Healthy?

Bolognese is high in protein because of the beef, but because of the pasta, it can contain a very high level of carbs too. The best option would be to have it with a side salad instead of pasta.


Bolognese has become one of the most popular sauces in Italy. Although it may seem complicated at first, once you master the basic recipe, you will find yourself making it again and again.

But if you are finding your sauce lacking, then try adding some milk to add some thickness and flavor to it.

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