A favorite in Cat’s household for over 20 years

With many layers of rich savory flavors in Pasta with Umami Bolognese Sauce, you’ll make the best bolognese in town. If you feel the need for a Julia Child moment, then add a glass of wine to the pot. This sauce is even better the next day … if it lasts that long.

Prep time:15 minutes
Cook time:45 minutes
Servings:8 – 10


  • 1 pound Ground Beef
  • 1 pound Italian Sausage or Hot (bulk) Sausage
  • optional: 1 – 2 cups Carrot Shreds
  • Extra Virgin Olive Oil (EVOO)
  •  1 Onion, sliced
  • 4 cloves Garlic, minced
  •  8 – 10 ounces Mushrooms, sliced
  • 2 jars Marinara Pasta Sauce
  •  1 tablespoon Italian Seasoning
  • 1 – 2 heaping tablespoons Basil Pesto, if available (extra layer of flavor)
  • 2 tablespoons Beef Bouillon Paste
  • optional: pre-packaged Italian Meatballs (see step 4)
  • Grated Parmesan Cheese for topping


  1. In a large, deep-sided skillet or Dutch oven over medium heat, brown ground beef and sausage. Transfer to paper toweling to drain.
  2. Return pan to heat. Add 2 Tbsp. EVOO, sliced onions, mushrooms and, if desired, carrot shreds. Sauté until mushrooms start to soften and onions are translucent. Add garlic, sauté 3-4 minutes more until soft and fragrant.
  3. Reduce heat to low. (Process meats in food processor if you prefer a fine grind.) Return meats to pan. Add both jars of sauce, Italian seasoning, basil pesto and beef bouillon paste. Allow to simmer for 20 minutes or more for flavors to meld. Serve over pasta and top with grated Parmesan cheese.
  4. Option w/meatballs: Reduce ground beef and sausage amounts by 1/4 -1/2 pound each and add 1 pound pre-packaged meatballs, along with meats, in step 3.

Wine Pairing Guide

Want to know more about how to select the best bottle for your budget? You can find a great bottle at any price range if you know how to determine quality vs. price. Learn more in our primer Selecting the Best Wine for Your Budget.

In general, pricing is a guideline as to the style of wine making in red wines. Less expensive reds are made to enjoy as soon as you uncork. Pour and enjoy! More expensive reds typically need 20 to 40 minutes to decant (breathe) to enjoy to their fullest.

Texas: Ruby Cab, Dolcetto
West Coast: Pinot Noir, Barbera, Zinfandel
France: Pinot Noir, Beaujolais, Côtes du Ventoux, Gamay, Cinsault, Counoise
Italy: Bardolino, Primitivo, Chianti Classico, Nebbiolo
Spain: Tempranillo, Grenache, Carignan
Texas: Dolcetto, Tempranillo, Merlot, Cabernet Franc, Shiraz, Sangiovese
West Coast: Barbera, Zinfandel, Cabernet Franc, Merlot, GSM blends
Argentina: Merlot, Tempranillo, Bonarda
Australia: Cabernet Sauvignon, Shiraz
Chile: Merlot, Carménère
France: Beaujolais crus, Village Burgundy, Côte du Rhône Village, Grenache/Syrah/Mourvèdre blend, Petite Bordeaux
Italy: Negroamaro, Barbera, Valpolicella, Chianti Riserva, Sangiovese
South Africa: Shiraz, Pinotage
Spain: Tempranillo, Grenache
Texas: Tempranillo, Cabernet Franc, Montepulciano, Cabernet Sauvignon
West Coast: Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Meritage (Bordeaux-style blend), Petite Syrah/Shiraz, Mourvedre
Argentina: Malbec, Cabernet Sauvignon
France: better Bordeaux (Left Bank = bolder-style Cabernet, Right Bank = softer style Merlot), Châteauneuf-du-Pape, Mourvèdre, Vacqueyras, Gigondas
Italy: Amarone, Barolo, Barbaresco, Brunello di Montalcino, Sagrantino, Montepulciano d’ Abruzzo, Salice Salentino, Super Tuscan
Spain: Tempranillo, Grenache, Monastrell (bolder-style red regions: Priorat, Montsant, Toro, Ribera de Duero)