Let me start with that this recipe or idea comes directly from my mother. I was visiting her one weekend, years ago and when I walked into the house she was in the kitchen making a pasta sauce. She was grating some carrots into it and I asked her what it was she was making. Her response was typical “Well, I had some ground turkey and Italian sausage leftover from the other night and this carrot was getting soft, so I decided to make a pasta sauce with all of it.” Guess where I learned how to grab a bunch of stuff out the kitchen and just make something?
I tasted it and was a bit surprised by how good it was. Later in the day after it had simmered on the stove for a few hours, it got even better. It also got a little sweet without adding any sugar. My guess is that it comes from the grated carrots because they do have a relatively high sugar content for veggies. When I got home, I started tweaking the recipe for a client of mine that loved spaghetti. Well, the good ole fashion spaghetti with mushrooms, tomatoes and 50% fat ground chuck. I thought this chicken bolognese or chicken spaghetti recipe might be able to replace the fattening one because it had soooooo much flavor. And guess what? It totally did!
There is was much flavor in the chicken bolognese that my clients didn’t miss the fat. It was one of those times where I wanted to hug myself because they weren’t the easiest clients to please. But before I digress into that topic…. Back on track!
When it comes to making this healthy bolognese sauce, you can use either ground turkey or ground chicken. I’ve found that it really doesn’t matter which one you use as long as it’s not the dark meat. For the sausage I’ve only used 2 types: the house made chicken Italian sausage from Whole Foods or the Publix Greenwise Italian sausage. They both add a lot of flavor and not a whole bunch of fat. As with almost every spaghetti sauce, you want to cook this for as long as possible on low heat. This allows the flavors to really develop and makes it a perfect candidate for the slow cooker while at work or a Sunday when you are doing batch cooking for the week.
Give this chicken bolognese recipe a try and I promise that you wont’ be disappointed or miss the fattening red meat one bit!
Related Recipe: Authentic Bolognese Spaghetti
Chicken & Italian Sausage Bolognese
- 1 pound of ground chicken or ground turkey with 10% fat or less
- 16 ounces of ground chicken Italian sausage
- 1 28-ounce can of crushed tomatoes
- 1 cup of whole milk
- 1 small yellow onion
- 3 cloves of garlic
- 2 medium carrots
- 1 bay leave
- 1 1/2 teaspoons Italian seasoning
- kosher salt
- 1 box of spaghetti
- Heat a large Dutch oven to medium heat. Add in the ground chicken or turkey and the Italian sausage. Make sure you remove them from the casing though! Season with a pinch of salt and a pinch of Italian seasonings. It'll take somewhere between 6-8 minutes to cook.
- While the meat is cooking, start on the vegetable by dicing the onion, grating the carrots and mincing the garlic.
- When the meat is pretty much done and broken up, drain on some paper towels. Place the pot back on the stove and add in the olive oil onions and carrots. Season with a pinch of salt and some Italian seasoning. Sauté for a couple minutes. Add in the garlic and cook for another minute or so. Add the meat back in, the crushed tomatoes, milk and bay leave. Stir and add in a pinch of salt and seasonings. Cover and simmer for at least 30 minutes. But seriously, the longer it cooks, the better it is so think slow cooker.
Dairy Free, Egg Free, Peanut Free, Tree Nut Free, Soy Free, Fish Free, Shellfish Free, Crustacean Free, Celery Free, Mustard Free, Sesame Free, Lupine Free, Mollusk Free, Alcohol Free, No Oil Added, No Sugar Added