Smokey Spaghetti Bolognese

spaghetti Bolognese recipe from scratch with addition of liquid smoke


  • 400-500 g mincemeat (I used minced turkey)
  • 1 large onion (finely diced)
  • couple of garlic cloves (crushed) or 2 tsp garlic powder
  • 1 tbs dried oregano
  • 1 tsp dried basil
  • 3 tbs olive oil
  • ½ tsp chilli flakes
  • 400 g tin of chopped tomatoes
  • half a tube of tomato purée (about 100 g)
  • ½ cup boiling water
  • 2 vegetable cubes
  • 1 tsp of liquid smoke
  • 1 tsp molasses sugar / soft dark brown sugar or to taste
  • rainbow peppercorns
  • handful of fresh basil leaves (chopped)
  • grated cheese (preferably Parmigiano-Reggiano / Parmesan)
  • 500 g dried spaghetti pasta
  • some extra virgin olive oil to serve if using lean mince like turkey – optional


  1. On the bottom of large pot fry mince and onions with olive oil, add also garlic if using fresh.
  2. Once onions are starting to get brown add the rest of herbs: oregano, dried basil, chilli flakes and fry some more.
  3. In meantime dissolve cubes in boiling water to make stock.
  4. Reduce fire, add stock, chopped tomatoes and tomato purée to the pot, cook until most of the liquid has evaporated.
  5. In separate pot cook pasta in lots of water, drain and leave aside.
  6. Remove sauce from fire, add liquid smoke and stir well.
  7. Transfer pasta to the pot with sauce, add also optionally some extra virgin olive oil, mix everything together.
  8. Share spaghetti to the plates, top with fresh basil, cheese and freshly cracked pepper.
  9. Enjoy while still warm.

Makes 4-6 servings.

Your thoughts…

  1. Could you taste the difference with the liquid smoke?

  2. Oh yes, it is very smokey but liquid smoke must be added towards the end, if used too early it will fade…

  3. You had me at “smoky”…
    Bolognese with turkey! I must try that.

  4. yummmm, sometimes i’ve used chipotle peppers too and it gives a smokey taste as well with a bit of heat :)

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