Spaghetti With Wine and Meat

If you’re looking for a traditional spaghetti sauce recipe with oregano, pepper and everything else in your spice rack, you’re going to be disappointed. This sauce does take a bit of work so it won’t be ready in 20 minutes. Part of the reason why we chose this particular recipe is the woman who made it swore it would enhance the flavor of wine, so when we picked up a bottle of Table Red from San Marcos in Paso Robles, we knew what we were going to do with it.

This recipe yields a huge amount of sauce, so if you eat a lot of pasta you can make one pot and eat the rest of the sauce the remainder of the week. It also freezes well.


  • 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 shallots, finely chopped
  • 1 carrot, peeled and finely chopped
  • 1 small garlic clove, minced
  • 2 or 3 bay leaves
  • 5 ounces ground veal
  • 5 ounces ground pork
  • 5 ounces lean ground beef
  • 1 cup full-bodied red wine
  • 2 cans plum tomatoes, with their juices
  • 1 cup heavy cream
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper, to taste
  • 1⁄2 cup grated Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese
  • 8 large fresh basil leaves, coarsely chopped

Substitutions: If you cannot find the veal, replace it with one sweet Italian sausage and a 1/2 cup of pancetta or bacon. If you cannot find shallots, you can use one small yellow onion.

spaghetti with wine and meat sauce insolence + wine


  • In a dutch oven over medium-high heat, warm the olive oil. Add the shallots and carrot until he shallot is opaque and the carrot pieces are tender. Next add the minced garlic and bay leaves.
  • Next up, add the meat. Stirring occasionally to break up the chunks of meat. Once the meat is longer pink, add the wine and raise the temperature to high and cook until the wine is slightly reduced. Add the tomatoes along with their juices and the heavy cream, reducing the heat to low. Cook covered, on low, stirring occasionally for the next 2 hours.
  • While you're waiting for your pasta to cook, add the cheese and the basil to the sauce. Adjust the salt and pepper as you see fit.
spaghetti with wine and meat insolence + wine

I would recommend using a bottle of Zinfandel as I didn't feel the Table Red really did the rest of the flavors justice. That being said, the picky spaghetti eater in the house loved this recipe and asked when I was making it again. It would also be a good sauce for lasagna.

spaghetti with wine and meat sauce insolence + wine

Do you have a favorite spaghetti recipe that's been in your family for ages? What is your must-have ingredient for your spaghetti sauce?