Mushroom Bolognese Sauce is insanely hearty and packed with rich flavors. It’s sure to satisfy vegans, vegetarians, and anyone else who loves mushrooms! This is THE recipe that helped me survive my first Whole30. It’s so good that I continue to make it weekly during the colder months!
Whole30 has made me think outside the box and despite the long list of ingredients that aren’t allowed, I’ve still been able to come up with lots of Whole30 recipes that are so good you would never know they are Whole30 compliant.
This recipe is based off a vegan mushroom bolognese I had at a local restaurant. I was so impressed by how hearty the bolognese sauce was, that I knew I had to recreate it at home so I could enjoy it all the time.
This recipe comes together with a few fresh ingredients from the produce section of your local grocery story and a few pantry staples that you probably already have on hand.
So What Is Bolognese Sauce?
Bolognese sauce is a thick and hearty sauce, typically made with meat, that can be served over pasta, gnocchi, or enjoyed by itself with a spoon. Rather than using meat, we are using mushrooms to make this bolognese the heartiest and most delicious bolognese you’ll ever have!
What Is The Difference Between Spaghetti Sauce And Bolognese Sauce?
Spaghetti sauce vs bolognese: the red spaghetti sauce we typically serve over spaghetti (or zoodles) is called marinara sauce. Marinara sauce is a tomato sauce made with tomatoes, olive oil, garlic, and herbs. Bolognese is a hearty sauce that is typically made with meat like ground beef or Italian sausage.
This bolognese sauce gets its rich and hearty feel from the mushrooms rather than meat.
It’s honestly amazing how mushrooms can turn into something SO hearty. I mean, you really wouldn’t know that there wasn’t any meat in this sauce.
What Is Bolognese Sauce Made Of?
This vegetarian and Whole30 Mushroom Bolognese is made from a combination of pantry staples and fresh produce like dried oregano, bay leaves, crushed red pepper, tomato paste, crushed tomatoes, fresh basil, and portobello mushrooms.
Here’s Why You’ll Love This Recipe
This Mushroom Bolognese Sauce is one of my favorite recipes when it gets chilly, and there are so many reasons to love it!
- It’s great for meal prepping and can be stored in the refrigerator for up to 5 days in an airtight container, it can also be stored frozen.
- Mushroom Bolognese is my favorite thing to eat when it’s cold outside.
- Using pantry staples means you’ll most likely already have these ingredients on hand, with the exception of a few produce items.
- It’s a real crowd pleaser, and everyone from vegans to meat lovers to kids will love this mushroom bolognese. I’ve even heard people who don’t like mushrooms say they love this bolognese recipe!
- It’s so easy to make. Everything is made in one pot, so the cleanup is simple!
How To Make Bolognese Sauce
Mushroom Bolognese is one of the easiest recipes ever. It all comes together in one pot, so the cleanup is a breeze.
1. Prepare the ingredients. Clean the portobello mushrooms, (this video shows you how to do it easily), chop the onion and red pepper.
2. Make the sauce. Heat a large pot over medium heat, and add the onions, garlic, shallots, and dried basil and sauté for 2-3 minutes. Next add the mushrooms, oregano, garlic powder, red pepper flakes, salt and pepper, and cook for 8-9 minutes or until the mushrooms have begun to cook down. Then add the tomato paste, diced tomatoes, fresh basil, red pepper, and bay leaves. Simmer for 15 minutes, taste and season with salt and pepper, or more herbs if needed.
3. Ready to serve! Remove the bay leaves and serve the bolognese.
Can I Add Meat To This Bolognese Recipe?
You can absolutely add meat to this bolognese recipe. I love adding ground chicken or turkey but you can also add ground beef or Italian sausage. Below is an old photo (from over 2 years ago!!!) when I first made mushroom bolognese with ground turkey.
If you’re adding a protein to the bolognese sauce, you’ll want to cook the meat in the pot you are using to make the sauce first. Then transfer it to a plate while you cook the mushrooms. Add the meat back into the pot when you mix in the tomato paste.
Tips For Making Awesome Mushroom Bolognese
- Sprinkle some parmesan cheese over sauce if you aren’t doing Whole30.
- Add ground turkey or beef if you want to add some protein.
- Serve it over zoodles, gnocchi, or pasta.
More Whole30 Recipes
- 15 Minute Whole30 Blackened Shrimp Tacos
- Whole30 Egg Roll In A Bowl
- Crispy Air Fryer French Fries
- Whole30 Sweet Potato Fries
Whole30 Survival Guide
To help guide you through Whole30, I created the best guide ever! I wish I had something like this when I did my first Whole30.
I wanted it to be beneficial to everyone, so whether this is your 1st or 100th Whole30, you will definitely benefit from this survival guide!
Did I mention it’s FREE? Here’s what’s inside the free Whole30 Survival Guide:
- 10 amazing Whole30 recipes
- All my tips, tricks, and secrets to surviving Whole30
- Whole30 date night ideas
- My favorite Whole30 products and where to get them
- And more!
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Whole30 Recipes: Mushroom Bolognese
- 8 large portobello mushrooms, cleaned and diced
- 28 ounces diced red tomatoes
- 6 ounces tomato paste
- 1 red pepper, diced
- 1 small yellow onion, diced
- 1 shallot, diced
- 5 cloves of garlic, minced
- 2 teaspoons dried oregano
- 1 teaspoon garlic powder
- 1/2 tablespoon dried basil
- 1/2 cup fresh chopped basil
- 3 bay leaves
- 1/2 tablespoon red pepper flakes
- salt and pepper to taste
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- Prepare the onion, shallot, mushrooms, pepper, and garlic as noted above.
- Heat a large heavy bottomed pot over medium heat with olive oil. Add the onions, garlic, shallots, and dried basil and saute for 2-3 minutes until the onions begin to turn translucent. I usually prepare the mushrooms while these cook.
- Next add the mushrooms, oregano, garlic powder, red pepper flakes, salt and pepper, and cook for 8-9 minutes or until the mushrooms have begun to cook down. Then add the tomato paste, diced tomatoes, fresh basil, red pepper, and bay leaves. Simmer for 15 minutes, taste and season with more herbs, salt, and pepper if needed.
- Remove the bay leaves, garnish with fresh chopped basil, and serve.