best keto italian ragú aka bolognese sauce


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Best Keto Italian Ragú aka Bolognese Sauce: the classic way. Keto-perfect at 2g carbs per serving.

Just like mama used to make. For real. This recipe was passed on to me by my mum and I’ve been making it for decades. It is the tastiest ever, ragú or bolognese sauce you’ll ever eat.

It’s definitely one to keep forever and ever, keto or not. You’ll find it useful for many dishes, like my Authentic Italian Lasagna.

Best Keto Italian Ragú aka Bolognese Sauce is naturally a low carb dish, so I have to confess to not really changing mama’s recipe much to make it keto-friendly. 

It takes a mere few minutes of preparation. The rest is just simmering time and all you have to do is give it a stir every 15-20 mins or so. You could make it in advance, if you want to save time. Just don’t be tempted to cut back on the lengthy cooking. It is the long, slow and gentle cooking that infuses flavours and intensifies the taste. I know that many people will tell you they can knock up a Bolognese in 10 minutes. Yes, undoubtedly the meat will be cooked, but it will just be a watery, tomato-y, tasteless sauce. Stick to my recipe and you’ll discover the difference.

best italian ragú aka bolognese sauce

My Best Keto Italian Ragú aka Bolognese Sauce keeps for several days in the fridge. Or you may want to divide it into portions and freeze them for another occasion. Ragú is a basic but extremely versatile dish. Eat it with low carb fettuccine, topped with lots of Parmesan cheese. Use it to stuff courgettes (zucchini), peppers or any other vegetable you fancy. Add mushrooms or chopped courgettes, for variety.

Prefer creamy sauces? Just combine mascarpone cheese, cream, or crème fraîche for an instant transformation.

And if you love spicy food, knock yourself out with chopped chillies or extra cayenne pepper or both.

As for the type of minced meat, it is best not to use high fat content mince. It will make the ragù way too oily and unpalatable.

best italian ragú aka bolognese sauce

How to Make the Best Keto Italian Ragú aka Bolognese Sauce

It’s a lazy, one-pot method. Splash extra virgin olive oil, brown the meat, add everything else, lid on, lower heat, timer on.  Couldn’t be easier.

When you read the recipe, you’ll notice that it calls for ‘minced’ garlic + shallot. I mince garlic and a tiny amount of shallot (literally a thumb nail size amount) because I have an allergy to alliums that can make me ill if I’m not careful. If you like onions, feel free to add a whole one, but be sure to chop it finely, as traditional ragú should not be overpowered by chunky onion bits or be too garlicky.

1 hour and 15 minutes later, your Best Keto Italian Ragú aka Bolognese sauce will be ready. 

best italian ragú aka bolognese sauce

My favourite? Keto spag bol: ragú with mascarpone and gorgonzola on a bed of black bean spaghetti (try Aldi’s organic – just 2g carbs per serving!) topped with freshly grated Parmigiano, as seen in the photos. Soooo good!

best italian ragú aka bolognese sauce


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best keto italian ragú aka bolognese sauce

Best Keto Italian Ragù aka Bolognese Sauce

This low-carb, traditional Italian ragú is a versatile accompaniment for pasta and gnocchi, a key element of lasagna and perfect for stuffing a variety of vegetables.
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Course: Main Courses, Make your Own, Pasta and Gnocchi
Diet: Dairy Free, Egg Free, Gluten Free, Grain Free, Keto, Low Calorie, Low Carb, Nut Free
Keywords: beef, bolognese, italian, mince, sauce
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: 1 hour 20 minutes
Total Time: 1 hour 25 minutes
Servings: 4


  • 500 g minced beef lean
  • 15 g extra virgin olive oil 1 TBSP (U.S. option HERE)
  • 1 shallot minced
  • 1 garlic clove minced
  • 150 g passata (sieved tomatoes)
  • 20 g tomato double concentrate
  • ¼ tsp ground cloves
  • ¼ tsp ground cinnamon
  • tsp cayenne pepper
  • ¼ tsp ground nutmeg
  • ¼ tsp paprika
  • 1 beef stock cube crumbed (U.S. option HERE)
  • ¾ tsp fine himalayan pink salt (U.S. option HERE)
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 50 g water
  • 1 handful chopped parsley optional


  • put olive oil into a medium size saucepan over high heat, add mince, and cook for about 5 minutes, stirring often to break up any lumps.
  • add minced garlic and shallot, plus all other ingredients.
  • stir, reduce heat to minimum and put lid on.
  • simmer for 75 mins, stirring occasionally; add a little water if needed (no more than 30-50ml at a time), should the ragù appear too dry or start to stick to the bottom of the pan.
  • taste the ragù and adjust seasoning to suit your preference.
  • turn heat off, discard bay leaves, and stir in chopped parsley (if using).
  • serve however you like.


Serve with your favourite pasta, keto gnocchi, or vegetables.
For a milder flavour, stir in double cream, crème fraîche, or mascarpone, for the last few minutes of cooking.
The ragù will keep several days in the fridge (but don't add dairy until you're ready to use it).
You can also portion it and freeze it for later use (again, without dairy).
The only way to measure ingredients accurately is with Metric Kitchen Scales (U.S. option HERE).


Serving: 1 | Calories: 265kcal | Carbohydrates: 2g | Protein: 26g | Fat: 16g
Tried this recipe? Mention @queenketo or tag #queenketo. Thank You!

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  1. Superb! I added some mushrooms and a dash of red wine. Just amazing. Thank you!5 stars


    Just made the Bolognese sauce.
    Intense flavours.
    Looking forward to having it for dinner tomorrow with some “barenaked” Spaghetti

    Thank you for the recipe !

  3. Alex Marshall

    Making this now I doubled up to freeze so put it in the slow cooker as easier to manage. Couldn’t find any lower carbs lassata so blitzed a tin of lowish carbs tomatoes in the blender and used that. Decided to use beef and pork with bacon so will see how it all goes

    • Alex Marshall

      having some trouble getting the bacon fat to melt, want to add some extra fat but I can’t eat soft bacon fat or soft bacon so might take it out. Not used pork mince before so no idea how this will taste

  4. Alex Marshall

    Hi, not tried this yet, just wondered where you are getting your passata from but the lowest carb I can find is 4.3 net per 100g

    • Hi Alex I buy as much as possible in Italy, where the carb load tends to be much lower due to the non-addition of sugars. In the UK, I buy Sainsbury’s SO Organic passata in a carton. 3.9g carbs per 190g weight. I hope it helps.

      • Alex Marshall

        Hi yes thanks that does help. How much mascarpone/cream etc do you add? Or is it just personal taste?

      • Alex Marshall

        Hi, I had a look at that, it’s 3.9 per 100g, and 6.8 per 1.4 which is 150g which doesn’t add up but that’s what it says on the label, but it comes in a 600g jar and I won’t be able to use all of that. Thank you tho.

        • The one I use comes in a carton. Might explain the difference.

          • Could do yes, thanks not seen it in a carton, well not the organic stuff so maybe my local shop doesn’t stock it, hate that, will find the lowest and smallest I can find or just make enough for 8 and freeze ?

  5. Will definitely make your ragu very soon. I know how divine a real italian ragu tastes like….Great blog, love your recipes..subscribed:) Planning to cook a few of your recipes…we keep keto simple but you really intriqued me with that lupin fluor.

    • That’s great Zoe! Yes, I absolutely love lupin flour. So low carb and easy to work with. It’s a real shame that some people with peanut allergy cannot use it. Let me know how things turn out. 🙂 P.S. I can’t see you on the subscriber list, pls let me know if you’re having trouble.

      • Hmmm…really strange. For some reason I do not receive your new posts by email. tried to subscribe again right now & it says my email is already in your database. Don’t know what went wrong. Would love to get updates of your new recipes 🙁

  6. Hi QueenKeto.
    I made your ragu today….Wow! Stunning.
    I thought the cooking time was a bit excessive but now I understand why. The flavour was rich and intense.
    I added some mascarpone for added fat and cooked it with a sprinkle of dried chilliy flakes.
    So simple, yet packed a punch!!!!
    It’s so good to have a UK website where I can buy ingridients and understand measurements (not USA cups etc)
    Keep up the stella work!!!

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