My Kid-Approved, Healthy Bolognese Recipe

A healthy recipe that is easy, kid-friendly and inexpensive to make

Getting your kids to eat healthy food can be a challenge. Buying fresh produce and other quality ingredients on a budget can also be a challenge. I’m not going to lie. My kids love fast food. I have a rule that they are only to allowed to eat it once a week. Some moms buy it more than that and that’s ok. Other moms very seldom let their children eat fast food and that’s ok too.

I love trying to incorporate vegetables into my family’s favorite recipes. If the food tastes good they don’t even notice all the vegetables. One example of this is my turkey bolognese sauce. If you and your family really hate ground turkey you can also always substitute ground beef instead. Ground turkey is leaner and lower in calories, but it’s up to you and what works for you and your family.

You can put this sauce over white pasta, whole wheat pasta, gluten free pasta, brown rice pasta, spiralized zuchhini or over spaghetti squash. Again, it’s all about preference.

I typically shop at my local Aldi which many readers will agree is a great place to get affordable, fresh groceries. I like the Fit & Active® 93% Lean Ground Turkey. It is around $2.99 for a 19.2 oz. Package. However, any ground turkey or ground beef product will work for this recipe.

I get the fresh produce from Aldi including the garlic, onions, carrots and celery and the canned tomatoes and tomato paste. The red wine is optional and I happened to have some leftover from a get together so I threw about a cup into my sauce to give it some extra flavor.

Turkey Bolognese Recipe

Makes 4 servings
1 lb. Ground turkey or ground beef (My Aldi ground turkey package is 19.2 oz. so it makes a bit extra)
8 oz. pasta of your choice (white, whole wheat, gluten free, brown rice pasta or spiralized zuchini or spaghetti squash)
X olive oil
1 small onion, chopped
3 cloves of garlic, minced
1 large carrot, chopped
2 stalks of celery, chopped
28 oz. crushed tomatoes, canned
6 oz. tomato paste, canned
Optional: 1 cup red wine or 1 cup chicken broth
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon pepper
1 teaspoon Italian seasoning
1 cup Parmesan cheese


1. Bring 2 cups of water to a boil. Put pasta into boiling water and cook for 10 minutes or refer to package instructions for the appropriate time. Strain pasta.

2. Pour olive oil into saute pan, turn stove on medium high heat and give it a minute to heat up. Once it is heated, add chopped onions and garlic to pan.

3. Once onions and garlic are browned, add ground turkey and cook until no longer pink.

4. Add chopped carrots and celery. Saute until tender.

5. Add canned tomatoes and tomato paste. Cook for a few minutes and then add wine or chicken broth (optional). Let wine or broth reduce for at least five minutes.

6. Add salt, pepper, Italian seasoning and Parmesan cheese. Stir and let simmer for at least 5 more minutes. Serve over pasta, spiralized zucchini or spaghetti squash. Serve with a salad.

Give it a try and let me know what you think!

Disclaimer: I know some may argue that it isn’t an authentic Bolognese.  I swear I am not trying to commit sacrilege here.  I am simply trying to make a favorite recipe of mine a little healthier. Bear in mind that some of the links in this post are affiliate links and if you go through them to make a purchase I will earn a commission. Keep in mind that I link these companies and their products because of their quality and not because of the commission I receive from your purchases. The decision is yours, and whether or not you decide to buy something is completely up to you.

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