Elk Bolognese Pasta Recipe

This elk Bolognese pasta recipe is a hearty and flavorful take on a classic Italian dish with game meat. With aromatic garlic, fresh basil, lean ground elk meat, in a rich and creamy tomato-based sauce.

There’s nothing more comforting than a big bowl of delicious pasta to serve to family and friends.  This salt-free version is great to serve alongside garlic knots and a big side salad.

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If you’re looking for a hearty, flavorful pasta sauce with elk meat, this easy Bolognese sauce is delicious! Bolognese sauce is an Italian meat ragu sauce, which originates from Bologna, Italy – and don’t worry, there is no sliced bologna in it. It’s traditionally made with ground pork or beef, although for my version I used lean ground elk meat.

You can serve this elk Bolognese any noodle you like for this dish – it’s great with a thick pasta like fettucine or tagliatelle. It’s loaded with vegetables and slow simmered on the stove for an hour, making it a great hands-off dish that you can cook for company.

This Elk Bolognese Sauce Is:

  • Rich
  • Bright
  • Garlicky
  • Made without Salt
  • Easy to batch cook and freeze for later
  • Great for company
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Viral Pasta Recipes For Everyone

This elk pasta sauce recipe is a fantastic way to try something different in your meal rotation! Pastas and noodles have been around for centuries – but they are a great vehicle for enjoying with a modern sauce recipe made with ground elk meat.

We love using noodles and pasta in our kitchen because they are inexpensive, versatile, and they cook quickly. Browse all our modern pasta recipes to find your next favorite fork-twirler!

What’s In This Ground Elk Bolognese Meat Sauce?

  • Ground elk– I got some great lean ground elk from our Misfits Market box, which was great to try in new recipes!
  • Garlic
  • Extra Virgin Olive Oil: I like to use a fruity olive oil which has a fantastic flavor and deep color- it’s inexpensive so I keep a few liters stocked up in my pantry.  Olive oil gives this dish a great taste, and also can contain heart-healthy properties!
  • Balsamic vinegar – to give this sauce some great flavor and acidity.
  • Salt
  • No Salt Added Diced Tomatoes:  I only use no salt added diced tomatoes, these boxed tomatoes are really great to stock up on!  I like boxed tomatoes better because they have no added salt, are BPA free and more eco-friendly than aluminum cans.
  • Carrots
  • Fresh Basil
  • Half & Half – or light cream, to give this recipe a little richness at the end!
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How do I Make this Elk Bolognese?

  1. In a Dutch oven or large pot, begin by browning the ground elk meat on low heat.  Cook for 10 to 15 minutes until elk is cooked all the way through.  Remove from heat and transfer cooked elk to a bowl.
  2. In the same Dutch oven, heat the olive oil over low heat.  Add the garlic and onion, and sauté on low from 5 or 6 minutes until the veggies begin to soften.
  3. Add the carrots, salt, diced tomatoes, tomato paste, balsamic vinegar and vegetable stock. Add the cooked ground elk back to Dutch oven and reduce on low heat for 45 minutes until sauce begins to thicken.
  4. Finish off the sauce with the half & half and fresh basil, and stir.
  5. Garnish with extra fresh basil and black pepper, and enjoy!

Make Ahead Ground Elk Bolognese Pasta Sauce

This easy Elk pasta sauce is a great dish to make ahead of time. Prep this the day or night before, and simply heat before serving.

Make ahead meals are a great option if you want to get some prepping done beforehand. Browse all our modern make ahead meals to find your next favorite.

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More Modern Pasta & Sauce Recipes You’ll Love

Ground Elk Meatballs

Goat Cheese Pesto Pasta

Cottage Cheese Alfredo Pasta Sauce

Creamy Tomato Soup with Gnocchi

Roasted Delicata Squash Pasta

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Elk Bolognese Pasta Sauce

Kelly Jensen
This elk Bolognese pasta sauce recipe is a hearty and flavorful take on a classic Italian dish with game meat. With aromatic garlic, fresh basil, lean ground elk meat, and no-salt-added tomatoes, you won’t miss the salt in this pasta sauce.
5 from 2 votes
Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 1 hour
Total Time 1 hour 5 minutes
Course Dinner, Sauce
Cuisine American
Servings 8 1-cup servings
Calories 290 kcal

Equipment

  • Large Pot

Ingredients
  

  • 1.5 lbs ground elk
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 6 cloves garlic minced
  • 2 sweet onion diced
  • 3 carrots chopped
  • 2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
  • 32 ounces diced tomatoes
  • 6 ounces tomato paste
  • 2 cups vegetable stock
  • 3/4 cup half & half
  • 1 cup fresh basil chopped, plus more if desired
  • 1/2 teaspoon each salt & pepper

Instructions
 

  • In a Dutch oven or large pot, begin by browning the ground elk meat on low heat.  Cook for 10 to 15 minutes until elk is cooked all the way through.  Remove from heat and transfer cooked elk to a bowl.
  • In the same Dutch oven, heat the olive oil over low heat.  Add the garlic and onion, and sauté on low from 5 or 6 minutes until the veggies begin to soften.
  • Add the carrots, salt, diced tomatoes, tomato paste, balsamic vinegar and vegetable stock. Add the cooked ground elk back to Dutch oven and reduce on low heat for 45 minutes until sauce begins to thicken.
  • Finish off the sauce with the half & half and fresh basil, and stir.
  • Garnish with extra fresh basil and black pepper, and enjoy!

Nutrition

Calories: 290kcalCarbohydrates: 20gProtein: 22gFat: 14gSaturated Fat: 5gPolyunsaturated Fat: 1gMonounsaturated Fat: 5gCholesterol: 64mgSodium: 519mgPotassium: 927mgFiber: 3gSugar: 13gVitamin A: 4643IUVitamin C: 22mgCalcium: 112mgIron: 5mg
Keyword elk bolognese recipe, elk meat sauce recipes, elk pasta sauce, gound elk recipes, ground elk recipes, recipes with elk meat, what to make with ground elk
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