Bolognese Pasta Bake

Mary Berry’s Bolognese Pasta Bake

Mary Berry’s Bolognese Bake

Recipe by Mary BerryCourse: Main CourseCuisine: ItalianDifficulty: Medium


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A heartwarming take on the all-time favourite Spaghetti Bolognaise, Mary Berry puts her own stamp on this dish to produce a pasta bake that is both delicious and fulfilling


  • 1 tbsp olive oil

  • 2 onions chopped

  • 2 celery sticks chopped finely

  • 675 g minced beef

  • 2 garlic cloves crushed

  • 2 tbsp tomato purée

  • 2x 400 g tins of chopped tomatoes

  • 350 ml beef stock or beef stock cubes in 350ml of hot water

  • 2 tsp Worcestershire sauce

  • 1 tbsp redcurrant jelly optional

  • A knob of butter

  • 250 g chestnut mushrooms, sliced

  • 1 tbsp chopped fresh thyme leaves

  • 225 g penne pasta

  • 100 g mature Cheddar cheese, grated

  • 50 g Parmesan cheese grated

  • salt and freshly ground black pepper


  • Heat the oil in a deep frying pan. Add the onions and celery and sweat over a high heat for about 3 minutes, until they are soft and translucent. .
  • Add the mince and brown quickly, breaking it up with a wooden spoon
  • Add the garlic and tomato purée and stir to combine.
  • Add the tomatoes, stock, Worcestershire sauce and redcurrant jelly (if using)
  • Stir to combine and season with salt and pepper.
  • Cover with a lid and reduce the heat to a low simmer and let the sauce simmer for 30–35 minutes.
  • Meanwhile, 10 minutes before the sauce is ready, melt the butter in a frying pan, add the mushrooms and fry them for a minute over a high heat.
  • Put a lid on the pan and cook for 2 minutes to draw out any liquid, then remove the lid and fry for 2 minutes over a high heat to evaporate the liquid.
  • Add the mushrooms and the thyme to the mince and stir well.
  • Take off the heat
  • Preheat the oven to 160°C/140°C/320°F/ fan/Gas 3
  • Place the pasta into a pot of boiling salted water and cook as per the packet instructions. Check about 2 minutes before the package cooking time to see if it is cooked. you should be looking to keep it al dente (cooked but firm to the bite)
  • The pasta will cook more in the oven so keep it undercooked rather than overcooked
  • Drain well into a colander and quickly flash under cold water
  • Stir the pasta into the mince, then taste to check the seasoning.
  • Spoon everything into the ovenproof casserole dish. Top all over with both cheeses and bake in the oven for 25–30 minutes until golden and bubbling around the edges.
  • Serve with a nice crisp green salad


Recipe and method taken from Mary Berry’s “Simple Comforts

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