Traditional White Bolognese Sauce (or ragù bianco alla Bolognese) is a classic Italian meat sauce that is a little different as it has no tomato sauce. Ground beef, Italian sausage, white wine and herbs make for a very flavorful sauce best served with wide pasta pappardelle, rigatoni or gnocchi.

Ground beef and Italian sausage with carrots made into a Bolognese sauce without tomato in a pan with a wooden spoon

This is the non-tomato version of my Traditional Bolognese Sauce, with a few hours shaved off the cooking time, which is only 30 minutes. Though not technically white in color, it just means that there is no tomato in the recipe. 

Beef, veal, and/or pork is usually used along with mild Italian sausage (spicy can also be used) which brings just the right amount of flavor. To keep it simple, I like to use just beef and Italian sausage. This is a less rich sauce than it’s tomato-based counterpart but just as meaty, and just as tasty.

A closeup of meat sauce and gnocchi on a white plate garnished with chopped parsley

This sauce freezes very well in a sealed container. When you are ready to use it, defrost in the fridge overnight, then reheat in a pan.

Because this is a very meaty sauce, it holds up better to a wider noodle like pappardelle or a large pasta tube like rigatoni. I also love it with potato gnocchi.

Bolognese sauce mixed with gnocchi in a white bowl

In addition to mixing with pasta, I like to use Bolognese sauce in lasagna. My Lasagna Bolognese is very popular and would work well with this white sauce also.

If you have vegetarians in your family, I have a Mushroom Vegetarian Bolognese Sauce that they would love and has all the same flavors as a traditional Bolognese sauce.

Gnocchi and white Bolognese sauce from overhead in a white pasta bowl

If you’ve made this Traditional White Bolognese Sauce or have a question, leave them below. I love to hear from my readers.

Yield: 4

Traditional White Bolognese Sauce

Meaty white Bolognese sauce in a white Dutch oven

A delicious combination of ground beef, mild Italian sausage, wine and spices. A non-tomato version of traditional Bolognese sauce.

Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 30 minutes
Total Time 40 minutes


  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1/2 cup yellow onion, finely chopped
  • 3/4 cup (80 grams) carrot, peeled and finely chopped
  • 1/4 cup (35 grams) celery, finely chopped
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 pound (453 grams) ground beef (80/20)
  • 1/2 pound (226 grams) mild Italian sausage meat
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons flour
  • 3 garlic cloves, peeled and chopped
  • 1 teaspoon fresh rosemary, chopped
  • 4 sage leaves, chopped
  • 1 cup dry white wine
  • 1 1/2 cups (400 ml) beef stock/broth


  1. To a high-sided sauté, pan add the oil over medium heat. When the oil is hot, add the onion, carrot and celery and a little of the salt. Cook for 5 minutes until they start to soften.
  2. Turn up the heat to medium-high, add the beef and sausage and rest of the salt. Cook, breaking up the meat until lightly browned. Add the garlic, rosemary and sage, cook for 1 minute. Sprinkle in the flour and stir to mix well. Cook for a minute.
  3. Add the wine and cook until it starts to evaporate. Add the beef broth and bring to a simmer. Cook for 30 minutes until thickened but still a little saucy. Taste for seasoning and add more salt if needed (this will depend on how salty your stock/broth is).

Nutrition Information



Serving Size


Amount Per Serving Calories 340Total Fat 18gSaturated Fat 5gTrans Fat 0gUnsaturated Fat 12gCholesterol 54mgSodium 848mgCarbohydrates 13gFiber 1gSugar 4gProtein 20g

This nutrition calculation is provided by Nutronix that is only a guideline and not intended for any particular diet.