Olive Magazine
Bowl of spaghetti with vegan mushroom bolognese sauce

Vegan bolognese

Published: September 1, 2021 at 9:30 am
  • Preparation and cooking time
    • Total time
  • Easy
  • Serves 6

Make your bolognese meat-free with a rich ragu of dried porcini and chestnut mushrooms, and plenty of vegetables for a low-fat, vegan meal

  • Vegan
low inkcal363
low infat5.6g

Try this vegan twist on a bolognese, or make our classic spaghetti bolognese recipe.

For more meat-free options, check out our vegan mushroom ragu, vegetarian bolognese, vegan mac and cheese and more vegan pasta recipes.


  • 30g dried porcini mushrooms
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 500g chestnut mushrooms, finely diced
  • 2 onions, chopped
  • 4 cloves garlic, crushed
  • 2 carrots, grated
  • 2 stalks celery, finely diced
  • thyme leaves, chopped to make 1 tsp
  • rosemary leaves, chopped to make 1 tsp
  • 1 tsp celery salt
  • 1 star anise
  • 2 tbsp tomato purée
  • 2 x 400g tins chopped tomatoes
  • ½ a small bunch basil, torn
  • 400g tagliatelle


  • STEP 1

    Put the porcini in a bowl and pour over 200ml boiling water. Leave to soak while you start the sauce.

  • STEP 2

    Heat a large non-stick pan until hot and add 1 tbsp olive oil. Add the chestnut mushrooms and a pinch of salt, and fry, stirring, until they start to soften and give out liquid. Keep frying until all the moisture has disappeared and the mushrooms have coloured to a dark golden brown. Don’t skimp on this bit as this will ensure you get maximum flavour in the finished sauce. Scoop out the mushrooms then add the onions, garlic, carrots and celery to the same pan with another tbsp of olive oil and stir well. Put on a lid and cook for 10 minutes, stirring now and again, or until the veg has softened. Add the herbs, celery salt, star anise and tomato purée. Drain the porcini mushrooms, keeping the liquid. Chop the porcini well and add to the sauce, along with the strained liquid. Tip the cooked chestnut mushrooms back in.

  • STEP 3

    Cook, stirring, for a minute then tip in the chopped tomatoes and bring to a simmer. Cook for 30 minutes until the sauce is rich and thick, and stir through the basil just before serving. Cook the tagliatelle following pack instructions, then drain and toss with the sauce before serving.

Check out more of our vegan recipes

Vegan Ramen Recipe with Chilli and Tofu

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