How to Easily Understand the Meaning of Sunday Sauce

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Christina Flores

· 3 min read

Healthy Food Recipes: Sunday Sauce

Prep Time: 30 minutes

Cook Time: 3 hours

Additional Time: 30 minutes

Total Time: 4 hours

Servings: 6-8


  • 2 lbs ground beef
  • 1 lb Italian sausage, casings removed
  • 1 onion, diced
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 (28 oz) cans crushed tomatoes
  • 2 (6 oz) cans tomato paste
  • 1 cup dry red wine
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 1 tsp dried oregano
  • 1 tsp dried basil
  • 1/2 tsp crushed red pepper flakes (optional)
  • Salt and black pepper to taste
  • 1/4 cup fresh parsley, chopped
  • 1/4 cup fresh basil, chopped

Steps to Cook:

  1. In a large Dutch oven or heavy-bottomed pot, brown the ground beef and Italian sausage over medium-high heat, breaking up the meat as it cooks, until no longer pink, about 8-10 minutes.
  2. Drain any excess fat from the pot.
  3. Add the diced onion and minced garlic to the pot and sauté for 3-4 minutes, until the onion is translucent.
  4. Stir in the crushed tomatoes, tomato paste, red wine, bay leaves, dried oregano, dried basil, and crushed red pepper flakes (if using). Season with salt and black pepper to taste.
  5. Bring the sauce to a simmer, then reduce the heat to low and let it simmer, uncovered, for 2-3 hours, stirring occasionally, until the sauce has thickened and the flavors have melded.
  6. Remove the bay leaves.
  7. Stir in the chopped fresh parsley and basil.
  8. Serve the Sunday sauce warm over your favorite pasta, such as spaghetti, penne, or rigatoni.

Cook’s Note:

  • For a thicker, more concentrated sauce, let the sauce simmer for an additional 30 minutes to 1 hour.
  • If the sauce becomes too thick, you can thin it out with a bit of water or chicken broth.
  • The Sunday sauce can be made in advance and stored in the refrigerator for up to 5 days or frozen for up to 3 months.
  • Serve the Sunday sauce with grated Parmesan cheese, fresh basil leaves, and crusty bread for a complete and satisfying meal.
  • This recipe can be easily doubled or tripled to feed a larger crowd or to have leftovers for the week.

The Sunday Sauce, also known as Ragù alla Napoletana, is a classic Italian meat-based sauce that is simmered for hours to develop a deep, rich flavor. This recipe combines ground beef and Italian sausage, sautéed with onions and garlic, and simmered in a tomato-based sauce with red wine, herbs, and spices.

The long cooking time allows the flavors to meld together, creating a sauce that is both hearty and aromatic. The addition of fresh parsley and basil at the end adds a bright, herbaceous note that balances the richness of the sauce.

This Sunday Sauce is the perfect foundation for a variety of pasta dishes, from spaghetti to rigatoni. It can also be served as a standalone dish, accompanied by crusty bread and a salad for a complete and satisfying meal.

One of the key benefits of this recipe is its versatility. The sauce can be made in advance and stored in the refrigerator or freezer, making it a convenient option for busy weeknights or meal prepping. Additionally, the recipe can be easily scaled up to feed a larger crowd or to have leftovers for the week.

In terms of the health benefits, this Sunday Sauce is a relatively healthy option. The main ingredients, such as ground beef, Italian sausage, and tomatoes, are all nutrient-dense and provide a good source of protein, fiber, and essential vitamins and minerals. The use of fresh herbs and spices also adds antioxidants and anti-inflammatory properties to the dish.

To make this Sunday Sauce even healthier, you can consider using leaner cuts of beef or turkey sausage in place of the traditional Italian sausage. You can also adjust the amount of oil used in the cooking process and experiment with different herbs and spices to suit your personal preferences.

Overall, this Healthy Food Recipes: Sunday Sauce is a delicious and satisfying dish that can be enjoyed as part of a balanced and nutritious diet. Whether you’re feeding a crowd or looking for a comforting meal to enjoy on a Sunday afternoon, this recipe is sure to become a new family favorite.

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About Christina Flores

Hi, I am Christina Flores, author of I'm passionate about creating delicious and nutritious recipes to help people lead healthier lives. Join me on this culinary journey as we explore the world of healthy eating together!