Court Street Cooking Corner: Turkey Bolognese

Ethan Maher, Editor


Recipe By: Stephanie Olson


We all know beef isn’t quite the best food out there, health-wise. It is a red meat, meaning it contains more saturated fats than other types of meats (the bad kind of fat!). It’s got top-notch flavor and makes amazing Bolognese sauce, however! In fact, my family and I used to have it as one of our regular meals throughout the year; we had it at least once every two or so months. It went perfectly with any type of pasta, though rigatoni is always my favorite with Bolognese. What changed, though? During quarantine and the pandemic, my family and I have been searching out new recipes to try for more variety during these tough times. And… we found this recipe! Turkey is much healthier than beef, and in my opinion, this dish actually tastes as good, if not better, than the beef version! Either way, it’s great to try new recipes, especially right now—it can be a fun family experience.



Prep time: 45 minutes     Cook time: 5.5 hours                Yield: 11 cups


  • 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil (divided)
  • 1 ½ pounds 93% lean ground turkey
  • ½ pound carrots, peeled and finely chopped
  • 1 large zucchini, shredded
  • ½ large yellow onion, finely chopped
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 6 cloves garlic, minced (about 2 tablespoons)
  • 2 tablespoons dried oregano
  • ½ teaspoon dried thyme
  • ½ teaspoon red pepper flakes (plus additional to taste)
  • 1 ½ cups dry white wine (e.g. Sauvignon Blanc)
  • 1 (28 ounce) can crushed tomatoes
  • 1 teaspoon granulated sugar
  • 1/3 cup half-and-half
  • Cooked pasta (for serving)


  1. Turkey: Lightly coat a 6-quart slow cooker (or larger) with non-stick spray. In a large skillet, heat 1 tablespoon of the oil over medium-high heat. Once the oil is hot (but not smoking), add the turkey. Break up the meat with a spatula until it starts to brown (5-7 minutes). Place the turkey into the slow cooker.
  2. Vegetables, Wine, and Spices: Add the remaining ingredients, except for the half-and-half, into the slow cooker. Stir in order to combine.
  3. Cook: Cover and cook on low for 6 hours. Then, add in the half-and-half. Stir to combine.
  4. Serve: Taste and add additional black pepper, red pepper flakes, or salt as desired. Serve over pasta.


Bon appétit!