If you love spaghetti and meat sauce, but are trying to cut down on red meat, try this delicious turkey Bolognese sauce adapted from the January/February 2012 issue of Everyday Food. The original recipe calls for the sauce to be served over cooked spaghetti squash, but I used whole wheat pasta instead. If you can’t find ground turkey, buy a turkey breast and whirl it in your food processor.

Avoiding Additives and Preservatives

To avoid additives and preservatives in this recipe, use nitrite-free bacon and crushed tomatoes without artificial ingredients, such as Unico brand.

Buy ground turkey or grind a turkey breast in your food processor

Saute bacon until crisp

The sauce is ready in about 35 minutes

Turkey Bolognese over spaghetti


3 bacon slices, cut into ½ -inch pieces

2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil

1 medium yellow onion, diced small

1 large carrot, diced small

2 small celery stalks, diced small

3 garlic cloves, minced

1 pound ground turkey breast or chicken breast

2 cups crushed tomatoes (from a 28-ounce can)

Red-pepper flakes (optional)

Coarse salt and ground pepper

Cooked spaghetti

Grated Parmesan, for serving


In a large nonstick skillet, cook bacon over medium until crisp, 8 minutes. With a slotted spoon, transfer bacon to paper towels to drain. Add 1 tablespoon oil to skillet. Add onion, carrot, celery, and garlic and cook until vegetables are tender, 15 minutes. Transfer to a medium bowl. Add 1 tablespoon oil and turkey to skillet and cook, breaking up meat with a wooden spoon, until almost cooked through, 5 minutes. Add bacon, vegetables, tomatoes, and pinch of red-pepper flakes, if using, to skillet and bring to a simmer; cook until turkey is cooked through and sauce is thickened, 5 minutes. Season with salt and pepper. Serve over spaghetti squash and sprinkle with Parmesan. Serves 4.

Adapted from the January/February 2012 issue of Everyday Food