Annabel Karmel’s Hidden Vegetable Bolognese

Suitable from 12 months +


Re-fuel after a busy day with my super-tasty Bolognese recipe which is packed full of those all-important veggies.  A great way towards their 5-a-day and those fussy veggie detectives will be none the wiser!


Prep: 15 minutes

Cook: 35-40 minutes

Makes: 4 portions



1 tbsp olive oil

1 small onion, finely chopped

1 small leek, thinly sliced

½ stick celery, diced

¼ small red pepper, diced

1 small carrot, peeled and grated

½ eating apple, peeled and grated

1 clove garlic, crushed

1 x 400g tin chopped tomatoes

450g (1lb) minced beef

4 tbsp tomato purée

2 tbsp tomato ketchup

250ml beef stock

¼ tsp dried oregano

200g spaghetti


  1. Heat the oil in a large frying pan and sauté the vegetables, apple and garlic for 10 minutes until soft. Transfer to a blender and add the tomatoes, then whiz until smooth.
  2. Wipe out the pan with a piece of kitchen paper, then add the mince and fry over a medium-high heat, breaking the mince up with a wooden spoon, until browned (you may need to do this in two batches). If your child likes a finer texture you can transfer the browned mince to the food processor and whiz for a few seconds.
  3. Add the tomato and vegetable sauce to the mince and stir in the tomato purée, ketchup, stock, and oregano. Bring to a simmer and cook for 20 to 30 minutes until the sauce is thick. Season to taste with salt and pepper (optional).


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