Lamb Bolognese


Lamb Bolognese //

This is a story about a girl and dinner…and how she never cooks it.

This may come as a shock but after cooking for this space and doing my freelance stuff, the last place I want to be (usually) is in the kitchen washing dishes. Cooking is never really the deterrent, but the dishes keep me away. And plus, it’s so nice to go out and about sometimes. But recently, all I’ve wanted to do is cook dinner. It also helps that Josh does the dishes. Teamwork is pretty chill.

A few weeks ago I went to my neighborhood grocery store and picked up a few ingredients for an impromptu bolognese with some ground lamb I already had in the fridge. I kind of thought nothing of it, in fact I actually fell asleep midway through because I was coming down with a cold. I came this close to burning it AND the house down, but luckily I didn’t and I’m alive to share this recipe with you, because it turned out to be one of the best things I’ve made in quite some time, so said Josh.

Lamb Bolognese

Lamb Bolognese

Lamb Bolognese

This bolognese is one of my favorites. It’s like if I put one of my awkward, too close for comfort hugs in a bowl. And then put it on the internet for you to recreate! If you love hugs, then you’ll love this dish.

Some people HATE hugs. I have friends who desssspise them. I give them anyway because I think everybody deep down probably loves them. I do hate hugs from creepy people, though, which I imagine everyone does. Wait, does this mean my friends who hate hugs think I’m creepy?

This is what this dish is. Have I sold you on it?

Also: All I want to do right now is talk about Breaking Bad. But I can’t. I won’t. AHHH! Last night! Craziness!

Lamb Bolognese

Lamb Bolognese


  • Olive oil
  • 2 small carrots, trimmed, peeled and diced
  • 1 shallot, minced
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • *1/4 teaspoon dried majoram
  • *1/4 teaspoon dried oregano
  • *1/4 teaspoon dried basil
  • 1/4 teaspoon red pepper flakes
  • 3 tablespoon tomato paste
  • 1/2 pound ground lamb
  • Salt
  • 1 15- ounce can diced or cherry San Marzano tomatoes
  • 7 to 9 kalamata olives, pitted and chopped
  • 1 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
  • 3 tablespoons grated Parmesan-Reggiano, plus more for garnish
  • 1 tablespoon unsalted butter
  • Italian parsley, for garnish

*You can also replace these spices with a good quality jar labeled "Italian Seasonings." That's !usually the spices that are included.


    • To a large pot, heat two tablespoons of olive oil over medium heat. When the oil is hot, add the diced carrots and shallot. Cook until the carrots have softened and the shallots turn translucent, about 5 minutes. Add the garlic, spices, red pepper flakes, tomato paste and ground lamb, using a wooden spoon to break up the lamb in to crumbles. Sprinkle the lamb with a few pinches of salt and cook, stirring frequently, for about 5-7 minutes, until the meat has browned.
    • Next, pour in the can of tomatoes. (If you're using a can of cherry tomatoes, take the back of your spoon and crush them.) Add 1/2 cup (you can eyeball this measurement) of water to the tomato can, swishing it around so you get all of the remnants of tomato juice; pour the tomato water into the pot and stir. Bring the tomato sauce to a slight simmer and then turn the heat down to low. Cover the pot and cook for 20 minutes, stirring frequently. At the 20 minute mark, stir in the kalamata olives, balsamic vinegar, Parmesan-Reggiano and a splash or two of water, if it's cooked down a bit too much. Cover the pot once more and cook for an additional 20 minutes, until the sauce is fragrant and has thickened slightly. (If at any time the sauce becomes too thick, you can simply add a bit more tomato paste and a 1/4 cup of water or veggie stock.) Right before tossing with the pasta, add the butter and mix until melted.
    • Meanwhile, boil some salted water and cook the paparadelle per the box's instructions. (Mine told me 10 minutes exactly.) Toss the pasta with a few tablespoons of sauce and serve with a few spoonfuls of bolognese on top. Garnish with more Parmesan-Reggiano and a sprinkle of Italian parsley
    Nutrition Facts
    Lamb Bolognese
    Amount Per Serving (4 g)
    Calories 0
    * Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.
    Did you make this recipe?Tag @acozykitchen on Instagram and hashtag it #acozykitchen
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    Leave a Reply

  • Reply Sophia September 30, 2013 at 1:36 am

    As a kitchen deprived college student, this is a sight for sore and longing eyes! I wait for your posts every week as they allow me a little escape from all the crazy, busy, fun but hectic goings on in college life. Thank you! Looks incredible.

    • Reply Adrianna Adarme September 30, 2013 at 8:44 am

      Sophia! You’re the best. Thanks for being here!

  • Reply Sarah September 30, 2013 at 1:44 am

    Delicious!! And everyone loves hugs. You’re not creepy.

  • Reply Belinda @themoonblushbaker September 30, 2013 at 2:22 am

    It is not that I do not like hugs, it is just that I feel weird when I give them. I am not sure if I am doing it right!
    Really breaking bad is the only thing that could top this night with a dish of this pasta. I can not wait!

  • Reply Laura (Blogging Over Thyme) September 30, 2013 at 6:01 am

    Yum, yum, yum!! I totally know what you mean about not wanting to cook dinner after being in the kitchen all day (when I worked in a restaurant, I never cooked-partially because I had no time to, but also because I wanted people to cook for ME, haha).

    This looks fabulous, as always!! Hugs in a bowl, love it.

    • Reply Adrianna Adarme September 30, 2013 at 8:44 am

      I used to feel bad about this but then my boyfriend (who’s mom was a chef) told me she never cooked them dinner. Always takeout. Haha.

  • Reply Jocelyn (Grandbaby Cakes) September 30, 2013 at 6:28 am

    I seriously want and need this in my life.

  • Reply Sophie September 30, 2013 at 8:41 am

    Thanks for not giving any spoiler alerts 🙂 I hate being behind on television!!! I’m sure it was just so crazy and I’m dying to see it!

    This sounds so delicious. Your photos are just getting better and better, these are especially gorgeous! You fork-twirled that pasta perfectly girlfran.

    I’m sure your hugs are not creepy. A hug from a friend is always welcome — if people don’t like them, they haz their own problemz.

    • Reply Adrianna Adarme September 30, 2013 at 8:43 am

      I gave a spoiler alert a few weeks ago on Twitter and felt awful, so never again! 🙁

      The fork twirling thing took me a solid 10 minutes. Haha.

      And agreed, they haz problemz.

  • Reply Quyen September 30, 2013 at 9:09 am

    Bolognese and fresh pasta is my go-to favorite! In my recipe, I put a ton of olives because I love it so!

  • Reply Laura (Tutti Dolci) September 30, 2013 at 9:19 am

    Bolognese perfection!

  • Reply Sarah September 30, 2013 at 9:26 am

    Beautiful pictures today! I want to jump headfirst into my computer right now!

  • Reply Eileen September 30, 2013 at 9:51 am

    Rich lamb and hearty pasta sound just about perfect for the incoming fall weather! Such a cozy and satisfying meal. 🙂

  • Reply Meagan @ Scarletta Bakes September 30, 2013 at 10:18 am

    This just looks SO succulent! As soon as I saw the title I clicked my face off to get over here – I’m always looking for new, delicious ways to treat lamb. Thank you for another gorgeous recipe!

  • Reply Maggie @ A Bitchin' Kitchen September 30, 2013 at 11:12 am

    This looks amazing! My man adores lamb, so I’m adding this to my “cook for James” list! Thank you! 🙂

  • Reply Katie September 30, 2013 at 12:26 pm

    Just wanted to say your blog (and instagram!) is a new favorite of mine. The recipes are soo good and you have the best anecdotes on any food blog by far.

    • Reply Adrianna Adarme September 30, 2013 at 12:28 pm

      Haha! Thanks for being here! And thanks for liking my random rants. 😉

  • Reply Kiran @ September 30, 2013 at 12:57 pm

    I hate doing dishes too, even up to these days 😀

  • Reply Gwen @SimplyHealthyFamily September 30, 2013 at 1:20 pm

    I love cooking but you’re right, the thought of having to do dishes kinda ruins it sometimes. I love lamb and have not attempted bolognese yet. I’ll have to Pin this to make ASAP. thanks for sharing.

  • Reply dervla September 30, 2013 at 1:59 pm

    I love hugs! And i love bolognese too. Those wide noodles look incredible. Also, don’t spill the beans on Breaking Bad just yet, i’m two episodes behind 🙂

    • Reply Adrianna Adarme September 30, 2013 at 3:02 pm

      Oh I won’t. Don’t you worry! You’re in a for a fun treat.

  • Reply Sarah Crowder (punctuated. with food) September 30, 2013 at 5:53 pm

    Beautifully styles and I totally want to eat this – love lamb!

  • Reply Julie October 1, 2013 at 7:56 am

    This looks positively lovely. I adore a good bolognese!

  • Reply Denisse @ Le Petit Chef October 1, 2013 at 3:37 pm

    this looks sooo good! I just made a lamb ragu with whole wheat penne and mint the other day. I also added carrots because I love the element of sweetness that they add…I’m intrigued by the idea of adding olives, though. I’ll have to try that next time!

  • Reply Emily @ Life on Food October 1, 2013 at 5:35 pm

    Yes, yes and yes! This looks amazing. Talk about comfort food. How can I make this appear in front of me right now.

  • Reply Bev @ Bev Cooks October 2, 2013 at 6:46 am

    Oh my gawwwwwwwwwwwwwwwd yes.

  • Reply Becca October 5, 2013 at 5:06 pm

    This is happening tomorrow night! Thank you.

    Side note: I’m dying over those bowls.

  • Reply Reading List | Savvy Eats October 7, 2013 at 6:37 am

    […] I love a good bolognese. […]

  • Reply laurasmess October 15, 2013 at 5:28 pm

    Haha, for some reason I the first thing that popped into mind when I read your post was ‘Shepherd’s bolognese, like Shepherd’s pie! But whatever it’s called, it looks so delicious. This is my first visit to your blog and I’m loving it so far. Oh, and re Breaking Bad? I can’t bring myself to watch it. I have addicted friends but it looks so… well, confronting and sad. But good at the same time. Maybe I should give it a go!

  • Reply DanV October 28, 2013 at 5:23 am

    I just love this sauce so much! Thank you for the recipe. Although I always do this with minced ground beef. Delicious.
    Oh yes, what’s with the boyfriend who never says a thing about my wonderful dishes and then, out of nowhere, “I LOVE THIS”. Lol but thats ok.
    I really want to try this with some good meatballs. I made meatballs using an old recipe, but I didn’t really like them… I’m going to try one of your recipes next.

  • Reply Lena Kaligaris-Bombolito, otherwise known as Greek-Italian Pasta. | beets me November 22, 2013 at 9:58 am

    […] make this lamb bolognese for your guests. Adrianna says this feeds four, and I must say this feeds four people of moderate […]

  • Reply Margaret November 29, 2013 at 4:59 pm

    This looks delicioussss Adrianna! And where did you purchase those lovely little gold plates?

    • Reply Adrianna Adarme November 29, 2013 at 6:29 pm

      Thank you! They’re actually vintage–picked ’em up at an old garage sale. 🙂

  • Reply There’s No Stopping Me | Breezeway Mike January 1, 2014 at 7:02 pm

    […] afternoon of café and coziness. I cooked up a dinner I have been DYING to make for months now: Lamb Bolognese. It was a hit! Panini even said it was one of her favorites…a true […]

  • Reply ambrosia January 29, 2014 at 10:41 am

    Such a wonderful recipe!

  • Reply Carrie Stocklin July 30, 2014 at 5:12 pm

    I have had pounds of ground lamb in the freezer from a friend who has a farm with no idea what to do with it. Searched for recipes and chose yours. What do you know, I had everything in the house with few exceptions. I haven’t made anything this delicious in a while. We all, my 7 year old included, scarfed it down. I’m sharing the recipe with my sis-in-law who lives in Australia where lamb is the go to meat. Thanks for an all around winner. We will make and serve again and again!

    • Reply Adrianna Adarme July 31, 2014 at 3:32 pm

      Oh yay! Thank you for the feedback. So glad you and your little dude/dudette loved it! xo

  • Reply Lamb, Eggplant, and Fig Skillet | stetted September 14, 2015 at 1:51 pm

    […] Lamb Bolognese – A Cozy Kitchen […]

  • Reply K May 8, 2019 at 6:45 am

    Hey lady!

    How much pasta did you use with that sauce? I can’t wait to make this.


    • Reply Pamela Dale October 23, 2019 at 8:51 am

      Okay, so it’s not me. I couldn’t find how much pasta to use either.