8 servings eaten over 1 dinner and 1 lunch

Who doesn’t love spaghetti and meat sauce? This classic is comforting and also very budget friendly! Ground meat is cheaper when purchased in bulk, which is why we use across two meals. If you still have more leftover, you can also freeze the extra. We sneak in a good amount of veggies into our meat sauce to bulk it up without having to use as much meat, which is healthier and cheaper too!



  • Lean ground beef - 2 lbs
  • Red pepper flakes - 1/2 tsp
  • Italian seasoning - 1 Tbsp
  • Salt - 1 tsp
  • Black pepper - 1/2 tsp
  • Garlic cloves, peeled - 4
  • Onions, rough-chopped - 1
  • Carrots, peeled and rough-chopped - 2
  • Celery - 2 stalks
  • Crushed tomatoes - 1 28 oz can + 1 14 oz can
  • Diced tomatoes - 1 28 oz can
  • Cooking oil - 1 Tbsp
  • Spaghetti - 1 1/2 lbs Parmesan (opt) - for serving


  • Red wine vinegar - 1 1/2 Tbsp
  • Dijon mustard - 2 tsp
  • Cooking oil - 3 Tbsp
  • Baby spinach - 5 oz


Make pasta | Bring a saucepan of water to boil. Salt generously and add pasta. Cook until al dente, tender but not soggy. Drain. (Can be done up to 3 days ahead)

Season meat | Mix together ground meat, red pepper flakes, Italian seasoning, salt, black pepper. (Can be done up to 1 day ahead)

Garlic / Onions / Carrots / Celery | Rough chop and then puree in a blender, food processor or with an immersion blender. (Can be done up to 3 days ahead)

Diced tomatoes | Drain.


  1. Heat a Dutch oven over medium-high heat. Add oil and then meat to heated oil.
  2. Use a wooden spoon to break meat up into bits. Brown for 4 to 6 minutes.
  3. Fold in your veggie puree and saute for another 3 to 4 minutes.
  4. Add crushed tomatoes and diced tomatoes. Boil and then simmer uncovered (be careful of spattering or just embrace it and clean up later) for 15 to 20 minutes.
  5. While sauce is cooking, whisk together red wine vinegar, Dijon, and cooking oil. Salt and pepper vinaigrette to taste.
  6. When sauce is done simmering, taste and then season with more spices, salt, and or / pepper. If the sauce tastes too tart or acidic, temper it with something sweet like sugar.
  7. Divide pasta into bowls and plates and let everyone spoon as much sauce as they want over pasta. Serve with as much parmesan as you want and enjoy with side spinach salads.