Easy Ground Chicken Spaghetti Bolognese

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This easy ground chicken spaghetti bolognese is a fresh take on the Italian classic pasta dish. The combination of lean chicken, rich tomato sauce, and Italian seasoning creates a delicious bolognese-style pasta sauce that the whole family will love. This easy weeknight meal is a lean twist on the classic family favorite.

Two white bowls of Ground Chicken Spaghetti Bolognese on a grey background.

Why you’ll love this recipe

Quick and easy: This ground chicken spaghetti recipe is perfect for busy weeknight dinners. With simple ingredients and minimal prep, it’s a breeze to whip up.

Extra protein: Using lean ground chicken as the main protein instead of regular ground beef or other red meat makes this dish a lighter, yet still satisfying, meal. Ideal for those looking for a leaner alternative to a traditional bolognese sauce.

Ingredients and substitutions

Ingredient overview for Ground Chicken Spaghetti Bolognese.
  • Chicken: You’ll need ground chicken but you can substitute it with ground turkey as well. Alternatively, cut diced boneless skinless chicken thighs or chicken breast into small pieces.
  • Spaghetti: Dried or fresh spaghetti or any of your favorite pasta shapes will work for this recipe. Use gluten-free pasta for a gluten-free version.
  • Tomatoes: I use a can of diced tomatoes in juice and tomato paste for this recipe but you can also opt for crushed tomatoes or passata.
  • Red wine: A light-bodied red wine such as Pinot Noir works well for this bolognese sauce. You can also use a dry white wine, chicken broth, or vegetable broth instead.
  • Onion and garlic: Fresh garlic cloves add extra flavor to this bolognese-style sauce. You can substitute them with 1/2 tsp of garlic powder.
  • Seasoning: Thyme, oregano, bay, and basil add authentic Italian flavors to this pasta recipe. You can also use 1 tbsp of my homemade Mediterranean or Tuscan seasoning. Salt and black pepper round out the flavors.
  • Olive oil: I use extra-virgin olive oil but you can opt for any vegetable oil.
  • Garnish: Serve this pasta dish with freshly grated Parmesan cheese and chopped fresh basil leaves.

Chicken bolognese variations

  1. Creamy chicken spaghetti: Stir in a couple of tablespoons of heavy cream, sour cream, or cream cheese for a creamy twist.
  2. Spaghetti casserole: Transform this delicious recipe into a comforting casserole dish by baking it with shredded cheese on top until bubbly and golden.
  3. Low carb: Swap regular pasta for spaghetti squash or zucchini noodles for a low carb, gluten-free easy dinner idea.

How to make ground chicken spaghetti bolognese

Step overview on how to make Chicken Spaghetti Bolognese.
  1. Sauté diced vegetables in olive oil.
  2. Add ground chicken and minced garlic. Cook on high until the chicken is cooked through.
  3. Deglaze the pan with red wine. Reduce the liquid.
  4. Add tomatoes and seasoning. Simmer on low for 20 minutes.

Serving

Serve chicken bolognese pasta with a side of garlic bread or Turkish bread and a simple side salad such as insalata mista for a complete meal.

FAQ

Can I make this ahead of time? 

Absolutely! The flavors often deepen when allowed to meld, making it a great make-ahead option. Store in an airtight container in the refrigerator for 3-4 days. Add some extra chicken stock if you’re reheating it the next day.

Can I freeze this meat sauce?

Yes, this ground chicken bolognese sauce can be frozen in an airtight container for up to 3 months. Thaw in the refrigerator before reheating.

Two white bowls of Ground Chicken Spaghetti Bolognese on a grey background.

Easy Ground Chicken Spaghetti Bolognese

Caro Jensen
This easy weeknight meal is a lean twist on the classic family favorite. The combination of ground chicken, rich tomato sauce, and Italian seasoning creates a delicious bolognese-style pasta sauce that the whole family will love.
5 from 4 votes
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 30 minutes
Total Time 40 minutes
Course Dinner
Cuisine American
Servings 6 servings
Calories 360 kcal

Ingredients
 
 

  • 2 tbsp olive oil extra virgin
  • 1 yellow onion medium-sized, finely diced
  • 1 carrot peeled, finely diced
  • 1 celery stalk finely diced
  • 1 lb ground chicken
  • 2 garlic cloves minced
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp ground black pepper
  • 1/2 cup red wine optional
  • 6 oz crushed tomatoes
  • 2 tbsp tomato paste
  • 1/2 tsp dried thyme
  • 1/2 tsp basil
  • 1/2 tsp oregano
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 8 oz dried spaghetti
  • 1/4 cup grated parmesan cheese optional
  • 1/4 fresh basil leaves optional

Instructions
 

  • Add olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add the finely diced onion, carrot, and celery. Cook for 2 minutes until the onion pieces are translucent. 
    2 tbsp olive oil, 1 yellow onion, 1 carrot, 1 celery stalk
  • Increase the heat to medium-high heat. Add the ground chicken and minced garlic. Season with salt and pepper and cook until the chicken is cooked through.
    1 lb ground chicken, 2 garlic cloves
  • Pour in the red wine, allowing the liquid to reduce while deglazing the pan.
    1/2 cup red wine, 1 tsp salt, 1/2 tsp ground black pepper
  • Reduce back to medium heat. Stir in the diced tomatoes, tomato paste, and herbs. Simmer on low heat for 20 minutes, allowing the flavors to meld.
    6 oz crushed tomatoes, 2 tbsp tomato paste, 1/2 tsp dried thyme, 1/2 tsp basil, 1/2 tsp oregano, 1 bay leaf
  • Meanwhile, cook the spaghetti according to the package instructions until al dente. Save 1 cup of pasta water.
    8 oz dried spaghetti
  • Once the bolognese sauce has thickened, season it to taste with salt and freshly ground pepper.
  • Combine the cooked spaghetti with the ground chicken sauce, ensuring the pasta is well-coated. Add some pasta water if the sauce is too thick.
  • Serve hot, garnished with fresh basil and freshly grated parmesan cheese.
    1/4 cup grated parmesan cheese, 1/4 fresh basil leaves

Notes

For more tips on how to make this chicken spaghetti bolognese, check out the article above.

Nutrition

Calories: 360kcalCarbohydrates: 35gProtein: 20gFat: 13gSaturated Fat: 3gPolyunsaturated Fat: 2gMonounsaturated Fat: 6gTrans Fat: 0.05gCholesterol: 69mgSodium: 649mgPotassium: 665mgFiber: 3gSugar: 4gVitamin A: 1974IUVitamin C: 5mgCalcium: 76mgIron: 2mg
Keyword chicken, Easy Dinner
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