Healthy Spaghetti Bolognaise

Spaghetti bolognaise is a delicious way to incorporate a heap of vegetables and nutrients into your family meals. Use whatever vegetables you have on hand for added nutrition.

Ingredients

  • 1 red onion, peeled, diced
  • 2 carrots, halved
  • 2 stalks celery, diced
  • 1 red capsicum, stemmed, seeded, diced
  • 1 zucchini, cut into 2-inch (5cm) pieces
  • 250 g (9 ounces) mushrooms, quartered
  • 115 g (4 cups) baby spinach
  • 200 g (7 ounces) beef, uncooked, cubed
  • 400 g (14 ounces) brown lentils
  • 800 g (28 ounces) sun-ripened tomatoes
  • 5 fresh basil leaves
  • salt and pepper, to taste
  • 2 Tablespoons tomato purée
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1 Tablespoon apple juice concentrate
  • 350 g (12 ounces) wholemeal spaghetti
  • 60 g (½ cup) grated Parmesan cheese

Directions

  1. Place onion, carrot, celery, capsicum, zucchini, mushroom and spinach into the Vitamix Container in the order listed and secure lid.
  2. Select Variable 1.
  3. Turn machine on and slowly increase speed to Variable 3. Blend or pulse until vegetables are chopped to desired consistency.
  4. Place chopped vegetables into a prepared cooking pot over medium heat. Cook for 2 minutes.
  5. Place beef into the Vitamix Container and secure lid.
  6. Select Variable 1.
  7. Turn machine on and slowly increase speed to Variable 3. Blend for a few seconds, or until the beed has minced.
  8. Add minced beef to the pot of cooked vegetables.
  9. Clean the Vitamix Container to prepare for tomato sauce.
  10. Place lentils, tomatoes, basil leaves, salt and pepper into the Vitamix Container in the order listed and secure lid.
  11. Select Variable 1.
  12. Turn machine on and slowly increase speed to Variable 10, then to High. Use the tamper to press ingredients into the blades.
  13. Blend until ingredients are well combined.
  14. Add the tomato sauce mixture to the bolognaise mixture, along with tomato paste, cinnamon and apple juice concentrate. Simmer over medium heat for 15 - 20 minutes.
  15. Serve over cooked spaghetti, with grated parmesan cheese if desired.

Notes

Add 1 teaspoon of ground cumin to make healthy nachos. Serve with oven-baked corn chips, avocado, sliced spring onion and natural thick yoghurt. For a wheat- and gluten-free option, use zucchini noodles in place of wholemeal spaghetti. Subsitute beef for 14 ounces (400g) lean turkey, ground chicken, or 2 14 ounce (400g) cans of brown letils to make a vegetarian bolognaise.