This Turkey Ragù Tagliatelle is lighter than a classic bolognese sauce but still packed with hearty and rich flavors. Ready in 1 hour, naturally gluten free, and perfect for weeknight dinners!
Making quick and easy dinners for your family doesn't mean you should have to sacrifice flavor. Just make this Turkey Ragù Tagliatelle recipe instead!
A hearty turkey ragù sauce is layered over wide tagliatelle noodles, filling everyone at the table with warmth without weighing them down. Be sure to make extras, because everyone will be asking for seconds!
This ground turkey ragù is easier to make than a traditional bolognese sauce but is just as hearty and flavorful. It comes together in one pot in just one hour, helping you save on time, stress, and clean up.
Tagliatelle ragù is a dish that’s perfectly healthy and filling on its own, but when you’re craving extra veggies, serve it next to an Heirloom Tomato Salad or a Roasted Vegetable Salad. It’s an Italian-inspired meal you won’t soon forget.
What is ragù?
Ragù is a classic Italian meat sauce made with ground meat, vegetables, red wine, and tomatoes. It’s served over long, flat noodles that scoop up the hearty bites with ease.
Ragù vs. bolognese sauce
Yes, ragù and bolognese are Italian meat sauces served with pasta, but they are not the same thing:
- Bolognese is a hearty meat sauce that is cooked low and slow for at least 3 hours and is finished with cream or milk.
- Ragù is a quicker alternative and is usually served with spaghetti or wide pasta noodles. In this recipe, the sauce comes together in one pot in just under 1 hour.
When you want the best of both worlds, make a ragù bolognese! This flavor-packed Italian sauce infuses the rich, hearty flavors of both recipes, but omits the garlic entirely.
Ingredients and substitutions
This is just a snapshot of the key ingredients you need for this pasta recipe. Scroll down to the recipe card to see the full list of ingredients.
- Ground turkey - More authentic ragù recipes are made with ground beef or pork, but ground turkey helps lighten it up.
- Tomato sauce - My Multi-Purpose Tomato Sauce would be perfect here! Otherwise, use jarred or canned tomato sauce to keep this recipe easy.
- Bacon - Or use pancetta.
- Soffritto - Sauteed carrots, celery, and onion (known as “soffritto” in Italian) provide the ragù sauce with texture and aromatic flavors.
- Garlic - This is what sets the sauce apart from a traditional ragù bolognese while adding an extra savory baseline.
- Red wine - Use a dry red wine preferably, like Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, or Pinot Noir.
- Gluten free tagliatelle pasta - Or you can use regular tagliatelle noodles if you don’t need the recipe to be gluten free. If you can’t find tagliatelle noodles, replace them with another long, flat pasta noodle like fettucini or pappardelle.
How to make turkey ragù
Step 1: Cook the bacon slices in a warm skillet until they’re crispy.
Step 2: Add the onion, garlic, carrots, and celery to the skillet. Saute until they’re soft and tender.
Step 3: Next, add the ground turkey and season it with salt, pepper, and thyme. Stir to combine and cook until the meat is thoroughly browned.
Step 4: Deglaze the pan with the red wine. Use a wooden spoon to scrape up any stuck browned bits from the bottom. Cook until the wine has mostly evaporated.
Step 5: Finish by stirring in the tomato sauce. If the ragù is too thick, add ½ cup of water. Leave the sauce to simmer to help it thicken.
Step 6: Meanwhile, cook the tagliatelle pasta in a separate pot according to the package instructions.
Step 7: To serve, scoop some of the cooked noodles into a bowl and top with scoops of the turkey ragù. Garnish with fresh herbs, cracked black pepper, or parmesan cheese, and enjoy!
Just like turkey bolognese, ground turkey ragù is perfectly fine served on its own (the hearty sauce can be quite filling). But just in case you need a few eye-catching sides to go with it, pair each serving with a few slices of artisan bread or fresh dinner rolls, corn risotto, roasted veggies, and tomato-stuffed eggplant.
To really take it up a notch, pair each plate of pasta with my Garlic Parmesan Bread. Garlic bread + comforting pasta are a match made in heaven!
More ways to cook with turkey
Put the leftover Thanksgiving turkey or the ground turkey in your fridge/freezer to use in these flavor-packed and family-friendly recipes:
- Ground Turkey Shepherd’s Pie
- Homemade Turkey Broth
- Slow Cooker Turkey Chili
- Instant Pot Turkey Meatballs
- Turkey Fennel Stuffed Cabbage Rolls
- Ground Turkey Butternut Squash Skillet
Looking for more easy pasta recipes?
- Chicken Sausage and Vegetable Pasta Skillet
- Instant Pot Creamy Alfredo Pasta
- Classic Meat Sauce Lasagna
- Garlicky Kale & Mushroom Pasta
- One Pot Stovetop Lasagna
Turkey Ragu Tagliatelle
- 1 lb ground turkey
- 28 oz tomato sauce pureed or Chucky
- 2 slices bacon cut into cubes
- 1 small onion diced
- 3 cloves garlic minced
- 2 celery stalks chopped
- 1 carrot chopped
- ½ cup red wine
- salt and pepper to taste
- thyme fresh or dried
- 12 oz tagliatelle (gluten-free)
- Heat large skillet over medium heat, add bacon. Cook stirring often until toasted
- Add onion, garlic, carrots and celery. Cook until soft and fragrant (about 7-8 minutes)
- Add in turkey, salt, pepper and thyme. Cook breaking up the meat with fork until cooked through (12-15 minutes)
- Add the wine and cook until it is mostly evaporated.
- Finally add in tomato sauce + rinse tomato can/ jar with ½ cup water pour into the sauce. Reduce heat and cook for 12-14 minutes.
- Meanwhile cook tagliatelle according to package instructions.
- When ready to serve, pour turkey ragù over tagliatelle and serve.
- Garnish with topping of choice; roasted mushrooms, fresh herbs, freshly grounded pepper and cheese.
This is a big hit in my house! I have even made it for a friend. They loved it too. when do you recommend adding in the mushrooms. I see them in the finished picture and in the picture of ingredients, but not in the instructions. Thank you!
Silvia Dunnirvine says
Hi Taryn, I am so glad to hear. We love this comforting meal too! as for the mushroom you have two options, to add in along with the veggies to be sautéed or pan fry separately. If you like your mushrooms to retain its shape and stand out on the dish, I recommend that you pan fry separately sliced with a little bit of oil/ butter, salt and pepper.