Ragù alla Bolognese Recipe – Bolognese Sauce. Best ground beef recipes. Copyright © 2022 Terence Carter / Grantourismo. All Rights Reserved.

Best Ground Beef Recipes from Bolognese and Lasagne to Chilli con Carne

This post may contain affiliate links.

Our best ground beef recipes include classic comforting dishes such as ragu alla Bolognese and lasagne from Northern Italy, our Cambodian inspired curried beef sausage rolls, a Tex-Mex chilli con carne and nachos, and my recipes for the Russian dumplings pelmeni and piroshki, savoury minced meat-filled hand pies.

Incredibly delicious and completely comforting, our best ground beef recipes are some of our best beef recipes on the site, and some of the most popular recipes with our readers. As we’ve added even more minced beef recipes to this collection since we first published the compilation of beef mince recipes, we decided to share it with you again.

If there’s one handy habit that we formed in the early days of the pandemic, it was to always keep minced meat in the freezer. You’ll always find ground beef and pork mince in our fridge, and occasionally I’ll pop a pack of minced chicken meat in there too. Chicken, pork and beef mince are incredibly versatile, easy to cook with, and affordable.

During the first couple of years of the pandemic, many of our favourite quarantine cooking dishes – the dishes we cooked that could be stretched out over several meals to prolong the period between supermarket shops – were dishes made with ground beef and minced pork, such as ragu Bolognese, lasagna and chilli con carne.

Those dishes also happen to be some of the most comforting dishes. Now before I tell you about our best ground beef recipes, I have a favour to ask. Grantourismo is reader-funded. If you’ve made any of our recipes and enjoyed them, please consider supporting Grantourismo so we can keep creating food stories and recipes.

You could click through to this post for ways to support Grantourismo, such as booking accommodation, hiring a car or campervan or motorhome, purchasing travel insurance, or booking a tour on Klook or Get Your Guide. We’ll earn a small commission if you do, but you won’t pay any extra.

You could also shop our online store, where we’ve got everything from gifts for street food lovers to food-themed reusable cloth face masks created from Terence’s images; support our epic first-of-its-kind Cambodian culinary history and cookbook on Patreon; or purchase something on Amazon, such as one of these James Beard award-winning cookbooks, classic cookbooks for serious cooks, cookbooks by Australian chefs, cookbooks for foodie travellers, and gifts for Asian food lovers and picnic lovers. Now let me tell you about our best ground beef recipes.

Best Ground Beef Recipes from Bolognese and Lasagne to Chilli con Carne

Traditional Ragu alla Bolognese Recipe

This ragu alla Bolognese recipe is based on the traditional recipe for the classic meat sauce from Bologna in Emilia Romagna, Northern Italy, and it’s one of our best ground beef recipes as the sauce can be used to make both tagliatelle alla Bolognese and lasagne alla Bolognese, below.

If you follow Terence’s exacting ingredient list and cooking directions, you’ll make a perfect ragù alla Bolognese, which is rich and moreish, just as it’s made in its birthplace. You’ll need 250g of beef mince for Terence’s version – along with pork mince and veal mince. In Bologna, they use tagliatelle, but of course you can use spaghetti.

Ragu alla Bolognese Recipe for a Traditional Bolognese Sauce from Northern Italy

Italian-Australian Spaghetti Bolognese Recipe

This spaghetti Bolognese recipe and surprising Italian-Australian history of spaghetti Bolognese comes courtesy of food writer Matt Preston, whose World of Flavour, The Recipes, Myths and Surprising Stories Behind the World’s Best-Loved Food is a cookbook as much as a myth-busting culinary history that sets the record straight: ‘spag bol’ is not Italian, it’s Italian-Australian.

Terence and I were both raised in Australia in the 1970s by mothers who made spaghetti Bolognese – or spaghetti Bolognaise as it was written back then; ‘spag bol’ for short, because Australians shorten everything. Matt Preston’s spaghetti Bolognese recipe makes the sort of spaghetti Bolognese our mums made, which Terence and I cooked before we travelled to Italy. Not ‘authentic’ for Italians, but still incredibly delicious.

Spaghetti Bolognese Recipe and the Italian-Australian History of ‘Spag Bol’ According to Matt Preston

Classic Lasagne alla Bolognese Recipe

Terence’s classic lasagne alla Bolognese recipe is another of our best minced beef recipes. Rich and comforting, this traditional lasagne Bolognese begins with that great Bolognese ragù recipe, above. The sauce is layered between flat pasta sheets and besciamella, Italy’s béchamel sauce, and Parmigiano Reggiano.

Once again, this is the style of lasagne made in Bologna, which means thinner sheets of pasta, a sparing use of besciamella, no mozzarella, and a flavour profile more savoury than sweet. Our recipe will easily feed a family or provide a few very comforting lockdown meals.

Classic Lasagne alla Bolognese Recipe from Emilia Romagna – Best Lasagne Recipe Ever

Delicious Hummus with Spiced Ground Beef Recipe for Hummus bil Lahme

This easy hummus with spiced beef recipe makes hummus bil lahme, a delicious Arabic dish that originated in the Levantine cuisines of Lebanon, Syria, Palestine, and Jordan, although it’s found right across the Middle East.

Served as an appetiser with other mezze, pickles and pita bread, it can also be eaten as a side with salads and mixed grilled meats. You can scoop it up with crispy homemade pita chips or serve with pickles and olives and an array of Arabic mezze or starters, such as baba ghanoush, labneh, muttabal, and muhammara.

Hummus bil lahme also makes a fantastic side dish to beef kofta, mixed grilled meats, roasted chicken, grilled lamb chops, Arabic sausages, and salads, such as fattoush and tabbouli, if you’re cooking up a Middle Eastern feast for a group of friends or family.

Delicious Hummus with Spiced Ground Beef Recipe for Hummus bil Lahme


Tex-Mex Chilli con Carne Recipe

Like the traditional ragù Bolognese above, it’s a 4-5 hour process to make Terence’s Tex-Mex style chilli con carne, but you’ll get several meals out of it, starting with a big old bowl of chilli, making this another of our best ground beef recipes.

Over the years Terence has made this chili con carne with beef mince, beef chunks, a combination of beef and pork mince, and just ground pork, but our favourite version includes a mix of ground beef and pork mince.

It’s a hearty chili and while it takes some time to make it doesn’t require a lot of work. We tend to eat it alone or with a salad the first night, and then over the next day and night we’ll repurpose it in all kinds of ways, starting with quesadillas.

However, you could make the chilli the centrepiece of a Tex-Mex or Mexican feast, and serve it with this authentic Mexican tortilla soup, tacos al pastor and char-grilled corn on the cob or grilled corn salad.

Chilli Con Carne Recipe For Those Who Like Their Chilli Hot and Smoky

Our Ultimate Nacho Recipe

When Terence makes his chilli con carne he always ensures he makes a big batch so we have enough leftover so I can make my ultimate nachos. If you’re feeding a family and you don’t, you can always add more ground beef or minced pork or a tin of kidney beans, or all of the above.

But don’t forget the beauty of nachos is all the extras you can pile on top and serve on the side, including this authentic guacamole and easy red tomato salsa, along with jalapenos, spring onions, black olives, and generous dollops of sour cream. Wash it down with classic margaritas and micheladas.

Ultimate Nachos Recipe – How to Make the Most Delicious Nachos You’ll Ever Eat

Traditional Russian Pelmeni Recipe

My family’s traditional Russian pelmeni recipe is another of our best ground beef recipes. This one makes my baboushka’s dumplings stuffed with savoury pork and beef mince that are boiled and served with sour cream and fresh aromatic dill and it is rustic home-cooked Russian comfort food at its best.

When my grandparents were still alive my baba would make big batches of these Russian-Ukrainian dumplings for family meals, especially for Russian Christmas, Easter, and Sunday lunches and dinners. I made a batch of pelmeni the other night and I’m making a batch of vareniki with mashed potato and caramelised onion tonight. We’ll eat them fried tomorrow.

Russian Pelmeni Recipe for Russian Dumplings Just Like My Baboushka Used to Make

Homemade Curried Beef Sausage Rolls Recipe

Our homemade curried beef sausage rolls recipe is another of our best ground beef recipes, flavouring minced beef with the traditional Cambodian curry paste called kroeung that’s used in Cambodia’s Saraman curry to makes a spicy beef sausage roll. If you’re not familiar with Saraman curry, it is the richest, most complex of Cambodian curries and a cousin to Thai Massaman curry.

Another pandemic cooking tip: along with minced meat, I recommend always keeping some puff pastry in the freezer too. If you love a good sausage roll you are going to love our spicy beef sausage rolls.

Homemade Curried Beef Sausage Rolls Recipe Made With Cambodian Saraman Curry

Russian Piroshki Recipe

This Russian piroshki recipe makes fantastic savoury minced meat-filled pastries or hand pies and this is another of our best ground beef recipes. They’re typically eaten as a snack or as a side with borscht.

My grandmother often served piroshki as one of an array of Russian dishes at family gatherings and sent me home with leftovers wrapped in tea towels to keep them warm. While we love deep-fried piroshki, these can be baked if you prefer and like most minced meat dishes, they taste even better the next day.

Best Russian Piroshki Recipe for Perfect Savoury Minced Meat-Filled Hand Pies

Traditional Chebureki Recipe

This traditional chebureki recipe makes deliciously-crunchy fried pastries filled with savoury minced beef and onions that are so big you need to hold them in two hands.

A beloved Black Sea beach holiday snack of Crimean Tatar cuisine, chebureki (чебуреки) are a popular street food in Russia, Ukraine, Eastern Europe, Central Asia, and the Crimean Tartar diaspora.

My grandmother used to tell me that she loved eating chebureki on summer holidays on the Crimean seaside as a child. I got to try them in Moscow many years ago, but I reckon mine are more delicious.

A tip: don’t over-stuff the pastries. A tablespoon of filling spread out is plenty. If you over-fill it with the minced meat mixture, the pastry will not only be unbalanced, but it won’t hold shape or maintain its crunchiness.

Chebureki Recipe for a Crimean Beach Holiday Treat That Became a Popular Russian Street Food Snack

Spicy Ground Beef Turnovers Recipe for Mini Chebureki

My spicy ground beef turnovers recipe for mini chebureki makes a spicier, smaller, hand-pie sized version of chebureki (above), crispy fried pastries filled with cumin-spiced minced beef and onions, traditionally so large you need two hands to hold them.

The main differences between this spicy ground beef turnovers recipe for mini chebureki and the larger more traditional chebureki is the size – these pastries are smaller, obviously – and the level of spice. Traditional chebureki are cumin-driven and more gently spiced. I’ve bumped up the spices considerably on these.

Cumin is still the main spice, as I didn’t want the pastries to lose their identity. However, I’ve added smaller measures of spices used in Crimean-Tatar cuisine and the cuisines of the Central Asian countries of the Silk Road along which chebureki would have travelled to create a spicier pastry.

Spicy Ground Beef Turnovers Recipe for Mini Chebureki, Cumin Spiced Fried Minced Beef Pastries

Published 24 August 2021; Updated 28 April 2023

Please do let us know if you make any of our best ground beef recipes as we’d love to know how they turn out for you.


Lara Dunston Patreon


Photo of author
A travel and food writer who has experienced over 70 countries and written for The Guardian, Australian Gourmet Traveller, Feast, Delicious, National Geographic Traveller, Conde Nast Traveller, Travel+Leisure Southeast Asia, DestinAsian, TIME, CNN, The Independent, The Telegraph, Sunday Times Travel Magazine, AFAR, Wanderlust, International Traveller, Get Lost, Four Seasons Magazine, Fah Thai, Sawasdee, and more, as well as authored more than 40 guidebooks for Lonely Planet, DK, Footprint, Rough Guides, Fodors, Thomas Cook, and AA Guides.

Leave a comment