Wild Boar Bolognese (Authentic)

Every so often I reminisce about my time spent in Italy and the amazing food there.

Now, don’t get me wrong I’ve had poor food there also, but bolognese was not one of them.

During these times I take to the kitchen to remake some of my favorite dishes.

This wild boar bolognese was made with these thoughts in mind. 

Wild Boar Bolognese

Ingredients For Wild Boar Bolognese

One of the great things about bolognese is that everyone has their own interpretation of it and there are no hard and fast rules.

In my experience, bolognese should have complex flavoring, yet be a lighter dish.

If you were looking for something with deeper flavors, I’d suggest trying wild boar ragu.

Some will argue that these are the same, but saying that in Italy could get you into a lot of trouble.

Ragu is a meat sauce, but these vary according to region in Italy, bolognese is a sauce from one of these regions.

So, all boloneses are ragu, but not all ragus are bolognese.

With that out of the way, let’s focus on the ingredients used in this recipe.

One thing I used here that I didn’t use in my venison bolognese is pancetta.

I find that browned venison gives enough flavor on its own whereas with the wild boar, I wanted to elevate it more by beginning with a base of pancetta.

I also ground the wild boar with pork belly to create a better texture.

Traditionally wild boar is made with white wine, but I felt that it would get lost on the wild hog meat, so opted for a dry red wine instead.

Wild Boar Bolognese

While these ingredients along with the tomatoes made up the bulk of the dish the full recipe list has a lot more going on

  • Wild hog meat
  • Pork belly
  • Pancetta
  • Red wine
  • Venison sock
  • Milk
  • Shallots
  • Garlic
  • Carrots
  • Celery
  • Bay leaves
  • Nutmeg
  • Oregano
  • Parsley

Not everyone understands the milk in a bolognese, but in my opinion, it does a lot for the texture of the dish.

Without it, the dish would also be sharper, particularly if your tomatoes aren’t sweet.

In addition to the ingredients above you will need some form of pasta for serving.

I typically serve it over spaghetti or pappardelle pasta.

Cooking Wild Boar Bolognese

Wild Boar Bolognese

There are a few moving parts in creating a wild boar bolognese.

This dish is not as simple as wild boar sloppy joes, but the extra steps do make for a much more complex flavored dish.

The key things when making this recipe are to brown the meat, reduce the wine, and reduce the milk.

If you can pull these things off the rest of the dish will fall into place.

  1. Cook onions and garlic over low heat
  2. Add the pancetta
  3. Add the carrots and celery
  4. Brown the wild hog meat on a separate pan
  5. Add the meat to the pan with veg and pancetta
  6. Add the wine and reduce
  7. Add the milk and reduce
  8. Add all other ingredients and stir
  9. Cook on low for 3 hours uncovered

Alternatively, you can cook this recipe in a slow cooker. The first few steps would remain the same, but the 3 hours of cooking would be transferred to the slow cooker

Serving Wild Boar Bolognese

Wild Boar Bolognese

What I love about this bolognese is it speaks for itself, and you don’t need any fancy sides.

The only 3 ingredients I serve with this bolognese is a plain pasta, some parmesan or grand padano cheese, and a fresh parsley garnish.

Wild Boar Bolognese

Wild Boar Bolognese

This deep rich wild boar bolognese is perfect for almost any meal. Its complex flavor profile is layered with intrinsic tastes tha leave you wanting more.
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Course: Main Course
Cuisine: Italian, Traditional, Wild Game
Keyword: wild boar
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 3 hours
Servings: 6
Author: Rusty


  • 1 1/4 lbs wild boar ground
  • 1/4 lb pork belly ground with boar
  • 1/4 lb pancetta chopped
  • 3 shallots finely chopped
  • 3 cloves garlic minced
  • 1 stick celery finely chopped
  • 1/2 carrot finely chopped
  • 3 cups tinned tomatoes San Marzano
  • 1 cup milk
  • 1 cup dry red wine alternatively use white
  • 1 cup venison stock see note 1
  • 1 tsp oregano
  • 1/2 tsp nutmeg
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 2 tbsp chopped fresh parsley


  • If your meat isn't already ground, start by grinding the wild hog and pork together using a medium plate.
  • Heat a large pot over low heat and add a tablespoon of olvive oil
  • Add the shallots and garlic and cook for about 1 minute, just before the shallots become translucent
  • Add the pancetta and cook for 3 minutes
  • Add the carrots and celery and continue to cook over low heat
  • On a separate hob heat a cast iron pan over high heat, add a tablespoon of high temperature oil. Add a small amount of the ground wild boar at a time and brown
  • Add all of the browned wild hog to the pot of veg and pancetta
  • Increase the temperature to medium and add the wine, cook until the wine is reduced by 75%, stirring continuously
  • Reduce the temp to low and add the milk, reduce the milk by about 80%
  • Add the tomatoes, oregano, bay leaves, nutmeg, salt & peppr, and parsley and stir
  • Add in the stock and cook on low for 3 hours

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