Share this article

If you joined us on our 50th anniversary golden bus tour last year, you’ll have seen the brilliant chef, Sal, keeping everyone entertained and well-fed during the live cooking demonstrations.

Well, now Sal’s back – this time cooking in isolation from her sister’s kitchen – with a series of special ‘cook-in’ recipe videos, as filmed by her nieces on their mobile phones!

As we’re all trying to shop less and make money go further, in these videos Sal helps us to make the most of whatever Free Food we’ve already got in our cupboards, fridges and freezers.

So if you fancy a cook-along in the kitchen, Sal’s your gal! 

Sal Henley - Slimming World Blog

On the menu this week is Slimming World spaghetti bolognese. Sal tells us more…

“Hi everyone, Sal here. I wanted to start with a recipe that everyone knows, and spag bol is a classic. It became a firm favourite with me in my university days, as it was relatively cheap to make and easy to cook for large numbers. 

I love the simplicity of this Slimming World recipe. It uses a lot from the store-cupboard and it’s also really easy to remember because it uses two of each ingredient (apart from the mince and the stock cube). Most people have a spag bol in their regular recipe rotation, so hopefully this version will become a go-to dish!

I also love that it can be batch-cooked and frozen for another day. I try to batch-cook wherever I can, to save me cooking from scratch every time. The freezer is your friend, especially at the moment when it may be more difficult to get out to the shops and some of us are busier than ever.

I hope you enjoy joining in from your own kitchen and cooking along with me. And remember to check back as I’ll be doing a cook-in video every week for the next six weeks at least.”

Sal’s spag bol tips

  • This is a really versatile recipe to have up your sleeve. If you want to make a vegetarian version, just add 100-125g dried red lentils with a cupful of water (instead of the mince) and cook for the same amount of time, adding extra water if needed. 
  • Alternatively, you can add drained, canned green lentils to the sauce after 15 minutes of cooking time.
  • If you’re in the mood for spice, you can transform this spag bol into a chilli con carne by adding Tabasco (to taste) and a drained can of kidney beans.
  • For a Free Food boost, grate a courgette into the pan 5 minutes before the end of cooking.
  • You can use a food processor to chop your vegetables if you’re short on time or making up a big batch. 
  • Or, if you prefer, you can add grated onion or carrot instead of diced.
  • Crumble the stock cube straight into the dish rather than dissolving in water, to pack the biggest flavour punch.
  • If you don’t have dried oregano, you can use dried chives, thyme or parsley instead (although I’d recommend putting oregano on your shopping list as I think it’s the most versatile dried herb).
  • Fancy a twist on the traditional? Try stirring in a dash of soy sauce or Worcestershire sauce at the end of cooking.

Slimming World spaghetti bolognese

Serves 4
Ready in 50 minutes

What you need:

2 carrots, peeled and diced
2 celery sticks, diced 
2 onions, diced
2 garlic cloves, crushed
500g lean beef mince (5% fat or less)
2 rashers lean back bacon, visible fat removed, chopped 
2 cans chopped tomatoes 
2 tbsp tomato purée
2 tsp oregano
1 beef stock cube

What you do:

1. Place a large non-stick frying pan over a medium-high heat. Add the carrots, onions, celery and garlic and a little water, and stir-fry for about 7-10 minutes.

2. Add the beef mince and chopped bacon, then cook for about 5 minutes or until browned, stirring occasionally.

3. Add the chopped tomatoes, tomato purée and oregano, and crumble in the stock cube. Bring to the boil, then cover and reduce the heat to medium-low. Simmer for 30 minutes. Serve with cooked dried pasta and your favourite salad. 

Please join in, cook along and let us all know how you get on – we’d love to hear what you’re creating, how you’ve made it work for you and the ingredients you’ve got. And you can share your pics on social media, too, using #EatWellAtHome

For more great recipes – or to find out how to join Slimming World – head to

Share this article