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How is bagna cauda made? The original recipe of the typical Piedmontese dish

Bagna cauda

Bagna cauda in Piedmont is a real institution: let’s find out how it is prepared according to the original recipe!

The bagna cauda, ​​or bagna caoda , is a typical Piedmontese recipe and for the inhabitants of the region it is sacred! It is one of those classic convivial dishes that are perfect for gathering friends and family around a table, and being very rich and substantial, it can be enjoyed as a single dish.

But what is this recipe? Well, if you didn’t know it is a sauce (in fact the meaning of bagna cauda is hot sauce) based on only three ingredients: anchovies, garlic and oil. It is prepared in large quantities and then served in fujots , small single-portion terracotta containers with a small flame underneath that always keeps the sauce warm. However, if you don’t have them, you can also serve it in regular dishes!

Once served, this sauce becomes the accompaniment to the whole dinner, where you can serve vegetables, raw meat and many other ingredients. Let’s find out more together: do you know, for example, that the traditional recipe of Piedmontese bagna cauda was deposited on 7 February 2005 by the Asti delegation of the Italian Academy of Cuisine? The recorded passages seem to be the most truthful and traditional, but it is also true that each family has its own version and preparation of the bagna cauda. What are you waiting for to prepare it ?! Follow us in the kitchen!

Bagna cauda
Bagna cauda

How to prepare the bagna cauda

The procedure is actually very simple, but at the same time long and laborious. In short, we are certainly not faced with a recipe to be made at the last minute, so if you want to prepare this typical product to perfection, organize yourself well .

  1. First you will have to desalt the anchovies by soaking them for at least 2 and a half hours, even 3. Every now and then remember to change the water .
  2. Once this is done you will have to clean them: open them in half, remove the entrails and divide them into fillets, then rinse them and leave them aside in a bowl with the glass of wine inside.
  3. It’s time for the garlic: peel it and remove the inner core from all the cloves. There are also those who first leave it to soak in milk to soften it.
  4. In any case, put it cut into small pieces in a large pot with double handles, add the oil and cook over a very low heat : what you need to get is a paste, with the garlic that will practically melt, and it will take a long time. bit’!
  5. Once well melted, add the anchovies, and if you need more oil.
  6. Let it go over low heat and when the sauce has a homogeneous consistency, it will be ready !

The best known variant: the bagna cauda with milk

If you want to try this dish but you need to tone down the garlic taste a little (without eliminating it, however) we recommend that you check out this version of the “hot sauce”. To make it you will have to cut the garlic into slices as in the traditional recipe of bagna cauda, ​​then put them in a saucepan and add about 300 m of whole milk . Turn on the stove over low heat and let the milk and garlic go until the garlic has completely melted. Continue with the original recipe by decreasing the amount of oil (about 250 ml will be fine) and continue to follow the traditional steps by adding oil in case everything becomes too dry.

And here too this version is ready and will amaze you.

In preparing this recipe, many asked us if it was possible to make a bagna cauda without garlic, we would like to tell you that garlic is the second fundamental ingredient of the preparation and any Piedmontese could not even feel this claim. For this reason, if you don’t like garlic, we think it’s better that you dedicate yourself to another typical dish . Italy is full of wonderful and traditional recipes, such as, for example, not to go too far from Piedmont, risotto alla milanese (just to name one).

What do you eat bagna cauda with

What are the best vegetables for bagna cauda? And what other ingredients can you try? Well, we can tell you that there really is no limit to the imagination: Jerusalem artichokes, boiled potatoes, roasted onions, leeks, chard, fresh raw onions, raw cabbage and beets still … do not hold back and abundant! Instead, if you want to try other things you can prepare some raw meat slices of excellent quality to taste.

The vegetables or meat will be immersed in the bagna cauda, ​​placed inside the special fujot with light and then enjoyed.

If you have a little left over, among the dishes that are the most popular there are certainly the peppers in bagna cauda. Or, use it to season meatballs !

Do you love the cuisine of Turin and its surroundings? Also try the Piedmontese eggs ! If you want to know more about this vegetable , here are all types of cabbage !


The easy and delicious recipe of bagna cauda is best consumed at the moment . You can also keep it in the refrigerator for 1 day , but in that case it will be denser and for this reason we advise you to use it perhaps spread on croutons as an appetizer. We do not recommend freezing in the freezer.

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