Stop whatever you’re doing and add this insanely delicious Short Rib Ragu recipe to your menu rotation asap!
- Family dinner? This is totally, 100% worth the effort!
- Trying to impress a significant other? Yep, we’ve been there. This does the trick.
- Truly love yourself and want to enjoy an astoundingly good, restaurant-worthy pasta at home? You should — you deserve this.
While there’s no denying that a simple pasta recipe can hit the spot, when you really take the time to develop depth of flavor, well… the results speak for themselves. This beef ragu is the ultimate comfort food! And because the flavors intensify the longer it sits, this is a great dish to make today and serve tomorrow!
If there is one fall or winter pasta recipe you make this year, let it be this braised short rib ragu!
Ingredients Needed To Make This At Home
- Bone-in beef short ribs: Look for English cut style (between the bones) instead of Flanken ribs (cut through the bones)
- Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper, for seasoning!
- A light, neutral oil, such as canola oil, vegetable oil, or grapeseed oil.
- Mirepoix: the Italian trifecta of onion, carrots, and celery!
- Garlic: finely chop a few cloves garlic
- 2 tablespoons tomato paste, which adds a rich, deep tomato flavor.
- Red wine: use something that’s good enough to drink, as the flavor will intensify as it cooks down!
- Whole plum tomatoes, which you can hand crush or break apart with a wooden spoon.
- Low-sodium beef broth, to make up the rest of the braising liquid for the short ribs.
- Fresh herbs: We’re using a combination of fresh rosemary (or fresh thyme) and sage.
- Dried herbs: bay leaves!
- Parmigiano Reggiano: you’ll want to shave Parmesan cheese on top, but if you happen to have a rind in your freezer, throw one of those in with the beef ribs too!
- Chopped parsley, for serving
- Flaky sea salt, for serving
You’ll also need a large pot, a large Dutch oven, or a braiser to cook the ribs in (must have tall, deep sides, not a shallow pot), a spatula, tongs, and a large mixing bowl.
Sear The Beef Ribs To Develop Flavor
Searing beef before braising is a great way to enhance the beef flavor in a dish. When you sear, you caramelize the natural sugars in the meat, which results in a deep brown crust which translates to one thing: flavor!
What Is Mirepoix?
Mirepoix (pronounced: meer-PWAH) is the holy trinity of onion, carrots, and celery sautéed slowly in butter or oil until translucent, but not browned (think: medium-low heat). The goal is to soften the vegetables and to develop a flavor base within the dishes (such as soups, stews, and braises) right from the get go.
Serve With A Long, Flat Pasta
What’s the best shape of pasta to serve with Short Rib Ragu? We recommend a long, flat pasta, such as pappardelle. If you can’t find pappardelle pasta, any other long, thin noodle, such as tagliatelle, linguine, or fettuccine will work great!
- Pat the beef ribs dry with paper towels before seasoning — this will help them sear.
- Sear the ribs before braising!
- Allow the meat to cool slightly before shredding.
- Consider discarding the cartilage: this is definitely personal preference, but the entire dish will eat silky smooth if you discard the cartilage after shredding the meat off the bones (either with two forks or your hands).
Absolutely! Braised meats and pasta sauces are the perfect dishes to be made in advance! In fact, many folks (myself included!) think that pastas taste even better the next day.
Store leftovers in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 4 days.
Cool the short rib ragu completely to room temperature, without pasta, then store in a freezer-safe container for up to 3 months. To defrost, thaw overnight in a fridge or place in a large pot and cook slowly over medium heat until defrosted. Cook pasta fresh to order, then toss with ragu and serve.
Other Pasta Recipes To Try!
We also have a fantastic recipe for braised beef pasta that is similar to this recipe, however instead of a ragu sauce, the braising liquid is strained so the mirepoix, herbs, and other ingredients provide a rich depth of flavor, but the sauce is silky smooth. Plus, we serve it with creamy burrata cheese, and it is exceptional!
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Honestly, you could serve this ragu with a crusty baguette and call it a day. Sometimes simple is best!
There are a lot of pasta recipes on Well Seasoned, but this may be the very best of them all. If you make this Short Rib Ragu recipe at home, please let us know by leaving a review and rating below!
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Tender, Slow Braised Short Rib Ragu!
- 3.5 lbs bone-in beef short ribs English cut style, not Flanken style
- 1 Tbsp Kosher salt
- ½ tsp freshly ground black pepper
- 2 Tbsp light neutral oil, such as grapeseed, canola, or vegtable oil
- 1 large sweet onion or yellow onion, diced
- 2 large carrots cut into ¼" dice
- 2 large celery stalks diced
- 3 cloves garlic finely chopped
- 2 Tbsp tomato paste
- 2 cups red wine
- 1 (28oz) can whole plum tomatoes
- 2 cups low-sodium beef stock
- 2 Tbsp aged balsamic vinegar
- 4 sprigs rosemary or thyme
- 4 sprigs sage
- 2 bay leaves
- Parmigiano Reggiano rind optional
- 1 lb pappardelle or other long, flat pasta
- Parmigiano Reggiano for serving
- Finely chopped parsley
- Flaky sea salt for serving
- Season the ribs. Preheat oven to 350F. Pat ribs dry with a paper towel, then generously season on all sides with 1 Tbsp Kosher salt and ½ tsp freshly ground black pepper.
- Sear the ribs. Preheat a large dutch oven over high heat, then add a few tablespoons of a light, neutral oil. When very hot, work in batches as needed to sear the ribs until browned on all sides, about 10-12 minutes total. Transfer seared ribs to a plate, then reduce heat to medium-high.
- Sauté the vegetables. Drain off all but 2 Tbsp of fat from the pan, then add diced onion, carrots, celery, and garlic, then cook, stirring occasionally, until translucent – about 4-6 minutes.
- Stir in tomatoes. Stir in 2 Tbsp tomato paste until dissolved, then delgaze with 2 cups red wine, being sure to scrape the bottom of the pan. Allow this to cook down for 1-2 minutes, then add a 28oz can of whole tomatoes, either crushing them with your hands directly into the pot or breaking them up with the back of a wooden spoon or spatula. Add 2 cups low-sodium beef stock and 2 Tbsp balsamic vinegar, then stir and bring to a boil.
- Cook the ribs. Using kitchen twine, tie together rosemary (or thyme) and sage sprigs, then place in the pot along with 2 bay leaves and a Parmesan rind, if using. Return the seared ribs to the pot, then cover with a lid and transfer to a preheated oven. Cook until tender and falling off the bone, about 2 ½ – 3 hours.
- Shred the beef. Use tongs to carefully remove the beef ribs and place in a large bowl. Cool until you're able to handle the beef with your hands. Discard beef bones, then using your hands or two forks, shred the beef.
- Discard herbs and Parmesan rind. Remove the herbs and the Parmesan rind, then return the shredded beef to the sauce and stir.
- Cook the pasta. When ready to serve, cook pappardelle until al dente according to package directions, then drain, reserving at least 1 cup of the pasta cooking liquid.
- Finish, then serve. If serving the entire ragu at once, you can simply stir in the cooked pappardelle with the sauce, toss until the pasta is evenly coated, then serve. If you’re only using a portion of the ragu, we recommend heating about 1-2 cups at a time in a large skillet over medium-high heat. When hot, add the cooked pappardelle along with a generous splash (about ¼ cup to start) of reserved pasta cooking water. Toss until thoroughly coated, then serve with shaved or grated Parmigiano Reggiano and lots of chopped parsley. Sprinkle with flaky sea salt just before serving.
- Cartilage can be discarded when shredded meat. Feel free to leave it in If you prefer!
- Leftovers: Store in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 4 days.
- Make ahead: The flavors intensify as it sits – this is a great dish to make today and serve tomorrow!
- Freeze: Cool the short rib ragu completely to room temperature, without pasta, then store in a freezer-safe container for up to 3 months. To defrost, thaw overnight in a fridge or place in a large pot and cook slowly over medium heat until defrosted. Cook pasta fresh to order, then toss with ragu and serve.