Slow Cooker Beef Ragu is a rich and tender, fall-apart tomato beef sauce. With all the magic happening in your slow cooker, come home to a satisfying, ready-made home cooked dinner!
This Slow Cooker Beef Ragu recipe is my favourite way to spend a cold winters day with warm flavours! Beautifully browned and slow cooked beef infuses so much flavour into this rustic and versatile sauce.
SLOW COOKER BEEF
While this ragu is incredibly easy to make with cheaper cuts of beef that are normally tough and chewy, slow cooking breaks down the meat and creates a melt-in-your-mouth tomato sauce.
Serve this slow cooker ragu on anything: zucchini noodles and spaghetti squash for lower carb options OR pasta and rice if you’re a carb lover. Even a soft and creamy polenta happens occasionally over here with this ragu, just like this Osso Bucco in Red Wine Sauce.
BEST BEEF CUT FOR RAGU
Beef brisket or roast, simmered in crushed tomatoes, garlic, basil and oregano, seasoned with salt and pepper, and drowning in red wine. How can it not taste like heaven? This ragu makes about 14-15 cups of falling-apart meat sauce, which is heaps and perfect for leftovers. Think ragu grilled cheese. Um…. YES.
HOW TO MAKE RAGU
In this recipe, you have the option of browning the meat first. The flavour that develops from that simple step is mind-blowing. Of course, you don’t HAVE to, but I’m kind of TELLING you to do this step — in a non-bossing-you-around type of way.
THEN, you’re going to brown your garlic and onions in the pan juices… and throw it all in with the rest of the ingredients.
After that, just walk away completely confident in knowing something good and delicious is happening in your slow cooker. Deep flavours building together and blending into a perfect rustic sauce. Because you can’t mess up slow cooked meat… especially this recipe. Its fool proof.
How To Serve Ragu
Once it’s done, shred your beef with a couple of forks until it’s completely shredded, and pour it a llllll over your pasta / rice / or the lower carb options mentioned above.
Looking for a Slow Cooker Bolognaise Sauce? Find it HERE!
WATCH US MAKE RAGU HERE:
Slow Cooker Beef Ragu
- 1 tablespoon olive oil , divided
- 4 pounds | 2kg beef brisket or round roast (or any slow cooking beef of your choice), trimmed of fat
- 1 onion , finely chopped
- 4 cloves garlic , finely copped or minced
- 2 x 14-ounce | 410g cans crushed or diced tomatoes
- 1/2 cup red wine (or beef broth / stock)
- 1/2 cup beef broth | stock
- 4 tablespoons tomato paste
- 1 beef bouillon cube
- 1 teaspoon basil
- 1 teaspoon oregano
- 1-2 teaspoons salt (adjust to your tastes)
- cracked pepper to taste
- 1-2 teaspoons sugar (adjust to your tastes)
- 2 bay leaves
- 2 teaspoons cornstarch mixed with 2 tablespoons water (OPTIONAL FOR A THICK SAUCE)
- Cut beef into 4 pieces. OPTIONAL FOR ADDED FLAVOUR: Heat olive oil in a large pan or skillet over medium-high heat. Sear each piece of beef on both sides until browned (about 5 minutes each side). Transfer each piece to your 6qt slow cooker bowl as soon as they are seared.
- You should have left over oil in the pan (or skillet) from the beef. If not, add 1 tablespoon of (extra) oil to the pan. Fry the garlic until fragrant (about 30 seconds). Add the onion and fry until transparent. Add the garlic/onion mixture over the beef in the slow cooker, plus all remaining ingredients (except for the cornstarch/water mixture).
- Cover and cook on LOW for 7-8 hours, or HIGH for 4-5 hours.The beef is ready if it falls apart easily when pulled apart with two forks.
- NOTE: If you desire a thicker sauce, stir the cornstarch/water mixture into the slow cooker. Cover and cook on high heat for an additional 30 minutes and allow to thicken.
- Shred the beef into pieces; mix through the sauce. Serve over pasta, rice, polenta, zucchini noodles or spaghetti squash.
andrew glasheen says
Made it yesterday, followed the recipe to a T with the exception of basal. Got a 4+lb bottom roast for $1.29 a lb., so took closer to 5 hours. Awesome!!! Served with polenta and mixed green salad with a dijon dressing, and a crusty French loaf. In the Sunday lineup!
ellis tracy says
This recipe was amazing. Everyone in a family of SEVEN loved it. SOOOOOO GOOD.
This is just about ready and I’ve just tested it, it’s a flavour bomb! Thank you so much for the recipe Karina!
Have got this cooking on high for almost 5 hours but it’s not quite pull apart yet… anxious for it to work as it smells incredible!
I don’t have cornstarch – would gelatin powder work with the same method?
Delicious recipe! We are a low carb family, so I omitted the cornflour and the sugar and neither were missed. Now my go to ragu recipe!
Hi there, i was wondering if i half the meat as its only for 1 person do i half the liquid too?
Thank you 🙂
THE. BEST!!!! To die for recipe! Neighbor made this and shared. DO sear the beef!
I don’t have slow cooker— could I do it in Dutch Oven? How?
I’m wondering if I could cook this in my instant pot? Any recommendations for cooking time?
Thank you so much for all these wonderful recipes!!! 🙂
Hi! Your recipe looks and sounds delicious! Are the carbs listed with the cornstarch or without?
Hi! The carbs listed is with the corn starch included. Thanks for following along with me!! xo
Vanette Fontenette says
Your recipes are always amazing. Thank you for the beautiful photos and delicious meal inspiration!
I don´t want to invest in a slow cooker, but use a “Rhömertopff” instead. Does any of you know which temperature a slowcooker normally operates with in low/medium/high?
Kim S says
Karina, I have been receiving your emails for a few weeks now and am just getting ready to start your weekly meal plans. Everything looks delicious and easy to make. I admire the time you take to do this, thank you.
YAY! Thank you so much for following along with me! I am so glad that you are going to use the menu plans! Let me know what you think!
This came out AMAZING!! We put it over Jasmine rice and it was perfect. So flavorful, the kids devoured it!
Hi Karina! Thank you for all the great recipes! I would like to make this dish, but I have a dilemma. I don’t drink wine & haven’t tried cooking with wine because I don’t know which wine to use. Can you please advise me on what brand or type of red wine to look for to make this dish? It looks delicious & I would like to try it using the wine. Hopefully it will encourage me to cook more with wine in the future. Thanks in advance!
Hi Tanya! I usually use a shriraz or a dry red wine. It’s not a favourite to drink, but it’s great to cook with! If you go to the liquor store and ask for a dry red wine for cooking, they will normally point you in the right direction 🙂
Nisha @ Honey What's Cooking says
This looks delicious, saw the video on Instagram. I love the addition of red wine.
This is great ! Makes me hungry right away ! Great photos too ! Thank you !