Today’s vegetable beef ragu recipe is a prime example of the robust side of Italian cuisine.
We make this ragu with ground beef and an array of fresh vegetables that pack a ton of flavors. The main ingredients are accompanied by red wine, chicken broth, and a simple seasoning blend.
We love this recipe for its versatility being perfect for everything from a cozy family dinner to a pleasant date night.
Difference Between a Bolognese and a Ragu
There are few things that separate Ragu and Bolognese because they are both made from ground meat, tomatoes, and other vegetables. In fact, Bolognese is the most popular version of Ragu.
The two ingredients that can help you distinguish between these two meat-based sauces are the wine and the number of tomatoes. Bolognese uses less tomato and white wine instead of red. White wine has a lighter and fruitier taste compared to the bold and nutty taste of red wine.
Is Vegetable Beef Ragu Healthy?
Yes, we believe this dish is healthy.
First of all, it is a suitable option for a weight loss diet. Each serving of our vegetable beef ragu has only 457 calories and 5.3 g of saturated fat. On top of that, beef and mushrooms provide this dish with 22.8 g of protein, which promotes bone and muscle health.
Beef is also a respectable source of heme iron, which may help prevent anemia caused by iron deficiency.
Beef is both the main protein source and the base of the sauce. It gives the sauce the distinctive signature richness that separates it from other meat-based sauces.
We chose three vegetables to accompany the beef in the sauce: mushrooms, carrots, and celery. These three contribute greatly to the overall flavor profile of Ragu.
Combined with two other well-known aromatics (garlic and onion), celery makes the Ragu more fragrant. Carrots and mushrooms bring their sweetness and earthiness, adding yet more layers to this hearty sauce.
This recipe doesn’t need a diverse seasoning blend thanks to the variety of flavors from the other ingredients. Salt, pepper, dried oregano, and paprika are the spices in this dish.
A must-have ingredient for any Ragu is tomatoes. In this recipe, we use tomato paste because it’s more concentrated, giving the sauce bolder tomato flavors.
The beef and vegetables are cooked in red wine and unsalted chicken broth. This is a balanced combination of richness and boldness with lighter notes.
The tastes of beef and red wine go together perfectly, and we want to balance the richness with chicken broth. Beef broth is a suitable option but it may tend towards overkill.
We thicken up the sauce by adding a little all-purpose flour.
Ragu is a chunky meat-based sauce, so a long pasta would be the ideal choice. We use fettuccine, but tagliatelle or linguine also work well.
We finish up the dish by sprinkling a little parsley on top.
How to Store and Reheat Leftovers
Ragu (or any meat-based sauce) should last for 3-4 days in the fridge and 4-6 months in the freezer. Store the sauce in airtight containers or heavy-duty freezer bags to maximize its shelf life.
Reheat the sauce on a pan over medium heat. Add some broth or water to the sauce and stir until warm.
You can also cook in the microwave on high for 2 minutes. If the sauce isn’t warm, continue reheating and check every 30 seconds.
What to Serve With Vegetable Beef Ragu
These vibrant and diverse salads will make a perfect side dish to serve alongside this signature Italian dish.
Broccoli Cauliflower Salad
Watermelon Arugula Salad
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This recipe is a quick and easy way to satisfy your craving for a hearty and flavorful bowl of noodles. Made with tender beef, vegetables, and egg noodles, this dish is perfect for busy weeknights when you don't have a lot of time to cook. Plus, it's customizable so you can add your favorite veggies or spices to make it your own.
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Tuyet Pham is an award-winning Saigonese chef who believes that joy is the secret ingredient to delicious food. At Healthy Recipes 101, Tuyet personally tests and simplifies every recipe, ensuring maximum flavor with minimal effort. With a background at prestigious French restaurants P’TI Saigon and Le Corto, Tuyet knows how to make every dish exceptional.
Luna Regina is an accomplished writer and author who dedicates her career to empowering home cooks and making cooking effortless for everyone. She is the founder of HealthyKitchen101.com and HealthyRecipes101.com, where she works with her team to develop easy, nutritious recipes and help aspiring cooks choose the right kitchen appliances.
Natalie Butler is a registered dietitian nutritionist with a passion to help others live their best life through food, fitness, safer beauty and a healthy lifestyle. She has expertise with a variety of diets and diseases and believes that there is no one-size-fits-all approach for health.
Vegetable Beef Ragu Recipe
This beef ragu is seriously something else - very impressive in both taste AND presentation! A real showstopper dish that everyone will enjoy from start to finish!