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.
The vegetables provide their own health benefits as carrots, celery, and mushrooms are all decent sources of antioxidants and fiber.
Ingredients for Vegetable Beef Ragu
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
- Caprese Salad
- Spinach Salad
- Burrata Salad
How to Make Vegetable Beef Ragu
This vegetable beef ragu recipe helps you make a delicious and homelike Italian dish with beef, vegetables, and pasta.
- cook TIME 25 mins
- prep TIME 12 mins
- total TIME 37 mins
- COURSE Main Course
- CUISINE Italian
- SERVINGS servings
- CALORIES 458 kcal
- 16 ozcooked fettuccine (from 8 oz uncooked)
- 10 oz85% lean ground beef
- 8 ozwhite mushrooms (finely chopped)
- 2 ozcarrots (diced)
- 2 ozcelery (sliced)
- 2 tbspolive oil
- 1 tbspgarlic (minced)
- 2 ozonions (minced)
- 1 tbspHunt’s tomato paste
- 0.5 tbspall-purpose flour
- 1 tspdried oregano
- 0.8 tspsalt
- 0.5 tspblack pepper
- 0.5 tsppaprika
- 4 fl ozred wine
- 0.5 cupunsalted chicken broth
- 2 tbspparsley (finely chopped)
Cook the pasta: Boil for 1 minute less than the package instructions for al dente pasta.
Chop the mushrooms: Slice off the stem and cut the mushrooms into thin slices. Finely chop the slices.
Dice the carrots: Slice off the top part and cut the carrots crosswise into 2-3 parts. Cut the parts lengthwise into thin strips then cut the strips crosswise into small dice.
Slice the celery: Cut off the leafy green part and chop the celery into thin slices.
Mince the garlic.
Mince the onions.
Chop the parsley.
Caramelize garlic and onions: Prepare a pan and add 2 tbsp olive oil, 1 tbsp garlic, and 2 oz onions. Stir for 1 minute or until caramelized.
Stir in tomato paste: Add 1 tbsp tomato paste and mix well for 30 seconds.
Cook the mushrooms: Add 8 oz white mushrooms and stir for 3 minutes.
Cook the carrots and celery: Stir in 2 oz carrots and 2 oz celery. Cook for 1 minute.
Cook the beef: Add 10 oz of ground beef and stir for 3 minutes.
Thicken the sauce: Stir in 1/2 tbsp all-purpose flour and mix well.
Season the sauce: Season with 1 tsp dried oregano, 1/2 tsp paprika, 3/4 tsp salt, and 1/2 tsp black pepper.
Pour in the liquids: Add 4 fl oz red wine and cook for 1 minute. Pour in 1/2 cup unsalted chicken broth, turn down to low heat, and let it simmer for 10 minutes.
Garnish and serve: Turn off the heat and sprinkle with 2 tbsp parsley. Divide 16 oz cooked fettuccine and the sauce into 4 servings. Serve the sauce on top of the pasta. Enjoy.