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Quick Lamb Ragu

A simple meat sauce for polenta or pasta that's savory and delicious.
Course: Dinner, Main Course
Keyword: Easy Dinner, Lamb Ragu


  • 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1/2 yellow onion, chopped
  • 1 carrot, diced
  • 1 celery stalk, diced
  • 1 pound ground lamb
  • 1 tablespoon tomato paste
  • 1 teaspoon fresh thyme leaves, minced
  • 1/2 cup red wine
  • 1 28-ounce can whole peeled tomatoes (preferably organic)


  • In a large skillet over medium heat, warm the olive oil until it shimmers. Add the onion, carrot, celery and sauté. Cook until the vegetables soften, about 3 minutes.
  • Add the ground lamb and sauté until the meat loses its raw red color. Sprinkle the meat generously with kosher salt and fresh ground pepper. Add the tomato paste, thyme, and red wine and stir to combine. Simmer until the wine reduces, keeping the heat at medium or medium-low. 
  • Add the whole tomatoes and cut them up with kitchen scissors, or break them up with the back of a spoon. Stir the sauce to combine and let simmer on low, covered, for 30 minutes. Watch the sauce and if it starts to brown on the edges of the pan or look dry, add 1/8 cup water and stir.
  • Taste the sauce for salt and adjust if necessary. Serve over penne, polenta, spaghetti squash or orzo.