This easy prosciutto ragu recipe is loaded with salty, savory flavors and a surprise of sweetness thanks to onion jam!
Is there anything better than a comforting bowl of rich ragu? I don’t think so. It really takes me to my happy place!
This prosciutto ragu is made with prosciutto, sausage, and ground beef for a rich, thick, savory ragu perfect for any day of the week.
You can mix and match the proteins, too. Try it with pancetta. Or use all sausage, all beef, or a mix of beef and pork. You could even try it with ground turkey for a healthier take.
The real secret to this recipe? The onion jam! You can, of course, caramelize the onions yourself but there’s something so deeply satisfying about throwing in a couple tablespoons of onion jam to give this prosciutto ragu recipe that special sweet undertones.
I used Josephine’s Feast Outrageous Onion Preserves but you can use your favorite brand of onion jam, onion preserves, or jarred caramelized onions. There are so many out there to choose from!
How to make this easy prosciutto ragu recipe:
This recipe, like many ragu recipes, is all about layering flavors. First, start by rendering the fat out of the prosciutto. Then, cook the meat in the prosciutto fat and remove it from the pot.
Transfer all the meat to a paper towel-lined plate and drain off all but 1 tablespoon of fat.
From there, begin cooking the vegetables and aromatics. Start with the mushrooms, then add the diced onion and celery. Once they soften, add minced garlic and onion preserves.
From there, simply add it all together. Put the cooked meat back in the pot along with water or stock and whole peeled tomatoes, and then bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer for 1 hour until reduced. Once the ragu has finished simmering, add in the heavy cream and you’re done!
When your ragu has finished cooking, prepare your favorite pasta–I love rigatoni or pappardelle for a hearty ragu like this one–and toss the pasta with the sauce. Garnish with a few basil leaves and some freshly grated parmesan and that’s it! You’re ready to enjoy.
Easy Prosciutto Ragu Recipe
- Large pot
- 4 ounces prosciutto diced
- 1 pound ground beef
- 1 pound hot Italian sausage loose
- 8 ounces mushrooms sliced
- 1 tablespoon olive oil if needed
- 1 yellow onion peeled and diced
- 3 ribs celery with leaves diced
- 8 cloves garlic peeled and minced
- 1-2 tablespoons of your favorite onion jam
- 28- ounce can whole peeled tomatoes
- 2 cups water or beef stock
- Salt pepper, and crushed red pepper to taste
- ⅓ cup heavy cream
- 16 ounces dry rigatoni
- Fresh basil leaves
- freshly grated Parmesan cheese
Cook the prosciutto:
- Place the prosciutto in a wide pot and turn the heat to medium. Cook for 5 minutes until the fat begins to render.
- Add the beef and sausage and cook for 12-15 minutes, breaking it up with a wooden spoon as it cooks, until cooked through. Transfer to a paper towel-lined plate. Remove all but 1 tablespoon fat from the pot.
Cook the mushrooms:
- Add the mushrooms to the pot and cook, stirring often, for 10 minutes until crisp and golden brown. Season with salt and pepper.
Cook the aromatics:
- If the pot is dry, add 1 tablespoon olive oil to the mushrooms. Add the diced onion and celery to the mushrooms and cook for 6-7 minutes. Season with salt and pepper.
- Add the garlic and cook for 1 minute until fragrant. Add the onion jam and toss to coat.
Simmer the ragu:
- Return the cooked meat to the pot. Add the whole peeled tomatoes and 2 cups of water or beef stock. Taste and season with salt, pepper, and crushed red pepper. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer for 1 hour. Add more water or beef stock if the liquid evaporates too quickly. Once thick, turn off the heat and stir in the heavy cream. Keep warm.
Make the pasta:
- Once the ragu has finished cooking, bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Cook the pasta until al dente. Remove 1/4 cup of pasta cooking water and then drain the pasta.
- Turn the heat on the ragu to medium-high. Once bubbly, add the pasta cooking water and stir to combine. Add the cooked pasta and toss for 1 minute until glossy. Turn off the heat.
- Divide the pasta and ragu between bowls. Serve with basil, parmesan, and extra virgin olive oil if you like!