Instant Pot Short Ribs Ragu
This Instant Pot short rib recipe has simple ingredients and is so easy to make! Tender, slow-cooked, fall-off-the-bone beef in a rich & flavorful tomato sauce. This short rib ragu recipe is truly perfect!
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What Makes This Recipe Great
This easy Instant Pot short rib recipe is going to knock your socks off! It’s comforting, savory, and perfect for wowing guests at all of your gatherings! This is the perfect recipe for fall and holidays time of year. This is one of my favorite dishes and it tastes like it comes from your local Italian restaurant!
Smother this Instant Pot short ribs ragu on top of your favorite gluten-free al dente pasta, mashed potatoes, or veggies, and be prepared to want seconds! If you’re looking for a good Instant Pot short rib recipe, this sure is it!
What Is Ragu?
Ragu is a meat-based Italian sauce with minced elements (think carrots, onion, celery, etc). It is typically made with tomato sauce or tomato paste and red wine and served with pasta. I keep my version super simple and flavorful but use a high-quality jarred marinara sauce. The seasoned short ribs are fall-apart tender and it’s so delicious. This heart beef ragu has the same taste, with less effort!
Ragu is also typically thicker than other sauces. Short ribs ragu is not to be confused with short rib ragout, which is a slow-cooked French-style stew that can be made with meat or fish and vegetables. Totally different!
The Difference Between Ragu vs. Bolognese
Bolognese falls under the ragu umbrella. It typically has a thinner sauce than ragu, and it is also usually made with white wine vs red. I’ve made bolognese sauce with red wine and it turned out delicious, so either way works!
Some people like to add some heavy cream to the bolognese to lighten up the color. It is also typically served with wide, flat pasta, whereas Instant Pot Ragu is served with thinner noodles.
How To Make This Recipe
Full ingredients and quantities are listed below in the printable recipe card.
Short ribs: the star of the show! You can use bone-in or boneless beef short ribs. I personally think bone-in ribs provide the most flavor. You can also use chuck roast for this recipe if that’s what you have on hand. I like to get meaty boneless short ribs from Wegmans or Whole Foods. Tough cuts of meat work for this recipe because the pressure cooking helps to break down the connective tissue and they become so tender.
Veggies: Onions, Carrots, Celery, Minced garlic. I like to use a small yellow onion.
Red wine: You want a hearty red wine – something dry. I used a Cabernet Sauvignon. It doesn’t have to be anything fancy or expensive, you just don’t want it to be sweet! The dry red wine adds to the richness of the sauce.
Olive oil: You can also sub avocado oil if you prefer.
Beef Broth: Kettle and Fire is my favorite. Also made with clean ingredients. It can be tricky to find beef broth without gluten and additives, so this is my go-to! Code MARY gets you 20% off site-wide.
Gluten Free Pasta: I love Jovial Foods Tagliatelle. I know a lot of people like to serve short rib bolognese or short ribs ragu with pappardelle pasta. I have yet to find a gluten-free version of this, so this tagliatelle is the next best thing!
Step by Step
- Making short rib ragu in your pressure cooker is super simple. First, pat your short ribs dry and sprinkle them generously with salt and black pepper. Press saute and heat the olive oil. Add the short ribs. Brown short ribs for 3 minutes on each side until golden brown. They may stick a little, but once they have a nice sear on them, they should release just fine.
- Remove the short ribs using a slotted spoon, and set them aside. Add the carrots, celery, onion, and garlic into the pot and sauté them for 2-3 minutes.
- Pour in the wine and listen to that glorious sizzle! It’s one of my favorite things. Use a spoon to deglaze the bottom of the pot and scrape up any brown bits on the bottom.
- Add the short ribs back in along with the marinara sauce, beef broth, salt, and crushed red pepper. Stir well, then cook on the “meat / stew” setting for 35 minutes. Let it naturally release for 30 minutes after. Manually release any remaining pressure.
- Remove the browned short ribs and place them on a cutting board. Shred meat using 2 forks. Discard any bones and pieces of fat from the top of the sauce. Turn the Instant Pot back to Sauté mode, and let the sauce reduce and thicken as it bubbles for 10 minutes. Skim any fat off the top.
- Return the shredded meat to the pot and stir. Season with kosher salt and pepper as needed.
- Serve over the side of your choosing! Boom, told you Instant Pot Short Ribs Ragu was super easy!
Slow Cooker Method
Slow cooking the meat also works for this recipe. Simply do steps 1-3 in a skillet on the stove.
- Transfer the short ribs to the slow cooker and pour the sautéed veggies, wine, marinara, broth, and spices over top.
- Stir and cook on low for 8-9 hours or high for 3-4 hours!
- Shred the meat and discard the bones and fat. Turn the slow cooker to high and let the sauce simmer while it thickens for about 15 minutes.
- Return the meat to the pot and stir. Skim any fat off the top.
Stove Top / Oven Method
Complete steps 1-3 in an oven-safe large Dutch oven or large pot that is oven safe. Don’t forget to deglaze the bottom of the pan and get the browned bits up with a wooden spoon!
- Add all of the ingredients into the pot and transfer to a 350-degree oven for 2.5-3 hours.
- Shred the beef and discard the bones and fat.
- Heat the sauce on the stove and let it bubble and thicken for 10 minutes. Skim excess fat off the top.
- Return the shredded beef to the pot and stir. Serve with parmesan cheese or some fresh herbs like parsley, and enjoy!
How to Serve This Recipe
I served my Instant Pot short ribs ragu with gluten-free tagliatelle and parmesan cheese. Some other options:
Trader Joe’s Cauliflower Gnocchi
Other veggie noodles
Yes! Let it cool completely before transferring it to an air-tight container. You can freeze it for up to 3 months!
It is paleo-friendly if served over cauliflower gnocchi, spaghetti squash, or veggie noodles. It is not Whole30 compliant because of the wine! You could always omit that to stay compliant.
More Instant Pot Recipes
Instant Pot Short Rib Ragu
- 3 lbs bone-in short ribs, or 1.5 lbs boneless
- 2 tbsp olive oil
- ½ onion, diced
- 2 carrots, peeled and diced
- 3 ribs of celery, diced
- 3 cloves minced garlic
- ½ cup dry red wine
- 28 oz jarred marinara sauce, I love Rao's Homemade brand
- ½ cup beef broth, I love Kettle & Fire brand
- ¾ tsp sea salt
- ½ tsp crushed red pepper
- fresh parsley, for serving (optional)
- parmesan or pecorino romano, for serving (optional)
- Pat your short ribs dry and sprinkle them generously with salt and pepper.
- Set the Instant Pot to Sauté mode and add the olive oil. Once it's hot, add the short ribs. Sear them until browned and crispy, about 3 minutes per side. They may stick a little, but once they have a nice sear they should release pretty easily.
- Remove the short ribs from the pot and set aside.
- Add in the onions, celery, carrots, and minced garlic. Sauté for 3-4 minutes until they begin to soften.
- Add in the red wine and deglaze the pot, scraping up any brown bits from the bottom.
- Add the short ribs back into the pot along with the marinara sauce, beef broth, salt, and red pepper flakes. Give everything a good stir.
- Cook on the "meat/stew" setting for 35 minutes. Let it naturally release for 30 minutes.
- Remove the short ribs from the pot and place them on a cutting board or sheet pan. Shred using 2 forks and discard any bones and pieces of fat.
- While you are shredding the meat, stir the sauce and set the Instant Pot to "sauté" again. Let the sauce bubble and reduce a bit for about 10 minutes. Skim any fat off the top.
- Place the shredded meat back into the pot and stir. Serve tossed with gluten free tagliatelle (pictured), gnocchi, polenta, mashed potatoes, or regular pasta. Garnish with parsley and parmesan, if desired. Enjoy!
- Heat the olive oil in a large skillet over medium high heat. Season the short ribs with salt and pepper. Add them to the skillet and sear them for 3 minutes on both sides. Remove the short ribs and set them aside.
- Add the onions, celery, carrots, and minced garlic to the skillet. Sauté 3-4 minutes until softened. Add in the red wine and stir, using a spoon to deglaze the bottom of the pan and scrape up any brown bits.
- Add the short ribs to the bottom of the slow cooker and top with the onions, carrots, celery, garlic, and wine. Pour the marinara sauce and beef broth over top of the short ribs and sprinkle with the salt and crushed red pepper.
- Give everything a good stir. Cook on high for 3-4 hours, or low for 8-9 hours.
- Remove the short ribs and shred using two forks, discarding any bones and pieces of fat.
- Meanwhile, set the slow cooker to high heat and let the sauce bubble and reduce a bit for about 15 minutes. Skim any fat off the top.
- Return the shredded meat to the slow cooker and stir. Serve the ragu over gluten free tagliatelle (pictured), gnocchi, polenta, mashed potatoes, or regular pasta. Enjoy!
Stove Top /Oven
- To make this in a dutch oven, follow the instructions above for searing the short ribs and sautéing the onions, carrots, celery, and garlic in the pot. Preheat your oven to 350. Add the wine and use a spoon to scrape any brown bits off the bottom of the pot. Add the short ribs back into the pot along with the marinara sauce, beef broth, sea salt, and crushed red pepper. Stir well, then cover the pot and place it into the oven. Cook for 2.5-3 hours. Remove the beef and shred, then add it back to the pot. Skim any fat off the top. Serve with suggested accompaniments above!
This recipe was originally posted on December 10, 2021 and updated with new copy on October 14, 2023.