Made from scratch this slow cooker beef and pork ragu is rich in flavour and very easy to make. Prepared with a few simple ingredients this ragu requires minimal effort to make the best pasta sauce ever.
🌟 About This Recipe
- This recipe uses a combination of minced beef and minced pork. We choose to use a combination of meat because we like the flavour. It is also a way to reduce the strong flavour and smell that you can get with pork sometimes.
- Beef and pork ragu is a fantastic comfort food that can be enjoyed all year round.
- If you are looking for a budget friendly family meal that is healthy and hearty, give this recipe a try.
- This recipe is excellent for freezer meal prep because, it is freezes and reheats very well.
- This ragu is gluten free, sugar free and dairy free.
What is Pork Ragu?
Pork ragu is a slow cooked braised pork that is often served with pasta. It can be made with boneless pork shoulder, pork shoulder on the bone and even with ground meat.
There are several ways of cooking braised pork ragu. Some recipes will use a Dutch oven and start with cooking it on the stove, then finish with a long slow cook in the oven.
Other recipes will have you cook the ragu in a pot over a medium flame, then reduce the heat and continue cooking until the meat becomes fall apart tender.
Then there are recipes that make the use of a slow cooker. Some recipes will be dump and go and others will need a little precooking before it’s placed in the slow cooker – which is what this recipe is.
Why we like using the slow cooker
We love using the slow cooker it works out cheaper to run than your oven, especially if it is electric. It’s also virtually hands free when compared to the stove top cooking, where you need to come back and occasionally stir.
If fact after some initial precooking and after it’s in the slow cooker, you can just walk away and let it do its own thing and come back when it done.
Please note that below is a guide for some of the ingredients we used in the recipe. The printable recipe further down the page has the complete list of ingredients, including quantities and step-by-step instructions.
Bacon – adds flavor and seasoning to the sauce. Choose lean bacon or trim away the excess to cut down on the fat.
Ground Beef and Pork - if you can choose lean ground pork and ground beef, to make a sauce that is not greasy and heavy.
Onion, carrot, and celery - these vegetables add flavor and bulk to the sauce. If you have fussy young children you can “hide” the vegetables by grating the carrot and finely chopping the celery and onion.
Beef stock – for convenience we just make some up with stock cubes.
Canned tomato and tomato paste – add richness to the sauce because they have been cooked for a long time to bring out a rich tomato flavor.
Red wine – adds flavor and also helps to make the meat tender. You do not need an expensive wine for this recipe.
Step 1 – Remove the excess fat from the bacon and cut it into small dice. Heat the oil in a large frying pan add the bacon and cook until it turns brown. This can take about 5 minutes over medium-high heat.
Step 2 – Turn down the heat and add the onion, garlic, carrot, and celery, cook for about 5 minutes more or until the vegetables are soft. Occasionally stir the mixture as it cooks.
Step 3 – Next add the ground pork and ground beef and turn the heat back to high and cook. Use a wooden spoon or spatula to break the meat into tiny pieces. Cook until the meat has turned from pink to brown.
Step 4 – Pour in the wine and add the tomato paste, continue to cook on high for about 2-3 minutes.
Step 5 – Transfer the mixture to the slow cooker.
Step 6 – Add the diced tomatoes, stock, oregano, and bay leaf.
Step 7 – Stir well, cover with a lid and cook on low for 8 hours or on high for 4 hours.
Step 8 – When ready, taste the beef and pork ragu for seasoning and adjust the seasoning to taste with salt. Serve hot over pasta.
✏️ Recipe Notes
Use all pork – If you don’t like the idea of combining two different types of meat replace the ground beef with ground pork.
Make a pork shoulder ragu – you can replace the ground meat with an equal amount of shoulder pork. Remove the excess fat from the shoulder pork and cut it into about 4 - 6 large pieces.
Season the pork with a little salt, brown the meat in a hot pan with a little oil, transfer the meat to the slow cooker.
Cook the bacon and the vegetables as outlined in the recipe and cook for 5 minutes more.
Next, add the wine and cook on high heat for 2-3 minutes stirring occasionally then transfer the tomato sauce to the slow cooker with the remaining ingredients.
Cook on low for 8 hours or on high for 4 hours or until the meat is fall-apart tender.
Use two forks to shred the meat into small pieces and mix into the tomato sauce.
Taste the pork shoulder ragu for seasoning and season to taste with salt and freshly ground black pepper.
Serve with pappardelle pasta or pasta of your choice.
🥗 Serving Suggestions
Turn this beef and pork ragu into an extra special meal make your own homemade pasta. It's not as hard as you think and homemade is so much better than store-bought.
Yes, this beef and pork ragu can be frozen. For convenience and for easy dinners, portion the ragu into individual serves (or family size serves). Allow the mixture to come to room temperature, then place into freezer-safe containers and freeze for up to three months.
Per serving this beef and pork ragu recipe has about 329 calories.
If you like this you might also like to try our slow cooker Bolognese sauce. It’s another easy Italian ragu that is great for serving with pasta. This recipe is made with ground beef and is richer in taste because milk is added to the sauce.
🍲 More Easy Recipes
If you make this beef and pork ragu recipe, I did love to know! Please come back and leave a comment below and tell me how it went.
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📋 Recipe Card
Slow Cooker Ground Beef and Pork Ragu
- Large frying pan/skillet
- Slow cooker
- 3 tablespoons olive or vegetable oil
- 100 grams bacon diced
- 200 grams onion diced
- 2 garlic cloves minced or grated
- 75 grams carrot chopped
- 50 grams celery stalk diced
- 250 grams pork mince
- 250 grams lean beef mince
- 125 grams (125 ml) red wine
- 2 tablespoons tomato paste
- 1 x 400 grams can diced tomatoes
- 300 grams (300 ml) beef stock
- ½ teaspoon dried oregano
- 1 bay leaf
- Salt and pepper
- Heat oil in a deep saucepan. Add the bacon and fry over medium heat, stirring frequently for about 5 minutes.
- Reduce the heat slightly and add the onion garlic, carrot and celery and cook for about 5 minutes or until the vegetables are soft, stirring occasionally.
- Add the ground pork and beef, turn the heat to high and cook. As you cook the meat break it into tiny pieces with a wooden spoon or spatula. For about 10 minutes or until the meat has turned from pink to brown.
- Pour in the wine and cook on high for about 2-3 minutes, to cook of the alcohol. Season the mixture to taste with salt.
- Transfer the mixture to the slow cooker.
- Stir in the tomato puree, diced tomatoes, stock, oregano and bay leaf. Put the lid on and cook on low for 8 hours or on high for 4 hours.
- Before serving taste the ragu and adjust the seasoning to taste with salt and pepper.
- Serve with pasta.