Slow Cooked Beef Shin Ragù (Slow Cooker + Oven Instructions Included)

Beef shin ragu tossed with thick noodles in a stone bowl and a bowl of parmesan on the side.

I love Pasta Evangelist’s Beef Shin & Barolo Wine Ragù, but ordering from them is a treat and I thought I could do even better myself. And it turned out I could: say hello to my rich, easy, indulgent and oh so delicious Slow Cooked Beef Shin Ragù.

Pieces of beef shin are cooked down in a rich red wine and tomato sauce before being shredded and tossed with wide pappardelle noodles that wrap themselves around the beef shreds before the whole thing is finished with a generous shower of freshly grated pecorino? What is there not to love? It is the perfect make-ahead dinner (also great for meal prep) as all you’ll have to do come dinner time is cook some pasta and toss in the sauce.

October 2023 update: I’ve had so many requests for a slow cooker version of this recipe, I’ve updated the recipe card at the bottom of this post with slow cooker instructions in the notes. It’s delicious both ways and the slow cooker is both energy saving and convenient, but I still think the oven version has a slightly richer flavour as you’re able to finish it uncovered in the oven for half an hour so if you have the time. I urge you to try the original recipe first before turning to the slow cooker one (which is what I usually make if we’re running errands on a Saturday as it can cook safely whilst we’re out the house!)

Beef shin ragu tossed with thick noodles in a stone bowl and a bowl of parmesan on the side on a countertop.
Close up of Beef shin ragu tossed with thick noodles in a stone bowl and a bowl of parmesan on the side.

I’ve adapted this Slow Cooked Beef Shin Ragù recipe from a Tom Kerridge recipe in BBC Good Food which we loved for dinner, but felt needed a little more oomph!

Also, it is a super freezer-friendly recipe, so make up a big batch (you can easily double this sauce once you’ve tried it and realised you love it as much as I do!) and freeze it in portions to give future you a treat at the end of a busy day. With a nice glass of red wine portions of this in front of a film have proved to be the perfect antidote to work stress of an evening. We have done this before, and it totally works! Sometimes all you need is a big bowl of pasta in front of the television.

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Slow Cooked Beef Shin Ragù

  • Author: Rachel Phipps
  • Prep Time: 15 minutes
  • Cook Time: 3 hours 10 minutes
  • Total Time: 3 hours 25 minutes
  • Yield: Serves 4
  • Category: Pasta
  • Method: Slow Cooking
  • Cuisine: Italian


This rich, indulgent Slow Cooked Beef Shin Ragù recipe is delicious tossed with pasta and totally freezer-friendly so it is great for batch cooking.


  • 500g (1 lb 2 oz) beef shin
  • sea salt
  • 1 tbsp light oil
  • 1 brown onion
  • 1 carrot
  • 2 celery sticks
  • 2 large cloves garlic
  • 2 tbsp tomato puree 
  • 1/2 tbsp white miso paste
  • 1 x 400g (14 oz) tin chopped tomatoes
  • 200ml (3/4 cup) red wine
  • 1 rosemary sprig
  • 1 sage sprig
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 250ml (1 cup) beef stock, made with 1 stock cube
  • freshly ground black pepper
  • 400g (14 oz) pappardelle
  • pecorino or parmesan cheese, for serving


  1. Pre-heat the oven to 160 degrees (330 farenheit). Heat the oil in a large, lidded casserole dish or heavy bottomed saucepan set over a medium high heat. Pat the beef shin dry on a piece of kitchen paper and season well with sea salt. Brown for at least 5 minutes on each side so they have a good amount of colour, but take care not to let the bottom of the pan burn. Remove to a plate lined with kitchen paper to soak up any excess oil.
  2. Meanwhile, peel and finely chop the onion, carrot and top, tail and finely chop the celery. Add to the pan with a generous pinch of salt and cook for 5-6 minutes until soft and just starting to colour.
  3. Crush in the garlic and cook for a further minute before stirring in the tomato puree and the miso paste. Cook for another minute until the tomato puree has caramelised slightly and turned a lovely brick red colour. 
  4. Add the tinned tomatoes, and use the wine to rinse out the tomato juices, adding them too. Use the wooden spoon to scrape any brown bits off the bottom of the pan and into the sauce. Add the herbs, beef stock and season really well with a little more salt and some black pepper.
  5. Return the beef shin to the pan and turn up the heat to bring it to the boil. Then, clap on the lid and transfer the pot to the oven for 2 hours.
  6. Remove the lid, stir the mixture and return to the oven for a further 30 minutes, uncovered.
  7. While you put the pasta on to cook in a pan of boiling, salted water carefully shred the beef shin into the sauce, removing any gristly bits along with the bay leaf, rosemary and sage sprigs. Season to taste and replace the lid to keep warm while you wait for the pasta.
  8. Drain the pasta reserving a little of the cooking water and return it to it’s pan set over a medium low heat.
  9. Stir in the beef ragù, adding a little of the cooking water to create a rich and glossy sauce.
  10. Serve in warm bowls topped with grated pecorino or parmesan cheese, if liked. 


Slow Cooker Instructions

Follow the recipe instructions as above either browning the beef, softening the vegetables and caramelising the tomato puree in a high-sided frying pan, or in the removable insert of a sear-and-stew model slow cooker (I swear by these!) Only add 100ml of red wine, and 1/2 a beef stock cube made up with 50ml of water. Cook on high for 4 hours or on low before 8 hours. Turn the slow cooker up to high (if you’re not already cooking on high!) and leave the lid off to allow the sauce to reduce a little whilst you shred the beef and keep it warm while the pasta cooks.

Recommended Equipment

I find that my 24cm Le Creuset casserole dish (ad) is the perfect size to make this ragu. To crush garlic, I recommend both this garlic press (ad) or this microplane (ad).