Simple, Tender Beef Short Ribs in Tomato Sauce

If a year ago you told me that I’d cook beef short ribs for dinner tonight and unabashedly enjoy them, I may have bought into the latest Rapture. I’ve never been a big meat eater, especially such notoriously fatty cuts of meat, but since we’ve been purchasing all our meats from Rocky Plains, LLP, I’ve been much more adventurous (and a little more carnivorously inclined), and have been discovering new ways of cooking even the less lean cuts more healthfully. A little meat goes a long way in our house, and we fully trust our locally sourced proteins as representative of stellar standards from nutritional, humane, and environmental vantage points.  There’s not much to this recipe: you roast the beef for approximately 1/2 hour  (more to remove more fat) while you begin preparing the sauce in a skillet. Remove the ribs from the oven and transfer to a baking dish; pour over the sauce, and bake on a significantly lower heat for 2 1/2 hours. Add whatever touches you like to the sauce, though you won’t likely want any cheese or added fats. Drippings from the beef are ridiculously flavorful, and cooking, covered, in sauce renders the meat so succulent and tender it really slides off the bone. As this cut does have quite a bit of fat (that you can easily cut off after cooking), and therefore less meat, you’ll have all the more opportunity to load the rest of your plate with colorful veggies. Yummy.  : )

Beef Short Ribs in Tomato Sauce

  • 1 to 1 1/2 pounds beef short ribs
  • 1 teaspoon or less olive oil
  • 1/2 medium onion, chopped
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 15-ounce can crushed tomatoes
  • 1 teaspoon fresh thyme
  • 1 teaspoon fresh torn basil
  • 1/3 cup dry red wine
  • Dash crushed red pepper flakes
  • Salt and pepper to taste

1) Lightly salt and pepper short ribs. Place on a roasting pan and bake at 450 F for 30-40 minutes. Drain fat.

2) While ribs are roasting, heat a small amount of olive oil in a skillet and lightly brown the onion and garlic. Add remaining ingredients, bring to near boil, reduce heat, cover, and simmer.

3) Remove ribs from oven. Transfer to a 9 X 13 baking dish, bone side up, and pour over sauce. Cover, and bake at 325 F a further 2 1/2 hours.

Photo credit: Fliker user StudioGabe

  1. Kristin
    May 23, 2011

    And, any leftover meat will certainly be appreciated by a certain canine friend, anyway, right?

    This sounds like a great recipe for the colder months since the oven would be on for a while so I will “clip” this for later. Meanwhile, Aaron will be grilling up spare ribs with his own rub concoction that he won’t divulge ingredients of!

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