Shredded Beef Ragu Recipe

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Shredded Beef Ragu Recipe with Pappardelle with a fork on plate with basil and parmesan on the table. It's so easy to make and has a thick meaty texture and a super rich delicious flavor.

This is my easy, made-for-busy-moms Shredded Beef Ragu Recipe!  It has a thick meaty texture and a super rich delicious flavor.  It’s made with beef chuck, so it’s affordable and easy to work with.  It’s made without wine, but instead gets that acidic backdrop from Balsamic Vinegar.  And it’s easy for busy moms because it’s made in a slow cooker!  Just toss all ingredients in, set for 6-8 hours, shred the beef, and that’s it!

Shredded Beef Ragu Recipe with Pappardelle on plate with parsley, basil, parmesan, and bread on the table. It's so easy to make and has a thick meaty texture and a super rich delicious flavor.

EASY DINNER TO FREEZE FOR LATER!

This recipe makes a ton of sauce that freezes and then cooks up again deliciously!  That means it’s perfect for getting multiple meals out of.  Simply cool and then freeze the portion you want to save.  It will keep in your freezer for up to 4-6 months.  Click here to get more freezer dinners: Five 5-Ingredient Freezable Dinners – with Grocery List!

Here are some other recipes that are great for freezing:

Shredded Beef Ragu Recipe with Pappardelle with a fork on plate with parsley, basil, parmesan, and bread on the table. It's so easy to make and has a thick meaty texture and a super rich delicious flavor.

Quick note!  This post contains affiliate links, which means I earn a commission (at no extra cost to you) if you purchase from them.  This commission is what helps me keep this blog afloat :).  But, I also share these links because I have used the products, genuinely love them, and want you to know exactly what I used. 

EQUIPMENT NEEDED

I made this recipe in a slow cooker. However, you could also make it in the oven in a dutch oven or any or any good quality enameled cast iron 5-6 quart dutch oven or small roasting pan with a lid. For the oven, you will want to cook it for 2-3 hours at 400 F degrees until the meat is fall apart tender.

PREP-AHEAD STEPS FOR YOUR BEEF RAGU RECIPE

We are all extremely busy and making dinner during the week can be overwhelming. Here are the steps you can prepare in the day(s) ahead. (Full recipe is below)

The prep for this recipe is to dice the onions and carrots, as well as to mince the garlic.  The rest of the ingredients are simply measured out and then added to the slow cooker insert.

Can I substitute red wine for the Balsamic Vinegar?

Yes, you can add red wine to this recipe and then will want to eliminate the balsamic so the ragu is not too acidic.  If you want to add wine, you can reduce the 2 cups of broth to 1.5 cups and then replace the reduced amount of 1/2 cup with wine.  Or add 1 cup of broth and 1 cup of wine for even more wine flavor.  I would use a good dry red wine that you enjoy drinking.

Are there any other cuts of beef that can be used?

The beauty of this dish is that you can use a less expensive tough cut of meat used for stew and it gets really tender and delicious.  If you want to make this even more decadent, you could use boneless short ribs in this instead.  Just cut them into cubes so they cook evenly and get as tender as possible.  

COOK YOUR BEEF RAGU RECIPE 

This is the easiest part!  Just put all of the ingredients into the slow cooker, mix to combine, and then set the slow cooker to 6 or 8 hours, depending on your schedule.

Raw beef cubes in pot for Shredded Beef Ragu Recipe with Pappardelle. It's so easy to make and has a thick meaty texture and a super rich delicious flavor.

Raw beef cubes, diced onion, and diced carrots in pot for Shredded Beef Ragu Recipe with Pappardelle. It's so easy to make and has a thick meaty texture and a super rich delicious flavor.

Pouring pureed tomatoes over raw beef, diced onion, carrots, and other ingredients in pot for Shredded Beef Ragu Recipe with Pappardelle. It's so easy to make and has a thick meaty texture and a super rich delicious flavor.

2 bay leaves on top of ingredients in pot for Shredded Beef Ragu Recipe with Pappardelle. It's so easy to make and has a thick meaty texture and a super rich delicious flavor.

When the beef is done cooking and is fall apart tender, scoop all of the cubes out of the sauce and shred them. Leave your Slow Cooker on the warm setting. Once shredded, add it back to the sauce in the slow cooker.

2 forks shredding cooked beef for Shredded Beef Ragu Recipe with Pappardelle. It's so easy to make and has a thick meaty texture and a super rich delicious flavor.

2 forks shredding cooked beef for Shredded Beef Ragu Recipe with Pappardelle. It's so easy to make and has a thick meaty texture and a super rich delicious flavor.

Adding cooked shredded beef to sauce in pot for Shredded Beef Ragu Recipe with Pappardelle. It's so easy to make and has a thick meaty texture and a super rich delicious flavor.Cook your pappardelle pasta in a large pot of water with a large pinch of salt. Follow package instructions. Cook to al dente and then strain the pasta.

While the pasta is cooking, you can give the fresh parsley a rough chop and either tear the basil into pieces or roll the leaves and slice across to chiffonade it.

Mix the pasta and some of the sauce. Serve and garnish with the basil, parsley, and parmesan. 

ENJOY!  😍 Carrie

Shredded Beef Ragu Recipe with Pappardelle with a fork on plate with parsley, basil, parmesan, and bread on the table. It's so easy to make and has a thick meaty texture and a super rich delicious flavor.
Shredded Beef Ragu Recipe with Pappardelle with a fork on plate with parsley, basil, parmesan, and bread on the table. It's so easy to make and has a thick meaty texture and a super rich delicious flavor.
5 from 1 vote
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Slow Cooker Shredded Beef Ragu Recipe

This is my easy, made-for-busy-moms Shredded Beef Ragu Recipe!  It has a thick meaty texture and a super rich delicious flavor.  It's made with beef chuck, so it's affordable and easy to work with.  It's also a beef ragu without wine, but instead gets that acidic backdrop from Balsamic Vinegar.  And it's easy for busy moms because it's made in a slow cooker!  Just toss all ingredients in, set for 6-8 hours, shred the beef, and that's it! #beefragu #meatsauce #ragurecipe #easyfamilydinners #dinnerideas #slowcooker #crockpot

Course Main Course
Cuisine Italian
Keyword Beef, beef sauce, pasta, pasta sauce, ragu, slow cooker
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 6 hours
Servings 10 servings
Author Carrie Tyler

Ingredients

Ragu Ingredients

  • 2 1/2-3 lbs Beef chuck roast, cubed
  • 1 Medium onion, diced finely
  • 1 cup Carrots, diced finely
  • 6 cloves Garlic, minced
  • 2 cup Beef broth
  • 3 Tbsp Tomato paste
  • 2 Tbsp Balsamic Vinegar
  • 28 oz Crushed Tomatoes
  • 2 Bay leaves
  • 1 tsp Dried Thyme
  • 1 tsp Sugar
  • 2 tsp Salt or to taste
  • 2 tsp Ground Black Pepper

Pasta and Toppings (serves 10, so reduce by half if you will freeze half of the ragu)

  • 40 oz Uncooked Pappardelle pasta (4oz dried per serving)
  • 1 small bunch Fresh Basil leaves
  • 6 oz Grated or Shredded Parmesan cheese
  • 1 small bunch Fresh Italian Parsley (optional)

Instructions

Prep Ahead Steps

  1. Finely dice the carrots and onions. Mince the garlic cloves.

Make the Ragu

  1. Put all ingredients into the slow cooker pot, starting with the beef chuck cubes, then adding all of the other ingredients. Mix to combine. Store in the fridge overnight to cook in the morning or move on to the next step.

    Pouring pureed tomatoes over raw beef, diced onion, carrots, and other ingredients in pot for Shredded Beef Ragu Recipe with Pappardelle. It's so easy to make and has a thick meaty texture and a super rich delicious flavor.

Cook your Beef Ragu and Pasta

  1. In the morning, set your slow cooker to 6 or 8 hours, depending on your schedule.

  2. When the beef is fall apart tender, scoop all of the cubes out of the sauce and shred them. Leave your Slow Cooker on the warm setting. Once shredded, add it back to the sauce in the slow cooker.

    Adding cooked shredded beef to sauce in pot for Shredded Beef Ragu Recipe with Pappardelle. It's so easy to make and has a thick meaty texture and a super rich delicious flavor.
  3. Cook your pappardelle pasta in a large pot of water with a large pinch of salt. Follow package instructions. Cook to al dente and then strain the pasta.

  4. While the pasta is cooking, you can give the fresh parsley a rough chop and either tear the basil into pieces or roll the leaves and slice across to chiffonade it.

  5. Mix the pasta and some of the sauce. Serve and garnish with the basil, parsley, and parmesan. Enjoy!

    Shredded Beef Ragu Recipe with Pappardelle with a fork on plate with parsley, basil, parmesan, and bread on the table. It's so easy to make and has a thick meaty texture and a super rich delicious flavor.

Recipe Notes

You could also make this recipe in the oven by braising the beef with the same exact ingredients in a dutch oven in the oven for 3-4 hours until the beef is pull apart tender.

Taco Chicken Burger Recipe

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Two Taco Chicken Burgers on wood platter with smokey taco seasonings, cilantro, and scallions.  Then on top are melty cheese, guacamole, lettuce, tomato, and chipotle mayonnaise!

Welcome to my taco obsession and it’s spillage into every type of food that I make! This recipe was a successful experiment in how tacos can transform into the most incredible burger.  This easy Taco Chicken Burger Recipe is flavorful, moist, and all together taco-licious.  It is chock full of smokey taco seasonings, cilantro, and scallions.  Then on top you’ve got all the taco fixings you need… melty cheese, creamy guacamole, tomato, lettuce, and chipotle mayonnaise!  I mean, c’mon, you’ve got to try this!

You know what else is great about these burgers?  You can make a double batch and freeze them raw individually.  Once frozen, you can combine them in an airtight container and store for up to 4 months in the freezer.  Want more freezer hacks?  Click here to get my printable cheat sheet with 10 Freezer Hacks to make easy dinners!

Hand holding half of a Taco Chicken Burger with smokey taco seasonings, cilantro, and scallions. Then on top are melty cheese, guacamole, lettuce, tomato, and chipotle mayonnaise!

HEALTHIER BURGERS!

We all want to indulge a little during the summer, especially when it comes to grilling and eating outside.  But, indulging doesn’t have to be unhealthy.  You can have a fantastic treat that’s good for you too!  It’s all about balance.  And that’s just what we have here.  

For starters, I’ve replaced the higher calorie beef with very lean white meat chicken.  Next, I added tons of flavor with seasonings and fresh cilantro and scallion to the lean chicken so that you don’t miss anything.  Now, I did add cheese to the top of this guy, but it’s about balance, right?  Lettuce, tomato, and Guacamole are the balance.  The Guacamole has avocado and we all know the health benefits of avocados!  They are loaded with vitamins, nutrients, and minerals.  They have protein, fiber, and heart-healthy monounsaturated fatty acids.  And they contain more potassium than a banana!  Here are two more recipes with avocado:  Roasted Cumin Carrots with Avocado Crema and Zippy Pineapple Salsa with Avocado and Red Peppers.

Hand putting lettuce on a Taco Chicken Burger with smokey taco seasonings, cilantro, and scallions, cheese, guacamole, tomato, and chipotle mayonnaise!

Quick note!  This post contains affiliate links, which means I earn a commission (at no extra cost to you) if you purchase from them.  This commission is what helps me keep this blog afloat :).  But, I also share these links because I have used the products, genuinely love them, and want you to know exactly what I used. 

EQUIPMENT NEEDED

The only thing you really need for this recipe is something to cook the burgers on. Ideally, this would be a grill of some sort, either outdoor or stovetop grill. If you don’t have a grill available, you can sear the burgers in a hot skillet or frying pan. Cover them to finish cooking through or put in the oven.

PREP-AHEAD FOR YOUR TACO CHICKEN BURGER RECIPE

We are all extremely busy and making dinner during the week can be overwhelming. Here are steps you can prepare in the day(s) ahead. (See full recipe below)

Start by mixing the mayonnaise and chipotle powder in a bowl, cover, and store in the fridge.  

Moving on to Taco Chicken burger itself.  I love to add fresh cilantro and scallions to it.  You can go heavier or lighter, but this is really the perfect amount in the recipe.  Next, add in the spices and seasonings: Chili powder, cumin, garlic powder, chipotle chili powder, salt.

Stir to combine and then divide into 6 equal parts using a knife or fork.  Once divided, then start to form them into patties.  You can do this a day ahead of cooking.

Hand holding a raw chicken patty for a Taco Chicken Burger recipe. The burger has smokey taco seasonings, cilantro, and scallions. Then on top are melty cheese, guacamole, lettuce, tomato, and chipotle mayonnaise!

Can I use store bought taco seasoning? 

Sure can!  However, I would say to test cook a tsp of the burger mixture before adding the salt.  Many taco seasonings already have a fair amount of salt in them and if you add more, it could end up being incredibly salty.  To test, just add the teaspoon of mixture to a skillet to cook.

How do I freeze the burgers?

You can freeze the raw patties individually and then store them airtight in the freezer.  This is done easily on a sheet pan in the freezer.  Once frozen, transfer to an airtight container.  You can also store in the fridge or freeze using aluminum foil or parchment paper cut into patty-size squares to separate the burgers and then stack, seal and freeze them. 

Raw chicken patties stacked between aluminum foil pieces for a Taco Chicken Burger recipe. The burger has smokey taco seasonings, cilantro, and scallions. Then on top are melty cheese, guacamole, lettuce, tomato, and chipotle mayonnaise!

They will last for up to 4 months in the freezer.  You need to defrost them in the fridge for 24 hours before cooking.

COOK YOUR TACO CHICKEN BURGER RECIPE 

When you are ready to cook the burgers, you can make the guacamole.  This unfortunately, is not a step that can be done in advance as the avocado starts to oxidize and turn brown once exposed to air.  

Knife removing seed from half avocado for a Taco Chicken Burger recipe. The burger has smokey taco seasonings, cilantro, and scallions. Then on top are melty cheese, guacamole, lettuce, tomato, and chipotle mayonnaise!

Hand holding half avocado and spoon scooping it out for a Taco Chicken Burger recipe. The burger has smokey taco seasonings, cilantro, and scallions. Then on top are melty cheese, guacamole, lettuce, tomato, and chipotle mayonnaise!

Mixed Guacamole for a Taco Chicken Burger recipe. The burger has smokey taco seasonings, cilantro, and scallions. Then on top are melty cheese, guacamole, lettuce, tomato, and chipotle mayonnaise!

How long does it take to cook the burgers?

The burgers take about 5 minutes per side on an outdoor hot grill. 

Grilled chicken burger on gas grill for a Taco Chicken Burger recipe. The burger has smokey taco seasonings, cilantro, and scallions. Then on top are melty cheese, guacamole, lettuce, tomato, and chipotle mayonnaise!

On a stovetop grill or in a skillet you will want to first get a good sear on both sides for about 2 minutes each.  Then cover the burgers to finish cooking through, about 4-5 minutes.  You can use aluminum foil to cover.

For any method, you want to ensure that the internal temp reaches 165 F degrees.

Assemble your burgers: top with cheese, guacamole, tomato,lettuce, and then chipotle mayo on the top bun! 

Taco Chicken Burger on wood platter with top bun off to side. The burger has smokey taco seasonings, cilantro, and scallions. Then on top are melty cheese, guacamole, lettuce, tomato. On the top bun is chipotle mayonnaise!

ENJOY!  😍 Carrie

Taco Chicken Burger cut in half with a bite taken out on wood plate. The burger has smokey taco seasonings, cilantro, and scallions. Then on top are melty cheese, guacamole, lettuce, tomato, and chipotle mayonnaise!
Taco Chicken Burger cut in half on wood plate. The burger has smokey taco seasonings, cilantro, and scallions. Then on top are melty cheese, guacamole, lettuce, tomato, and chipotle mayonnaise!
5 from 1 vote
Print

Taco Chicken Burger Recipe

This easy Taco Chicken Burger Recipe is flavorful, moist, and all together taco-licious.  It's chock-full of smokey taco seasonings, cilantro, and scallions.  Then on top you've got all the taco fixings you need… melty cheese, creamy guacamole, tomato, lettuce, and chipotle mayonnaise!  #healthyrecipes #chickenburger #turkeyburger #mexicanfood #familydinnerideas #healthydinners

Course Main Course
Cuisine American
Keyword burgers, grilling, ground chicken, mexican burger
Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 10 minutes
Servings 6 Burgers
Author Carrie Tyler

Ingredients

Taco Chicken Burgers

  • 2 lbs Ground Chicken, white meat (any ground chicken will work)
  • 4 Scallion
  • 1/4 cup Cilantro, chopped
  • 1 tsp Chili Powder
  • 1 tsp Cumin
  • 1 tsp garlic powder
  • 1/2 tsp Chipotle Chili Powder
  • 1 tsp Salt
  • Olive Oil Spray

Guacamole

  • 3 Ripe Avocados
  • 2 Scallions
  • 2 Tbsp Cilantro, chopped
  • 1/2 Lime
  • 1/4 tsp Salt

Other Burger Toppings

  • 6 Burger Buns
  • 6-12 Slices Monterey Jack Cheese (or Pepper Jack or Cheddar)
  • 1 tsp Chipotle Chili Pepper powder
  • 1/2 cup Mayonnaise
  • 2 Tomatoes, large (for slicing)
  • 1/2 head Iceberg Lettuce

Instructions

Prep Ahead Steps

  1. Mix the mayonnaise and chipotle powder in a bowl, cover, and store in the fridge.

  2. Chop the cilantro and slice the scallions for both the burgers and for the guacamole. You can store the guacamole ingredients in the fridge until you are ready to make it.

  3. Make the burgers by placing the ground chicken into a large mixing bowl and then adding the cilantro, scallion, and the remaining spices and seasonings. Stir to combine and then divide into 6 equal parts using a knife or fork.  Once divided, then start to form them into patties.  You can do this a day ahead of cooking and store in the fridge in an airtight container.

    Raw chicken patties stacked between aluminum foil pieces for a Taco Chicken Burger recipe. The burger has smokey taco seasonings, cilantro, and scallions. Then on top are melty cheese, guacamole, lettuce, tomato, and chipotle mayonnaise!

Make the Guac and Cook the Burgers

  1. Get the toppings ready…slice the tomatoes,shred the lettuce, pull out the buns.

  2. Scoop the avocado out of the skin into a medium mixing bowl and mash it to desired consistency (I like small chunks).  Add the chopped cilantro, sliced scallion,and juice from half of a lime.  Mix to combine.  Add salt to taste.

    Hand holding half avocado and spoon scooping it out for a Taco Chicken Burger recipe. The burger has smokey taco seasonings, cilantro, and scallions. Then on top are melty cheese, guacamole, lettuce, tomato, and chipotle mayonnaise!
  3. Before cooking/grilling your burgers, spray with Olive Oil Spray so that the burgers do not stick. Cook your burgers on the grill high heat.  It should take 5 minutes on each side for an outdoor gas or charcoal grill.  Test the internal temperature to ensure it reaches 165 F degrees.  At the last minute, add the cheese if you want it to be melted down.

    Grilled chicken burger on gas grill for a Taco Chicken Burger recipe. The burger has smokey taco seasonings, cilantro, and scallions. Then on top are melty cheese, guacamole, lettuce, tomato, and chipotle mayonnaise!
  4. Assemble your burgers: top with cheese, guacamole, tomato, lettuce, and then chipotle mayo on the top bun! Enjoy

    Taco Chicken Burger on wood platter with top bun off to side. The burger has smokey taco seasonings, cilantro, and scallions. Then on top are melty cheese, guacamole, lettuce, tomato. On the top bun is chipotle mayonnaise!