Spicy Tuscan-Style Sausage Ragu in your Slow Cooker!

It was a cold and windy day...my kind of weather.  It was a day for baking and a day for comfort food.  It was a day for the slow cooker!  A cold day, with yummy aromas coming from the kitchen.  A day for the fireplace.

I recalled seeing a recipe for Spicy Tuscan-Style Ragu that Mari at Once Upon A Plate had posted.  She described it as thick and rich...she was right!  This was a different kind of sauce from my usual, also.  I don't normally use just sausage and I had never tried making it in a slow cooker.  What a great idea, except about mid-day we lost electricity.  Not to worry it came back on...only to go off again.  This time it stayed off for a long time.  I decided I had no choice but to go to the stove top.  Just as I dumped everything into the pan, the electricity came back on.  Geez....

It did finish cooking.  It was Easy! Aromatic!  Delicious!  I bought the cookbook.  Yes, I have a cookbook weakness.  Take a look.  You may find yourself adding The Italian Slow Cooker to your library.

The sausage proportions may be adjusted to your taste.  We like a spicy dish so I evened out the amount of sweet to hot sausage.  I agree with Mari, this dish needs a sturdy, chunky pasta!

Spicy Tuscan-Style Sausage Ragu
Adapted from The Italian Slow Cooker

Makes 10 cups

2 Tbsp olive oil
3/4 pound sweet Italian pork sausage, casings removed
3/4 pound hot Italian pork sausage, casings removed
1 large red onion, finely chopped
2 garlic cloves, finely chopped
1/2 cup dry red wine
1 28 oz can Italian peeled tomatoes with their juice, chopped
1 28 oz can tomato puree
Salt to taste
1 cup heavy cream

In a large skillet, heat the oil over medium heat.  Crumble the sausages into the pan and cook, stirring frequently to break up the lumps, until the meat is lightly browned.  Add the onion and garlic and cook until the onion is tender.

Add the wine and scrape the bottom of the skillet.  Pour the contents into the slow cooker.  Add the tomatoes puree, and a pinch of salt.  Cover and cook on low for 5 hours.  Stir in the cream and cook for 1 hour more, or until the meat is very tender.  Taste for seasoning.

I garnished with shaved Parmesan and a chiffonade of basil.  Yum!


I will make this dish again but I will probably go to the butcher and buy some bulk sausage.  I could eat another plate of this!!

Be sure to visit Mari at Once Upon A Plate.  Her blog is so much fun and each recipe is a keeper!

I am participating in Foodie Friday hosted by Michael at Designs by Gollum and Fusion Fridays hosted by Jane Deere.


  1. The ragu sounds great, glad your electric is back on! Fun pics, love the bees on the bowls:@)

  2. I'm SO happy you liked it as well Kate!!

    Thanks for the link back. xo

    P.S. The basil chiffonade is a perfect garnish. Lucky you, my basil bit the dust (first freeze of the season a couple of days ago.)

  3. I'm trying to bond with my slow cooker, so I just posted a recipe for ribs. I love a ragu dinner. Terrific recipes, Kathy. I look forward to trying this. I can imagine the delicious aroma.

  4. It definitely looks like a comforting dish!!!

  5. I am loving my slow cooker again. This will be on my list of recipes to try. Sorry about your power ourages. Bummer.

  6. It looks fab and I love marie's recipes..Yours looks done to perfection.Thank you!

  7. This looks so delicious and perfect for these chilly days. I can't wait to give this a try sometime. I bet this smells amazing. Such a hearty and comforting meal.

  8. making this tonight. looking forward to it!

  9. Finally posted this on my own blog. I love this recipe! Thank you! http://thejoyfultable.blogspot.com/2014/04/tuscan-ragu-crock-pot-sauce-at-its.html


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