If you need an easy, affordable dinner that will be sure to please a crowd, look no further than this Slow Cooker Pork Ragu. Tender shredded pork shoulder sits in a rich tomato sauce that is perfect over pasta or a plate of creamy polenta for the perfect Italian comfort dinner. It takes 6 hours in the crock pot, but only 15 minutes to throw together.
Is pork ragu just another red spaghetti sauce?
While ragu is great served over pasta it is actually a braised meat dish. It can be made with beef, chicken, lamb, or even wild game. The meat needs to cook at a low temperature, in a braising liquid for a long time to give you meat that is falling apart. This ragu is made with pork, onion, garlic, oregano, basil, black pepper, and canned crushed tomatoes.
What is the best cut of pork for this slow cooker recipe?
Pork shoulder AKA pork butt is best for making this dish in the crock pot. It has a good amount of fat that will render down into the sauce, and it is mostly free of sinew and cartilage that would be unpleasant to eat.
Pork shoulder is readily available and very inexpensive. You can buy large pieces of pork shoulder with the bone intact or boneless pieces that are ready to place right in the crock pot. If you only find a large piece still on the bone, you can remove the bone and cut the roast into a few large pieces.
Super Quick Prep for a Super Delicious and Luxurious Meal
This recipe only takes a few minutes to throw together. Place a 2lb pork roast in the crock pot. Dump a can of crushed tomatoes over the top. Throw in diced onions, minced garlic, sugar, and spices over the top. Add a bouillon cube and water. Set the slow cooker for 6 hours, cover, and try to keep yourself distracted while the amazing aromas fill your house and make your mouth water.
When the timer goes off, use tongs or a couple of forks to shred the pork and stir it into the braising liquid.
Can I freeze the pork ragu ingredients to use later?
If you can only find a large bone-in roast, you can absolutely cut it into a few pieces. Freeze the extra meat with all of the other recipe ingredients to use for another meal. Even if you can get smaller pork shoulder roasts, buying the large one is much cheaper. Taking a few extra minutes to bag and freeze this for later is sure to pay dividends on busy weeks.
How do I serve this Delicious Ragu?
You can serve this beautiful pork over pasta using the juices like a sauce. I would recommend a heavier, thicker pasta like bocatini, rigatoni, or parpadelle. A broader noodle will carry the meat and sauce nicely.
Risotto and polenta are also great options to accompany Slow Cooker Pork Ragu. Polenta and ragu are to Italians what short ribs and mashed potatoes are to Americans.
Slow Cooker Pork Ragu
- 2 lbs Boneless Pork Picnic Roast
- 3 Cups Crushed Tomato
- 1 Chicken Bouillon Cube + 1 Cup Water ( Water added when cookinor 1 Cup Chicken Stock
- 1 Yellow Onion Diced
- 6 Cloves garlic Minced
- 3 Tbsp Salt
- 1 Tbsp Black Pepper
- 2 Tbsp Granulated Garlic
- 2 Tbsp Granulated Onion
- 1 Tbsp Oregano
- 1 Tsp Basil
- 1 Tsp Sugar
- Add the pork roast, tomatoes, diced onion, minced garlic, water, bouillon cube, sugar, and dry spices directly to the slow cooker.
- Turn the slow cooker on for 6 hours.
- When the time is up, use tongs or a pair of forks to shred the pork and stir it into the braising liquid. Simmer with the lid off for 10 minutes to bring the pork and sauce together.
- Serve over pasta or polenta
- Defrost before cooking by placing bag in the fridge the night before.