A Quick and Creamy Ragu with Ricotta and Lemon

Looking for a hearty and flavorful meal, but don’t have six hours to make a traditional ragu? Look no further than this quick and easy recipe featuring creamy ricotta cheese and zesty lemon. In this post, we’ll cover everything you need to know about ragu, including its ingredients and variations. Plus, we’ll share tips and tricks for perfecting your ragu game, including when to add milk and how to cook it overnight. And finally, we’ll explore some delicious serving options to bring your ragu to life. So let’s dive in!

How to make Quick Ragu with Ricotta and Lemon

Are you tired of the same old pasta sauce? Look no further than this quick and easy recipe for Ragu with Ricotta and Lemon. With just a few key ingredients, you can elevate your pasta game in no time.


To make this dish, you’ll need:

  • 1 pound of ground beef
  • 1 onion, diced
  • 2 cloves of garlic, minced
  • 1 tablespoon of olive oil
  • quick ragu with ricotta and lemon

  • 1 can of diced tomatoes
  • Salt and pepper
  • 1 cup of ricotta cheese
  • Zest of one lemon
  • 1 pound of your favorite pasta


  1. First, heat the olive oil in a saucepan over medium heat. Add the onion and garlic, and sauté until the onion is translucent.
  2. Add the ground beef to the saucepan and cook until browned.
  3. Add the can of diced tomatoes, salt, and pepper to taste. Let the mixture simmer for 15-20 minutes.
  4. While the sauce is cooking, cook your pasta according to the instructions on the package. Drain and set aside.
  5. In a separate bowl, mix together the ricotta cheese and lemon zest. Set aside.
  6. Once the sauce is done cooking, spoon it over a serving of pasta. Top with a dollop of the ricotta and lemon mixture.


  • Want to add some extra flavor? Try adding some fresh herbs like basil or oregano to the sauce while it’s simmering.
  • Don’t have ricotta cheese on hand? Cottage cheese or even cream cheese can be a great substitute.
  • As an added bonus, this dish can be made in advance and reheated for an easy weeknight meal.

So next time you’re looking to switch up your spaghetti routine, give this quick ragu with ricotta and lemon a try. Your taste buds will thank you.

6 Hour Ragu: Slow and Steady Wins the Race

When it comes to making ragu, there are two schools of thought: those who want it quick and easy, and those who are willing to put in the time and effort for a deeply flavorful, luxurious sauce. For those in the latter category, we present the 6 hour ragu.

Simmering Your Way to Deliciousness

The key to a great 6 hour ragu is time and patience. You can’t rush perfection, and the longer you let your ragu simmer, the more complex and concentrated the flavors will become. Start by browning your meat in a heavy pot or Dutch oven over medium-high heat. Once it’s nicely browned on all sides, remove it from the pot and set it aside.

Building Flavor Every Step of the Way

Next, add your aromatics to the pot. This typically includes onion, carrot, celery, and garlic. Cook them until they’re softened and fragrant, then add your tomato paste and cook for a few more minutes until it’s slightly caramelized. Then it’s time to deglaze the pot with some red wine, scraping up all the browned bits from the bottom.

Slow and Steady Wins the Race

Now it’s time to bring everything together and let it simmer. Add your tomatoes, broth, and meat back to the pot. Bring the whole thing to a boil, then reduce the heat to low and let it simmer for at least 6 hours. You’ll want to give it a stir every hour or so to make sure nothing is sticking to the bottom.

Finally, The Moment of Truth

After 6 hours, your ragu will be ready to go. The meat should be tender and falling apart, and the sauce should be thick and rich. All that’s left to do is taste and adjust the seasoning as needed. Serve it over pasta, polenta, or with some crusty bread to mop up all that delicious sauce.

In conclusion, if you’re looking for a truly decadent and flavorful ragu, the 6 hour method is the way to go. It requires a bit of patience, but the end result is so worth it. Impress your dinner guests with this slow-cooked, rich, and flavorful sauce.

Dutch Oven Ragu: The Key to a Delicious Quick Ragu with Ricotta and Lemon

When it comes to making a quick ragu with ricotta and lemon, the secret to its success is all in the technique used for cooking the ragu. And that’s where the Dutch oven comes in.

What is a Dutch Oven?

A Dutch oven is a heavy-duty pot with a tight-fitting lid that’s perfect for slow-cooking recipes like ragu. The thick walls and heavy lid allow for even heat distribution and retention, which translates to tender, flavorful meat that falls off the bone.

Why Use a Dutch Oven for Ragu?

Using a Dutch oven for ragu is essential to achieving the desired taste, texture, and depth of flavor. The heavy pot ensures that the meat cooks slowly and evenly, allowing any connective tissue to break down and become tender. The result is a rich, hearty sauce packed with flavor and perfect for pairing with ricotta and lemon.

How to Make Ragu in a Dutch Oven

To make a delicious ragu in a Dutch oven, start by heating some oil in the pot over medium-high heat. Add the meat, such as beef or pork, and cook until browned on all sides. Remove the meat from the pot and set it aside.

Next, add the onions, garlic, and other ingredients to the pot, such as canned tomatoes, tomato paste, and seasonings. Stir the mixture and let it cook for a few minutes before adding the meat back in.

Once the meat is added, pour in some water or stock, enough to cover the meat, and bring the mixture to a boil. Once boiling, reduce the heat to a simmer, cover the Dutch oven with the lid, and let the ragu cook for at least two hours, stirring occasionally or until the meat falls off the bone.

Using a Dutch oven for your quick ragu with ricotta and lemon is definitely the way to go. Not only does it cook the meat to perfection, but it also enhances the overall flavor of the dish. Whether you’re cooking for friends or family, this ragu recipe is a surefire crowd-pleaser that’s easy to make, delicious, and satisfying.

What’s in Ragu?

If you’re a die-hard fan of Italian cuisine like me, you must have come across the term ragu. It’s a rich, flavorful sauce that can elevate even the simplest of pasta dishes. But what exactly goes into making a delicious ragu?


Traditionally, ragu is made with beef, pork, and veal. The combination of these three meats adds more depth of flavor to the sauce. However, you can substitute these with ground turkey, chicken, or even lamb if you’re not a fan of any of these meats.


Onions, garlic, and carrots are commonly used to make the base of the ragu. They’re sautéed until translucent to release their natural sweetness and flavor. You can add celery, leeks, and bell peppers for extra flavor and depth.


Tomatoes are the star of the ragu and the reason behind its beautiful red color. You can use canned tomatoes for convenience or fresh tomatoes if they’re in season. But if you want to switch things up, you can use sun-dried tomatoes or tomato paste as well.


Herbs and spices are essential in giving the ragu its delicious flavor. You’ll need bay leaves, oregano, thyme, and rosemary to add some aromatic undertones to the sauce. A pinch of red chili flakes or black pepper can also spice things up.


Ragu needs a liquid component to turn it into a sauce. Beef broth, chicken broth, or red wine are common liquids used in making ragu. But you can also use vegetable broth, or even water if you’re looking for a healthier option.

Now that you know what goes into making a delicious ragu sauce, it’s time to get in the kitchen and start cooking. Trust me; your taste buds will thank you for it!

NYTimes Beef Ragù

If you’re looking for an Italian-inspired dish that’s easy to prepare, then the NYTimes beef ragù is a must-try. This is a classic recipe that has been around for generations and was popularized by the New York Times.

What is NYTimes Beef Ragù?

Beef ragù is a meat-based sauce that originated in Italy, specifically in the Bologna region. However, the NYTimes beef ragù has become popular all over the world due to its rich flavor and heartiness. The ragù has a base of ground beef that is slowly simmered in a tomato-based sauce with a blend of vegetables, herbs, and spices.

How to Prepare NYTimes Beef Ragù?

To make this mouth-watering dish, start by sautéing onions, celery, and carrots in olive oil until they’re soft and add some garlic to give it a gentle kick. Cook ground beef in the same pan until it’s browned and then add a can of crushed tomatoes and some beef broth. Add herbs like thyme, rosemary, and oregano to give it a nice aroma and some salt and pepper for seasoning. Allow the ragù to simmer on low heat for at least an hour so that all the flavors can meld together.

Serving NYTimes Beef Ragù

You can serve the NYTimes beef ragù in a variety of ways. One classic way is to serve it over freshly cooked pasta that’s been coated in butter and Parmesan, but the key is to be creative! Try serving it over mashed potatoes or roasted vegetables for a new twist. Give it a topping of freshly grated Parmesan cheese and a sprig of herbs for a pop of color and flavor.

In Conclusion

If you’re looking for a meal that’s hearty, flavorful, and easy on the wallet, then the NYTimes beef ragù is an excellent option. It’s a classic recipe that will satisfy your cravings for Italian cuisine without requiring too much work in the kitchen. So, give it a try for your next family dinner or romantic night with your loved one and enjoy the unforgettable flavor combinations!

Beef and Nduja Ragu

When it comes to ragu, there are countless ways to prepare it. But have you ever tried making a beef and nduja ragu? If you haven’t, you’re missing out on a whole new level of flavor.

What is Nduja?

Nduja is a spicy, spreadable salami from Calabria, Italy. It’s made from pork, spicy red peppers, and a blend of spices. Its heat level can vary from mildly spicy to blow-your-head-off hot. You can find it at specialty grocers or online.

Adding Nduja to Beef Ragu

To make a beef and nduja ragu, start by browning ground beef in a large pot over medium-high heat. Add chopped onions, garlic, and celery, and cook until the vegetables are soft. Next, add a can of crushed tomatoes, beef broth, and a dollop of nduja.

Stir well to combine, and let the ragu simmer on low heat for a few hours. The long cooking time will help the flavors meld together into a rich, savory sauce that’s perfect for ladling over pasta.

Pairing Beef and Nduja Ragu

When it comes to pairing beef and nduja ragu, the possibilities are endless. You can serve it over any type of pasta, or even use it as a filling for lasagna. Top it off with some fresh ricotta and a squeeze of lemon for a bright, tangy contrast to the rich meaty flavors.

In conclusion, beef and nduja ragu is a delicious and easy way to switch up your pasta night routine. With the addition of nduja, you’ll get a spicy kick that elevates the already flavorful ragu. So, next time you’re in the mood for some hearty Italian comfort food, give this recipe a try. Your taste buds will thank you.

Tuscan Sausage Ragu: A Hearty and Savory Sauce

If you’re looking to elevate your quick ragu with ricotta and lemon recipe to the next level, you might want to add a bit of Tuscan flair to your dish with some hearty sausage ragu. This rich and savory sauce is a perfect alternative for those who don’t like ground beef or are looking for a new twist on a classic recipe.

What is Tuscan Sausage Ragu?

Tuscan sausage ragu is a meat sauce that originated in the Tuscan region of Italy. The sauce is made with ground or chopped Italian sausage (usually a combination of sweet and hot), onions, garlic, tomatoes, red wine, and herbs like thyme, rosemary, and bay leaves. The result is a thick and flavorful sauce that pairs well with pasta, polenta, or even mashed potatoes.

How to Make Tuscan Sausage Ragu

To make Tuscan sausage ragu, start by cooking the sausage in a large pot over medium-high heat until it’s browned and cooked through. Remove the sausage from the pot with a slotted spoon and set it aside.

Next, add some chopped onions and garlic to the same pot and cook until they’re soft and translucent. Then, add a can of crushed tomatoes, a cup of red wine, and your herbs of choice (fresh or dried).

Simmer the sauce for about 20 minutes, stirring occasionally, until it’s thickened and reduced. Finally, return the cooked sausage to the pot and stir it into the sauce.

Serving Suggestions

Tuscan sausage ragu is a versatile sauce that can be served with various types of pasta, including spaghetti, fettuccine, penne, and rigatoni. You can also serve it with creamy polenta or mashed potatoes for a cozy and comforting meal.

Tips and Tricks

  • Choose high-quality Italian sausage for the best flavor and texture in your Tuscan sausage ragu.
  • Use a combination of sweet and hot sausage for a balanced and nuanced taste.
  • Don’t skip the red wine; it adds depth and complexity to the sauce.
  • Adjust the spiciness level of the sauce by using more or less hot sausage or adding crushed red pepper flakes.
  • Store any leftover Tuscan sausage ragu in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 4 days or in the freezer for up to 3 months.

In conclusion, Tuscan sausage ragu is a rich and savory choice that adds a flavorful twist to any quick ragu with ricotta and lemon recipe. Whether you’re making it for a cozy family dinner or a special occasion, this hearty and satisfying sauce is sure to please.

Quick Ricotta Recipe

If you’re anything like me, the word “ricotta” probably conjures up images of lasagna or cannoli. But did you know that ricotta is extremely versatile and can be used in a variety of dishes? Here’s a quick and easy recipe that will show you just how flexible ricotta can be.

Lemon and Ricotta Pasta

This quick and simple recipe is perfect for those nights when you don’t have much time to cook. All you need is some pasta, a little bit of ricotta, and some lemon zest. Cook the pasta according to the package directions, then drain and toss with a couple of tablespoons of ricotta. Add a quarter teaspoon of lemon zest and a pinch of salt, then give it a quick stir. Voila! You’re done.

Ricotta Toast

If you’re running short on breakfast ideas, try making ricotta toast. Toast a slice of bread, then spread a generous amount of ricotta on it. Drizzle with honey, sprinkle with cinnamon, and top with a few slices of fresh fruit. Not only is it delicious, but it’s also a healthy way to start your day.

Ricotta and Tomato Salad

This refreshing salad is perfect for hot summer nights. All you need is some cherry tomatoes, a little bit of ricotta, fresh basil, and balsamic vinegar. Cut the cherry tomatoes in half and toss them with a tablespoon of ricotta. Chop up some fresh basil and sprinkle it on top. Drizzle a teaspoon of balsamic vinegar over the whole thing, then give it a quick toss. It’s simple, but absolutely delicious.

Ricotta and Cucumber Sandwich

If you’re looking for a quick and healthy lunch, try making a ricotta and cucumber sandwich. Slice a cucumber thinly and spread a tablespoon of ricotta on each slice of bread. Top with the cucumber slices and a few leaves of lettuce. Add a little bit of salt and pepper if desired. It’s a quick and easy way to get in your daily veggie intake.

quick ragu with ricotta and lemon

With these simple recipes, you’ll never look at ricotta the same way again. Give them a try and see just how versatile this delicious cheese can be!

The Best Ragu Bolognese Recipe

If you’re looking to satisfy your Italian cravings, a good ragu Bolognese is an excellent choice. Here’s a simple but delicious recipe that will have you cooking like a nonna in no time.


  • 500g beef mince
  • 1 onion, finely chopped
  • 2 carrots, finely chopped
  • 2 celery stalks, finely chopped
  • 4 garlic cloves, finely chopped
  • 400g canned chopped tomatoes
  • 1 beef stock cube
  • 1 cup of red wine
  • 1 bay leaf
  • Salt and pepper


  1. Heat a large, deep saucepan over medium heat.

  2. Add the onion, carrots, celery and garlic and cook for about 5 minutes, or until soft.

  3. Add the beef mince and cook until browned, breaking up any chunks with a wooden spoon.

  4. Add the canned tomatoes, beef stock cube, red wine and bay leaf and season with salt and pepper.

  5. Bring the mixture to a boil before reducing it to a simmer.

  6. Cook the sauce for about 90 minutes, stirring occasionally.

  7. quick ragu with ricotta and lemon

  8. Once the sauce has thickened and is no longer watery, remove it from the heat.

  9. Discard the bay leaf and taste for seasoning.


  • For an extra depth of flavour, try adding some pancetta or bacon to the ragu.
  • Serve the ragu over al dente pasta and finish with freshly grated parmesan cheese.

This ragu Bolognese recipe provides an excellent base for a hearty and flavourful pasta dish. It’s perfect for a cozy night in or when you need to impress your guests. Don’t be afraid to experiment with additional ingredients or variations to make it your own. Bon appetit!

Can You Cook Ragu Overnight?

Are you in a hurry to cook Ragu but wondering if it’s possible to cook it overnight? Well, wonder no more! First things first: let’s address the elephant in the room. Yes, technically, you can cook Ragu overnight. But the real question is, should you?

The Pros

One of the main benefits of cooking Ragu overnight is that it allows the flavors to meld together for an extended period, resulting in a richer and more nuanced taste. It also saves you time in the morning, as all you have to do is reheat the Ragu and it’s ready to serve.

The Cons

On the flip side, cooking Ragu overnight can result in a loss of texture and overcooked ingredients. It can also increase the risk of burning the sauce if left unattended for too long. So, if you’re someone who values texture and doesn’t want to risk ruining the sauce, cooking Ragu overnight might not be the best idea.

The Alternatives

If you’re still determined to cook your Ragu overnight, there are some precautions you can take to mitigate the risks. First, use a slow cooker or a heavy-bottomed pot that can sustain low heat for extended periods. Second, stir the Ragu occasionally to ensure it isn’t sticking to the bottom of the pot. Finally, turn off the heat and let the Ragu cool to room temperature before placing it in the refrigerator overnight.

Alternatively, you could cook the Ragu for a few hours in the evening, refrigerate it overnight, and resume cooking it in the morning. This method allows you to reap the benefits of overnight cooking without the risks.

There you have it! Yes, you can cook your Ragu overnight, but it comes with some risks. If you’re determined to do so, make sure to take the proper precautions. On the other hand, there are alternatives that can give you similar results without the potential issues. Ultimately, the decision is up to you and what you’re comfortable with.

What to Serve with Beef Ragu

Okay, so you’ve nailed down the perfect quick ragu recipe with ricotta and lemon to impress your guests, but what should you serve with it? Fear not, my friend, for I have some delectable suggestions.

Carb It Up

You can never go wrong with a hearty carb to serve as a base for your ragu. Think pasta, polenta, or roasted potatoes. If you’re feeling adventurous, try making your own gnocchi for a truly impressive meal.

Fresh Greens

To balance out the richness of the ragu, why not add a bright and fresh salad? A simple mix of arugula, lemon, and parmesan will do the trick. Or, you could opt for a classic caprese salad with ripe tomatoes, fresh basil, and creamy mozzarella.

Something Cheesy

Because let’s face it, cheese makes everything better. Serve your ragu with a side of garlic bread topped with melty mozzarella or a cheese board with an assortment of your favorite varieties.

Wine, of Course

No meal is complete without a good bottle of wine. A full-bodied red like a Chianti or Cabernet Sauvignon would complement the rich flavors of the beef ragu perfectly.

There you have it, folks. With these scrumptious suggestions, your quick ragu with ricotta and lemon is sure to be a hit. Happy cooking!

When to Add Milk to Bolognese

If you’re a fan of Italian cuisine, you have probably tried a bolognese sauce at least once in your life. The mouthwatering meat-based sauce is widely known as the go-to sauce for pasta, and it’s found all around the world in different variants.

The key ingredients in this sauce are minced meat (beef, veal, or pork), canned tomatoes, onions, carrots, celery, garlic, and herbs. However, some recipes call for the addition of milk or cream to the sauce. So, when should you add the milk?

Adding Milk to Bolognese – An Italian Debate

The addition of milk to bolognese sauce has been a topic of debate among Italians for decades. Some cooks believe that adding milk, preferably whole or full-fat milk, helps mellow down the acidity of the canned tomatoes and creates a smoother texture.

Others argue that adding milk to bolognese is a travesty that ruins the natural flavor of the sauce and creates an unappetizing, pale color. Despite the differing opinions, it’s safe to say that the addition of milk is an authentic ingredient in some regions of Italy.

Two Schools of Thought

There are two schools of thought when it comes to adding milk or cream to bolognese sauce. The first school of thought recommends adding the milk or cream when you add the canned tomatoes to the sautéed vegetables. Adding milk at this stage ensures that all the flavors are well incorporated and that the sauce has a consistent texture.

The second school of thought suggests adding the milk or cream toward the end of the cooking process. This method is believed to enhance and meld all the flavors and create a richer, creamier sauce.

How to Add Milk to Bolognese Sauce

Regardless of which school of thought you align with, the addition of milk or cream to bolognese sauce is a simple process. Here’s how to do it:

  1. Once you’ve sautéed the vegetables and browned the meat, add canned tomatoes to the saucepan.
  2. Add milk or cream to the saucepan, depending on your preference.
  3. Stir the sauce to ensure the milk is well incorporated with all the other ingredients.
  4. Bring the sauce to a boil, then reduce the heat and simmer the sauce for an hour to two hours, depending on the recipe.

In conclusion, adding milk to bolognese sauce is a regional preference with no right or wrong answer. The addition of milk helps create a smoother texture and mellow down the acidity of the canned tomatoes. However, it can be skipped if you prefer a richer, darker-colored sauce. Regardless of which method you choose, adding milk or cream to bolognese sauce adds a new dimension to the dish that’s worth trying.

Trader Joe’s Lemon Ricotta Ravioli Recipes

If you have a Trader Joe’s nearby, then you’re in luck because they sell a delicious Lemon Ricotta Ravioli that’s perfect for a quick and easy meal. Here are a few recipe ideas to try out:

Lemon Ricotta Ravioli with Brown Butter Sage Sauce

  • Cook the Lemon Ricotta Ravioli according to the package instructions.
  • In a separate pan, melt butter over medium heat until it turns brown.
  • Add a handful of chopped sage leaves to the pan and cook for about a minute.
  • Remove the pan from the heat and add a squeeze of lemon juice.
  • Serve the ravioli with the brown butter sage sauce on top.

quick ragu with ricotta and lemon

This dish is so simple but so flavorful! The nuttiness of the browned butter pairs perfectly with the bright lemon and creamy ricotta flavors in the ravioli.

Lemon Ricotta Ravioli with Tomato and Basil

  • Cook the Lemon Ricotta Ravioli according to package instructions.
  • In a separate pan, sauté chopped garlic and diced tomatoes over medium heat until the tomatoes have softened.
  • Add a handful of chopped basil leaves to the pan and cook for a minute more.
  • Serve the ravioli with the tomato and basil sauce on top.

This recipe is a great way to incorporate some fresh summer flavors into your meal. Plus, the juicy tomatoes provide a nice contrast to the richness of the ricotta.

Lemon Ricotta Ravioli Salad

  • Cook the Lemon Ricotta Ravioli according to package instructions.
  • In a bowl, mix together arugula, chopped cherry tomatoes, sliced red onion, and crumbled feta cheese.
  • Toss the salad with a simple dressing made from olive oil, lemon juice, and Dijon mustard.
  • Top the salad with the cooked ravioli.

This recipe is a refreshing option for a hot summer day. The tangy dressing and fresh greens balance out the rich flavor of the ravioli.

There you have it! Three simple and tasty ways to enjoy Trader Joe’s Lemon Ricotta Ravioli. Give them a try and let us know which one is your favorite!

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