Red Wine Braised Short Ribs
Red wine braised short ribs always hit the spot for an ultra-comforting meal. After an easy sear and braise (with some veggies, broth, and of course a little red wine), you’ll enjoy the most succulent, tender, fall-of-the-bone meat.
The Best Braised Beef Short Ribs
A bite of super tender short ribs with creamy mashed potatoes dabbled in meaty juices is, well, heavenly. And while it may sound like a luxurious meal served up at a 5-star restaurant, it’s actually incredibly easy to make in your own home kitchen.
I talk about the simple art of braising below (it’s just a combination of dry heat and moist heat), so if you’ve never done it before don’t worry. It’s super easy. Plus, it has a magical way of turning basic short ribs into the tastiest chunks of meat you’ve ever had!
Ingredients You’ll Need
The best part about this recipe is that you only need a handful of ingredients to create an insane amount of flavor. Here’s what you’ll need:
- Beef Short Ribs: I buy English-cut beef short ribs fresh from the butcher, but packaged ones will work as well. Just look out for thick, meaty pieces that have good marbling. If they’re too lean, they’ll end up tough and dry.
- Bacon: I love to cook in bacon grease as it imparts awesome flavor into the ribs. Plus, the crispy bacon gets added back into the rich sauce.
- Onion, Carrots and Garlic: Diced onions, carrots, and garlic simmer in the broth to give it a layered, slightly sweet flavor.
- Red Wine: Feel free to choose your favorite red wine, though I personally recommend a bold red wine like cabernet sauvignon to enhance the rich flavor of the braised beef. And there’s no need to buy a fancy bottle, just a drinkable one!
- Tomato Paste: Just two tablespoons are needed to give the sauce a bit more depth in flavor.
- Beef Broth: Low-sodium beef broth makes up the bulk of the braising liquid.
- Fresh Herbs: A combination of fresh thyme, rosemary, and parsley works wonders for this recipe.
Find the printable recipe with measurements below.
What Does Braising Mean?
If you’re all about “set it and forget it” types of meals, braising is your best friend. It’s a two-step method that starts with pan searing, followed by cooking low and slow in a liquid. This process helps to break down the meat’s connective tissue and collagen, giving you ridiculously tender results.
Plus, it helps to create an even richer broth to spoon over your short ribs at the end. So yes, I think it’s time to start braising your favorite chunks of meat, especially the tougher ones like beef chuck roast and short ribs!
How To Make Braised Short Ribs
This braised short rib recipe really only needs 20 minutes of your undivided attention. Once everything is in the pot, the remaining 2 1/2 hours is pretty much on autopilot, where the braising process work its magic.
Prep the ribs. Make sure your ribs are at room temperature. Then pat them dry and season with salt and pepper.
It all starts with bacon! In your pot over medium-low heat, cook the bacon until it’s perfectly crispy. Then remove the bacon with a slotted spoon to a small bowl, but leave the grease as you’ll cook the ribs in this.
Sear the ribs. Increase the heat to medium-high and sear the ribs on each side for about 1 to 2 minutes, until they’re beautifully golden brown. Then transfer them to a plate.
Cook the veggies. Sauté the onions and carrots until softened, then stir in the garlic and tomato paste until everything is perfectly combined.
In goes the wine! Pour in the wine and let it simmer for 5 minutes uncovered, reducing the wine by about half.
Let the braising begin. Place the ribs back in the pot and add the beef broth, bacon, and herbs. Cover, reduce the heat to low and cook for 2 to 2 1/2 hours. When the time is up, you’ll have the most tender short ribs ever!
A Few Questions Answered
If you’re avoiding alcohol or don’t have any on hand, you can substitute it with more beef broth.
In my opinion, yes! The key with braised short ribs is to brown them on all sides so they’re golden before you simmer. This adds so much flavor to the meat and sauce, and helps keeps the ribs juicy and tender on the inside as they slowly cook in your pot or Dutch oven.
If you don’t have a large enough pot, you can use a slow cooker for braising. First, sear the short ribs in a large skillet and then transfer them to the slow cooker. Follow the rest of the recipe (in your skillet or small pot) up until you reduce the red wine. Once it’s reduced, transfer everything into the slow cooker and let it cook for 6 to 8 hours.
How To Serve Short Ribs
Round out your short ribs recipe with comforting side dishes and vibrant vegetables!
- Pile the short ribs on a layer of mashed veggies. Mashed potatoes are a classic comfort food pairing as they help to soak up all that delicious sauce. But if you’re going for something a bit lighter try mashed cauliflower.
- Serve with vegetable side dishes. Add some hearty and colorful veggies to your plate, such as roasted carrots, roasted potatoes, roasted broccoli, or roasted Brussels sprouts. Either way, don’t forget to drizzle some braising liquid over it.
Good news, braising liquid tastes even better over time! So when you’re enjoying leftovers, whether it’s a week, or even a month from now, the short ribs will taste just as good (if not better) than when you first made them. Who doesn’t love that? Here’s a few ways to store them.
- To store: Add the ribs and some of the braising liquid into an airtight container and store in the fridge for up to 4 days.
- To freeze: You can store the ribs and liquid in a freezer-safe container for up to 3 months. But if you’re wanting to save the rest of the braising liquid for other recipes, pour them into Souper Cubes! They’ll make for a great soup base or sauce to pour over meats and veggies.
- For reheating: To reheat, you can either microwave the ribs or warm them up on the stovetop.
Red Wine Braised Short Ribs Recipe Video
Watch the video below! I’ll show you just how simple these short ribs are to make in your own kitchen.
More Succulent, Slow Cooked Meats
If you’ve fallen in love slow cooked meals, I’ve got lots more for you to choose from. Here’s a few tasty ideas!
These braised short ribs will have everyone’s satisfaction levels through the roof. So once you make them, I’d love to hear what you, your friends, and family think of this recipe in a comment below!
Red Wine Braised Short Ribs
- 6 slices bacon
- 5 pounds beef short rib
- 2 tablespoons kosher salt
- 2 teaspoons freshly cracked black pepper
- 2 medium yellow onions, chopped
- 3 medium carrots, chopped
- 6 garlic cloves, minced
- 2 tablespoons tomato paste
- 2 cups red wine
- 4 cups beef broth
- 2 thyme sprigs
- 2 rosemary sprig
- ¼ cup finely chopped fresh parsley
- Let the short ribs come to room temperature. Pat the short ribs dry with a paper towel, then season all sides with the salt and pepper. Set aside.
- Slice the bacon into 1-inch (2.5cm) pieces. Heat a large pot on medium-low heat and add the bacon. Cook, stirring frequently, until the bacon is crispy. Remove the bacon with a slotted spoon to a bowl, and leave the grease in the pot.
- Increase the heat to medium-high, then add the short ribs and cook each side for 1 to 2 minutes, until browned all over. Transfer the short ribs to a plate and set aside.
- Add the onions and carrots to the pot and cook in the remaining bacon grease for 3 to 4 minutes or until the vegetables become softened.
- Add the garlic and tomato paste and stir together for another minute.
- Add the red wine and simmer for 5 minutes, to reduce the wine by about half.
- Place the ribs back in the pot. Add the beef broth, crispy bacon, and herbs. Cover, reduce the heat to low and cook for 2 to 2 ½ hours, until the meat is very tender and falling apart. If it's not falling apart, cook them a bit longer.
- Remove the pot from the heat, use tongs to remove the sprigs of herbs, and skim off any fat that has accumulated on the surface.
- Enjoy the short ribs over a plate of mashed potatoes (more serving ideas listed above) with a spoonful of sauce. Garnish with fresh parsley.
Recipe originally posted March 2016, but updated to include new photos and information.