Bucatini with Lamb Ragu

Red rover, red rover, send my entire head over.


Don’t tell me you’re surprised to see more pasta today. You were warned. And it doesn’t stop tomorrow either. Hi, this girl has eeeesssseeews.

That would be issues, MOM.

Okay, let me ask you something. You, my friends. Not my mom. Well, my mom too if she’s reading, I guess. When was the last time you let a sauce just siiiiiiimmer and simmer and simmer for hours and days and years? It’s been a while, n’est ce pas?

Well, not anymore! (Sound the trumpets! Draw back the curtain! Throw down the gauntlet! Wait, that’s not it.)

lamb1  lamb2

I know it’s super warm and gorgeous and perfect blah blah BLAH for a lot of the country right now, but we’re having a minor dip in temperatures this week in KC, which means a minor dip in my congeniality, DUMB DUMBS. (I’m just kidding! But do you get it?)

I find that in detrimental times like these, it’s best to turn to simmering.

Matter of fact, I’m going to write a quick song about it. Right now. This instant:

lamb3  lamb4

Oh, siiiiimmering, oh siiiiimmering. You make my heart go cray cray.

The buuuuubbling, the maaaaaarrying. The things you do and say say.

You’re gloooorious, you’re veeeeelvety. I cannot walk away way.

Oh, siiiiimmering, sweet siiiiiimmering, I’m sorry for saying cray cray.


I feel so much better already.


Time to snuggle.

Bucatini with Lamb Ragu:

What it took for 4:

* 2 Tbs. extra-virgin olive oil
* 1 small white onion, diced
* 2 carrots, diced
* 2 stalks celery, diced
* 4 or 5 cloves garlic, minced
* 1 pound ground lamb
* 1 tsp cinnamon
* 1 tsp smoked paprika
* 1 pinch crushed red pepper
* 2 Tbs. tomato paste
* 2 Tbs. fresh thyme and rosemary leaves
* 1 (28 oz) can whole peeled tomatoes, crushed with your hands in a bowl
* 1 bay leaf
* 1 Tbs. honey
* 1 pound bucatini
* coarse salt and freshly ground pepper
* 1/2 cup freshly chopped parsley
* freshly grated parmesan for garnish

Heat the oil in a large sauté pan over medium-high. Add the onions and sweat for 2 minutes. Then add the carrots and celery; sauté until they start to soften, 4 minutes. Add the garlic and sauté another minute. Throw in a pinch of salt and pepper.

Add the lamb and cook until browned all over, maybe 5 minutes. Add the cinnamon, paprika, crushed red pepper, tomato paste and herbs. Toss until it’s all combined, a good couple of minutes. Smells insane already, huh?

Add the hand-crushed tomatoes to the pan, the honey and bay leaf. Throw the lid on and let it simmer on low for as long as you want. The longer the better. I let mine go about 2 hours. Then taste it, add another pinch of salt and pepper (if it needs it. it probably will).

In the meantime, boil the pasta until just al dente. Add the pasta to the pan and toss toss toss. omg.

Throw in a good handful of chopped parsley and freshly grated parmesan. Give it another toss.

Serve with a nice green salad and crusty bread! And more cheese and parsley. Oh my gosh do that.

* you can always sub ground turkey, chicken or beef in place of lamb!


Can’t even tell you.

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43 Responses to Bucatini with Lamb Ragu

  1. Angie April 10, 2013 at 8:02 am #
    This looks so good! I can't wait to try it, I have lamb in the freezer!
  2. Laura (Blogging Over Thyme) April 10, 2013 at 8:08 am #
    I'm one of those people who lives where its too warm right now--90 degrees and NOT loving it. Although I'd still eat this pasta in a heartbeat :) Laughed out loud at the eeeeesssseeewws part!
  3. Tieghan April 10, 2013 at 8:22 am #
    Bev, it is snowing here right now. Yes, snowing!! I am making this. It is comforting and delicious looking! Thanks girl!
  4. Rachel @ Baked by Rachel April 10, 2013 at 8:34 am #
    Spring weather is for the birds... okay who came up with that saying? It makes no sense. Anyway... I've only had lamb once and it was so good so I know minus the tomatoes, I'd love this. :)
  5. Cookbook Queen April 10, 2013 at 8:36 am #
    Never enough pasta. NEVER!!!!! Also, totally rainy here in AR. Perfect weather for a simmah.
  6. Liz @ The Lemon Bowl April 10, 2013 at 8:42 am #
    I want to cry this is so perfect. It's pouring rain and dark out - perfect for this pasta!
  7. Carly @ Snack Therapy April 10, 2013 at 8:48 am #
    I wish my hair was made out of this pasta so I could snack on it all day long.
  8. Heather @ Heather's Dish April 10, 2013 at 8:59 am #
    Why must I read this every day right after a lame-o breakfast of oatmeal? I would give my left arm for a bowl of this (I'd totally give my right arm, but I need it to eat and write ;)
  9. claire @ the realistic nutritionist April 10, 2013 at 9:00 am #
    Not quite as enthusiastic as above commenter, but I want to EAT THE SHIZZ OUT OF THIS!
  10. dishing up the dirt April 10, 2013 at 9:21 am #
    I'm always carbo loading! love this pasta dish!
  11. Kelly Senyei | Just a Taste April 10, 2013 at 9:29 am #
    Bucatini is my jam, baby! And by "jam," I mean "pasta of choice." Another homerun from Weidner!
  12. Brianna April 10, 2013 at 9:32 am #
    I've never had bucatini, but this recipe sure gets me excited to try it! Thanks for posting this!
  13. Marie @ Little Kitchie April 10, 2013 at 9:43 am #
    Pastas like this are my love language. Gorgeous!
  14. Meagan @ A Zesty Bite April 10, 2013 at 9:51 am #
    ok this is a must try for me. Never even had bucatini before and now I want it!
  15. Amanda April 10, 2013 at 10:33 am #
    You crack me up Bev, love the song :) This dish looks amazing!
  16. SaltySweetSour April 10, 2013 at 11:20 am #
    This looks amazing! Love the idea of adding a touch of cinnamon - will have to try that for sure!
  17. Arthur in the Garden! April 10, 2013 at 11:21 am #
  18. Kelli @ The Corner Kitchen April 10, 2013 at 12:26 pm #
    This has my name written all over it! Love lamb ragu!!
  19. Michelle April 10, 2013 at 12:49 pm #
    Bucatini is my all time favorite pasta!!
  20. Paula - bell'alimento April 10, 2013 at 1:27 pm #
  21. Kiran @ KiranTarun.com April 10, 2013 at 2:08 pm #
    I'm hungrier the more I kept scrolling through the photos!!!
  22. Karla @ Foodologie April 10, 2013 at 2:18 pm #
    Southern California has awesome weather BUT I NEVER find bucatini anywhere in stores around these parts. Fail? I think so Gah you just gave me nostalgic memories of Italy!
  23. Katie April 10, 2013 at 3:38 pm #
    Bucatini is my JAM. I want to live inside that bowl.
  24. Nicole April 10, 2013 at 3:51 pm #
    Yum! This looks delicious! I love how you incorporated the honey in there too!
  25. Lokness @ The Missing Lokness April 10, 2013 at 4:15 pm #
    Mouthwatering!!! Still haven't tried bucatini pasta. With your pasta recipe, I have to hunt down bucatini this weekend. Can't wait to make this next week.
  26. Kari@Loaves n Dishes April 10, 2013 at 5:15 pm #
    There's something so comforting about a pot simmering away on the stove. This dish is perfection!
  27. Jackie @ The Beeroness April 10, 2013 at 5:46 pm #
    I don't think Mary would have a little lamb anymore if she heard about this recipe ;)
  28. Julie @ Table for Two April 10, 2013 at 7:32 pm #
    I LOVE a good ragu sauce and i'm seriously loving the lamb in this!!!
  29. Laurie {SimplyScratch} April 10, 2013 at 9:04 pm #
    I don't think I've ever seen a ragu look so damn good! Come to mama!
  30. Kevin (Closet Cooking) April 10, 2013 at 10:32 pm #
    What a tasty looking pasta!
  31. MadSCAR April 11, 2013 at 4:22 am #
    Love it! This is amazing :)
  32. ashley - baker by nature April 11, 2013 at 5:53 am #
    You make bucanti look real good.
  33. Nutmeg Nanny April 12, 2013 at 8:41 pm #
    Oh goodness, my husband and I love lamb! This looks like a delicious way to serve it :)
  34. Sasha April 13, 2013 at 3:29 pm #
    Wow. What a marvelous song haha
  35. Courtney April 15, 2013 at 11:22 am #
    Made this over the weekend. Great flavor! The one thing I would suggest would be to drain the canned whole peeled tomatoes because it watered down the sauce. I'm hearty sauce kinda gal :-)
    • Bev Weidner April 15, 2013 at 11:27 am #
      So glad you liked it! And yes, if you're not going to cook the sauce for hours and hours like I did, draining a little liquid is a great idea! My sauce got super thick because I simmered it for 17,649 years. :) Thanks for letting me know what you thought! (Also, did you crush the tomatoes with your hands first before adding them? That helps thicken it up a bit too!)
      • Courtney April 16, 2013 at 11:41 am #
        I need to try the 17, 649 years method. Mine simmered for about 2 hours. I crushed the hell out of the tomatoes. Made me feel Italian (which I like to pretend to be). Thanks for the awesome recipe and keep up the good work!
  36. Laura October 28, 2016 at 6:16 pm #
    This is Fantastic making it tonight for the 3rd time!
  37. Gustavo Zdanovich December 8, 2016 at 5:46 pm #
    Looks absolutely heavenly! Can't wait to try it!
  38. Bea Sinka September 11, 2017 at 12:17 pm #
    Bev, this recipe is so perfect! I'm really glad to find your site :) Thank you <3
  39. Shayna July 23, 2019 at 1:14 pm #
    Just wanted to leave a message here...I know this is several years old but I’ve made the recipe countless times since discovering it and it’s still amazing. Thanks for sharing what has become a favorite in my household no matter what the temperature is outside.


  1. Thursday Things – Food, Fitness, Faith - April 11, 2013 [...] 9)     Lamb. Ragu. Done. [...]

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