Polenta with Ground Beef Ragout


Sliced polenta on the bottom and a spoonful of pesto or olive tapenade on top add a gourmet angle to this slow-simmered beef recipe.

Polenta with Ground Beef Ragout
Photo: Blaine Moats
Prep Time:
25 mins
Cook Time:
7 hrs
Total Time:
7 hrs 25 mins


  • 1 pound lean ground beef

  • 1 14.5 ounce can Italian-style stewed tomatoes, undrained

  • 3 medium carrots, cut into 1/2-inch-thick slices

  • 2 medium onions, cut into thin wedges

  • 1 large red sweet pepper, cut into 1-inch pieces

  • ½ cup beef broth

  • ¼ teaspoon salt

  • ¼ teaspoon ground black pepper

  • 6 cloves garlic, minced

  • 1 medium zucchini, halved lengthwise and cut into 1/4-inch-thick slices

  • 1 16 ounce tube refrigerated cooked polenta

  • 6 tablespoon purchased pesto or olive tapenade

  • Fresh basil sprigs (optional)


  1. In a large skillet, cook ground beef until brown. Drain off fat. Transfer meat to a 3-1/2- or 4-quart slow cooker. Stir in undrained tomatoes, carrots, onions, sweet pepper, broth, salt, black pepper, and garlic.

  2. Cover and cook on low-heat setting for 7 to 9 hours or on high-heat setting for 3-1/2 to 4-1/2 hours.

  3. If using low-heat setting, turn to high-heat setting. Stir in zucchini. Cover and cook about 30 minutes more or until zucchini is crisp-tender.

  4. Meanwhile, prepare polenta according to package directions. Serve meat mixture over polenta. Top individual servings with pesto. If desired, garnish with basil. Makes 6 servings.

Nutrition Facts (per serving)

388 Calories
20g Fat
30g Carbs
20g Protein
Nutrition Facts
Servings Per Recipe 6
Calories 388
% Daily Value *
Total Fat 20g 26%
Saturated Fat 4g 20%
Cholesterol 50mg 17%
Sodium 773mg 34%
Total Carbohydrate 30g 11%
Protein 20g

*The % Daily Value (DV) tells you how much a nutrient in a food serving contributes to a daily diet. 2,000 calories a day is used for general nutrition advice.

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