A thick, delicious sauce brimming with flavor. Full of spices, garlic and Italian sausage this hearty sauce is perfect to drench over gluten-free pasta for a top-8-free dinner. This Allergy-friendly Ragu is free of: gluten, dairy, egg, soy, peanut & tree nuts. (Vegetarian option too!)
I am a sucker for pasta. Plain and simple. Although I have no claim to Italian roots, I’d like to thick I just haven’t gone far enough back in my family history because there has got to be some pasta making Italian in my heritage somewhere for this love to have come from!
However, a lot of pasta involves CHEESE. That’s usually what makes it good. For pasta to be good it’s gotta have cheese in the sauce and then an additional dusting of grated parm on top, right? WRONG.
I’ve had to be really picky with a pasta I call “good” because since having to go dairy-free for my son, our pasta has to stand up on it’s own without that gooey goodness.
So, for me to say this is the best Ragu–you know that’s saying something. As in, I’ll-never-buy-the-bottled-stuff-again.
This is thick, hearty and bursting with flavor.
If you’ve been following me, or you happen to be my neighbor–you’d know I make this Slow Cooker Bolognese a LOT. However, I like to serve this ragu when I don’t want so many leftovers (the bolognese makes enough for dinner that night, a light lunch the next day and enough to freeze for another meal). Plus, I don’t always have 8 hours for it to slow cook.
That’s where this Ragu comes into play. It only takes some quick prep work and then let it simmer for an hour. It’s great for weekends when I can get it simmering in the late afternoon and then dig in for a comfort meal a little later. Confession though: I do sit and “test” the sauce almost the entire time it’s simmering. I pick out the biggest mushroom I can find and go to town.
One of my other favorite parts–it’s so kid-friendly. I simply tell my kids it’s “spaghetti” and what kid does not like spaghetti?? Don’t be a rookie mom like me (seriously, how am I having my third and still making mistakes like this??) I let my toddler eat it with a white shirt on. I almost did an Instagram story of me having to spray and spray pounds of Shout on it afterwards. What can I say–I was too excited to dig in myself to worry about what my kids were wearing. It was still worth it!
Feel free to serve this over any type of pasta you like–if you don’t need to be gluten-free, use spaghetti or angel hair pasta. If you are gluten-free like us, I prefer brown rice pastas, but thankfully there are tons of kinds! Or, if you’re trying to go grain free–you can have it over quinoa. This sauce will amplify anything it’s over.
Now get a fork and dig in!
- 1 Tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
- 1 pound Italian Sausage (or omit if doing vegetarian)*
- 1 large red onion, diced finely
- 4 large cloves garlic, chopped
- 6 oz can of tomato paste
- 1 cup gluten-free broth (vegetable broth if doing vegetarian)
- 1 28-oz can crushed tomatoes
- 1 package of mushrooms, sliced
- 1 teaspoon dried oregano
- 2 teaspoons dried basil
- 1/2 teaspoon dried thyme
- 1 bay leaf
- Sea salt and pepper, to taste
- 1 Tablespoon balsamic vinegar
- If needed, at the end of cooking if it's too acidic, a splash of honey or agave
- Fresh parsley or basil for garnish
- Heat olive oil in a large pan over medium heat. Add your diced red onion and soften. Next, add your Italian sausage and garlic and brown.
- Simply stir in the rest of the ingredients and allow it to start simmering.
- Turn the heat down to low, so that it's just barely simmering, and allow it to do so for one hour uncovered.
- At the end of cooking, adjust any seasonings. If it's too acidic (I find it isn't if you allow it to simmer the full hour) you can add a splash of honey or agave. If it's thickened too much, you can thin it out with some more broth.
- Serve over your favorite gluten-free pasta. Garnish with fresh basil or parsley if desired.
If you are making this vegetarian and want to omit the Italian Sausage, you may find you'll want to bump up the spices a bit, to make up for the extra spices found in Italian Sausage. Flavor to taste.
Adapted from the amazing: Gluten-free Goddess
DON’T FORGET TO PIN IT, SO YOU DON’T LOSE IT! BE SURE TO ALSO CHECK OUT MY OTHER ALLERGY-FRIENDLY PINTEREST BOARDS.
Obsessed with allergy-friendly pasta dishes too?? Check out some of my favorites:
Hi! I’m Megan, a mom to four kids, two with multiple food allergies & one with EOE. I’m a published cookbook author that constantly tweaks recipes to make them allergy friendly–it’s an addiction. I share every recipe & tip with you, to help you eat like you did before food allergies & dietary restrictions. You can still be awesome, even with food allergies!