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Italian Sausage and Mushroom Ragu with Pappardelle

4 Servings

45 minutes

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This rich and hearty ragu was inspired by a recipe from Portland, Oregon, chef Vitaly Paley. Ground cinnamon, a hefty pour of red wine and crushed tomatoes build layers of flavor over a base of garlic, portobellos and Italian sausage. Choose a full-bodied, dry red wine, such as cabernet sauvignon. Top with grated Parmesan cheese.




Don't use Italian sausage links, even if the casings are removed. Bulk sausage is better because its grind tends to be finer than that of link sausage, so the meat breaks apart more readily during cooking.

45 minutes


  • 2

    tablespoons salted butter

  • 5

    garlic cloves, finely chopped


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Alex H.
January 2, 2023
Warm and savory ragu
Wonderful recipe! Sometimes I'll use crimini in place of portobello. Will sometimes serve it over polenta rather than pasta.
Carleen W.
December 11, 2022
The 'wow' factor
An earthy depth of flavor. Tastes like it simmered for hours.
Raaya C.
October 20, 2022
Very delicious
The title says it all. So good,
Elizabeth S.

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Michele R.

With so much flavor added from all the other elements, we found water can be substituted for chicken broth with still great flavor if you don't want to defrost the chicken broth from the freezer. (In particular if you're using a boxed stock. Just say no to the box.) And if you can find Mutti brand crushed tomatoes, all the better. The cinnamon is "it" for this so while you may be tempted to leave it out (it is used more in regional Italian cooking than most American home cooks think), add it in. Cent'anni!

Paul G.

Not sure how to get this done in 45 minutes when I took 15 just to clean and chop the mushrooms! Maybe food processor next time. Otherwise fantastic flavors. As mentioned elsewhere - don’t skip the cinnamon.

William W.

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christine d.

The cinnamon took this dish over the top, we loved it.

Barbara K.

This was amazingly good made just as written. I"m already craving it again.

Daniel R.

I've made this twice so far. Very good.

Lorraine P.

Can this recipe be made with HOT Italian sausages, if removed from the castings and run it through the food processor to make it finer? My supermarket does not have sweet bulk sausage meat.

Lynn C.

Hi Lorraine -

Since the recipe recommends against using sausage with casing, I wouldn't recommend it for hot sausage either. I would be worried the food processor would over-process the sausage and turn it into a paste but, if you do decide to try it anyway, I would stick with the "pulse" rather than the "process" feature. Good luck!

The Milk Street Team

Carolyn M.

Made this tonight . Ran into trouble wiht wine reduction . Took more than 5 min. I may have taken 15 min ans I think it affected the “look” of the sauce. I think it still tasted good . Maybe next time I will just follow the time and ignore reduction . I wish there were more pictures online for step by step in all the recipes

Penny E.

I made this with link chicken sausage, which I squished out of the casings, and no onion or garlic, and it was still fabulously tasty! I was skeptical that I would want all those mushrooms, but I’m glad that I didn’t change that. I think the size of the pan is crucial, so that the mushrooms didn’t steam. Grazie!!

Kathy B.

Agree that this is delicious, yes, add cinnamon and plan on at least double the time for prep and several reductions of liquids. End result is worth it!

Sally M.

I plan to double this recipe — Any suggested changes to the ingredients or process?

Lynn C.

Hi Sally -

My only concern with doubling the recipe is fitting everything comfortably in a pan. It's already in a 12" skillet with 1 1/2 cups of broth (plus a lot of other ingredients). To double it, you'd need an extremely large skillet that fits 3 cups of broth. You could try doing it in a Dutch oven but I worry that the smaller surface area will affect how the mushrooms cook and how the liquid evaporates. Worth a try though!

The Milk Street Team

Bill M.

Followed recipe exactly and wasnt impressed . Wine reduction took long time ..broth reduction as well. Just seemed weird to keep adding different liquids then reducing. By the time this was done mushrooms were non existent and not much flavor let in the sausage chunks. I will try this again and maybe cut back on the liquids and chop my mushrooms coarser.

Diana L.

This was a good dish. However, none of my family members could taste cinnamon. I would I agree with Bill, we could not taste mushrooms.

Kathleen D.

Hi, I don’t cook with alcohol. Sometimes I sub a bit of vinegar for the wine. What ratio or other solution would you recommend here?

Lynn C.

Hi Kathleen -

I would recommend adding about 3/4 cup more chicken broth (or beef broth) and a couple of tablespoons of vinegar - make sure it's a good quality wine vinegar. If you don't cook with wine vinegar then a cider vinegar would work too. Even though it's a little bit less liquid than the recipe calls for I don't think it will matter too much in the end.

The Milk Street Team

maureen s.

Made this exactly as written. The hardest part is chopping the mushrooms. This is an excellent recipe.

Loretta F.

This was quite good. I made it as written but for the fact that I used a combination of fresh oyster mushrooms from the farmers market and button mushrooms. It took 45 minutes as I used the food processor to mince the garlic. Then, after I started the garlic and butter in the skillet, and without washing out the processor bowl, I used it to chop the mushrooms (which I don't wash individually, instead simply running water over them in a colander). I am considering - for next time - cutting back a bit on the amount of pasta for this amount of sauce.