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The easiest way to cook luscious red wine beef short ribs is in the oven! With just five ingredients, including garlic, herbs, beef broth and red wine, the meat turns out incredibly tender. Serve over olive oil mashed potatoes, pasta or creamy polenta.
This is my go recipe for making red wine braised beef short ribs! It’s a super-easy method and you only need four main ingredients and an oven. You can’t really cook anything more cozy and utterly delicious than tender braised beef in a rich, tangy red wine sauce.
Every single time I cook them for my family, they magically disappear before I can take a photo to show you! So here is the recipe, finally.
The best red wine beef short ribs
I think this might be the best way to cook oven-braised red wine beef short ribs, ever. The meat turns out tender and full of flavor and the process is as unfussy as it gets.
How to make easy beef short ribs
Making braised short ribs isn’t necessarily difficult. Depending on how they’re made, the cooking process can involve multiple steps.
Usually you either sear them on top of the stove or over high heat on a grill, transfer to a deep pan or pot and braise for hours in the oven or on the stovetop.
But it’s easy as pie to make tender, tasty braised short ribs in the oven without too much fuss.
Making short ribs in the oven
I usually use my trusty Dutch oven for braising meat because I like the results even more than using a slow cooker. It’s how I make one of my other favorite slow-cooked beef dishes, French Red Wine Beef Stew.
But for these short ribs, a rectangular baking dish or small roasting pan actually works perfectly.
The pan just has to be large enough that the ribs can lay flat and about halfway submerged in the braising liquid.
A small heavy-duty roasting pan is versatile for so many uses in the kitchen — it’s perfect for braising meats, roasting vegetables, fish and chicken.
Choose one that’s about 14 inches long by 11 inches wide and you’ll be good to go!
The savory juices and fork-tender meat falls off the bone, and they are so good over this creamy, cheesy polenta.
You can also shred the beef and use in olive oil mashed potatoes or simply as a filling for some killer tacos.
Baked red wine beef short ribs are easy to make
- The meat doesn’t need to be marinated ahead of time.
- The short ribs sear and then braise entirely in the oven (no need to brown the meat in batches or simmer on the stovetop). Plus, it makes clean up so much easier.
- In addition to the meat, all you need to make this recipe is red wine, garlic, fresh herbs and salt and pepper. Keeping it simple allows the taste of the beefy short ribs to shine.
Best red wine to use for braised short ribs
The best red wines for braising short ribs are dry, full-bodied varieties.
- Zinfandel, chianti, cabernet sauvignon or malbec are good choices, and they’re often affordable.
- An inexpensive (under $15) blend from Cotes-du-Rhone or Bordeaux would also be delicious for braised short ribs.
Ingredients to make braised short ribs
The beauty of this recipe is how minimalist it is — no onions, celery, carrots or tomato paste. And you still end up with delicious, savory meat that tastes like beef, pure and simple.
Here’s what you need:
- Boneless beef short ribs: This cut of meat comes from rib sections that start at the chuck (shoulder), plate or back ribs of the cow. You can also use 5 pounds of bone-in beef short ribs to make this recipe.
- Dry red wine: Use a dry red wine you enjoy drinking. See notes below on which wine is the best.
- Water or beef stock
- Garlic cloves (1 whole head)
- Fresh thyme, rosemary or dried blend such as Herbs de Provence
- Salt and pepper
Meltingly Tender Red Wine Braised Short Ribs
For the short ribs
- 3 pounds (1.3 kg) boneless beef short ribs, about 6 pieces, or 5 pounds bone-in short ribs
- Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
- 2 cups (500 ml) full-bodied dry red wine such as Cotes du Rhone or Malbec
- 1 cup (250 ml) water, or low-sodium beef broth
- 1 head of garlic, sliced in half horizontally
- 3-4 Fresh rosemary or thyme sprigs, or use 2 teaspoons Herbs de Provence
For the polenta
- ½ cup (80 g) cornmeal
- 1 cup (250 ml) milk
- 2 cups (500 ml) water
- Kosher salt
- 3 tablespoons (45 g) butter
- ⅓ cup (33.33 g) grated Parmesan cheese
- Heat oven to 475 (245C) degrees.
- Put the ribs on a large rimmed baking sheet. Sprinkle the meat liberally on all sides with salt (I use 2 tablespoons Diamond brand kosher salt) and black pepper.
- Roast the ribs 20 minutes, until they're sizzling and forming a brown crust. Transfer the ribs to a roasting pan or 14" x 10" baking dish large enough to hold the ribs in one layer. Turn the oven down to 275 (140C) degrees.
- Pour 1/2 cup of wine onto the baking sheet and scrape up any brown bits, then pour it all over the ribs. Add the remaining wine and water. Toss in the garlic and herb sprigs.
- Cover the pan tightly with foil and return to the oven for 3 1/2 hours, until the meat is very tender and breaks apart when prodded with a fork. Remove from the oven and let the meat rest, covered, for 20 minutes. Shred the meat with a fork and pour over pan juices to keep them moist (skim the fat if you like).
To make the polenta
- Bring the milk and water to a boil in a 2 or 3 quart heavy pot. Add 2 teaspoons salt and slowly stir in the polenta a little at time to avoid lumps.
- Turn the heat down to low and cook, stirring frequently until the polenta thickens, about 25 minutes. Stir in the butter and cheese. Cover and keep warm until serving.
Karen’s Notes and Tips
- Braised short ribs will keep refrigerated up to a week, or frozen for 1 month.
- Reheat in a 350 oven about 25 minutes, covered.
- Use about 5 pounds bone-in ribs instead of boneless ones if you prefer.