Rich Slow Cooker Lamb Ragu with Bacon

This slow cooker lamb ragu is an incredibly rich dish that’s perfect for anyone looking for a fantastic pasta recipe.

Slow Cooker Lamb Ragu

By the end of cooking the lamb is so tender and amazing, the sauce will also be rich and packed full of flavor. Top this dish off with some shaved Parmesan cheese for the best results.

There are quite a few ingredients required to make this lamb ragu but is certainly worth it. You might be able to get away with leaving a few ingredients out, but for the best result, I highly recommend leaving the recipe as is.

As with any good pasta dinner, some garlic bread will go amazingly on the side. This recipe will create quite a bit of food so you might not end up needing any extras.

Make sure you keep the leftovers as they will reheat nicely in the microwave or over the stove. I do not recommend heating leftovers in the slow cooker as it can take too long to reheat which can lead to food poisoning. For safe storage keep the leftovers in the fridge or freezer until required. It will last months in the freezer or just a few days in the refrigerator.

The video in the middle of the page will take you through all the steps to making this delicious lamb ragu. The video is short and snappy so won’t take up too much of your time.

Slow Cooker Lamb Ragu Recipe

Prep time
20 Minutes
Cook time
8 Hours & 15 Minutes
Total time
8 Hours & 35 Minutes


  • 1kg (2 lb.) lamb roast (1.5kg/3 lb. if bone in)
  • 200g (7 oz.) pancetta or bacon
  • 1 onion, diced
  • 2 tsp. garlic, crushed
  • 2 carrots, large dice
  • 2 celery stalks, large dice
  • 2 tsp. rosemary, dried
  • 2 tsp. thyme, dried
  • 2 bay leaves
  • ½ cup red wine
  • 2 Tbsp. tomato paste
  • 800g (28 oz.) crushed tomatoes
  • 1 cup beef stock or lamb stock
  • 500g (1 lb) pappardelle pasta, cooked (To serve with)


  1. Season the lamb with salt & pepper.
  2. In a frying pan over medium-high heat, add the bacon and fry until crispy. Once crispy, remove and put to the side.
  3. Add the lamb and brown on all sides. Once browned put to the side.
  4. In the same fry pan, add the red wine and cook for 2-3 minutes constantly stirring while making sure you’re scraping the bottom of the pan.
  5. In the slow cooker, add the lamb, bacon, red wine, onion, garlic, carrots, celery, rosemary, thyme, tomato paste, diced tomatoes, bay leaves and lastly the beef/lamb stock.
  6. Cook on low for 6-8 hours.
  7. Remove the lamb from the slow cooker and shred using two forks. Once shredded return the lamb.
  8. Season with salt & pepper.
  9. Serve & Enjoy

Recipe Tips

  • It’s hard to find lamb stock for sale at the supermarket so unless you make some at home, and you will instead need to use beef stock.
  • If you can’t get your hands on some lamb but have access to lamb sausages, then these make for a great replacement. Follow the recipe the same but slice them after you’ve finished browning them in the pan. Obviously, you won’t be shredding these either.
  • I recommend using pappardelle pasta, but you can use any type of pasta that you would like. You should cook the pasta in a pot of boiling water just before you go to serve rather than the slow cooker. However, if you want, you can cook the pasta in the slow cooker just be prepared to add more water as the pasta will thicken the sauce up a ton.
  • You can leave the bacon out if you don’t want to eat it. You will lose a bit of flavor but the dish should be just fine without it.

Nutritional Information

Lamb ragu is delicious, but you might be wondering how it will impact your diet. If this is the case, then you can find all the nutritional information right below. Also, this recipe assumes you’re having pasta with the sauce so if you choose something other than pasta then this information will be wrong.

Just keep in mind this information is an estimate using an online tool so it may vary slightly.

Nutrition Facts
Serving Size: 395g (13.93 oz)
Servings Per Recipe: 8
Amount Per Serving
Calories 484 Calories from Fat 227.7
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 25.3g 39%
Saturated Fat 6.5g 33%
Trans Fat 0g
Cholesterol 121mg 40%
Sodium 358mg 15%
Total Carbohydrate 24g 8%
Dietary Fiber 3g 12%
Sugars 5g
Protein 39g 78%
*Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your daily values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.

If you’re looking for more delicious pasta dishes that you can cook up in a slow cooker, then be sure to check out the creamy chicken carbonara. It’s the perfect dish if you need to feed a crowd or have some fussy eaters.

I hope that you enjoy this slow cooker lamb ragu and it cooks out to be as good as it was for me. If you have an amazing variation, tips or something else that you would love to say, then please don’t hesitate to leave a comment below.

Note: I use a 5.5L (6 Quart) slow cooker for all the recipes that I have on this website unless specified. If you have a smaller or larger slow cooker, then you might need to adjust the ingredients.

One Comment

  1. Gretchen on

    Thank you for this fantastic recipe. I made it today and served this to 12 people for dinner. Everyone wanted the recipe. It was a little more prep work than I like for a slow cooker dish – as you warned. But it is definitely worth it (as you also mentioned.) Thanks again.

    I gave this recipe 5 / 5

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