Recipes » Main Dish Recipes » Dutch Oven Braised Short Ribs with Polenta

Dutch Oven Braised Short Ribs with Polenta

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5 from 2 votes
This one-pot braised short ribs recipe is slow-cooked in a Dutch oven with a tangy sauce and served over warm polenta for a delicious dinner!
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 3 hours
Braised short ribs over polenta on a serving plate.

My Braised Short Ribs with Polenta recipe is braised in a Dutch oven with a rich, tangy sauce until the meat is so tender it practically falls off the bone. The ribs and sauce are served over warm polenta for a delightful dinner!

If you’re looking for the perfect hearty Dutch oven recipe, my one-pot Braised Short Ribs with Polenta is right up your alley. This is a yummy one, believe me. And even though it takes some time to complete, it’s really easy. You basically throw it all in your Dutch oven and just let it simmer.

Braised short ribs over polenta on a serving plate.

The sauce that the short ribs braise in will remind you of a spicy barbecue sauce. It’s made of ketchup, vinegar, horseradish, and a few more ingredients. The horseradish gives it just the perfect little kick. It you’re a horseradish lover like me, you’ll also like my braised beef short ribs with horseradish mashed potatoes … yum!!

Once the short ribs are done and nearly falling apart, you’ll brown some prepared polenta to serve with it. Rice or noodles would be good as well.

How to Make Braised Short Ribs with Polenta

Let’s Go Step-by-Step

I always like to show you the photos and step-by-step instructions for my recipes to help you picture how to make them in your own kitchen. If you just want to print out a copy, you can skip to the bottom of the post where you’ll find the recipe card.

STEP 1. Wipe the short ribs dry and sprinkle both sides liberally with salt and pepper.

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STEP 2. Place the short ribs in a large Dutch oven or heavy saucepan.

STEP 3. In a medium bowl, combine the catsup, water, apple cider vinegar, Worcestershire sauce, horseradish, mustard, salt, and pepper. Whisk to mix well.

STEP 4. Pour the sauce mixture over the short ribs. Add the bay leaf.

STEP 5. Cover the pan and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat and simmer for 2 hours, or until meat is tender.

STEP 6. Cool, then refrigerate until an hour before serving time. Skim off and discard all fat that has risen to the top. Remove and discard any loose bones from the ribs. Remove the bay leaf.

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.

STEP 7. You can now either leave everything in the Dutch oven or transfer the meat to a baking dish and pour the sauce over the top. (I transfer to a baking dish so that I can serve from it – the Dutch oven has gotten pretty messy by this point.)

STEP 8. Cover the Dutch oven or baking dish and cook for 30 minutes. Uncover, baste the ribs with the pan sauce, and return to the oven. Continue cooking for 30 more minutes.

STEP 9. While the short ribs finish cooking, prepare the polenta. Slice the roll of prepared polenta into approximately 1/2” slices.

STEP 10. Heat the olive oil over medium heat in a non-stick frying pan. Saute the polenta slices until lightly browned on both sides and heated through.

Serve the ribs with sauce over the browned polenta slices.

Finished beef short ribs over polenta on a serving plate.

Recipe Tips

  • Storing and freezing: Leftovers may be stored in an airtight container in the refrigerated for up to 3 days. To freeze, place the meat and sauce into a freezer-proof bag and seal removing as much air as possible. Freeze for up to 2 months.
  • Reheating: If frozen, allow the ribs to thaw overnight in the refrigerator. Reheat in the oven, in a covered dish or Dutch oven, at 350 degrees, for 20-30 minutes.

FAQs

Can you overcook short ribs?

Yes, you most definitely can. Just like when cooking a roast or barbecue pork ribs, cooking for too long can actually make the meat dry and stringy. Even though we like to say “it’s so tender it just falls off the bone,” that’s not the best advice. Cook until the meat is done throughout, tender and is just pulling away from the bones.

Do you cook short ribs bone side up or down?

You’ll find conflicting information on this throughout the internet and in cookbooks as well. To be honest, it doesn’t matter much. Up, down, whatever. They’ll be fine. Just toss them in the pot and get on with it.

Should I trim the fat from my short ribs before cooking?

Well, I don’t. Unless there seems to be some really excessive globs of fat hanging off or something like that. You need fat to maintain moisture during braising. And the purpose of the step in the recipe where you allow the ribs to cool until the fat rises to the top is so that you can remove the excess at that point.

Can I make this in a slow cooker?

You can make this recipe up through step 5 in a slow cooker. Instead of cooking in the oven for two hours, you’d cover and cook in your slow cooker on high for about 5 hours. I’d still advise to continue with the oven baking that starts in step 7.

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Braised short ribs over polenta on a serving plate.

Dutch Oven Braised Short Ribs with Polenta

This one-pot braised short ribs recipe is slow-cooked in a Dutch oven with a tangy sauce and served over warm polenta for a delicious dinner!
5 from 2 votes
Print It Rate It
Course: Main Dishes
Cuisine: American
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 3 hours
Total Time: 3 hours 10 minutes
Servings: 4 servings
Calories: 793kcal
Author: Lana Stuart

Ingredients

  • 4 pounds beef short ribs
  • Salt and Pepper
  • 1 cup ketchup
  • 1 cup water
  • 1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 tablespoon prepared horseradish
  • 1 tablespoon dry mustard
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • ½ teaspoon pepper
  • 1 bay leaf

For the polenta:

  • 18 ounces prepared polenta
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil

Instructions

  • Wipe the short ribs dry and sprinkle both sides liberally with salt and pepper.
  • Place the short ribs in a large, heavy saucepan.
  • In a medium bowl, combine the catsup, water, apple cider vinegar, Worcestershire sauce, horseradish, mustard, salt, and pepper. Whisk to mix well.
  • Pour the sauce mixture over the short ribs. Add the bay leaf.
  • Cover the pan and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat and simmer for 2 hours, or until meat is tender. Cool, then refrigerate until an hour before serving time.
  • Skim of all fat that has risen to the top and remove any loose bones from the ribs. Remove the bay leaf. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
  • You can now either leave everything in the Dutch oven or transfer the meat to a baking dish and pour the sauce over the top. (I transfer to a baking dish so that I can serve from it – the Dutch oven has gotten pretty messy by this point.)
  • Cover and bake for 30 minutes. Uncover, baste the ribs with the pan sauce and return to the oven. Continue cooking for 30 more minutes.
  • While the short ribs finish cooking, prepare the polenta.
  • Slice the roll of prepared polenta into approximately ½” slices. Heat the olive oil over medium heat in a non-stick frying pan. Saute the polenta slices until lightly browned on both sides and heated through.
  • Serve the ribs with sauce over the browned polenta slices.

Notes

TIPS AND FAQs
  • Storing and freezing: Leftovers may be stored in an airtight container in the refrigerated for up to 3 days. To freeze, place the meat and sauce into a freezer-proof bag and seal removing as much air as possible. Freeze for up to 2 months.
  • Reheating: If frozen, allow the ribs to thaw overnight in the refrigerator. Reheat in the oven, in a covered dish or Dutch oven, at 350 degrees, for 20-30 minutes.
 
Can you overcook short ribs? Yes, you most definitely can. Just like when cooking a roast or barbecue pork ribs, cooking for too long can actually make the meat dry and stringy. Even though we like to say “it’s so tender it just falls off the bone,” that’s not the best advice. Cook until the meat is done throughout, tender and is just pulling away from the bones.
Do you cook short ribs bone side up or down? You’ll find conflicting information on this throughout the internet and in cookbooks as well. To be honest, it doesn’t matter much. Up, down, whatever. They’ll be fine. Just toss them in the pot and get on with it.
Should I trim the fat from my short ribs before cooking? Well, I don’t. Unless there seem to be some really excessive globs of fat hanging off or something like that. You need fat to maintain moisture during braising. And the purpose of the step in the recipe where you allow the ribs to cool until the fat rises to the top is so that you can remove the excess at that point.
Can I make this in a slow cooker? You can make this recipe up through step 5 in a slow cooker. Instead of cooking in the oven for two hours, you’d cover and cook in your slow cooker on high for about 5 hours. I’d still advise continuing with the oven baking that starts in step 7.

Nutrition Information

Serving: 1 | Calories: 793kcal | Carbohydrates: 34g | Protein: 66g | Fat: 42g | Saturated Fat: 15g | Cholesterol: 195mg | Sodium: 1404mg | Potassium: 1460mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 14g | Vitamin A: 354IU | Vitamin C: 4mg | Calcium: 55mg | Iron: 8mg

Nutrition information is calculated by software based on the ingredients in each recipe. It is an estimate only and is provided for informational purposes. You should consult your health care provider or a registered dietitian if precise nutrition calculations are needed for health reasons.

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