Italian Pulled Pork Ragu (Instant Pot, Slow Cooker, Stove)

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Italian Pulled Pork Ragu is a hearty sauce made with pulled pork, tomatoes, roasted peppers and fresh herbs. Can be made in the Instant Pot, Slow Cooker or Dutch oven.

Italian Pulled Pork Ragu is a hearty sauce made with pulled pork, tomatoes, roasted peppers and fresh herbs. Can be made in the Instant Pot, Slow Cooker or Dutch oven.

Wonderful served over pasta, spaghetti squash or spiralized noodles.

A hearty sauce made with Pulled pork, tomatoes, roasted peppers and fresh herbs. Wonderful served over pasta, spaghetti squash or spiralized noodles.

I’ve tested this several ways, in the slow cooker, pressure cooker and stove and it comes out great any way you wish to make it! Pork tenderloins are a great lean option and come out very tender.  Browning them first really adds depth of flavor to the sauce. This sauce is incredibly light, so even if you want this over pasta which is how my husband ate it, it’s still a low calorie dish.

If you want this over spiralized zucchini, the question I get asked often is how I cook them. I like to heat a large skillet on very high heat, add a little oil and cook them really quick, about 1 1/2 to 2 minutes tops then quickly remove from the skillet so they don’t continue cooking. This way they still have a little bite to them and don’t get watery and mushy.

And since so many are asking, although I have and love my Instant Pot, I still love my slow cooker! I have the 6 Quart Hamilton Beach Set ‘n Forget Programmable Slow Cooker (affil link). I love it because you can adjust the time you want it to cook, and it automatically turns to warm when it’s done. It also has a probe for meat that automatically shuts off when done. I hated my old crock pot, it burnt everything and my food had a weird taste. This slow cooker is so great, I actually own several!

A hearty sauce made with Pulled pork, tomatoes, roasted peppers and fresh herbs. Wonderful served over pasta, spaghetti squash or spiralized noodles. A hearty sauce made with Pulled pork, tomatoes, roasted peppers and fresh herbs. Wonderful served over pasta, spaghetti squash or spiralized noodles.

 

Pulled pork is not just for sandwiches, it's wonderful in this hearty sauce which is perfect over pasta, spaghetti squash or spiralized noodles.
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4.49 from 29 votes
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Italian Pulled Pork Ragu (Instant Pot, Slow Cooker, Stove)

93 Cals 11 Protein 6.5 Carbs 1.5 Fats
Prep Time: 10 mins
Cook Time: 1 hr
Total Time: 1 hr 10 mins
Yield: 10 Servings
COURSE: Dinner
CUISINE: Italian
Pulled pork is not just for sandwiches, it's wonderful in this hearty sauce which is perfect over pasta, spaghetti squash or spiralized noodles.

Ingredients

  • 18 oz pork tenderloin
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • black pepper, to taste
  • 1 tsp olive oil
  • 5 cloves garlic, smashed with the side of a knife
  • 1 28 oz can crushed tomatoes (I love Tuttorosso)
  • 1 small jar roasted red peppers, drained (7 oz jar)
  • 2 sprigs fresh thyme
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 1 tbsp chopped fresh parsley, divided

Instructions

  • Instant Pot: Season pork with salt and pepper. Press saute button to warm, add oil and garlic and saute until golden brown, 1 to 1 1/2 minutes; remove with a slotted spoon. Add pork and brown about 2 minutes on each side. Add the remaining ingredients and garlic, reserving half of the parsley. Cook high pressure 45 minutes. Natural release, remove bay leaves, shred the pork with 2 forks and top with remaining parsley. Serve over your favorite pasta.
  • Slow Cooker: Season pork with salt and pepper. Heat a medium skillet over medium-high heat, add oil and garlic and saute until golden brown, 1 to 1 1/2 minutes; remove with a slotted spoon. Add pork and brown about 2 minutes on each side then transfer to the slow cooker with the garlic and the remaining ingredients, reserving half of the parsley. Cook 8 hours low. Remove bay leaves, shred the pork with 2 forks and top with remaining parsley. Serve over your favorite pasta.
  • Stove Top: Season pork with salt and pepper. Heat a large pot or Dutch oven over medium-high heat, add oil and garlic and saute until golden brown, 1 to 1 1/2 minutes; remove with a slotted spoon. Add pork and brown about 2 minutes on each side. Add the remaining ingredients to the pot including the garlic, reserving half of the parsley. Bring to a boil, cook covered on low until the pork is tender, and shreds easily, about 2 hours. Remove bay leaves, shred the pork with 2 forks and top with remaining parsley. Serve over your favorite pasta.

Nutrition

Serving: 1/2 cup sauce, Calories: 93kcal, Carbohydrates: 6.5g, Protein: 11g, Fat: 1.5g, Cholesterol: 33mg, Sodium: 347mg, Sugar: 3g
WW Points Plus: 2
Keywords: Italian Pork Ragu Recipe, Pork Ragu, Slow Cooker Pork

Pulled pork is not just for sandwiches, it's wonderful in this hearty sauce which is perfect over pasta, spaghetti squash or spiralized noodles.

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148 comments

  1. This has so much flavor.  You have to season and sear the pork in the garlic oil to get that result!  I did add a few more red peppers, an extra sprig of thyme and more parsley.  I also added diced tomatoes (drained) as I like my sauce with more tomatoes.  Great recipe and love the low calories and filling meal 🙌

  2. I saw some negative reviews after I bought the ingrediants, so I was worried about this dish. Boy do I disagree with the negative reviews. My family and I thought this was delicious and definitely something we will make again and again. The only change I made was to sprinkle some additional italian seasoning in the slow cooker. My tenderloin was not dry – at all. The meat was tender and juicy. I wonder if people did not brown the pork in the skillet or pan? It’s necessary to seal the juices in the tenderloin!

  3. Made it and loved it. A few things I added and a couple of tips when using the Instant Pot.

    I added a half finely diced sweet onion to the sauté stage, with the garlic and olive oil.
    I seared the pork in my cast iron pan on the stove.
    Make sure you use crushed tomatoes, big can, and then add ¼ to 1/3 cup of water in the can to swish out the rest of the tomatoes and add it to the pot. The Instant Pot pressure cooker needs a little extra water in it.
    I added a coarsely chopped Roma tomato for a little more texture.
    I used about 1 ½ tbsp of Italian seasoning in the pot, along with the other spices. Added salt and pepper to taste at the end.
    Used the low pressure setting for half the cook and then turned it to high. Make sure that you turn off the warming option so that the pressure naturally dissipates. Don’t use the quick release. Takes that extra 20 mins but really breaks down the pork tenderloin.
    A tip if you are a Instant Pot newbie like me, take the pork tenderloin out, onto a separate dish or bowl and shred it with the forks. It’s just easier that trying to do it in the pot without burning yourself, and ensures you get that fine shred you want in a Ragu
    Return to the pot and stir it back in.

  4. I’ve tried a lot of recipes, but this one just wasn’t great. Very bland as is (I did add more spices and Worcestershire sauce as another person suggested which helped). I cooked on the stove, but the pork despite me keeping an eye on it constantly, did dry out even though I took it out of the pan after an hour. Sadly won’t make this one again.

  5. Made this twice. First time noticed a lack of depth of flavor. Second time, same thing so I added a few dashes of worcestershire sauce and that really elevated it. The sauce is going to be think as made, but if you serve it over whole wheat pasta, maybe reserve some of the starchy water to add in to the pasta and sauce as you finish them in a pan. Such a low point bargain, we’ll be making it again.

  6. Made this tonight in the instant pot exactly as directed  and served it over spaghetti squash. Definitely a keeper. 

  7. This was super tasty.  I used a pork loin because that is what I had on hand- it did up the points to 3 blue WW but that was also for a cup rather than a half cup.  I did mine on the stove and it really was perfect- it reminded me of the skinnytaste chicken cacciatore recipe.  My picky boys gobbled it up.  Another winner!!