Osso Buco (Braised Veal Shanks)

Osso Buco is Italian for “bone with a hole” and can be made with veal shanks or even oxtails. The veal shanks are braised with vegetables in wine and broth, yielding flavorful meat. The shanks become extremely tender after slowly braising. So delicious!

Osso Buco with Veal Shanks and Risotto alla Milanese

I served the Osso Buco over Risotto alla Milanese, which is just as scrumptious as the veal. Made with saffron, beef stock, and marrow, the risotto pairs perfectly with the Osso Buco. Don’t worry, I’ll post the risotto recipe tomorrow! It’s definitely a favorite.

Then again, I have a soft spot in my heart for risotto. 

Osso Buco with Veal Shanks and Risotto alla Milanese

This dish can easily be adapted for a crock pot. Just be sure to brown the veal shanks in a very hot pan before placing them in the slow cooker. You don’t want to miss out on all that good flavor. Then, add the vegetables to the pan and cook until tender. In order to get all of the good flavor out of the pan, deglaze with wine and add the beef stock. Then, pour all of the ingredients into a hot slow cooker. Cook for 6 hours, or until fall-off-the-bone tender.

Osso Buco with Veal Shanks and Risotto alla Milanese

Osso Buco (Braised Veal Shanks)
Serves: 4 Veal Shanks
  • 3 tbsp olive oil
  • ½ cup flour
  • 4 veal shanks
  • 2 yellow onions, chopped
  • 1½ cup celery, chopped
  • 1½ cups carrots, chopped
  • 3 cloves garlic, pressed
  • 2 cups dry red wine
  • 3 bay leaves
  • 3 sprigs fresh thyme
  • 2 sprigs fresh rosemary
  • 1 can tomato paste
  • 1 quart beef stock
  • salt and pepper, to taste
  • 3 tbsp cornstarch (dissolved in 3 tbsp water)
  • ¼ cup parsley, chopped
  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit or preheat the slow cooker.
  2. In a medium bowl, stir together the flour with a bit of salt and pepper. Pat the veal shanks dry with a few paper towels and then dip them in the flour mixture. They need to be very dry in order to brown properly. Add the olive oil to a dutch oven or large pan and heat over high heat until very hot. Brown the veal shanks in batches until a nice crust is formed on each, about 8 minutes. Once the veal shanks are browned, set them aside on a plate.
  3. Using the same hot dutch oven or pan, add the onions, celery, and carrots. Cook until slightly tender and lightly browned. Add the garlic and cook for an additional minute. Deglaze the pan with the dry red wine. Cook for a few minutes, allowing the wine to reduce slightly. As the wine is cooking, scrape the bottom of the pan to remove any brown food residue (this is where the flavor lies). Add the beef stock and tomato paste. Bring to a boil.
  4. Place the bay leaves, thyme, and rosemary in the dutch oven or slow cooker. If using a slow cooker, pour the vegetables and beef stock into the crock pot and add the veal shanks. Cook for 6 hours on low heat, or until tender. If using a dutch oven, add the veal shanks to the vegetable and beef stock mixture. Cook in the preheated oven for 2½ hours, or until tender.
  5. To thicken the sauce, mix equal parts cornstarch with water. Slowly add the cornstarch mixture to sauce and stir until it thickens to the desired consistency. You may not need to add all of the cornstarch.
  6. Garnish with chopped parsley and serve while hot.
Tip: To keep meat in the veal shanks from falling away from the bone, use a bit of kitchen twine to tie them together.
Nutrition Information
Serving size: 1 Veal Shank