Garden Vegetable Ragu

This garden vegetable ragu is a meatless gem of a recipe! Garden vegetable red sauce cooked and seasoned perfectly! Top spaghetti or spaghetti squash and top with grated Parm.

Garden Vegetable Ragu l

This is another recipe from my Mom. She made it all the time when I was younger, and nothing beats the smell of this bubbling away (except this baked chicken) at the stove when you walk in from a long day at the job or from an excruciating bus ride home from the 6th grade.

I’ve been waiting for just the right time to share this with you! Like when the weather is a little cooler and the squash and zucchinis are all over the place. Yeah then. Now. You get it. I finally flicked on the furnace, which means Fall has officially started, so let’s bring on the warm and cozy meals that call for wine and cheese!

Garden Vegetable Ragu l

So when life gives one vegetables, one should make this ragu! Its hearty, healthy, delicious and a simple as pie to make!

Trim and slice the zucchini’s in half lengthwise.

Dice them into semi-thin half-moons.

Repeat with the yellow squash.

Dice up a medium yellow onion,

Peel and grate a carrot.

Bring all of the prepped veggies next to your stove top.

To a deep skillet or pot add about a tablespoon of olive oil and then heat over medium heat.

Drop in a tablespoon of butter.

Sauté the diced onions over medium-low heat until soft and translucent.

With a slotted spoon, remove and set aside.

Next add the yellow squash, adjust the heat if needed. Remove to the same dish as the onions once they’re golden.

Repeat with the zucchini.

Once the zucchini are soft and golden add the onions, yellow squash and carrots back in.

Add some fresh minced or pressed garlic.

Stir and cook until carrots soften a tad about 1-2 minutes.

Pour the tomato sauce and the two cans of diced tomatoes over the sautéed vegetables.

Add seasonings.

And zee wine!

Season the sauce with a pinch of sugar, kosher salt and fresh black pepper.

Garden Vegetable Ragu l

Then stir, cover and simmer for 35 minutes.

Garden Vegetable Ragu l

Next, remove the lid and top with 1/2 cup of grated Parmesan. Stir.

Garden Vegetable Ragu l
Lastly, sprinkle the vegetable ragu with a little or a lot of the reserved Parm. Next you can either plate it over cooked spaghetti noodles or prepared roasted spaghetti squash! And if you want a little meat in this dish, cook mild Italian sausage before sautéing the vegetables and then follow recipe from there on.

Enjoy! And if you give this Garden Vegetable Ragu recipe a try, let me know by snapping a photo and tagging me on twitter or instagram!

Garden Vegetable Ragu l

My cookbook Simply Scratch : 120 Wholesome Homemade Recipes Made Easy is now available! CLICK HERE for details and THANK YOU in advance! 

Yield: 6 to 8 servings

Garden Vegetable Ragu

Garden Vegetable Ragu
This garden vegetable ragu is a meatless gem! Lots of garden veggies in this sauce! Top spaghetti or spaghetti squash and grate with grated Parm.
Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 40 minutes
Total Time 1 hour


  • 1 tablespoon of unsalted butter
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 onion, diced
  • 2 small zucchini, trimmed and sliced into half moons
  • 2 small yellow summer squash, trimmed and sliced into half moons
  • 1 medium carrot, grated
  • 2 medium sized cloves of garlic, minced or pressed through a garlic press
  • 1 (28 ounce) large can tomato sauce
  • 2 cans diced tomatoes
  • 1 teaspoon sugar
  • 1 teaspoon of dried basil, or more to taste
  • 1 teaspoon of dried oregano, or more to taste
  • 1/2 teaspoon Italian Seasoning, or more to taste
  • 1 cup of (good) dry red wine
  • 1 cup grated parmesan cheese, divided
  • kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
  • cooked pasta


  1. Heat the olive oil and butter in a large, deep skillet on medium heat.
  2. Once hot and working in batches, sauté the onions, zucchini and yellow squash until soft and slightly golden. Remove to a bowl after each batch.
  3. Add in all the vegetables in, including the carrot and the garlic. Cook for 1-2 minutes.
  4. Pour in the tomato sauce and the diced tomatoes. Add in the cup of red wine. Season the sauce with the dried herbs, sugar, a little salt, a lot of black pepper. Stir, cover and reduce heat to simmer for 35-40 minutes.
  5. Lastly add the half cup of Parmesan (reserve the rest to garnish), taste and adjust seasonings if needed.
  6. Serve over pasta or prepared spaghetti squash.


Here are a few optional add-ins: leftover parmesan rind (just throw it on while it's simmering and remove before serving)

or sauté ground pork or turkey Italian sausage (for a meat version) before starting the vegetables omitting the oil and butter. Or up the veggies by adding 8 ounces sliced or quartered mushrooms, sautéing with the vegetables.

Nutrition Information:



Serving Size:


Amount Per Serving: Calories: 226 Total Fat: 10g Saturated Fat: 4g Trans Fat: 0g Unsaturated Fat: 4g Cholesterol: 19mg Sodium: 531mg Carbohydrates: 21g Fiber: 4g Sugar: 7g Protein: 8g
Nutrition information isn’t always accurate.
[this post contains affiliate links.]

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24 Responses to “Garden Vegetable Ragu”

  1. #
    Lauren's Latest — October 25, 2011 at 2:35 pm

    Love loading veggies into a tomato sauce! Beautiful photos as usual!

  2. #
    Carol — October 25, 2011 at 2:43 pm

    I always check the new recipes you post, never wrote anything before, but this time i wanted to tell you that you always inspire me!
    I'm from Brasil, and also have a food blog, but nothing compared to yours. I wish I had the chance do cook during the day, so the pictures would have the same great light of yours.. Well, I simply love your blog!!

  3. #
    Bev Weidner (Bev Cooks) — October 25, 2011 at 3:11 pm

    Oh my gosh. Like, oh oh oh my gosh.

    Like, oh oh oh oh oh oh my GOSH.

    Oh my gosh.


  4. #
    Aarthi — October 25, 2011 at 3:13 pm

    see i am drooling over here…Why don't you send me a plate here…I can dig in straight away…

  5. #
    Becky @ Becky Bakes — October 25, 2011 at 3:26 pm

    This looks so delicious! Comfort food that's healthy…can't beat that!

  6. #
    Laurie {Simply Scratch} — October 25, 2011 at 3:50 pm

    Lauren ~ thanks! me too!

    Carol ~ Nice to meet you! Thanks for commenting! You are too kind 🙂

    Aarthi~ Which ships faster UPS or FedEX?

    Becky~ you said it best! Healthy comfort food… who knew?

  7. #
    Cassie//Bake Your Day — October 25, 2011 at 3:54 pm

    My mouth is watering! I love red pasta sauces with lots of veggies. I can imagine that this smells heavenly. Your photos are beautiful too Laurie!

  8. #
    Shutterbug — October 25, 2011 at 4:02 pm

    It sure looks yummy! I love zucchini. I will have to try this recipe sometime. I bet it would taste even more delicious with some crispy bacon on top!

  9. #
    Grubarazzi — October 25, 2011 at 4:17 pm

    This looks delightful! I make something similar when hubs and I are in the mood for pasta. simply divine.

  10. #
    RavieNomNoms — October 25, 2011 at 5:51 pm

    That looks DIVINE! I love veggies. I could eat that ragu ALL THE TIME! You did such a nice job with it and I just love all the colors. One of my favorite pastas is actually with the same ingredients I just use whole tomatoes instead of the tomato sauce. I will have to try this soon!

  11. #
    Margaret Murphy Tripp — October 25, 2011 at 7:41 pm

    Looks delicious…and since I make red sauce nearly once a week, we love it so much…this is a nice twist! Great photos…they made me drool. Yum, yum, yum!

  12. #
    Jennifurla — October 25, 2011 at 8:49 pm


  13. #
    Kels — October 26, 2011 at 12:01 am

    I love adding zucchini to tomato sauce and this just takes it to the next level!

  14. #
    Emily — October 26, 2011 at 12:53 am

    Beautiful! I make this randomly to use up veggies that are starting to turn. I love the addition of wine. I am sure that really jazzes things up.

  15. #
    Dr Clark — October 26, 2011 at 6:42 am

    Vegetarian lifestyle is perfect for health and active living vegetables can provide actual amount of proteins and calcium to the body!

  16. #
    Becka (The Elegant Eggplant) — October 26, 2011 at 5:52 pm

    This is my kind of recipe! Tons of veggies, healthful, simple and delicious. LOVE IT!

  17. #
    Melanie @ Melanie Cooks — October 26, 2011 at 6:10 pm

    What a great pasta recipe! So yummy looking, and full of healthy veggies!

  18. #
    The Cilantropist — October 27, 2011 at 4:18 am

    I love zee wine! 😀 Haha, this recipe sounds awesome, right up my alley for a perfect weeknight meal!

  19. #
    kita — October 28, 2011 at 12:17 pm

    I love a hearty red sauce and this really fits the bill. Plus I love all the extra veggies you snuck in.

  20. #
    Anonymous — October 31, 2011 at 2:11 pm

    Hi, I love your blog! I make something similar to this but my sauce uses eggplant in addition to the squashes. Just peel, de-seed and cube the eggplant and cook the same as the other veggies. It adds great nutritional value, and a beautiful color! I plan on trying lots more of your recipes! Thanks, Julie

  21. #
    Jenn @ Baking Jenn's Blog — November 9, 2011 at 2:18 am

    This sounds AMAZING.

  22. #
    Ana — November 10, 2011 at 1:50 pm

    Those pictures are amazing! Looks delicious! Who needs meat when you got veggies (and Parmesan!)?! Thanks for sharing- this is a great addition to my Meatless Mondays.

  23. #
    Roxanne Rollins — April 12, 2012 at 11:33 pm

    I just made the ragu tonight. Delicious! I will definitely be enjoying this again. Thanks for the great recipes.


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