Best Easy Sunday Gravy Recipe Henry Hill

Title: The Best Easy Sunday Gravy Recipe by Henry Hill


When it comes to classic Italian comfort food, Sunday gravy holds a special place in the hearts of many. Made with love and simmered for hours, this rich and flavorful tomato-based sauce is the epitome of Sunday family gatherings. Today, we present to you the best easy Sunday gravy recipe by none other than the legendary Henry Hill, immortalized in the movie “Goodfellas.” So, roll up your sleeves and get ready to create a delectable sauce that will transport you to the heart of Italy.


– 1/4 cup olive oil
– 1 onion, finely chopped
– 4 cloves garlic, minced
– 1 pound beef short ribs
– 1 pound pork spare ribs
– 1 pound sweet Italian sausage
– 1 can (28 ounces) crushed tomatoes
– 1 can (6 ounces) tomato paste
– 1 cup red wine
– 1 teaspoon sugar
– 1 teaspoon dried basil
– 1 teaspoon dried oregano
– Salt and pepper to taste
– 1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese (for serving)
– Fresh basil leaves (for garnish)


1. In a large pot, heat the olive oil over medium heat. Add the onion and garlic, sauté until translucent and fragrant.

2. Add the beef short ribs, pork spare ribs, and Italian sausage to the pot. Brown the meats on all sides, ensuring they are cooked evenly.

3. Once the meats are browned, remove them from the pot and set aside.

4. In the same pot, add the crushed tomatoes, tomato paste, red wine, sugar, dried basil, dried oregano, salt, and pepper. Stir well to combine all the flavors.

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5. Return the browned meats to the pot, ensuring they are submerged in the sauce. Cover the pot and reduce the heat to low. Allow the sauce to simmer for a minimum of 3 hours, stirring occasionally.

6. After the simmering time, remove the meats from the pot and set aside. Discard any bones or excess fat.

7. Using an immersion blender or a regular blender, blend the sauce until smooth. Return the meats to the pot and continue to simmer for an additional 30 minutes.

8. While the sauce is simmering, cook your preferred pasta according to the package instructions.

9. Serve the Sunday gravy over the cooked pasta, garnishing with grated Parmesan cheese and fresh basil leaves.

Questions and Answers:

1. Can I use a different type of meat in this recipe?
Yes, you can customize the meats according to your preferences. Some popular alternatives include beef meatballs, chicken thighs, or even lamb.

2. Can I make this sauce in advance?
Absolutely! In fact, Sunday gravy tastes even better when made a day ahead. Simply refrigerate it and reheat it when ready to serve.

3. Can I freeze the sauce?
Yes, this sauce freezes exceptionally well. Store it in an airtight container for up to 3 months. Thaw in the refrigerator overnight before reheating.

4. What is the purpose of adding sugar to the sauce?
The sugar helps balance the acidity of the tomatoes and enhances the overall flavor profile of the sauce.

5. Can I substitute fresh herbs for dried ones?
Yes, you can substitute dried herbs with an equal amount of fresh herbs. Keep in mind that fresh herbs tend to have a stronger flavor, so adjust accordingly.

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6. What type of wine should I use?
Traditionally, red wine such as Chianti or Merlot is used in Sunday gravy recipes. However, you can experiment with different varieties to suit your taste.

7. What can I serve with Sunday gravy besides pasta?
While pasta is the classic choice, you can also serve this sauce with polenta, mashed potatoes, or even as a topping for homemade pizza.

8. Can I make this recipe vegetarian?
Certainly! You can omit the meat entirely and add extra vegetables like mushrooms, bell peppers, or zucchini for a delicious vegetarian version.

9. How long can I keep leftovers in the refrigerator?
Leftover Sunday gravy can be stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 4 days. Reheat it gently on the stovetop or in the microwave before enjoying.


Henry Hill’s best easy Sunday gravy recipe is a delightful homage to traditional Italian cuisine. With its rich flavors and tender meats, this sauce is sure to become a family favorite. So, gather your loved ones, sit back, and savor the taste of Sundays in Italy, right in your own home.

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