Spooning this hearty beef sauce over creamy polenta is a great alternative if you’re avoiding pasta or just want something a bit more rib-sticking.

  • Yield: 4 servings
  • Difficulty: Easy
  • Total: 30 mins 
  • Active: 25 mins 

Ingredients (13)

  • 1 cup quick-cooking polenta
  • 3/4 cup (3 ounces) grated Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese
  • 1/4 cup cream cheese or mascarpone
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 pound ground beef
  • 1 cup chopped yellow onion
  • 1 garlic clove, minced
  • 1 tablespoon chopped fresh rosemary
  • 1 tablespoon chopped fresh oregano
  • 1 teaspoon crushed red pepper
  • 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1 (28-ounce) can crushed fire-roasted tomatoes
  • 1/2 cup torn fresh basil leaves


  1. Cook polenta in a medium saucepan according to package directions. At the end, stir in 1/3 cup cheese and cream cheese.
  2. Meanwhile, heat oil in a large frying pan over high heat. Cook beef, onion, and garlic, stirring often to break up meat, until meat is no longer pink, about 5 minutes. Transfer beef mixture to a plate using a slotted spoon and discard excess fat. Return meat to the pan and add rosemary, oregano, red pepper, 1/8 teaspoon salt; cook for 4 minutes, stirring frequently. Add tomatoes, simmer on low heat to meld flavors, 8 to 10 minutes.
  3. Divide polenta evenly among 4 shallow bowls. Top each serving with beef mixture, a sprinkling of basil, and the remaining cheese.