Ossobuco, especially when served with a saffron risotto, is a symbol of the culinary tradition of Milan and of Italy in general. Today our chef teaches us how to make it to perfection. There are numerous elements to making an excellent ossobuco, and so there are many different versions and interpretations of this fabulous meat main course. In general, however, the principal two pieces of advice are these: buy the best quality meat cuts and take great care when making the finely chopped garnish of lemon, garlic and fresh parsley.


90 minutes Total time
60 minutes Active time
Serves 2 persons
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Salt the ossobuco cuts with sea salt and then sprinkle with the flour. Heat some oil in a pan with high sides and brown the meat. Cut the onion into thick slices and the carrots into rounds. Turn the meat over and add the vegetables, then add a little stock and cover the pan. Cook for an hour over a low heat, adding stock if necessary. When ready, serve with a generous sprinkling of grated lemon zest and, if you like, with a classic risotto Milanese.

To make a proper ossobucco, buy only the rear part of the tibia of the calf.
Ossobuco is one of those recipes that has made history in Italian gastronomy, and is one of the most loved, cooked and imitated all over the world. Its story seems to be a relatively recent one, dating back to the 1800s, but its reputation is beyond question. This is because it is a relatively cheap dish, it’s good for you, not very difficult to make, and above all it is a meal in itself, especially when served with a risotto or polenta. So this is a dish for the whole family, and is most likely well-known abroad because it was taken there with Italian emigrant families. In 1891 the famous chef Pellegrino Artusi included the recipe in his famous cookery book ‘Kitchen Science and the Art of Eating Well’.

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