Braised Veal Shanks


5 from 2 votes
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These easy braised veal shanks yield tender and delicate meat every time. It’s flavorful, cozy, and needs very little prep.

Looking for more veal recipes? Try veal cutlets, veal scallopini, veal parmesan, and veal Milanese.

veal shanks.

I typically cook my family braised beef shanks for a cozy dinner but cooking it with veal has become a new favorite. This simple yet elegant main dish features tender and delicate meat and crowd-pleasing flavors. It’s quick and easy and the meat falls off the bone!

What are veal shanks?

Veal shanks are cut from the hind shank (the area between the knee bone and shoulder) on the calves. They’re a bit on the pricey side compared to veal chops but I reckon it’s worth it, as meat is incredibly tender. 

Here are some reasons why I LOVE this recipe-

  • Rich and tender. Veal shanks are particularly rich and hearty, which makes them a fantastic choice for impressive and savory meals.
  • Versatile. Braising is my favorite method for cooking veal shanks but you can also cook them in a slow cooker.
  • Perfect for entertaining. Because of its sophisticated flavor and fall-apart tender texture, veal is the perfect option for a special dinner with your family or a cozy dinner party with friends.
  • BETTER than osso bucco. You may associate these shanks with osso bucco, but my recipe is a little different. It’s less heavy on the veggies and more focused on the meat.

Ingredients needed

  • Veal shanks. Look for meaty, bone-in veal shanks with a creamy pink color. I prefer to get mine from the butcher because it has no added liquid (most grocery stores pack it in water) and also is cross-cut, which is ideal for braising.
  • Onion. Adds a nice layer of savory flavor.
  • Cubanelle peppers. These peppers have a subtly sweet flavor, giving the stew a more complex flavor. If you can’t find cubanelle peppers (also called Italian frying peppers), use green bell peppers instead.
  • Oil. For searing the veal shanks.
  • Seasonings. I seasoned the stew and meat with a bay leaf, salt, black pepper, and smoked paprika.
  • Plum tomatoes. Use canned tomatoes to keep this recipe quick and easy.
  • Chicken broth. Or you can use vegetable broth or beef broth.
  • Dry white wine. I recommend using Pinot Grigio or Sauvignon Blanc. For an alcohol-free version, deglaze the pan with extra broth instead of wine.
  • Sour cream. This gives the sauce a nice creaminess.
  • Flour. To help thicken the sauce. I like using all-purpose flour but gluten-free flour or whole wheat flour work well, too.

How to make veal shanks

I’ve included step-by-step photos below to make this recipe easy to follow at home. For the full printable recipe instructions and ingredient quantities, scroll to the recipe card at the bottom of this post.

Step 1 – Cook the aromatics. Heat some of the oil in an oven-safe skillet or Dutch oven over medium-high heat. Once hot, add the onions and peppers, season them with salt and pepper, and sauté until soft.

bell peppers and onions in skillet.

Step 2 – Add the tomatoes. Pour the tomatoes and their juices into the skillet. Stir in the paprika and take the pan off the heat. Finish by stirring in the broth.

seasonings and vegetables in skillet.

Step 3 – Sear the veal shanks. Heat the remaining oil in a separate skillet. Season the veal shanks with salt and pepper and sear on both sides until golden brown.

raw veal shanks simmering in skillet.

Step 4 – Deglaze the pan. Pour the white wine into the empty skillet and scrape up the stuck browned bits from the bottom. Heat to a simmer.

liquid in skillet.

Step 5 – Braise. Add the seared shanks to the skillet with the onions, peppers, and tomatoes. Pour in the wine, then cover the pan with foil and braise the shanks in the oven.

raw veal shanks in skillet with sauce.

Step 6 – Thicken the sauce. Take the shanks out of the oven and stir some of the braising liquid in a small bowl with the sour cream and flour. Stir this slurry back into the stew, then heat it to a simmer on the stove to help it thicken.

thickening the broth with the veal shanks.

Step 7 – Serve. Serve the veal shanks and braising liquid with your favorite cozy side dishes and enjoy.

veal shank recipe.

How to make this in a slow cooker

I’m a big fan of searing and braising the veal shanks because it gives the meat more flavor and an irresistible golden crust. However, you can switch this up by using the slow cooker method instead: 

To slow cook, follow the instructions as written, but add the seared veal shanks and vegetables to a slow cooker with the wine and broth. Cook on low for 7 to 8 hours or on high for 5 to 6 hours. Stir the flour and sour cream slurry into the stew during the last hour of cooking. 

Recipe tips and variations

  • Dry the veal shanks. Before searing the veal, pat the meat dry with paper towels. I found this to be the key to getting a gorgeous and even sear around the meat.
  • Check for doneness. You’ll know the veal shanks are cooked to perfection when they’re almost falling off the bone. You can also use a meat thermometer to ensure that they reach a safe internal temperature of 155ºF.
  • Don’t forget the marrow. The bone marrow is what makes this veal shanks recipe (and other osso buco recipes) so special. Scoop it up with a very small spoon or the back of a regular spoon.
  • Use additional herbs. Upgrade the earthy flavors in the stew by adding fresh rosemary, parsley, thyme, and oregano to the braising liquid.
  • Add more veggies. Bulk up the stew by cooking minced garlic, carrots, leeks, and celery with the onions and peppers.

What to serve with this

While these braised veal shanks are filling on their own, they’re made even better when served over a bed of mashed potatoes, cauliflower mashed potatoes, creamy polenta, risotto, or gnocchi. When I want to go all out, I’ll finish this meal with sautéed asparagus and sauteed broccolini on the side.

Storage instructions

To store: You can store the leftover veal shanks in an airtight container in the refrigerator. recommend eating the leftovers within 1 to 2 days for the best flavor.

To freeze: Braised veal shanks can also be frozen for up to 4 months. Thaw them in the fridge overnight before reheating.

To reheat: Heat the leftover veal shanks in a skillet on the stovetop with a splash of chicken stock to prevent them from drying out.

braised veal shanks.

More cozy dinner recipes

veal shanks recipe.

Braised Veal Shanks Recipe

5 from 2 votes
These easy braised veal shanks yield tender and delicate meat every time. It's flavorful, cozy, and needs very little prep.
Servings: 4 servings
Prep: 5 minutes
Cook: 2 hours
Total: 2 hours 5 minutes


  • 4 veal shanks
  • 1 small onion chopped
  • 2 Cubanelle peppers or bell peppers
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon pepper
  • 1/4 cup olive oil divided
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 8 ounces canned tomatoes
  • 1 tablespoon smoked paprika
  • 1 3/4 cup chicken broth or beef broth
  • 1 cup dry white wine or more broth
  • 8 ounces sour cream
  • 1 tablespoon all-purpose flour


  • Heat half the oil in a cast-iron skillet. Add the onion, peppers, salt, and pepper, and cook for 5 minutes. Add tomatoes with juices, breaking them up with a spoon. Cook for 3 minutes. Add paprika and stir well. Remove from the heat and stir in the chicken broth. 
    seasonings and vegetables in skillet.
  • Heat the remaining oil in a separate skillet. Season the veal shanks with salt and pepper. Brown them on both sides. Remove the shanks from the skillet, add the wine, and scrape down browned bits. Simmer for 30 seconds. 
    raw veal shanks simmering in skillet.
  • Add the shanks into the skillet with onions, peppers, and tomatoes. Add wine a stir gently.
    raw veal shanks in skillet with sauce.
  • Preheat oven to 180C/350F.
  • Cover the shanks with aluminum foil. Braise the shanks for 2 hours or until very tender. Once cooked, remove the shanks onto a plate and keep them warm. 
  • Whisk sour cream with flour and some of the cooking liquid. Pour the liquid back into the skillet with the remaining liquid, then place over medium heat. Simmer the sauce for 5 minutes, or until it thickens.
    thickening the broth with the veal shanks.
  • Add the shanks back to the skillet and simmer until heated through. Serve immediately.


Serving: 1servingCalories: 395kcalCarbohydrates: 11gProtein: 37gFat: 23gSodium: 957mgPotassium: 1035mgFiber: 2gSugar: 6gVitamin A: 1342IUVitamin C: 7mgCalcium: 135mgIron: 3mgNET CARBS: 9g
Course: Main Course
Cuisine: American
Author: Arman Liew
Tried this recipe?Give us a shout at @thebigmansworld or tag #thebigmansworld!

Arman Liew

I’m a two time cookbook author, photographer, and writer, and passionate about creating easy and healthier recipes. I believe you don’t need to be experienced in the kitchen to make good food using simple ingredients that most importantly, taste delicious.

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