Fast Recipes

Rigatoni with chicken ragù and green sauce

This light ragù is freshened up further with a herb-packed green sauce.

By Alice Storey
  • Serves 4
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Rigatoni with chicken ragù and green sauce recipe
This white ragù is lighter than the red-sauce style, and the green sauce adds a fresh element. For an even simpler version, serve the dish with store-bought pesto and lemon instead.


  • 40 ml olive oil
  • 1 onion, finely chopped
  • 1 baby fennel bulb, finely chopped
  • 3 garlic cloves, finely chopped
  • 600 gm coarsely minced chicken
  • 2 tbsp coarsely chopped rosemary
  • ½ tsp freshly ground nutmeg
  • 250 ml dry white wine
  • 300 ml hot chicken stock
  • 20 gm butter, diced
  • 20 gm parmesan, plus extra to serve
  • 400 gm dried rigatoni
  • 200 gm stinging nettles (see note), broccoli rapa, kale or cavolo nero, coarsely chopped Green sauce
Green sauce
  • ½ garlic clove, crushed
  • 1 tbsp coarsely chopped rosemary
  • ½ cup flat-leaf parsley, coarsely chopped
  • ½ cup basil, coarsely chopped
  • Finely grated rind and juice of 1 lemon
  • 2 tbsp olive oil


  • 1
    Heat oil in a large saucepan over medium heat, add onion, fennel and garlic and sauté until starting to soften (2-3 minutes). Add chicken mince, increase heat to high and fry until starting to colour (5-7 minutes). Stir in rosemary and nutmeg, add wine, bring to a simmer, then add stock, reduce heat to medium and simmer until slightly reduced (5-7 minutes). Stir in butter and parmesan, season to taste.
  • 2
    For green sauce, combine ingredients in a small bowl and season to taste.
  • 3
    Cook pasta in boiling salted water until al dente, adding greens for the last 30 seconds
    of cooking. Drain, reserving 40ml pasta water, and combine pasta, greens and reserved water with ragù, season to taste, top with extra parmesan, and serve with green sauce to drizzle over.


Uncooked nettles really do sting; wear rubber gloves and wash them well under cold running water before blanching them.