Rosemary roasted rabbit (nonna Armida's recipe)

This recipe comes from Nonna Armida Ruffoni, Walter's mother.
Like many grandma recipes, it is a bit vague on the quantities and steps, indicating that "a lot" of rosemary should be used, and it must be cooked "softly" until ready… Giulia interpreted cooking times and doses as best as she could, and tweaked it to her liking. Feel free to tweak further (and share your ideas with us on Instagram!)


[[ recipeID=recipe-8kh1ucw53, title=Rosemary roasted rabbit (Nonna Armida's recipe) ]]

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Rosemary roasted rabbit (Nonna Armida's recipe)

Italians (along with Spaniards and French, among others) have been enjoying rabbit for centuries, but in the US this meat could be difficult to find. Lean, protein-rich, flavorful and sustainable, rabbit meat can now be found in many specialty butchers...but if you cannot get it, feel free to try the recipe with chicken or other poultry and let us know how it turns out!

Servings: 4

Keywords: Rabbit, Sunday roast, Nonna's recipe

  • Prep Time: 15 mins
  • Cook Time: 35 mins
  • Total Time: 50 mins


  • 1 Large roaster for stove and oven cooking and serving
  • 1 Rabbit, approx 2.5 lbs
  • 2 cloves of garlic
  • 5 sprigs of rosemary
  • 12 baby onions or 2 medium ones
  • 5 carrots
  • 1 cup of dry white wine
  • 2 small tomatoes or 1 large
  • 3 tbs EVO oil
  • 1 tbs butter
  • Black pepper
  • Salt
  • Instructions

    1. Remove the giblets, if present, and portion the rabbit in 10-12 pieces, or ask your butcher to do it for you.Rinse and pat dry the meat.
    1. Over low heat, in a large roaster or braiser (our Oval Roaster 15” works perfectly for this recipe), warm the oil and melt the butter, then add the rabbit pieces in a single layer without crowding the pan.
    1. Switch to medium heat to lightly sear the meat all over – it must become slightly golden, not brown, and take approximately 5 minutes – then season generously with salt and pepper.
    1. Add the finely chopped rosemary leaves and garlic cloves, and cook for 1 minute.
    1. Add the peeled baby onions (or quartered regular onions), chopped carrots, and toss to combine.
    1. Pour white wine all over, and let alcohol evaporate for a minute.
    1. When the alcohol has evaporated, add peeled and chopped tomatoes, cover your roaster and cook in a 375F oven for 20-30 min.
    1. Remove the lid from your roaster and cook uncovered for 5 more minutes — this will allow the meat to get more golden and the juices to thicken slightly.
    1. Serve with mashed potatoes (or polenta, a Northern Italian favourite!) and accompany with a full-bodied red wine.