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  • Writer's picturePasta Grammar

Tripe & Tomato Sauce | Authentic Italian “Trippa” Recipe

Updated: May 15

Tripe, the stomach lining of a cow, is a delicacy that few work up the courage to try. Those who do, however, are in for an incredible and delicious surprise! This Calabrian recipe cooks tripe in a spicy, flavorful tomato sauce. The tripe soaks up flavor like no other meat can and makes it perfect for a stew.

Tripe & Tomato Sauce | Authentic Italian “Trippa” Recipe

Tripe 101 | What to Look for, Where to Get It, and How to Treat It

Tripe can be a bit tricky to find at “normal” grocery stores. Check your local butcher or, better yet, Mexican grocery stores. If you look in the latter, be aware that tripe is normally sold under the name “menudo.” If you ask for the “trippa” you might end up with intestines, so be careful not to confuse the two.

Tripe comes in a few different varieties, each coming from a different part of the stomach. Anything you can find will work, but if you have a choice pick the “honeycomb” tripe. Tripe is sometimes sold pre-cooked, be sure to ask. Either will work, see the instructions below.

Tripe is also usually pre-cleaned. If it is, it should have basically no smell when you buy it. If it does have a slightly funky, barnyard-y smell, that just means it still needs to be cleaned. It’s easy to do yourself. Rinse the tripe, then let it soak in water with 1 tbsp baking powder per pound of meat for 3-4 hours. Then when you boil it per the recipe below, add 3/4 cup (180ml) of white vinegar into the water.

Watch the Pasta Grammar video where we make tripe and tomato sauce here:


Makes: 3-4 servings

Cook Time: Up to 4 hours

For this recipe, you will need:

  • 1 lb tripe, cut into 1-2 inch chunks

  • Salt

  • 1/2 cup (120ml) extra virgin olive oil

  • 1 garlic clove, peeled

  • 3-4 bay leaves

  • 1 dry or fresh chili pepper, chopped (optional)

  • 3/4 cup (180ml) white wine

  • 2 cups (475ml) tomato purée

  • Chili powder for topping (optional)

  • Large pot

  • Medium pot, preferably terracotta

  • Wooden spoon

Bring a large pot of water to boil and salt it generously. Add the tripe and boil until you can insert a fork into it, but it remains quite firm. The time needed can vary quite a bit depending on the tripe and whether it’s fully raw or not, but normally it will boil in 10-30 minutes. Drain the tripe.

Heat the olive oil, garlic clove, bay leaves and chili pepper in a medium pot over medium heat. When the garlic starts to sizzle, add the tripe into the pot. Sprinkle the meat with a pinch of salt. Shallow fry the tripe, stirring often, for 10-15 minutes or until it starts to become golden. Add the white wine and bring to a simmer.

After a few minutes, when the smell of alcohol has dissipated, add the tomato puree and a generous pinch of salt. Partially cover the pot and bring to a simmer. Let the tripe cook, stirring occasionally, until it is very tender—about 2-3 hours. As the tomato sauce cooks and evaporates, you’ll need to add a little warm water from time to time to maintain a healthy simmer.

As the tripe nears completion, turn up the heat and let the sauce thicken. Salt it again to taste. Serve warm, topped with a sprinkle of chili powder if you like.

Buon appetito!

If you're looking for a slightly less adventurous meat stew, check out our Peposo dell'Impruneta recipe!

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