Nov 2, 2020

Maple Bourbon Braised Short Ribs with Caramelized Shallot and Black Pepper Mashed Potatoes

Prep Time: 30 mins
Cook Time: 3 hrs 30 mins
Short ribs are braised for a few hours at a low temperature with maple and bourbon until they are fork tender and falling off the bone.

The rich, sweet taste of maple pairs perfectly with the oak and vanilla notes of the bourbon. Bourbon is considered “America’s native spirit” by a congressional decree in 1964, distilled in Kentucky. All bourbon is whiskey but not all whiskey is bourbon – the more you know!

The primal cut of meat is a tougher cut so it’s the perfect pairing for the method of braising. While it’s risen in price and popularity in recent years it’s fairly widely available. For this recipe I prefer to buy them with the bone attached. Not only does the marrow from the bone add to the flavor, it also makes for an impressive presentation. I portion about one short rib per person.

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Serve the braised short ribs with the caramelized shallot and black pepper mashed potatoes and sautéed kale (for some added greens!). Braising is my favorite method of cooking in the cooler fall and winter months.

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Maple Bourbon Braised Short Ribs with Caramelized Shallot and Black Pepper Mashed Potatoes

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Prep Time 30 mins
Cook Time 3 hrs 30 mins
Serves 4


For the maple bourbon braised short ribs:

  • pounds bone-in short ribs
  • Kosher salt, as needed
  • Freshly ground black pepper, as needed
  • 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 medium yellow onion, thinly sliced
  • 1 stalk celery, diced
  • 1 medium carrot, diced
  • 2 tablespoons tomato paste
  • 2 teaspoons fresh chopped thyme
  • 1 head garlic, top ¼” sliced off the top
  • 1 cup bourbon whiskey
  • ½ cup maple syrup
  • 3 cups beef stock

For the caramelized shallot & black pepper mashed potatoes:

  • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 2 medium shallots, thinly sliced
  • 2 pounds russet potatoes
  • 4 ounces cream cheese
  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • Kosher salt, as needed
  • ½ teaspoon coarse ground black pepper


For the maple bourbon braised short ribs:

  • Heat oven to 325ºF.
  • Season the short ribs all over with salt and pepper then dust with flour. Heat a 7-quart Dutch oven over medium-high heat, add the olive oil and heat through. Working in batches, sear the ribs on all sides, about 5 minutes total. Remove to a plate and repeat with the remaining ribs.
  • Return the pot to medium heat and add the onion, celery and carrot, sautéing until tender, about 6 minutes. Stir in the tomato paste and thyme then add the garlic, bourbon, maple syrup and beef stock. Return the short ribs to the pot and bring to a boil over medium heat.
  • Cover the Dutch oven and move it to the oven and cook, turning the ribs occasionally, until the meat is fork tender, about 3 to 3½ hours.

For the caramelized shallot & black pepper mashed potatoes:

  • Heat a medium sauté pan over medium-low heat, add the oil and heat through. Add the shallots and cook, stirring frequently, until they are soft and pale brown, about 10 minutes. Set aside.
  • Rinse and peel the potatoes then cut into 1½” chunks. Add the potatoes to a large pot and cover with water. Bring water to a rolling boil and cook the potatoes until they are tender, stirring occasionally, about 20 minutes. Drain the potatoes completely.
  • Add the potatoes to a free standing mixer or a large bowl if using a handheld mixer. Depending on the size of the mixer the mashing may have to be done in batches. After potatoes are mashed, beat in the cream cheese, butter and shallots. Season with the salt and add the pepper.

To serve:

  • Serve the short ribs over mashed potatoes and sautéed kale (optional). Ladle the additional sauce over the top of the short ribs and serve.



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Recipe Rating

  1. This short rib was SO delicious! You could really taste the maple and bourbon. And the sauce was perfect over the mashed potatoes. Only thing I needed that the recipe didn’t call for was some milk in the mashed potatoes. Highly recommend!