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Spanish Rabbit in Tomato Sauce Recipe - Estofado de Conejo en Tomate

User Rating 5 Star Rating (2 Reviews)


Conejo con Tomate - Rabbit in Tomato Sauce

Conejo con Tomate - Rabbit in Tomato Sauce

Lisa Sierra (c) 2008 Licensed to About.com
It is common for Spanish to eat rabbit and small game birds often. Rabbits are easy to find in any local food market or chain supermarket in Spain. This recipe cooks the rabbit in a rich tomato-wine sauce and is delicious. Serve in a bowl with home-fried potatoes. This simple rabbit recipe is easy, requiring only basic cooking skills. Ask your butcher to cut up the rabbit and the recipe will be even easier!

Prep Time: 15 minutes

Cook Time: 2 hours, 30 minutes

Total Time: 2 hours, 45 minutes


  • 1 - 4 lb whole rabbit*
  • 4 cloves garlic, finely chopped
  • 2 onions, sliced
  • 1 can (16 oz.) crushed tomatoes
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1 sprig tarragon
  • 1 sprig thyme
  • 2 stalks celery, finely chopped
  • 1 cup white wine
  • 1/2 cup water
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 1 sprig parsley
  • extra virgin olive oil


This Spanish Rabbit in Tomato Sauce recipe makes 6 servings.

* If you cannot buy rabbit in your local grocery store, use chicken! It still tastes wonderful and chicken requires much less cooking time to be tender!

Clean the rabbit, if necessary. Cut rabbit in small pieces (approximately 12-15 pieces). Chop onions, garlic and celery.

Pour enough olive oil into the bottom of large, heavy frying pan and heat on medium high. When hot enough, place rabbit in pan and brown the pieces on all sides. Remove and set aside.

Using the same pan, sauté the garlic, onion and crushed tomatoes for about 5 minutes. (If ingredients begin to stick, add more olive oil if necessary.) Add the bay leaf, tarragon, thyme and chopped celery.

Return the rabbit to the frying pan. Add the white wine and stir. Turn the heat up to bring to a boil and reduce the liquid by a half or two-thirds. Then, add the water and stir.

Reduce heat. Cover the pan and simmer gently until cooked – an hour and a half to two hours. (If using chicken instead of rabbit, it will take only 30-45 minutes.) While the meat is simmering, chop parsley.

Adjust salt and pepper. Sprinkle with chopped parsley and serve hot in bowls with fried potatoes and rustic bread.

User Reviews

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 5 out of 5
Rabbit recipe was succulent!, Member Great_Blue_Heron

We started raising meat rabbits on our homestead about a few months ago. I had such a problem eating rabbit (any meat that came from our yard), and passed it up a couple times thinking I could never eat it with my husband. We tried various recipes and all were too heavy on the fresh herbs or made the rabbit rubbery. This was the first recipe that actually made me enjoy rabbit! I was sad when we were finished and I even picked through the stew looking for rogue meat pieces. I am saving and memorizing the recipe. I would pick this recipe to serve to guests eating rabbit for the first time. Advice: Chose a fresh rabbit (farmer's market or backyard) and don't skrimp on the olive oil or garlic, but take it easy on the fresh herbs (they are strong). I served it over a bed of fluffy white rice instead of greasy fries. I also added pinches of salt and pepper while simmering. We left the bone in the legs and arms (be careful while eating, small shards do fall off, like fish). I felt this gave it more flavor. We simmered the stew for 2 hrs and 30 min and this allowed for the rabbit to fall off the bone. We didn't use cooking wine, but pinot grigio and it was fantasitc! Kudos to the Spanish and their love of the rabbit!

15 out of 15 people found this helpful.

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