Coniglio alla Cacciatora

If you’re looking for a classic Italian dish that’s packed with flavor and history, then Coniglio alla Cacciatora is a must-try. Originating in Tuscany, this hearty stew is made with rabbit (coniglio) that’s been cooked in a rich tomato sauce with aromatic herbs and spices. In this article, we’ll explore the history of Coniglio alla Cacciatora, everything you need to know about the dish, and how to prepare it at home.

Origin and History of Coniglio alla Cacciatora

Coniglio alla Cacciatora is a traditional Tuscan dish that has been enjoyed for centuries. The word “cacciatora” means “hunter’s style” in Italian, and the dish is believed to have been created by Italian hunters who would cook rabbits in a tomato sauce with herbs and vegetables while out in the field. Are you looking for a delicious and healthy Italian recipe to impress your guests or simply treat yourself to a flavorful meal? Look no further than Coniglio alla Cacciatora! Over time, the dish became popular in Italian households and has since spread to other parts of the world.

Everything You Need to Know About Coniglio alla Cacciatora

Coniglio alla Cacciatora is a flavorful and hearty stew that’s perfect for colder weather or as a comforting meal after a long day. The dish typically consists of rabbit meat that’s been cooked in a tomato-based sauce with garlic, onions, carrots, and celery. Herbs like rosemary and thyme are added for extra flavor, and red wine is often used to enhance the richness of the sauce.

How to Prepare Coniglio alla Cacciatora

This classic dish hails from the central regions of Italy and is traditionally made with rabbit, although chicken can also be used as a substitute. If you are looking to prepare Coniglio alla Cacciatora, you will need rabbit meat, onions, garlic, tomatoes, red wine, rosemary, thyme, and bay leaves. It is a perfect example of the rustic and simple cooking style that is so characteristic of Italian cuisine. The meat is first marinated in red wine, then cooked with onions, garlic, and tomatoes. The herbs and spices are then added to give the dish its distinct flavor.

Coniglio alla Cacciatora is usually served with a side of crusty bread, pasta, or polenta, which helps to absorb the delicious sauce and make it a filling and satisfying meal. If you are a wine enthusiast, you can pair the dish with a glass of Chianti, which is a red wine that originates from Tuscany, Italy. It is perfect for a cozy family dinner or a special occasion, and it’s sure to impress your guests.

Coniglio alla Cacciatora Recipe

Now that we’ve piqued your interest, you must be wondering how to make this delicious dish. Here’s a simple recipe that you can try at home.


  • 1 whole rabbit, cut into pieces
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 3 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 cup canned tomatoes
  • 1 cup chicken stock
  • 1/2 cup red wine
  • 1/2 cup olives
  • 2 tablespoons capers
  • 1 tablespoon tomato paste
  • 1 tablespoon fresh rosemary, chopped
  • 1 tablespoon fresh thyme, chopped
  • Salt and pepper
  • Olive oil


  1. Heat olive oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat.
  2. Season the rabbit pieces with salt and pepper and brown them in the skillet for about 5 minutes on each side.
  3. Remove the rabbit from the skillet and set it aside.
  4. In the same skillet, sauté the onion and garlic until they are translucent.
  5. Add the tomato paste and cook for a minute.
  6. Add the canned tomatoes, chicken stock, red wine, olives, capers, rosemary, and thyme.
  7. Bring the mixture to a boil, then reduce the heat to low.
  8. Add the rabbit pieces to the skillet and simmer for about 1 hour until the meat is tender and falls off the bone.
  9. Serve hot with your choice of side dish.

Health Benefits and Nutritional Values

Apart from being delicious, Coniglio alla Cacciatora has several health benefits. Rabbit meat is low in fat and calories, making it an ideal meat for those watching their weight. It is also rich in protein and essential vitamins and minerals such as iron, phosphorus, and potassium.

The tomato-based sauce used in this dish is also packed with health benefits. Tomatoes are a good source of vitamin C, which helps boost the immune system, and lycopene, which has been shown to have anti-cancer properties. The capers and olives add a punch of flavor while providing a healthy dose of antioxidants.

Here’s a breakdown of the nutritional values of Coniglio alla Cacciatora:

  • Calories: 345
  • Fat: 16g
  • Protein: 33g
  • Carbohydrates: 11g
  • Fiber: 3g
  • Sodium: 655mg
  • Iron: 3.8mg
  • Potassium: 811
A Coniglio alla Cacciatora

Frequently Asked Questions

  • Can I use chicken instead of rabbit in this recipe?

Yes, you can use chicken instead of rabbit in this recipe. However, the cooking time will be shorter as chicken cooks faster than rabbit.

  • Can I make this dish ahead of time?

Yes, you can make this dish ahead of time and store it in the fridge for up to 3 days. The flavors will intensify over time, making it even more delicious.

  • Is rabbit meat safe to eat?

Yes, rabbit meat is safe to eat and is considered a lean and healthy protein source.

  • Can I make this recipe in a slow cooker?

Yes, this recipe can be adapted for a slow cooker by browning the meat and sautéing the onions and garlic on the stovetop before transferring everything to the slow cooker and cooking on low for 4-6 hours.

  • What are some good side dishes to serve with Coniglio alla Cacciatora?

Some traditional Italian side dishes that pair well with this dish include roasted potatoes, polenta, or a simple green salad dressed with olive oil.

  • Can I freeze Coniglio alla Cacciatora?

Yes, you can freeze Coniglio alla Cacciatora for up to 3 months. Make sure to store it in an airtight container or freezer bag.

  • Is it safe to consume raw beef in Beef Carpaccio?

Consuming raw beef carries a risk of bacterial infection, such as E. coli and Salmonella. It is essential to ensure that the meat is fresh and of high quality before preparing Beef Carpaccio.


Coniglio alla Cacciatora is a delicious and healthy Italian dish that you must try. The slow-cooked rabbit in a rich tomato-based sauce with onions, garlic, and herbs is a treat for your taste buds. This dish is packed with protein and essential vitamins and minerals, making it a nutritious meal option. Whether you’re a fan of Italian cuisine or looking to try something new, Coniglio alla Cacciatora is a must-try recipe that will not disappoint.

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