How To Simply Make The Infamous Goodfellas Prison Sauce

by : UNILAD on : 01 Nov 2016 15:04

There may be no better cooking scene in a movie than the one from Martin Scorsese’s Goodfellas.


After Henry Hill gets pinched, he heads off to prison for Wiseguys – full of scotch, lobster, and a hell of a lot of other luxuries he and his crew need for a Class A feast.

Henry tells us: “In prison, dinner was always a big thing,” And so begins the greatest food scene ever in film – which we now have the recipe for.

If you need a reminder of the sensual scene before getting into how to cook the sauce, watch it here:


The video that teaches us how to make the infamous sauce is from Andrew Rae’s ‘Binging with Babish’ YouTube cooking series – and it’s fantastic.

While Henry says Paulie’s system for garlic is ‘very good’ – cutting it so fine with a razor blade it dissolves in the pan with just a little bit of oil – it’s not exactly true according to Andrew. But he does it anyway because it looks cool.

Whether or not you slice the garlic with a razor blade is your call.

goodfellas-herogoodfellas-heroWarner Bros. Pictures

After setting aside three small onions (or more if you’re onion crazy like Vinnie), he browns a pound each of sweet Italian and hot Italian sausages, and then some beef shank and some pieces of veal neck.

Add in onions, tomato paste, garlic, mix and add in a splash of red wine. Then comes the titular ingredient: three cans of DOP San Marzano tomatoes.

After that, the water, basil and carrot (that eventually comes out) comes in. Simmer for a whole four hours, add in some meatballs, and it’s ready.

After you’ve cooked it in your non-prison kitchen (we hope), sit back, relax and enjoy.



The written-out recipe and method is found below Andrew’s video, which you can find here. If you want the recipe that came straight from the horses mouth though, director Martin Scorsese’s mother, Catherine, shared the films’s sauce recipe (which is actually her own) with Entertainment Weekly around the time of the film’s release in 1990.

It differs a little from Andrew’s and can be found here.

Topics: Film and TV


YouTube/Andrew Rea
  1. YouTube/Andrew Rea

    Binging with Babish: Goodfellas Prison Sauce