Few dishes offer the same level of comfort and warmth as a well-prepared Beef Stew. This timeless recipe combines tender beef, hearty vegetables, and savory broth for a meal that’s perfect for chilly days or whenever you crave a taste of nostalgia. Let’s dive into the recipe for a comforting bowl of Beef Stew!
- Vegetable Variations: Feel free to customize your Beef Stew with your favorite vegetables. Green beans, peas, or mushrooms are excellent additions.
- Beef Cuts: While stew meat works well, you can also use chuck roast or any other beef cut suitable for slow cooking.
- Make It Ahead: Beef Stew often tastes even better the next day, so consider making it in advance and reheating it for an even more flavorful meal.
Q: Can I use frozen vegetables in this recipe?
A: While fresh vegetables are preferred, you can use frozen vegetables if that’s what you have on hand. Just adjust the cooking time accordingly.
Q: Can I make this Beef Stew in a slow cooker?
A: Absolutely! You can adapt this recipe for a slow cooker. Brown the beef and sauté the onions and garlic in a skillet, then transfer everything to your slow cooker and cook on low for 6-8 hours.
Q: Can I freeze leftover Beef Stew?
A: Yes, Beef Stew freezes beautifully. Allow it to cool completely, portion it into airtight containers, and freeze for up to three months.
- 3 teaspoons olive oil, divided
- 1 pound beef stew meat, with visible fat removed
- 1 cup chopped onion
- 1 clove garlic, minced
- 2 1/2 cups homemade beef stock or canned unsalted chicken stock
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 teaspoon dried thyme leaves
- 1 bay leaf
- 4 medium red potatoes (about 1 pound), cut into 1-inch chunks
- 2 large carrots, sliced 1/4-inch thick (about 2 cups)
- 2 celery stalks, sliced 1/2-inch thick (about 1 1/2 cups)
- 2 1/2 tablespoons flour
- 1/4 cup stock or water (for thickening)
Step 1: Brown the Beef
Heat 2 teaspoons of olive oil in a large sauté pan or Dutch oven over medium-high heat.
Add the beef stew meat to the pan, being careful not to overcrowd it. If necessary, brown the meat in two batches to ensure it browns evenly.
Sprinkle the meat with salt and pepper. Brown one side for about 5 minutes without turning it over.
Turn the meat over, add the remaining 1 teaspoon of oil, and brown the other side for an additional 2-3 minutes. Again, sprinkle with salt and pepper. Ensure that the meat is nicely browned on all sides.
Step 2: Sauté Onions and Garlic
With all the meat browned and still in the pan, reduce the heat to medium. Add the chopped onion and minced garlic. Cook and stir for about 2-3 minutes until the onion is browned and aromatic.
Step 3: Create the Stew Base
Pour in the homemade beef stock or canned unsalted chicken stock, then add salt, dried thyme leaves, and the bay leaf. The meat should be submerged in the liquid, so add more stock if needed to cover it.
Bring the mixture to a boil. Once it's boiling, cover the pan, reduce the heat to low, and simmer for 2 hours, checking occasionally.
Step 4: Add Vegetables
After 2 hours, stir in the red potatoes, sliced carrots, and celery. Bring the stew back to a boil. Cover and simmer for an additional 10-15 minutes or until the vegetables are tender.
Step 5: Thicken the Stew
In a separate bowl, combine the flour with 1/4 cup of stock or water, whisking until there are no lumps.
Stir this flour mixture into the stew, and cook for an additional 5 minutes or until the stew thickens to your liking.
Step 6: Serve and Enjoy
Discard the bay leaf, and ladle your delicious Beef Stew into bowls.
Serve your comforting Beef Stew hot, perhaps with a side of crusty bread for dipping, and savor the cozy flavors.