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My husband did the grocery shopping this week (yay!) and was proud to show me that he had picked up some stew meat. So we could make a nice beef stew. The only catch? I’ve never actually made beef stew from scratch.
The nice thing about learning to cook though is that once you have a basic idea of how to make a few dishes, you get pretty good at throwing things together. This is one of those dishes that I made up on the fly, using what we happened to have on hand. (I mentioned hubby got stew meat- he also picked up carrots and beef stock, for everything else I went scrounging.)
I found an onion in the pantry, plenty of seasonings and herbs, some red wine (I didn’t look closely enough before adding- it’s a moscato. Surprisingly still worked.)
About halfway through cooking I realized we had a package of diced potatoes, but you could absolutely use some fresh!
The pre-cubed stew meat was a definite win. Any time I can save prepping a meal is amazing – I enjoy cooking, but don’t have all day to spend doing so – ya know?
Prep Your Ingredients
I didn’t do too much here. For the meat, I find that if the ingredients are good then salt & pepper can go a long way. But I did add some Worcestershire sauce and I actually used garlic pepper, which is one of my favorite seasonings. It can be difficult to find, so I get really excited when I do find it, use it on everything, run out…. you get the picture.
I used 2 Tbs Worcestershire Sauce, salt & garlic pepper. I just eye balled the salt & pepper, definitely adjust according to your preferences and needs. Let it marinate while prepping veggies.
Next up, I peeled and chopped the carrots and onions. Nothing too fancy, just a nice rough chop and try to keep your pieces about the same size so they cook evenly.
If you are using fresh potatoes this would be the time to cut them up as well. Using the pre-chopped will save you time. If you want to add any other veggies, prep them here.
Turn Up the Heat
Start heating an enameled cast iron dutch oven or large pot to medium-high heat. You want to ensure that you’ll have plenty of room for the other ingredients.
Once it’s nice and hot add 1 Tbs olive oil and half of stew meat, turning it as needed to get a nice sear on each side. You don’t want to crowd the bowl so depending on how large your pieces are this could be several batches.
This searing should only take a minute or two on each side, if that. When all sides are seared remove the pieces to a separate bowl to hang out while you sear the second half. You might need to add another tablespoon of olive oil.
When all your stew meat has been seared and removed add the chopped onion to your dutch oven or large pot. Stir occasionally until the onions turn translucent.
Add 1/2 cup flour to the onions and stir until golden (it may look like a hot mess as it clumps- totally normal, just keep going. You’ve got this!)
When the flour is golden, add 1 cup red wine, stirring continuously and scraping the bottom of the pot to de-glaze and get all those yummy bits. If you can, choose a good cooking wine. (Do you have a recommendation? Let me know in the comments!) Do your best to break up the onion/flour mush.
Slowly add the beef stock to the pot, stirring often until thickened. Then reduce the heat to low.
Put it All Together
Now you’re ready to bring everything together! Add the seared stew meat back into the pot (all of it this time), the carrots, potatoes and any other veggies you want. This is also the time to add in your additional seasonings- I added a few sprigs of dried thyme, rosemary, a dash of cayenne, turmeric and some additional salt and garlic pepper. Stir to mix well.
Cover the pot and simmer for at least 1 hour. This should give plenty of time for the carrots and potatoes to get tender and delicious.
Feel free to stir every so often to keep the bottom from burning. You can also grab a spoon and get a little bite (let it cool) to check your seasoning now that everything is cooked. You might need to add more salt or pepper.
Make sure you remove the thyme sprigs before dishing out into bowls.
I served this with a rosemary bread. It would also be really good with sourdough. A bread bowl would be delish too! Top it with cheese if you like.
I was really happy with how this recipe turned out. It was thick, tender and flavorful. Hubby really liked it too and said this recipe is a keeper. It’s a great recipe for a cold wintry day.
- 1 lb cubed beef stew meat
- 2 Tbs Worcestershire Sauce
- 1 medium onion
- 4 medium carrots
- 1 package diced potatoes or 20 oz potatoes
- ½ cup flour
- 32 oz beef stock
- 1 cup red wine
- 1 tsp rosemary
- 4 sprigs fresh thyme
- garlic pepper
- Season the stew meat with 2 Tbs Worcestershire Sauce, salt & garlic pepper. Let marinate while prepping veggies.
- Peel and chop onion.
- Peel & slice carrots.
- If using fresh potatoes, peel if you want then chop to 1-2 inch cubes.
Make the Stew
- Heat enameled cast iron dutch oven or large pot to medium-high heat.
- Add 1 Tbs olive oil and half of stew meat*, turning as needed to get a nice sear on each side. This should only take a minute or two on each side, if that. When all sides are seared remove the pieces to a separate bowl to hang out while you sear the second half. Sear the second half, adding another tablespoon of olive oil if needed.*We’re trying to avoid overcrowding, so you can do this in 3 or 4 batches if needed, it just depends on how big your pot is.
- When all your stew meat has been seared and removed add the chopped onion to your dutch oven or large pot. Stir occasionally until the onions turn translucent
- Add 1/2 cup flour to the onions and stir until golden (it may look like a hot mess as it clumps- totally normal, just keep going. You’ve got this!)
- When the flour is golden, add 1 cup red wine, stirring continuously and scraping the bottom of the pot to de-glaze and get all those yummy bits. Do your best to break up the onion/flour mush.
- Slowly add the beef stock to the pot, stirring often until thickened.
- Reduce heat to low.
- Add the seared stew meat, carrots, potatoes, thyme, rosemary. Add cayenne, turmeric additional salt and garlic pepper to taste. Stir to mix well.
- Let simmer covered for at least 1 hour.
- Remove the thyme sprigs before serving.
When you make this recipe, be sure to share a photo of your finished stew and tag me on social @katydidliving. I can’t wait to see your results!
Hi, my name is Katy. I started this blog to help you infuse life with ease and joy by sharing recipes and tips for your fertility and lifestyle.
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Beef stew is such a classic winter dish. What other meals make you feel warm and cozy when it’s freezing outside?