The best beef stew ever, for stove top or slow cooker, includes tons of tender beef, a rich broth flavored with red wine, and plenty of hearty vegetables for a bowl of goodness that will truly warm you from the inside out.
Old Fashioned Beef Stew is the Best Beef Stew Ever
When I was growing up, it took me a long time to appreciate the goodness of good old fashioned beef stew. Beef stew was always prepared in a crock pot with onions, carrots, peas, corn, and lovely hunks of potato, allowing the juices of the beef to fully permeate the vegetables and broth. As a kid, it was just another soup. As an adult, when there are inches of snow on the ground, it’s a big bowl of heart warming awesomeness. There is nothing that quite compares to this wonderful and nourishing beef stew, definitely worth taking a break from binge watching Squid Game or discussing the latest college basketball standings to make yourself some real food for a change and save the canned stew for another day.
Easy Beef and Potato Stew Recipe
This beef stew recipe is the closest recreation of stew I grew up eating and includes my favorite vegetables and lots of potatoes and meat. I use Better Than Bouillon to prepare this recipe, but you can also just use bouillon cubes, I’ve done it both ways and it’s delicious regardless. If you want to take this the extra mile, you can add some chopped kale at the end, at the same time when you would add the peas and corn. Hope you enjoy and please report back any fun variations!
Time Saving & Easy Beef Stew
Want to do this in the crock pot? Though I think stove is best for this one, you can save yourself some tending time in the kitchen and throw everything but the peas and corn in at the beginning of the day, set the crock pot for 8-10 hours on low, and get some other things done while this thing cooks. Add the peas and carrots at the end of cooking, and let warm in the broth for about 5 minutes before serving.
How to Make the Best Beef Stew Ever
Based on Savory Sweet Life’s Hearty Beef Stew Recipe as written in Savory Sweet Life: 100 Simple Delicious Recipes for Every Family Occasion
Currah, Alice. “Hearty Beef Stew.” Savory Sweet Life: 100 Simply Delicious Recipes for Every Family Occasion, William Morrow, New York, NY, 2012, pp. 188–189.
- 1/3 cup all-purpose flour
- Pinch kosher salt
- 1 tablespoon freshly ground black pepper
- 3 pounds beef stew meat or boneless chuck roast cut into 1” pieces
- 3 tablespoons olive oil, plus more as required
- 1 medium onion
- 4 large cloves of garlic
- 3 celery ribs, sliced into ¼” pieces
- ½ cup red wine
- ¼ cup balsamic vinegar
- ¼ cup granulated sugar
- 32 oz beef broth
- 3 chicken bouillon cubes or the equivalent of Better than Bouillon
- Two 14 ounce cans diced San Marzano tomatoes
- 1 – 1 ½ lbs. small red potatoes, cut into 1” or smaller pieces
- 3 carrots, halved lengthwise and cut into ¼” thick pieces
- 1 cup of thawed frozen peas
- 1 cup of thawed frozen corn
- 1 tablespoon fresh rosemary
- 1 tablespoon fresh thyme
- Slices of warmed rustic Italian bread for serving
- Combine the flour, salt, and pepper in a large bowl. Toss the beef in the flour mixture to coat.
- In a large heavy pot, heat the oil over medium-high heat. Add enough of the beef pieces to loosely cover the bottom of the pot and cook until browned on al sides, about 8-10 mins. Transfer the cooked beef to a medium bowl. Add a little more oil if necessary and another round of beef to brown. Continue browning the beef in batches in this method until all the beef is browned.
- Heat another tablespoon of oil in the pot and add the onions, garlic, and celery. Sauté for 2 minutes. There should be a dark brown crust of sorts forming on the bottom of the pot…which is good!
- Add the wine, balsamic vinegar and sugar and stir the mixture, scraping the bottom of the pot until all the brown bits and residue has resolved in the wine vinegar mixture.
- Stir in the beef broth, the chicken bouillon cubes, tomatoes and all the liquid, potatoes, carrots, rosemary, and thyme. Return the cooked beef to the pot. Bring the stew to a boil before reducing heat to a simmer. Cover the pot and cook for 60 to 90 minutes or until the beef is tender.
- Add the peas and corn and simmer for another 5 minutes to warm through. Remove the stew from heat and allow to cool slightly before serving with several slices of warm bread.