Classic Beef Stew

8 servings
Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 3 hours
Total Time 3 hours 20 minutes

Classic Beef Stew is a one pot comforting and hearty, made with beef, vegetables, tomato paste, and seasoning, PERFECT for cold winter days!

Beef Stew is the perfect thing to make to warm up in the winter, and with the cold weather comfort foods like Pot Roast, Sloppy Joes and Beef Chili are popular on the site right now.


One of the most popular slow cooker recipes on the site is Slow Cooker Beef Stew so we have been long overdue for this stovetop version. We’re looking to make a lot of our slow cooker recipes in classic stove top versions this year after seeing many of you looking for help in the comment sections of the posts.

Plus this stew recipe is perfect for the season because it is a great recipe to make-ahead and enjoy for days. In fact it tastes even better the following day.

With a simple recipe of beef, potatoes and carrots with a tomato paste and beef broth base you only need a chuck roast (or even just stew meat) and some pantry staples to have the perfect cold weather stick-to-your-ribs meal your family will love.

Psst, serve this stew with these delicious homemade rolls or honey cornbread, I promise you’ll crave this meal every time the temperature dips. Even more brownie points if you brush those rolls with a bit of melted garlic butter.

How much red wine in beef stew?

This is a classic beef stew recipe unlike the recent pot roast recipe I posted where I included red wine. You can certainly include red wine in this recipe by swapping 1 cup of the beef stock for 1 cup of red wine.

I would not add an additional cup of liquids to the recipe however, you want to control how much liquid you create or the soup will rapidly become a watery soup.

N.b. you can also add a touch of balsamic vinegar to your beef stew if you’d like the acidity of the red wine without the wine, I suggest just 1-2 tablespoons.

Ultimate Beef Stew

Classic Soups and Stews Best Practices:

Always brown your meat before adding it to the soup/stew. Browned meat intensifies the flavors and it is also much better presentation as meat that just “stews” in the beef stock tends to stay a more grey color and it doesn’t look as appetizing.

Always add broth/stock when possible instead of water, water does nothing for building flavors.

Making this in the slow cooker/crock pot is of course a no brainer as the slow cooker version is one of the most popular recipes on out site (see above).

If you want to add a bit of richness to your beef stew finish it with a bit of garlic butter with minced parsley spooned over your serving. One small spoonful goes a long way.

Other vegetables to add to beef stew:

  • Celery: Celery can be added in one of two ways. Celery in general is known as a base vegetable that helps to build a good foundation of flavors with onions and carrots that are browned together with butter. Celery can also be added in 1″ or longer chunks if you’d like to have bites of celery in your meal.
  • Sweet Potatoes: Sweet Potatoes are a natural fit for this beef stew and would make a great substitute for the carrots as they bring a similar amount of sweetness to the recipe. I’d avoid swapping the potatoes for sweet potatoes as the carrots and sweet potatoes would both add sweetness.
  • Parsnips: One of the best vegetables for braised dishes because of its hearty texture, make sure you pick the largest parsnips you can find. The thicker they are the better for this long braising time. You will absolutely love this dish with parsnips, if I could I’d eat parsnips in place of carrots 100% of the time they’re so delicious.
  • Pearl Onions: Make sure you take some time to cook these in some butter before adding them to the beef stew or they will cook and become slightly leathery. Cooked in butter on medium heat for 5-6 minutes, stirring occasionally, before being added to the beef stew is a perfect amount before being added.
Ladle of Beef Stew

Best Meat for Beef Stew:

  • Chuck Roast: This is the most old-fashioned and classic cut of meat for most pot roasts or beef stews. I use this as a replacement for most recipes that actually call for stew meat because I find chuck to be well-marbled.
  • Stew Meat: This is the easiest way to go, not expensive cut of meat because it is pre-cut. I find it is generally not high quality though and usually extra cuts left over that the butcher is looking to sell off. I avoid this cut in the grocery store.
  • Ribeye: If you want to impress your guests and you are cooking this during the holidays you may find a ribeye roast is on sale. I find during Christmas it usually sells for a VERY low price (comparable sometimes to chuck). When it does I get a 4″ thick cut and use it to make the best roasts and stews with it because to me almost nothing beats the ribeye.

Instant Pot/Pressure Cooker Beef Stew Instructions:

Add the beef to the pressure cooker and set on the sauté setting with oil and brown. Add the rest of the ingredients, set on high pressure for 35 minutes then release pressure fully.


This is a great recipe your family will love on a cold winter night that you can also serve on gameday. Perfect for a tailgate party, a weeknight dinner or meal prepping for lunches for the week. Since it’s a matter of browning some meat and letting it braise in the oven this dish is great for lazy Sundays too.

Easy Beef Stew

Pin this recipe now to remember it later

Pin Recipe

Classic Beef Stew

Classic Beef Stew is a one pot comforting and hearty, made with beef, vegetables, tomato paste, and seasoning, PERFECT for cold winter days!
Yield 8 servings
Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 3 hours
Total Time 3 hours 20 minutes
Course Soup
Cuisine American
Author Sabrina Snyder


  • 3 pounds chuck roast , cut into 2" chunks
  • 1 teaspoon  Kosher salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon coarse ground black pepper
  • 2 tablespoons flour
  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 2 tablespoons canola oil
  • 1/2 yellow onion , chopped
  • 4 cloves garlic , minced
  • 2 carrots , cut into 2 inch chunks
  • 2 Yukon potatoes chopped
  • 4 cups beef broth
  • 1/4 cup tomato paste
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1 teaspoon thyme
  • 1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce


  • Preheat the oven to 325 degrees and season the beef chunks with salt and pepper before dredging in flour.
  • Add the butter and canola oil to a large dutch oven on medium heat and brown the beef on all sides in batches (3-4 minutes per batch).
  • Remove the last batch of the beef and add in the onions, garlic and carrots and cook for 2-3 minutes until slightly caramelized before adding the potatoes in along with the broth, tomato paste, bay leaf, thyme and Worcestershire sauce and stirring to combine.
  • Add the beef back into the pot, cover and cook in the oven for 3 hours, removing the bay leaf before serving.



Calories: 391kcal | Carbohydrates: 4g | Protein: 34g | Fat: 26g | Saturated Fat: 10g | Cholesterol: 124mg | Sodium: 909mg | Potassium: 745mg | Sugar: 1g | Vitamin A: 245IU | Vitamin C: 3.5mg | Calcium: 46mg | Iron: 4.2mg
Beef Stew

About the Author: Sabrina Snyder

Sabrina is a professionally trained Private Chef of over 10 years with ServSafe Manager certification in food safety. She creates all the recipes here on Dinner, then Dessert, fueled in no small part by her love for bacon.

Sabrina Snyder is a professionally trained personal and private chef of over 10 years who is the creator and developer of all the recipes on Dinner, then Dessert.

She is also the author of the cookbook Dinner, then Dessert – Satisfying Meals Using Only 3, 5 or 7 Ingredients, published by Harper Collins.

She started Dinner, then Dessert as a business in her office as a lunch service for her coworkers who admired her lunches before going to culinary school and becoming a full time personal chef and private chef.

As a personal chef Sabrina would cook for families one day a week and cook their entire week of dinners. All grocery shopping, cooking and cleaning was done along with instructions on reheating. As a private chef she cooked for private parties and cooked in family homes in the evenings for families on a nightly basis after working as a personal chef during the day.

Sabrina has been certified as a ServSafe Manager since 2007 and was a longstanding member of the USPCA Personal Chef Association including being on the board of the Washington DC Chapter of Chefs in the US Personal Chef Association when they won Chapter of the year.

As a member of the community of food website creators Sabrina Snyder has spoken at many conferences regarding her experiences as a food writer including the Indulge Food Conference, Everything Food Conference, Haven Food Conference and IACP Annual Food Professionals Conference.

Sabrina lives with her family in sunny California.

Dinner, then Dessert, Inc. owns the copyright on all images and text and does not allow for its original recipes and pictures to be reproduced anywhere other than at this site unless authorization is given. If you enjoyed the recipe and would like to publish it on your own site, please re-write it in your own words, and link back to my site and recipe page. Read my disclosure and copyright policy. This post may contain affiliate links.


Leave a comment & rating

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Recipe Rating

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.


  1. I have made this recipe many times in the last year and a half and I normally change it up I definitely add more vegetables and I also normally add a 1/2 a tbsp of balsamic vinegar and a whole lemon I also use ground cayenne pepper and a pinch of ginger powder

  2. Thanks so much for posting this recipe! I’d planned on making beef barley soup, and discovered I was out of barley, and at the last minute, I switched my plans to beef stew. After scrolling through MANY recipes, I came across yours .. and so glad I did.
    Absolutely delicious, and I made dumplings as well. I’m so glad you’ve posted it!

    Much appreciated.

    1. Aww, I’m super pleased you chose one of our recipes. We love creating recipes for people like you.

  3. Made this for six adults. Served cornbread with the stew. All agreed it was excellent.Like others, I added extra potatoes and carrots.(along with frozen peas during the last thirty minutes)

  4. This was easy to put together. The cooking process I put in the slow cooker on low for 4 hrs because mine runs hot. The kids even liked it & asked for seconds!! Good meal with crusty rolls or cornbread.

  5. This a perfect simple recipe, especially if you don’t have red wine on hand. I simmered stove top, which is just my preference but otherwise followed the recipe to the letter. It is delish, and I will def make this again

  6. I’ve made this stew many times. Always a hit. I do add wine and after browning even on the stove I chuck it all in the crockpot and cook on low for 8 hours. Thank you for sharing this fantastic recipe!

  7. I love baby bella mushrooms…I’d like to add some largely sliced baby bellas to this stew ..would you saute first or add in raw w/ cooked beef and veggies?

  8. Perfect cold-weather dinner! It turned out delicious. The only thing I changed was I added red wine when sauteeing the onions and carrots. I’ll be making this a lot this winter!

  9. I have made this twice and it is the best beef stew I have ever made. The first time I made it exactly as written, but I thought it needed more vegetables. The second time I made it I tripled the vegetables (6 carrots, 6 medium potatoes) and that made it better for me. There was plenty of liquid and the flavor was great. This will be my go-to recipe from now on.

  10. Thank you Sabrina for this wonderful beef stew recipe! I just made this today for my family… on stove top for 1 hour+ (as I do not have a big pot for the oven and didn’t have enough time). But turned out they love it!

  11. I was searching for a “Classic” Beef Stew recipe like my moms, & found this one. This recipe is SO delicious!! I actually added celery, a few more carrots, & potatoes, and about another cup of broth. It looks like it’s going to be “soupy”, but just turn it way down & let it simmer-and it’s absolutely perfect! I wouldn’t tell her, but this this just as good-except I had to cook it!(lol)

  12. Hi! I plan on making this tomorrow in the instant pot, but was wondering about the carrots. It says two inch chunks but I don’t believe in the photos they appear to be two inch chunks. Just concerned about everything cooking before the carrots if I cut them up too large. Thank you, and this looks delicious! 🙂

    1. I like my carrots to have a bit of bite to them instead of being mushy. The larger they are, the firmer they’ll stay. You can cut them up into whatever size you wish. Hope you enjoy the dish.

  13. Mmmmm, so good. This recipe for (wineless) classic beef stew was very tasty indeed . I’ve prepped this recipe twice now and both times came out as described by most of your reviewers, so good (although I did add 1TBS of Balsamic to the liquid mix the second time I made it). Delicious and well worth all of the 5 star reviews!

  14. I cooked it on my Stove oven-top for our dinner today and my husband loved it so much! I highly recommended this recipe. Perfect for cold weather in Germany ??

  15. This is the best recipe for beef stew that I’ve tried. I don’t have a Dutch oven so I simmered the stew on the stove for 2 hours. The meat was so tender and the mixture of spices, broth and paste added a perfect depth of flavor that I’ve been trying to achieve. This is my new go to recipe. Thank you!

  16. For the instant pot, do we still flour the meat before browning or just add It to the pot with the other ingredients after browning?

  17. Best beef stew EVER! Served with steamed green peas and homemade beer bread. My husband loved it! I used better than bouillon beef flavor for the broth!

  18. I made this today for dinner. It was so good. I have a cast iron dutch oven that I use for stews and other things made in the oven. It gives a great sear and little brown bits that are so yummy. The only thing I did different was to add home-canned carrots for the last 15 minutes of cooking because I didn’t have any raw carrots. It worked out great!! The hubster loved it too. Now if I could only get my biscuits to turn out as good as the stew.

  19. This was the best beef stew I’ve ever made – and the easiest! For years I’ve used my go to recipe in an old Betty Crocker cookbook and while it’s a fine recipe the steps are tedious, I never seemed to have enough gravy/liquid, and the potatoes were usually undercooked or mushy. This recipe solved all the above problems. It was so good! A couple days after eating it my hubby was still thinking about it and commented on how the potatoes were perfectly cooked. TY Sabrina!

  20. Ours turned into a paste. 2 tablespoons of butter and oil went dry on the first batch of meat while browning. What did we do wrong?

    1. Yes, but after browning the meat and caramelizing the onions, garlic and carrots add the beef back in with the rest of the ingredients and bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer for 2-3 hours until meat is tender.Enjoy!

  21. I LOVE THIS STEW!!! Just saw this recipe the other week and made it! It is so delicious! I always love tomato based soups and I’ve added canned tomatoes to stew but this is excellent using tomato paste! Thank youfor this recipe!

  22. Made this as directed with the exception of substituting a bottle of Guinness for two cups of beef broth. Came out perfectly, made the whole house smell amazing on a cold icy day, and tasted delicious ?

  23. I’ve seen your slow cooker version, and this stove-top one looks just as good! I appreciate all of your tips for ingredient options.

  24. This is the kind of thing my mom would serve up after I came inside from playing in the snow. Let me tell you, this hits the spot on a cold winter night.

  25. I’m a huge fan of beef stew. Love making it for weekends for my family. This recipe sounds so simple and easy. And above all delicious. I’m saving it for next week.

  26. You flat out can’t beat a classic beef stew. Look at all that chunky meat, those carrots, that sauce. Digging in!!

  27. This looks like the perfect bowl of comfort food for these cold winter months. Love all the chunky veggies in here.

  28. Hi Sabrina, Please clear up something for me. I’d like to make this recipe this weekend. Does this cook in the oven at 325 degrees or the stovetop in a dutch oven?

    Thanks for your help

        1. Made this stew on the weekend. It was awesome. My wife prefers the potatoes and carrots to the beef so I added alot more and of course extra broth (along with “better than boullion”) and the other ingredients. We had enough for three days suppers.

          Since I made so much I had to keep the dutch oven on the stovetop because I couldn’t fit it in my GE Profile oven. Even so, it cooked on very low for the three hours and came out PERFECT.
          Thanks for sharing this recipe.