simple instant pot beef stew photo by amrita song

Recipe: Simple Beef Stew


This is the easiest beef stew to whip up on a weekend to eat throughout the week. It’s especially great when the weather is a little gloomy or chilly or if you’re feeling under the weather. The beef chunks are perfectly tender, as are the celery, carrots and potatoes. It’s the perfect comfort food and pairs as well with crusty bread as plain rice. To eliminate some work, in place of tomato juice, I use my favorite local pasta sauce because it already contains garlic and other seasonings. If you have an Instant Pot, this can finish in about 35 minutes – if you cook it in the oven, it will take a bit longer.


Simple Beef Stew
Adapted from a Pinch of Yum recipe
4 to 6 servings


1 to 2 Tbsp. vegetable or canola oil
2 lbs. trimmed chuck roast or beef stew meat, cut into 1- to 2-inch pieces
2 Tbsp. flour
4 carrots, cut into 1- to 2-inch pieces
3 to 4 medium potatoes, cubed
3 stalks celery, cut into 1- to 2-inch pieces
1 large onion, cubed
¾ cup marinara sauce, such as Zia’s Original Pasta Sauce
¼ cup red wine (optional)
1 Tbsp. honey
2 tsp. kosher salt
Bread, rice or noodles, for serving


To prepare in the oven:
• Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. 


• In a Dutch oven over medium heat, preheat the oil. 


• Place the beef in a large bowl and toss with the flour until lightly coated. Sear the beef until lightly browned on all sides, about 5 minutes. 


• Add ¼ cup water to deglaze, scraping the bottom of the pot to loosen any browned bits. Add the carrots, potatoes, celery, onion, marinara, red wine (if using), honey and salt. 


• Bake uncovered until the meat caramelizes and the gravy thickens, about 15 minutes.


• Lower the oven temperature to 300 degrees, and cover the Dtuch oven. Bake 3 to 4 hours.


• If the stew looks a bit dry, add a glug of red wine or water. Serve with bread, rice or noodles.


To prepare in an Instant Pot:
• Add the oil to the Instant Pot on the Saute setting.


• Place the beef in a large bowl and toss with the flour until lightly coated. Add the beef chunks and cook until lightly browned on all sides, about 5 minutes.


• Add the carrots, potatoes, celery, onion, marinara, red wine (if using), honey and salt. 


• Seal the Instant Pot, close the vent and press the Meat/Stew button. The stew will cook on the normal, high pressure setting about 35 minutes. Let the pressure release naturally. 


• If the stew looks a bit dry, add a glug of red wine or water. Serve with bread, rice or noodles.


Amrita Song is a longtime contributor to Sauce Magazine. 

Tags : Recipes