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Beef And Vegetable Stew Recipe

Published by: Chef Matty Riedel • Updated: January 25, 2024

This beef and vegetable stew recipe makes a nourishing hearty stew where beef is stewed for hours, along with veggies and aromatics, until it’s melt-in-the-mouth tender. This recipe is perfect for cheap beef cuts and can be made in a slow cooker or on the hob.

Growing up, beef and vegetable stew was a family favourite—it would feature on the dinner table at least once every two weeks (technically meant we ate it for at least six meals, including the leftovers for the next day’s meals!).

My mum was a huge believer in using every part of the animal, and this recipe was the perfect way to make something mouthwateringly delicious from those cheap but challenging cuts.

A great dish any time of the year, beef and vegetable stew will always remain close to my heart despite how rustic and simple it is. Here’s how if you’d like to give this classic a go.

Since this dish involves slow cooking, it’s the perfect recipe for inexpensive, usually tough cuts. The long cooking period makes the beef melt-in-the-mouth tender. Add to this the chunky, flavour-soaked veggies and thick, velvety gravy, and you’ve got one of the most heart and belly-warming dishes ever!

The best part? You don’t need a slow cooker to whip up this incredible dish—your stovetop will work just fine. Here’s how to cook beef and vegetable stew on the hob and in a slow cooker.

Beef And Vegetable Stew Recipe

Beef and Vegetable Stew Recipe
Beef And Vegetable Stew Recipe
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5 from 1 vote
PREP TIME 30 minutes
COURSE Main Course
CALORIES 1627 kcal



  • 1 Onion, peeled and finely chopped
  • 1 Leek, finely sliced and make sure you trim off the top 3 centimetres, halve the leek, and thoroughly rinse it before slicing
  • 2 Celery sticks, finely sliced and make sure you trim off the dry ends
  • 500 grams Braising steak/stew meat, diced
  • 500 grams Potatoes, washed and roughly chopped
  • 400 grams Tomatoes, chopped
  • 400 grams Carrots, trimmed, peeled, and thinly sliced
  • 3 Garlic cloves, peeled and finely chopped
  • 2 tablespoons Olive oil
  • 1 Bouquet garni, I usually bundle one bay leaf and a couple of sprigs each of thyme and parsley, but you can use any bundle of herbs that you think will work with your beef and vegetable stew
  • 1 Beef stock cube
  • 4 Cloves
  • 1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
  • 500 ml or 1 litre Water
  • Pepper and sea salt, freshly ground for seasoning
  • A handful of chopped flatleaf parsley leaves to garnish


Method – Slow Cooker

  • In a large frying pan, heat a tablespoon of olive oil over medium heat. Let this warm for about a couple of minutes and then, add the beef, frying it till it’s brown all over (this should take about eight minutes).
  • In the meantime, set 500 millilitres of water to boil.
  • Scoop out your cooked beef and transfer it to a slow cooker (ideally, one with a capacity of at least 3.5 litres).
  • Add the leek, onion, potatoes, chopped tomatoes, carrots, celery, and garlic to the cooker.
  • Crumble your beef stock cube into the cooker and add the Dijon mustard, cloves, and bouquet garni.
  • Now, pour in the boiling water, along with a pinch of pepper and salt. Give all of it a good stir, pop the lid on, and switch on the medium setting in your slow cooker. Your stew should take about 8-10 hours to cook in this mode.
  • You can also cook it in the low setting for 10-12 hours, or go high and cut the cooking time down to 5 or 6 hours. However, I find that cooking in the medium setting gives me the result that sits best at the intersection of flavour, time, and how well my meat is cooked.
  • Based on the setting, your delish beef and vegetable stew is ready to lap up in 5 or 12 hours!
  • You can choose to serve this over a bed of finely sliced, stir-fried green cabbage seasoned with a bit of salt and pepper. Before you serve the stew, though, make sure you fish out your bouquet garni and do one final taste test, adjusting the seasoning if necessary.
  • Also, if you spot any of the cloves, fish them out—you don’t want your guests (or yourself) to find an unwelcome surprise amid all that deliciousness!
  • Sprinkle the parsley leaves on the stew, and it’s good to make its way into waiting tummies.

Method – On The Hob

  • If you’re using the stovetop, retain the same first step that we used in the slow cooker method. The only difference is that you’ll set a litre of water to boil instead of 500 millilitres.
  • Once the beef is cooked, remove it from the pan and set it aside.
  • In the same pan, fry the leek and onion with a couple of tablespoons of water (normal, room-temperature water).
  • Season the veggies with a bit of salt and pepper and fry them for about eight minutes, by which time they should have started softening.
  • After the onion and leek have cooked, return the beef (plus all those delicious juices that have oozed out onto the plate) to the pan. Now’s the time to also add in the rest of the veggies (including the chopped tomatoes) and garlic.
  • Once everything’s gone into the pot, crumble in your beef stock cube and add the Dijon mustard, bouquet garni, and whole cloves, along with the litre of water you’ve boiled. Season with salt and pepper, stir well, put the lid on, and bring the whole thing to a boil.
  • Once the stew hits boiling point, reduce the heat and let it simmer for an hour and a half, or until the beef is tender.
  • Once cooked, follow the same steps listed above (fishing out the garni to garnishing with parsley leaves) and you’re golden.
Chefs Tips
  • Canned tomatoes come with a bit of their own liquid, which increases the tomato flavour in the dish. You could use raw chopped tomatoes, but make sure you compensate with a bit of extra water and tomato bits for the reduced flavour.
  • I love the hit of flavour that the Dijon brings to the dish. The lovely mustard notes cut through the stew and elevate it, but if you’re not a fan of mustard, you can easily leave this out of the recipe.You can also add other veggies you like to the stew. Peas, corn, green beans, and mushrooms are all great options; add them to your pot or cooker when there are about 45 minutes of cooking time left.
  • You can use beef stock instead of water to cook the meat. In my opinion, there’s little that can go wrong when beef broth is in the equation, so go ahead and try this out!
Nutritional Information
Calories: 1627kcalCarbohydrates: 154gProtein: 129gFat: 55gSaturated Fat: 13gPolyunsaturated Fat: 5gMonounsaturated Fat: 31gCholesterol: 310mgSodium: 1744mgPotassium: 5515mgFiber: 27gSugar: 32gVitamin A: 68369IUVitamin C: 144mgCalcium: 401mgIron: 18mg
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Do You Boil Potatoes Before Putting Them In Stew?

You don’t need to pre-boil the potatoes as this will overcook them beyond salvation. Just letting them simmer with the rest of the veggies will let them soften while still holding their shape.

What Gives Beef Stew The Best Flavor?

Remember how we don’t change pans when cooking the leeks and onion? That’s because all the browned bits of fat and meat stuck to the bottom of the pan are huge flavour bombs. Cooking your veggies and aromatics in this “fond” adds huge bursts of flavour to the stew and any other similar meat dish.

Beef And Vegetable Stew Recipe: Parting Thoughts

And there you have it—two extremely simple ways to cook a beautiful beef and vegetable stew. I prefer the slow cooker method because the meat responds beautifully to the long cooking period, and there’s less washing up. If you can, I recommend trying both to find what works for you.

Happy eating!

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Chef and Restaurant Owner Matty Riedel
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