Instant Pot Beef Stew Recipe

Instant Pot Beef Stew Recipe

A comforting dinner that’s easy, doesn’t break the bank, and the whole family is sure to love? Sign us up. Beef stew is our ideal meal on a chilly night, combining tender beef with perfectly cooked veggies and thick, rich broth. Using a budget-friendly cut of meat, it’s an affordable dish that tastes even better the next day.

The Instant Pot makes homemade beef stew extra easy. First, we brown the beef using the sauté setting to add tons of flavor, then we use the same pot to cook the onions and garlic. We like to deglaze with a little red wine for a more robust flavor profile. Toss in the remaining ingredients along with the browned beef and pressure cook. A cornstarch slurry is added at the end to quickly thicken the stew.

Between searing the meat and simmering, most stovetop and oven beef stew recipes need at least two hours of cooking. The Instant Pot shrinks this time down to under an hour and a half from prep to the dinner table. Plus, it’s mostly hands-off and only dirties one pot. That’s our kind of weeknight meal.

As long as your Worcestershire sauce is gluten-free, this beef stew recipe is a tasty addition to a gluten-free diet. If you’re not gluten-free, serve with a little crusty bread to mop up any remaining juices.

“This stew is very tasty, easy and quick! If you’re a fan of spicy foods like me, sprinkle some chili and freshly ground black pepper in your bowl. You can also top it with freshly squeezed lime juice for an added tangy flavor.” —Bahareh Niati

Instant Pot Beef Stew Recipe/Tester Image A Note From Our Recipe Tester

Ingredients

  • 2 pounds boneless beef chuck roast

  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt, more to taste

  • 1/2 teaspoon black pepper, more to taste

  • 2 tablespoons canola oil, divided

  • 1 medium yellow onion, coarsely chopped

  • 4 cloves garlic, minced

  • 1 tablespoon tomato paste

  • 1/3 cup red wine

  • 2 teaspoons fresh thyme leaves, or 1 teaspoon dried thyme

  • 1 medium bay leaf

  • 3/4 pound baby Yukon Gold potatoes

  • 2 large carrots (about 1/2 pound), cut into 1 1/2-inch pieces

  • 1 large parsnip (about 1/2 pound), cut into 1 1/2-inch pieces

  • 2/3 cup beef broth

  • 1 tablespoon cornstarch

  • 1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce

  • 1 cup frozen green peas

Steps to Make It

  1. Gather the ingredients.

    ingredients to make Instant Pot beef stew

    The Spruce Eats / Bahareh Niati

  2. Place the beef on a cutting board and cut into 1-inch chunks, removing excess fat and gristle (some fat is good, but remove and discard any especially big pieces). Season all over with the salt and pepper.

    sliced, seasoned meat on a cutting board

    The Spruce Eats / Bahareh Niati

  3. Heat the Instant Pot on the sauté setting on high heat. Add 1 tablespoon of oil to coat the bottom of the pot. Add half of the beef in a single layer and let sear until browned, about 4 minutes. Use tongs to flip and brown the other side, about 3 minutes. Remove the beef to a plate and repeat with the remaining beef. Set aside.

    Beef searing in an Instant Pot

    The Spruce Eats / Bahareh Niati

  4. Add the remaining 1 tablespoon of oil to the Instant Pot. Add the onion and sauté, stirring occasionally, until beginning to turn translucent, about 2 minutes. Add the garlic and tomato paste; sauté just until fragrant, about 30 seconds.

    Onions and spices in an Instant pot

    The Spruce Eats / Bahareh Niati

  5. Add the wine, thyme, and bay leaf. Scrape the bottom of the pot to dislodge any browned, stuck-on bits. Let simmer until the wine is reduced by half, about 1 minute.

    ingredients simmering in an instant pot

    The Spruce Eats / Bahareh Niati

  6. Turn off the sauté function. Add the potatoes, carrots, parsnip, beef broth, and the browned beef along with any remaining juices to the pot. Stir to combine, then secure the lid. Cook at high pressure for 25 minutes. Use a natural release.

    beef stew cooking in an instant pot

    The Spruce Eats / Bahareh Niati

  7. Once the pressure has released naturally, whisk together the cornstarch and Worcestershire sauce in a small bowl until no lumps remain.

    Worcestershire sauce and cornstarch in a bowl

    The Spruce Eats / Bahareh Niati

  8. Remove the bay leaf. Turn on the sauté function to high and add the peas. Once simmering, add the cornstarch mixture and stir. Simmer until thickened slightly, about 3 minutes.

    thickened stew in an instant pot

    The Spruce Eats / Bahareh Niati

  9. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Serve warm.

    Instant pot beef stew with salt and pepper

    The Spruce Eats / Bahareh Niati

Tips

  • A whole cut of beef chuck is preferable to pre-cut stew meat. This is because stew meat often has excess fat and gristle still attached. Cutting up the beef yourself allows you to trim any unwanted bits and make sure the meat is uniform in size.
  • Browning the meat before pressure cooking the stews adds tons of flavor. If you’re short on time, you can skip this step and add the beef with the vegetables.
  • This recipe calls for whole baby yellow potatoes. They should be between 1 inch and 1 1/2-inches across. You can use an equivalent amount of large potatoes cut into 1 1/2-inch cubes.
  • A natural release ensures the stew is perfectly cooked and tender. This can take up to 30 minutes. If you’re impatient, you can perform a quick release after a 15-minute natural release.

Recipe Variations

  • A variety of vegetables work well in beef stew, just keep the ratio of vegetables to beef the same. Try turnips, rutabaga, sweet potato, or butternut squash. For a simple beef stew, swap the parsnips for more potatoes and carrots.
  • As the wine simmers in this recipe, all of the alcohol cooks off. If you don’t have wine handy or prefer not to cook with it, replace it with more broth and add a tablespoon or two of balsamic vinegar along with the peas.
  • If you don’t have beef broth, chicken or vegetable broth can be used instead.

How to Store and Freeze

  • Store leftover Instant Pot beef stew in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 4 days.
  • You can also freeze leftover stew. Store in a freezer-safe container, leaving an inch of headroom, for up to a month. Defrost in the fridge before reheating.

Is Beef Stew Gluten-Free?

Many beef stew recipes call for dusting the beef with flour before browning, which helps the stew thicken. This adds gluten to the recipe. This recipe is flour-free and uses cornstarch to thicken instead. As long as you double-check that all of the ingredients are gluten-free, this beef stew is safe to eat on a gluten-free diet.

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