There are several beef stew recipes on the blog. Okay, two. Two = several in my mind. Those recipes are fairly old, which doesnt mean theyre bad recipes. Ive learned a lot about recipe development and perfecting recipes since the old Live Simply days. Re-making beef stew has been on my recipe to-do list.
Beef stew is usually a labor of love to make. It takes a couple of hours to make in a Dutch oven or longer if you use the slow-cooker. A meal that usually takes time to cook is the perfect meal to make in the Instant Pot.
Not only is the Instant Pot a master at speeding up the cooking time for something like beef stew, it also cooks tough cuts of meat to absolute perfection. This means a meal that would typically be reserved for a chilly, slow weekend can now be made any night of the week.
As you can probably tell from the number of Instant Pot recipes shared on the blog, Im obsessed with this appliance. OBSESSED!
I dont rely on a ton of appliances in my kitchen. My go-to tools are: a chef knife, immersion blender, a regular blender, a Dutch oven and skillet, hand-mixer, a griddle (for cooking pancakes), a waffle maker, a cutting board, and the Instant Pot.
I was honestly skeptical of the Instant Pot when it first released a few years ago, but after hearing so much about it I bought one. And you know what? It sat in the box for about a year because of fear.
I eventually opened up the box, thanks to a nudge from Helen (who helps out here on the Live Simply Team). I wouldnt say that I had a love at first use scenario. I slowly fell in love with the Instant Pot as I learned more about what this appliance can actually do.
Why Make Beef Stew in the Instant Pot?
There are a few reasons why I recommend making beef stew in the Instant Pot over the slow-cooker or stove-top/oven methods.
- The Instant Pot cooks beef stew in a fraction of the time compared to other methods.
- The Instant Pot turns out perfectly tender beef and veggies without turning everything to mush.
- The saut feature of the Instant Pot allows you to brown meat. Browning meat builds a ton of flavor in the stew.
How to Make Beef Stew in the Instant Pot
This beef stew recipe starts off using the saut feature to brown the beef. This is the most time-consuming part of the entire recipe.
Once this flavor-building step is complete, its just a matter of adding everything to the Instant Pot and sealing the lid. The Instant Pot does take some time to come to pressure, but once it does, perfectly-tender beef stew is ready in just 45 minutes.
Easy Instant Pot Beef Stew
An easy, homemade beef stew with loads of vegetables. This stew is made in the Instant Pot (or electric pressure cooker of choice).
- 2 TB extra virgin olive oil
- 1 3/4 -2 lbs beef stew meat (*)
- 2 TB unsalted butter
- 2 carrots (sliced, about 1 cup)
- 2 celery ribs (roughly chopped, about cup)
- 1/2 yellow onion (roughly chopped (about 1 cup))
- 2 red or Yukon gold potatoes (roughly chopped (about 1 cup))
- 1 cup roughly chopped green beans
- 1 cup sliced mushrooms (4-5 mushrooms, such as: white, baby bella, or cremini)
- 4 garlic cloves (minced)
- 3 cups beef broth (or chicken broth)
- 2 TB tomato paste
- 2 tsp dried oregano
- 1 tsp dried thyme
- 1 1/2 tsp salt (divided, or to taste)
- 1/2 tsp black pepper (or to taste)
To Thicken (Optional):
- 1-2 TB arrowroot starch
- 2-3 TB water
- Instant Pot
- plate (or surface of choice for resting the meat )
- medium bowl
Sprinkle the beef with 1/2 teaspoon of salt. Let the salt rest on the beef while chopping the veggies.
In a medium-size bowl, whisk together the broth, tomato paste, oregano, thyme, salt, and pepper.
Add 1 tablespoon of olive oil to the Instant Pot. Turn on the Saute function. Once hot, add half the beef. Youll have to work in batches, probably two batches since all the beef wont fit in the pot. Brown the beef on each side for just a couple of minutes. Set aside on a plate. Add the additional olive oil and remaining beef. Brown again. Set the meat aside on the plate.
Add the butter to the hot Instant Pot. Add all the veggies, saute for 4-5 minutes until they begin to sweat. You dont want the veggies to stick to the bottom of the Instant Pot, so dont let the veggies brown. This is just a quick saute. Once done, press Cancel to turn off the saute function.
Add the broth mixture to the Instant Pot, scraping up any bits on the bottom of the pot with a wooden spoon. This is very important. If bits are left on the base of the pot, the Instant Pot may flash a burn notice when coming to pressure.
Add the beef to the pot, dont stir.
Set the Instant Pot to Manual, High Pressure for 35 minutes. On new models, the Manual button is labeled, Pressure Level.
Once the stew is done cooking, let the pressure naturally release for 10 minutes and then perform a quick release (using a towel or hot pad holder).
If youd prefer a thicker stew, you can add arrowroot starch. I prefer to use 1 tablespoon of arrowroot starch mixed with 2 tablespoons of water in a small bowl, and then add this mixture to the stew. For a thicker stew, go with 2 tablespoons of arrowroot starch to 3 tablespoons of water. Again, mix this in a small bowl before adding to the stew. Once added, press Saute, and allow the stew to simmer for a few minutes (about 3-5 minutes) to slightly thicken. Stir frequently during this time.
*I cant ever find exactly 2lbs of beef stew meat, so its usually between 1 3/4-2lbs. Another option is to purchase a beef chuck roast and cut the roast into pieces, trimming off any extra fat.
This beef stew is very hearty with all the beef and veggies. The serving size suggestion (6 people) will depend on the appetite of the people youre serving.