Don’t tell my husband this but I actually don’t mind those Sundays when I’m trapped at home with 47 loads of laundry to do. Those are the days I put something like this on the stove and love on it all day.
I usually wait until fall to start with the hearty soups and stews like this one but I just couldn’t resist myself this weekend.
And college football started this week. Whoop! Whoop! Surely that alone made it OK for me to make stew. Even if it was 95 degrees outside!
This is just a good base recipe. If you like peas, add peas. If you hate carrots, leave them out. Make it your own. Be sure to take a look at the notes on this recipe too. There are several variations you can make if you’d like.
Here’s to looking forward to a whole new season of meals you have to eat with a spoon!
Country Beef Stew
1.5-2 pounds chuck roast, cubed or stew meat
1-1.5 pounds beef short ribs (optional - see notes)
4 tablespoons olive oil, divided
Salt, pepper & garlic powder
2-3 cups diced carrots
2-3 cups diced celery
1 large onion, diced
5-6 cloves garlic, minced
1/2 teaspoon thyme
1/4 cup flour
2 envelopes beefy onion soup mix (such as Lipton’s)
4 1/2 cups water
1 cup dry red wine
2 tablespoons worcestershire sauce
1 bay leaf
4-5 medium potatoes, peeled and cubed
Heat 3 tablespoons olive oil over medium-high heat in a Dutch oven or large pot. Season meat and ribs liberally with salt, pepper and garlic powder. Add beef pieces and ribs in batches to hot oil and brown on all sides. Remove with a slotted spoon to a bowl; set aside. Do this in batches so not to overcrowd the pan. We’re looking for a nice sear on the meat so we need to give it space. Also, we're not looking to cook the meat through at this point.
Add remaining oil to pot then sauté carrots, celery and onion for 4-6 minutes or until onions are translucent. Add garlic and thyme and continue cooking 2-3 minutes. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Add flour to vegetables and stir well. Cook and stir for 2-3 more minutes.
Combine water with beefy onion soup, mix well then add to veggies and stir. Once broth is smooth and well combined, add wine and worcestershire sauce. Add meat, ribs and any pan juices back to the pot. Add bay leaf and potatoes then stir well.
Reduce heat to low, cover and cook for 3-4 hours, stirring occasionally. Do not let the pot come to a boil – just slowly simmer. Season with additional salt, pepper and garlic powder if desired.
When ready to serve, remove rib bones and bay leaf from pot if desired.
- I love, love, LOVE using short ribs in stew because they are crazy flavorful and also help to naturally thicken it. If you can’t find the ribs or don’t want to use them, just substitute with additional stew meat.
- You can substitute ox tails, shanks or any other bone-in cuts for the ribs.
- You can substitute beef broth for the water and beefy onion soup mix.
- I used a cabernet sauvignon for the wine but any dry red will do (pinot noir, merlot, etc.). Just be sure not to use a sweet red wine.
- I really don’t think there’s a substitute for the wine but if you absolutely must, substitute with beef broth plus one additional tablespoon worcestershire.
- The flour helps to thicken the stew. If you can’t use flour, thicken with a cornstarch slurry the last hour of cooking.
- YES! You can make this in a crock pot. Once everything has been seared and sautéed, throw all the ingredients in and cook on low for 6-8 hours or high for 4-6 hours.