The Crock Pot Beef Stew is an easy, comforting meal that serves the whole family. I make this rich and warming beef stew with chuck roast and added potatoes and carrots which I cook slowly in a herby tomato and beef broth flavored with paprika, mustard powder and a dash of Worcestershire sauce. This is the perfect winter comfort food!
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CROCK POT BEEF STEW
This delicious bowl of stew is perfect for this time of year, when we all want a little comfort food.
Slow cooking it helps to intensifies the flavors in this Beef and Potato Stew. As a result, the stew is juicy, and the meat and vegetables are tender.
The secret to tender beef is to choose the right cut of stewing beef and cook it low and slow.
I give you some suggestions for suitable cuts of beef later on in the post.
I also like to make this Instant Pot Beef Stew recipe from time to time which is a nice recipe when you need to put a meal on the table in under an hour.
CROCK POT BEEF STEW INGREDIENTS
VEGETABLES: Onion, celery and garlic flavor the stew, you could also use red onions or shallots. Carrots are also added to the stew as an additional vegetable to serve along with the beef.
BEEF: Boneless chuck roast is my favorite cut of beef to use in a stew. I find that it gets tender while still keeping its flavor and it doesn’t dry out during cooking.
You can use other stewing cuts of beef and I give you some suggestions later in the post.
POTATOES: Use russet potatoes, or similar and cut into 1-inch pieces. The potatoes cook in the stew and are served as a vegetable side along with the carrots.
TOMATOES: Canned diced tomatoes balance out the stew, adding acidity and a rich savory flavor.
BEEF BROTH: The beef broth adds flavor to the stew. You can use a store-bought or you can make your own.
HERBS: A combination of dried thyme, bay leaves and fresh rosemary flavor the stew.
SPICES: I like to add both regular paprika and smoked paprika to the stew which work well with the beef.
FLAVORING: As well as the herbs and spices, I like to add ground yellow mustard powder for a kick of heat, and some Worcestershire sauce to add some acidity to the beef sauce.
CORN STARCH: Cornstarch is added to the stew at the end to thicken it up.
HOW TO MAKE CROCK POT BEEF STEW
SAUTE THE VEGGIES. Pour one tablespoon of olive oil into a large skillet. Sauté the chopped onion and celery until soft, about 5 to 7 minutes. The add the minced garlic and stir for a minute, before removing the veggies from the skillet.
Remove the beef onto a plate then cook the other half of the diced meat.
Note: it is better to brown the beef in batches so that the beef browns properly.
PLACE THE INGREDIENTS INTO THE CROCK POT. Now place the chopped potatoes, chopped carrots, and sautéed veggies in the Crock Pot. Next, add the seared meat and the rest of the ingredients into the Crock Pot, except the cornstarch, and stir to mix.
COOK THE STEW. Place the lid on the Crock Pot and cook on LOW for 6 hours, on HIGH for 3-4 hours, or until veggies and meat are tender.
Finally, add the cornstarch and turn the Crock Pot to HIGH for 30 minutes to thicken the gravy. Serve the stew warm.
WHAT ARE THE BEST CUTS OF BEEF FOR STEW?
I’ve used chuck roast as its a great cut of beef, with just enough fat running through it to result in a really flavorful stew.
Chuck roast is a slow cooking cut, as the fat renders down the longer you cook it, resulting in really tender pieces of beef.
You could also use these slow cook beef cuts:
- Chuck roast or pot roast
- Bone-in short rib
- Bottom sirloin flap
- Fatty brisket
DO YOU HAVE TO BROWN STEW MEAT BEFORE PUTTING IT IN THE CROCK POT?
Browning the beef isn’t absolutely necessary, but it does make a big difference to the flavor of the finished stew.
I like to brown the beef so I get all the lovely caramelization which adds lots of flavor to the stew.
I also like to soften the onions, celery and garlic, to sweeten them before adding to the stew.
These steps are worth the time, as they result in real depth of flavor in the finished dish.
WHAT GIVES BEEF STEW THE BEST FLAVOR?
When making this easy beef stew I like to pack in flavor with rosemary, thyme and bay, which all pair really well with beef.
I then add both paprika and smoked paprika which adds a subtle smokiness to the stew, along with a dash of Worcestershire sauce to balance out the acidity.
RECIPE TIPS & MODIFICATIONS
- BROWN THE BEEF IN BATCHES as this ensures the beef sears and browns, rather than steams in the skillet due to overcrowding the chunks of meat.
- COOK THE BEEF ON LOW as this recipe goes better in the LOW cooking mode for the meat to be super tender.
- STORE LEFTOVER BEEF STEW in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to seven days.
- REHEAT LEFTOVERS IN THE CROCK POT by placing the stew on HIGH for 20-30 minutes.
- TO REHEAT LEFTOVERS ON THE STOVE, place the stew into a pot over a medium/low heat and heat up gently for 5-8 minutes, stirring frequently until warmed through and piping hot.
- TO FREEZE BEEF STEW, once cooked allow it to cool completely then place in an airtight container for up to 2 months. Thaw the stew overnight in the refrigerator before reheating.
TRY SOME OF MY FAVORITE CROCK POT RECIPES:
- 3 tbsp. olive oil
- 1 large yellow onion, chopped
- 1/2 cup chopped celery, chopped
- 4 garlic cloves, minced
- 2 lbs. chuck meat (or stew meat)
- 1.5 lbs. potatoes, peeled, chopped into 1 inch pieces
- 3 carrots, chopped into 1 inch pieces
- 1 can diced tomatoes
- 3 cups beef broth
- 1 tsp. salt
- 1/2 tsp. ground black pepper
- 1 tsp. dried thyme
- 3 bay leaves
- 1 tsp. smoked paprika
- 1 tsp. paprika
- 1 tsp. ground yellow mustard
- 3 rosemary sprigs
- 1 tbsp. worcestershire sauce
- 3 tbsp. cornstarch
- Fresh oregano and parsley for garnish
- Heat 1 tbsp olive oil in a large skillet. Sauté chopped onion and celery until soft, about 5 to 7 minutes. Add minced garlic and stir for a minute.
- Remove veggies from the skillet.
- Add another 1 tbsp. of olive oil and 1/2 of the meat into the skillet and stir to sear the meat and set that beef aside on a plate. Cook the other half. Note: it is better to do it in batches for the beef to golden properly.
- Place chopped potatoes, chopped carrots, and sautéd veggies in the crockpot. Next, add seared meat and the rest of the ingredients, except cornstarch, to the crock pot. Stir to mix.
- Cook on LOW for 5-6 hrs., on HIGH for 3-4 hrs., or until veggies and meat are tender. Finally, add cornstarch and turn the crock pot to HIGH for 30 minutes to thicken. Garnish with fresh oregano and parsley.
- Serve warm.
This recipe goes better in the LOW cooking mode for the meat to be super tender.
Store leftovers in an airtight container in the fridge for up to seven days. To reheat it, you can use the Crock Pot on HIGH for 20-30 minutes or the saucepan over the stovetop for 5-8 minutes, stirring frequently.
You can freeze this stew for up to two months.