Beef stew was one of my favorite meals growing up, so I loved creating this recipe. Warm and full of flavor, you’ll savor every bite of this Beef Stew in the Crock Pot!
When it comes to eating, I’m embarrassed to admit the number of different diets I have adhered to over the years. For a long time I was a strict vegetarian (the concept of being a vegan always appealed to me, but I knew I’d never last a week). After a while, I missed dairy and eggs so much that I morphed into a lacto-ovotarian. Then one day I decided I had to starting eating fish again and became a pescetarian.
I should note that I didn’t refer to myself with these names. It was more that people would notice I was abstaining from eating meat or fish and they would ask me, “what kind of ______arian are you?” Well, after years of living under these relatively pretentious labels, I’m back to being a foodatarian (I think I totally made that word up but it sounds less highfalutin than saying I’m an educated omnivore, consuming pretty much everything under the sun, but making informed decisions about what I eat and how it is produced.
After years of depriving myself of foods I actually craved, I realized that the thing I missed most was beef. I eat red meat very infrequently now, but when I do, I savor every bite. One dish I adored in my childhood was beef stew and I experienced so much nostalgia creating this recipe. Tons of assorted nutritious vegetables and chunks of lean meat simmering in its own juices come together to create a simple yet hearty crock pot dish that’s perfect for these chilly months.
I’m about moderation in all things and hopefully I will inspire my kids to love a little bit of this and a little of that and responsibly experience all the amazing foods our bodies are able to enjoy!
Beef Stew in the Crock Pot
- 2 pounds beef chuck, cut into 1-inch cubes
- 1/4 cup all purpose flour
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1/2 cup red wine
- 1 cup low sodium beef stock
- 2 bay leaves
- 1 tablespoon minced fresh thyme
- 2 russet or yukon gold potatoes, peeled and cut into 1-inch cubes
- 2 stalks celery, diced
- 2 carrots, peeled and diced
- 1 large onion, diced
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 1/2 teaspoons kosher salt
- 1 15 ounce can unsalted diced tomatoes
- Place the cubed meat and flour and in a Ziploc bag, seal and shake until the pieces are fully coated with flour.
- Heat the olive oil in a large sauté pan over medium high heat and sear the pieces of meat for 4 minutes until all sides are nicely brown. Remove the meat from the pan and place in the crock pot.
- Add the red wine and stock to the sauté pan and bring to a boil for one minute, scraping off the bits of meat that have caramelized in the pan with a wooden spoon.
- Add the reduced liquid to the crock pot along with the remaining ingredients and stir to combine.
- Cook on low in slow cooker for 6-8 hours, or high for 4-6 hours.
This has been my go to beef stew recipe for years! Have tried many others and always come back to this. The best! It’s in the crock pot now.
Score! Thank you for the sweet comment!
I’m normally not a fan of beef stew, but this one is amazing. It’s so easy to put together and the smell of it cooking all day is out of this world. I follow the recipe as written and see no need to make changes. It’s absolutely wonderful!
[…] Sunday: Crockpot Beef Stew […]
Searing the meat adds tons more flavor to it and helps keep it moist!
I couldn’t buy the wine because it was Sunday when I went grocery shopping and didn’t have a chance to pick some up, so I used balsamic vinegar and it turned out good. I also skipped the whole searing step, next time I’ll do that. Does anyone l ow what the purpose is of that?
I didn’t have flour on hand (or wine for that matter) however I found that Mashed Potato Flakes work just fine 🙂 ! We aren’t big wine drinkers so I put in Worcestershire sauce to give it a kick (3 tbsp to be exact)
If you bought meat that was frozen and you thawed it for the recipe, then definitely cook it before freezing again. Also, I would freeze only the vegetables, not the wine. I would make the step that includes wine the day when the whole meal is prepared.
Catherine, if I was to freeze this recipe before cooking it, would you recommend browning the meat first?
I substitute apple juice for the wine and it comes out delicious!
How well does this freeze? I’m a big fan of the ‘make and freeze for later’ approach! 🙂
Recipe sounds great. I was wondering what type of wine you used as I have never cooked with wine before but want to start. Also what type of onion did you use?
[…] Thursday, March 7th – I made pot roast in our slow cooker. I used a recipe from Weelicious and I let it cook all day while we were at work. It was so […]
I used vegetable stock (because it was on sale in Whole Foods) and skipped the wine because I have two little boys. I also forgot to reduce the stock and left the dish cooking for longer than specified in the recipe (because we were out in about)…and still it turned out GREAT. My entire family loved it…and especially my almost 9 mo old carnivore…I just shredded the meat and cut up the veggies for him and he was devouring it with pleasure… Next one to my recipe box!
I used a white onion and it gave the stew a zing. Yellow would make it sweeter.
However, I highly recommend NOT using Regina cooking red wine. I didn’t realize the word vinegar under the label. It was just awful.
I’m not giving up on this recipe, but next time I’m using regular red wine or just omitting it for more beef stock.
The flour helps thicken the stew. You can omit it or use gluten-free flour!
You have this in the Gluten Free tab of the wee app. Flour isn’t gluten free. Is it needed for the recipe? Alternatives?
That would make the beef tough. This cut of beef is really best cooked low and slow!
Do you think I could cook this on High to shorten the cooking time or would that make the meat tough?
Yes, I think it would. Low and slow cooking is perfect for oxtail!
Do you think oxtail would work instead of the chuck meat in this recipe?
Can I still cook this without a crock pot? If so, what do you suggest? I’m struggling to find things to cook for my toddler b/c he is such a picky eater. Feedings have become a part of my day that I don’t look forward to.
Made this on Tuesday and it was delicious – will be adding to my regular monthly menu. Side note, I do think my stew was a little on the sweet side and I think it might have been because of my onion and wine varieties. To get it perfect next time – what type of onion do you recommend white, yellow, red, etc and what type of red wine? Do you buy one that is called “cooking” wine? I used what I had, a Pinot Noir and it may have been on the sweet side. Nonethe less, thanks again!
and p.s., this stew looks delicious!
thanks for writing the intro regarding dietary choices. I was a vegetarian for 10 years, then returned to eating meat for 4 years, then back to vegetarian. I’ve just reintroduced fish as of Jan. 1, but I do feel like I am depriving myself of foods I crave. I don’t limit any of my daughter’s choices (I ensure they are healthy, but I don’t insist she follow a certain type of diet), but it is tough to sometimes admit you may want a certain type of food after making the decision not to consume it (and you are “publicly” identified as a ____arian).
Catherine, I do not have a crock pot…yes, perhaps I should go out and get one… I was wondering if you could instruct me on how to make this recipe on a stove top.
I would love to try it!!
Made this today and it was easy and very delicious!
“Stewing Beef” is just pre-cut cubes from the beef chuck. If it is tough that usually means it hasn’t been cooked long enough. If it is coming out tough even after being cooked in the slow cooker for several hours try cutting it into smaller cubes prior to cooking. It can also get tough by being over-cooked or cooked to quickly, but that shouldn’t happen in the slow cooker, that’s more of a stove-top problem. I hope you have more success with this recipe because beef stew is such a comfort food!
What kind of beef cut is chuck? I’ve made stews with the cut up stewing beef that you can buy at the grocery store but it always seems tough. I’m wondering where you can buy chuck?
I am thankful all the time for the person who invented the slow cooker. What a servant it is in our household!
No worries, the alcohol in the wine will burn off. Puree some and give it to your 1 year old. Yum!
This recipe sounds great, and the wine in it brings up a question I’ve had for a while: When you cook with wine in a recipe like this, does all of the alcohol evaporate out, or will some be left in the stew? Would there be enough wine remaining in the stew to worry about feeding it to a one year old?
We are gluten / dairy / soy / nut free, and the flour we use most often is Bob’s Red Mill all-purpose flour. It’s a good overall replacement in most situations.
I agree with Karen that the rice flour would be great too. 🙂
Thanks for the crock pot recipe, I’ve been looking for these now that the weather’s colder!
Sarah, I am gluten free and use either brown rice flour or almond meal to sub for regular flour. I think the brown rice flour would work best here – and yes, it’s to thicken!
Is there something I can sub for the flour to make this gluten free? I imagine the flour has a thickening purpose.
I made it with venison on Friday, and boy was it yummy! It was even better reheated tonight for dinner!
I make a very similar stew for my husband… never would have thought to use red wine. Will have to try! I usually add peas and use crushed tomatoes. Sometimes for a treat, I’ll make dumplings for it as well (my husband and daughter LOVE dumplings)
I do not eat red meat, pork, fish… by choice. Only poultry. But I love to cook for my family 🙂
This might also be delicious using venison. We have a deer waiting to be processed right now!
White whole wheat flour is made from white wheat berries, while the regular whole wheat flour we normally see is made with red wheat berries. It has a milder flavor and, obviously, lighter color. Chemistry-wise it acts like regular whole wheat, making a denser product. It’s still recommended that you use at least 50% all-purpose flour when you’re making recipes that aren’t specifically for whole wheat.
I’ve never heard of that kind of flour, but it’s sounds interesting. If you recipes are coming out fine, keep using it! It may be what’s called ‘white/wheat flour’. It’s not as processed as white flour.
I have been using a white whole wheat flour from Eagle Mills (bought it at wallmart)It says it is “Ultragrain whole wheat flout and has 4-1/2 times the fiber of regular flour. The color is not a pure white, but everything I have made comes out fine. Catherine – do you know about this? It is easier than mixing white and whole wheat.
I wouldn’t sub anything for the tomatoes. You could add a cup more stock and a few more of the veggies in the recipe to beef it up a bit (no pun intended).
I am allergic to tomatoes, is there something I can substitute or should I just omit them?
I was a vegetarian for 7 years and decided one day that I was tired of depriving myself. Although I’ve only returned to eating poultry, I agree that everything in moderation is acceptable. I don’t eat pork, beef, or seafood, but that’s a personal choice and I certainly do not deprive my family of these proteins. I just prefer veggies over anything else. But as a parent, I think it’s important to expose my kid to as many foods as possible.
I enjoyed your article, and this stew looks amazing! I’ll definitely give it a try.
Here’s more crock pot recipes if you want them! http://b12.ba4.myftpupload.com/category/crockpot/
Crock pot recipes are always appreciated! I am kind of like you. I used to be a lacto-ovo-vegetarian (as labeled in the hospital with my daughter. I had never actually heard the term.) and now I’m a pescatarian. Unlike you, I don’t crave beef or other meats so I’m good like I am. But I’m not aiming to raise my kids under any special diets so perhaps I’ll give this stew a shot.
Slow cookers are also measurably different than they used to be. Because of food safety concerns, the low setting is now the equivalent of what the old high setting was. It may sound counterintuitive, but you might get better results from an older model from a garage sale or thrift store. A friend and I make an enormous batch of slow cooker apple butter every year, and we borrow slow cookers and use 6-7 at a time, both old and new. The older models all cook at a considerably lower heat than the newer ones, even when we put the new ones on low, with no burns around the edges.
This is my slow-cooker. It was a gift from my parents several years ago, and I LOVE it! All Clad is a very good brand overall, but also pricey. I have had success with Crock Pot brand slow cookers, as well.
What brand slow-cooker do you use? I have a very cheap one that I think I need to replace, as even on the low settings most recipes burn around the edges, and it is not a matter of not having enough liquid. I think the pot gets too hot. I would like to know if you or others here think it is worth spending $$$ on something like a Williams-Sonoma one. Thank you for your recommendations, and great website!
Absolutely! The wine ads a lot of flavor (and the alcohol burns off), but you can use all stock.
Can additional stock be substituted for the wine?
I add a bit of chopped fennel to my beef stew recipe. Gives it that certain something!
Always looking for great recipes for the crockpot! Can’t wait to give this a try!!