Irresistible Instant Pot Beef Stew
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Learn how to make the perfect instant pot beef stew in less than an hour and it tastes just like a Mississippi pot roast! The flavors of this meal make it taste like it’s been slowly simmered all day long. Serve it on a bed of egg noodles, with hot crusty bread, or over mashed potatoes!
A ladle full of instant pot beef stew on a bed of the fluffiest mashed potatoes.
Or noodles. Or served with hot, crusty bread and a side salad. I’m basically trying to say serve it however your heart desires.
Can we all just agree that a pot full of homemade stew tucked away in the refrigerator is something to look forward to when you’re slammed at work and see no light at the end of the proverbial tunnel? Or perhaps that’s just me. Just sit back, take a breather, and think about that beef stew that’s hearty to the brim, filled with tender chunks of beef, soul-warming, and utterly delicious just sitting there waiting for you to get home. The fat girl inside of me is dancing with joy.
Let that countdown begin! Then it’s beef stew + Netflix and chill time (and I do mean that literally!)
I wanted to share my instant pot beef stew recipe with you after being inspired by the unusually cooler weather we’ve been having here in Texas. And by unusually cooler I mean it being in the mid-80s – yes my friend, here in the south, we consider that to be good weather. Can you believe it? It took years for me to get used to that.
This homemade beef stew is pretty straightforward, if you can dump a bunch of ingredients into the instant pot, you can make this meal. In fact, it’s so painless I would even trust my husband to put it together. Mind you, his arsenal of recipes starts with fried eggs and ends with tea. Okay, I digress. Mostly what I’m trying to get across is that YOU can do this without much effort.
Of course, if you’re like me and root for the Maillard reaction team, you can easily take this instant pot beef stew recipe a little further. Season your beef chunks with a pinch of salt and pepper and then sear them off with a knob of butter to really brown the meat on the outside leaving you with the most tenders chunks of beef in your stew. Because really, has butter in moderation ever steered you wrong?
Never ever, ever.
Of course, this doesn’t have to be an instant pot beef stew. You can easily use this as a guideline and follow other oven-friendly recipes and let the glorious scents of beef stew torture you for the upwards of 4-5 hours. Admittedly, if you’re anything like me, the thought of having prepared comfort food ready to eat in 45 minutes is a hair more appealing than the natural smells promised by the oven method mentioned above.
Instant gratification: sniff your bowl and shove spoonfuls of bubbly, thick stew with mashed potatoes. Repeat often.
I’d like to point out that the inspiration for this beef stew recipe comes from the Mississippi pot roast recipe that Pinterest is all about. We’re using a whole packet of ranch seasoning along with 1/2 a cup of thinly sliced pepperoncini peppers that you can pick up in the condiment aisle of your grocery store.
True story: I’ve never made a Mississippi pot roast. One major problem I have with it: using a fattier cut like chuck roast along with one or sometimes two, sticks of butter scares the bejesus out of me. The other one? Using a packet of ‘au jus gravy mix’. Friends, when you sear that meat, then let it pressure cook with low sodium beef broth, along with Worcestershire sauce, and fresh vegetables, you can quickly develop those same flavors while skipping all the mystery ingredients and excessive salt that you get from a store bought gravy mix.
Depending on how thick you like your stew, play around with the amount of cornstarch listed. The first time I made this instant pot beef stew recipe, I used two tablespoons of cornstarch and found that it was a little thin for my taste. I like my stew on the thicker side, not like a bowl of soup. So three tablespoons of cornstarch is our sweet spot. Use this as a guideline though. If you find that you prefer a thicker gravy too, mix a little more cornstarch with water and pop you stew back onto the sauté setting and let it start bubbling. Then add in the slurry. The beauty of using an instant pot (affiliate link) is the ability to go from pressure cooking to stove-top with the push of a button.
Final words: please serve this over a bed of homemade mashed potatoes. Might I be so bold as to suggest my garlic herb instant pot mash?
It has a way of working with this beef stew recipe.
- 1 3/4 - 2 pounds beef (chuck roast, cut into 1 1/2-2 inch pieces)
- salt and pepper
- 2 tablespoons butter
- 8 ounces baby bella mushrooms, halved or quartered
- 14-ounce bag (~ 2 cups) pearl onions
- 3 stalks celery, cut into 1-inch pieces
- 4 large carrots, cut into 1-inch pieces
- 1/2 cup pepperoncini (thinly sliced)
- 1 tablespoon EACH: tomato paste and sugar
- 1 (1-ounce) packet ranch seasoning mix*
- 2 tablespoons: Worcestershire sauce
- 2-3 tablespoons cornstarch*
- 1 1/4 - 1 1/2 cup low sodium beef broth*
- 3 cloves garlic, minced
- optional: season the beef with a big pinch of salt and pepper. Heat the butter in the instant pot on the saute setting. When the butter melts, sear the beef in batches, remove to a plate.
- Instant Pot: In a large measuring cup, mix the beef broth with 2 scant tablespoons of cornstarch until it dissolves. Place all the ingredients in the Instant Pot and select the meat/stew setting. Time the recipe for 35 minutes. Once the stew is cooked allow it to rest in the pot for 10-15 minutes before releasing the steam. This gives the meat a chance to really soak up all those flavors. If you feel the gravy is thin, dissolve the remaining tablespoon of cornstarch with a little water and add that in with the IP on the sautee setting. Adjust salt and pepper to preference.
- There are several recipes online for homemade ranch seasoning mix if that's more your thing! 2 tablespoons of homemade seasoning is approximately what you'll need for this recipe.
- I'm confident you could prepare this beef stew in the oven as well, I just haven't tried it yet. I'd suggest searing the beef then transferring it along with the rest of the ingredients into a glass baking dish (with cover) and letting it go low and slow at 325ºF for 3 1/2 - 4 1/2 hours. You can uncover the stew during the last 10-20 minutes to give it a little color as well!
Update 10/23/17: Some readers have mentioned they had issues with the instant pot displaying 'burn' while the pressure was building pressure. I myself did not have this problem. But this normally occurs when there isn't sufficient liquid in the pot. I retested the recipe and have upped the liquid to 1 1/2 cups (original recipe called for 1 1/4 cups). If you made this without any issues, I suggest keeping the recipe with 1 1/4 cups. If you're a first timer, I suggest making it with 1 1/2 cups of broth.
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