Beef Stew in Dutch Oven Pioneer Woman is a hearty and flavorful stew that is sure to warm you up on a cold winter day. This recipe from Ree Drummond, better known as the Pioneer Woman, is a classic stew that uses a Dutch oven to slowly simmer the ingredients together to create a delicious and comforting meal. With simple ingredients and easy instructions, this recipe is sure to be a hit with the whole family.
Why Dutch Oven Is Good To Cooking Beef Stew
Dutch ovens are an excellent tool for making beef stew because they are designed to hold and evenly distribute heat, making them great for slow-cooking stews. The heavy lid traps in moisture, resulting in a flavorful and tender stew.
The pot’s thick walls also help to maintain a consistent, low temperature while simmering, and the large size means you can make enough stew to feed a crowd.
What Kind Of Beef Is Best For Making Stew
The best type of beef for making stew is a cut of beef with a lot of connective tissue like chuck roast, bottom round, or brisket. These cuts are relatively inexpensive and, when cooked slowly over low heat, become tender and flavorful.
How Do I Thicken My Dutch Oven Beef Stew
The best way to thicken a Dutch oven beef stew is to add a roux (a mixture of equal parts butter and flour). To make a roux, melt butter in a medium saucepan over medium heat. Whisk in an equal amount of flour, stirring until the mixture is lightly browned and bubbling.
Then, add the roux to the beef stew and stir until fully combined. For an even thicker stew, you can also add a tablespoon or two of tomato paste.
The best flavor for beef stew comes from slow cooking the stew over low heat and using a variety of herbs and spices. Adding vegetables such as carrots, onions, celery, potatoes, and garlic will also enhance the flavor. Adding a splash of red wine, Worcestershire sauce, or tomato paste can also help to boost the flavor.
Pioneer Woman Beef Stew Ingredients
- Beef chuck roast: Look for well-marbled meat for maximum flavor. Cut the beef into 1-inch cubes for proper cooking.
- Salt and pepper: Be sure to season the beef well with salt and pepper before browning to enhance the flavor.
- Flour: Used to coat the beef cubes to thicken the stew.
- Olive oil: Used for browning the beef. Use a high-quality olive oil for the best flavor.
- Onion: Adds sweetness and depth of flavor to the stew.
- Garlic: Adds a nice subtle aroma and some additional flavor.
- Beef broth: Adds flavor and moisture to the stew. Can be substituted with chicken broth.
- Red wine: Adds acidity and complexity to the stew. Use a dry red wine such as a cabernet sauvignon or merlot.
- Diced tomatoes: Adds a slight sweetness and acidity to the stew. Can be substituted with crushed tomatoes.
- Bay leaf: Gives a subtle aroma and flavor to the stew. Be sure to remove before serving.
- Fresh thyme: Gives a subtle aroma and flavor to the stew. Can be substituted with dried thyme.
- Small red potatoes: Adds a nice texture and starchiness to the stew. Can be substituted with other types of potatoes.
- Carrots: Adds sweetness and a nice texture to the stew.
- Frozen peas: Adds a nice pop of color and sweetness to the stew. Can be substituted with fresh peas if in season.
How To Make Beef Stew In Dutch Oven
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). Season the beef cubes with salt and pepper and toss in the flour to coat.
- In a large Dutch oven or heavy pot, heat the olive oil over medium-high heat. Add the beef in batches and brown on all sides. Remove the beef from the pot and set aside.
- In the same pot, add the onion and garlic and cook until softened, about 5 minutes.
- Add the beef broth, red wine, diced tomatoes, bay leaf, and thyme and stir to combine.
- Return the beef to the pot and bring the mixture to a simmer.
- Cover the pot with a lid and place in the oven. Cook for 1 hour and 30 minutes.
- Remove the pot from the oven and add the potatoes, carrots, and frozen peas. Stir well to combine.
- Return the pot to the oven and cook, covered, for an additional 30 minutes, or until the vegetables are tender.
- Remove the bay leaf and thyme sprigs before serving.
- Enjoy with some crusty bread.
Is It Necessary To Brown The Beef Before Adding It To The Dutch Oven
Browning the beef is not strictly necessary, but it will add flavor to the dish. Browning the beef also helps the beef retain its juices and adds a deeper flavor to the dish.
How Long Does It Take To Cook Beef Stew In A Dutch Oven
Beef stew cooked in a Dutch oven usually takes at least two hours to cook, depending on the size and cut of the beef, the vegetables used, and the desired tenderness of the meat.
How To Store Leftover Beef Stew
To store beef stew in the refrigerator, let it cool to room temperature before transferring it to an airtight container. Beef stew will keep in the refrigerator for 3-4 days.
To freeze beef stew, let it cool to room temperature before transferring it to a freezer-safe container or resealable plastic bag. Make sure to press out as much air as possible before sealing the bag to prevent freezer burn. Beef stew will keep in the freezer for 2-3 months.
How To Thaw From Frozen Beef Stew In Different Ways
- Refrigerator Thawing: To thaw in the refrigerator, place the frozen stew in a covered container and put it in the refrigerator. Allow 24 hours for every 5 pounds of food to thaw. For example, a 2-pound container of beef stew will take about 8-12 hours to thaw.
- Cold Water Bath Thawing: If you need to thaw the stew faster, you can use a cold water bath. Place the frozen stew in a resealable plastic bag and submerge it in a bowl or sink of cold water. Change the water every 30 minutes to keep it cold. A 2-pound container of beef stew will thaw in about 2 hours using this method.
- Microwave Thawing: Remove the stew from its container and place it on a microwave-safe plate. Microwave the stew on the defrost setting for 5-10 minutes, stirring every few minutes to ensure that it thaws evenly.
How To Reheat Beef Stew
- Stovetop: heat the stew in a pot or Dutch oven over medium-low heat, stirring occasionally, until it’s heated through.
- Oven: Transfer the stew to an oven-safe dish and heat it in a preheated 350°F (175°C) oven, covered with foil, until heated through.
- Microwave: Transfer the stew to a microwave-safe dish and heat it on high in 30-second increments, stirring between each increment, until heated through.
- Slow Cooker: Reheat the stew in the slow cooker using the same method it was prepared earlier.
- Instant Pot: Use saute function to heat up the stew and keep warm function to maintain temperature.
What To Serve With Beef Stew For Dinner
Beef stew is a hearty dish that tastes best when served with a variety of side dishes. For a balanced meal, I would suggest serving it with a warm side dish, like mashed potatoes or a light salad. Roasted vegetables, such as carrots, potatoes, and onions, also go well with beef stew.