Tender beef chuck, carrots, and baby potatoes come together in this hearty Slow Cooker Beef Stew that simmers for hours. A nourishing one-pot meal the whole family will love.
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Perfect for the fall, this wholesome beef stew is a meal in and of itself. Hearty chunks of beef simmered for hours in a rich and savory broth, sit alongside potatoes and carrots for a colorful and nourishing meal.
With just a few minutes of prep, before you head out the door in the morning, this tasty meal will be waiting for you when you get home. Ready to be devoured and enjoyed by all.
Easily modifiable, feel free to throw in whatever fresh or frozen vegetables you have on hand. Leftovers are great the next day.
Crockpot vs Slow Cooker
You may see the terms crockpot and slow cooker used interchangeably. They are actually the same thing. Crockpot is a brand name of slow cookers. This countertop appliance invented in 1940 enables us to cook food without having to watch over it. It’s the perfect set-it-and-forget-it appliance. It’ll cook up your breakfast, lunch, dinner or even bake up a dessert.
Why You’ll Love This Recipe
Hearty: Loaded with chunks of beef, potatoes and carrots this stew is full flavored and filling.
Easy: With just a few minutes of prep this meal comes together easily so you can set it and forget it.
Customizable: Feel free to change up the type of beef and switch up the veggies.
Aromatic: The aroma while the stew cooks is simply amazing.
- Chuck meat – Chuck meat, cubed is the real hero in this crockpot recipe.
- Baby potatoes – Baby potatoes, whole, are added to the stew. You can also chop up whatever white potato you may have on hand if you don’t have baby potatoes.
- Carrots – Carrots add some sweetness and a pop of color to this stew. Cut them into large chunks.
- Olive oil – Extra virgin olive oil is great but any kind of oil will work.
- Onion – White onion, diced, or whatever type of onions you have will work.
- Garlic – Fresh minced garlic adds loads of flavor but jarred garlic can be substituted.
- Red wine – Red wine adds a deep fruity flavor to this stew.
- Tomato paste – Just a touch of tomato paste thickens up the stew and adds a tomato flavor.
- All-purpose flour – All purpose flour also helps thicken the stew.
- Beef broth – Beef broth adds flavor and helps simmer and cook the chuck meat.
- Thyme – Fresh thyme imparts a slightly minty and peppery flavor.
- Bay leaves – Bay leaves add an herby flavor to the stew.
- Salt and pepper – Add salt and pepper to taste.
How To Make
- Step 1: Sprinkle the meat with salt and pepper while the oil heats in the slow cooker. If you have a browning mode on your slow cooker use this setting to brown the meat on all sides and then transfer to a plate. If you don’t have a browning mode brown the chuck over the stove.
- Step 2: Stir the onion and garlic into the slow cooker and sauté until soft. Add wine and allow it to cook down.
- Step 3: Mix in the tomato paste and flour to thicken the stew and then whisk in the beef broth.
- Step 4: Place the browned beef back in the slow cooker and add the potatoes and carrots. Sprinkle with fresh thyme and a bay leaf.
- Step 5: Cover and cook on high for 4 hours or low for 6 hours.
- Step 6: When the stew is finished, remove the broth and place it in a pot on the stove with cornstarch. Whisk until it has thickened and then pour some of it back while reserving some to be served on the side.
Tips and Variations
- Change up the beef: Use bone-in short ribs, oxtail, brisket, or whatever else your butcher recommends.
- Add more vegetables: Feel free to throw in some parsnips, zucchini or chunks of squash.
- Don’t use red wine: If you don’t want to cook with alcohol, use more beef broth or red grape juice.
- Bring to room temperature: Let the stew come to room temperature before placing it in an airtight container.
- Use different herbs: Instead of thyme use fresh rosemary, garlic or sage.
Yes, you can put raw beef in a slow cooker! Some slow cookers have a function that allows you to brown the beef before you set it to cook but this isn’t absolutely necessary.
If you find your beef is tough it could be that you did not cook it long enough.
You do not need to fully submerge all the ingredients in the slow cooker. The liquid will create steam to cook whatever isn’t covered by the liquid.
The longer you allow the meat to cook the more tender it should be. However, if you put the cook time to 4 hours you will still get juicy and tender meat.
Make ahead and storage
This slow cooker stew can easily be made ahead of time and stored in the fridge in an airtight container for a few days. Stews also freeze very well so go ahead and throw leftovers in the freezer. In the freezer, the stew will keep for 3 months. Thaw leftovers in the fridge overnight and then reheat over the stove or in the microwave.
Looking for more slow cooker recipes?
Resist the urge to open the lid while the beef stew is cooking. You don’t want to release any of the heat as it is needed to cook the meat and vegetables thoroughly.
Slow Cooker Beef Stew
- 2 lbs chuck meat cubed
- 2 lbs baby potatoes
- 2 lbs carrots
- 2 tbsp olive oil
- 1 cup onion diced
- 3 cloves garlic minced
- 1 cup red wine
- 2 tbsp tomato paste
- 2 tbsp all-purpose flour
- 32 oz beef broth
- fresh thyme
- 3 bay leaves
- salt and pepper to taste
- Season the meat with salt and pepper. Heat oil in slow cooker (if browning mode is available otherwise heat up a large pot). Transfer seasoned beef to slow cooker and brown on all sides (about 10 minutes) then transfer meat to a plate.
- Add onion and garlic to slow cooker and sauté until soft (about 3-4 minutes). Pour in wine and allow it to reduce (about 3-4 minutes)
- Stir in tomato paste and flour. This will thicken quickly. Whisk in all the beef broth.
- Transfer beef back to the slow cooker. Add potatoes and carrots (they do not need to be fully submerged in the broth). Top with fresh thyme and bay leaf.
- Cover and cook on high for 4 hours or low for 6 hours.
Nutrition information is automatically calculated, so should only be used as an approximation.