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Classic Beef Stew Recipe

Classic Beef Stew Recipe

Here's a good old-fashioned stew with rich beef gravy that lets the flavor of the potatoes and carrots come through. This is the perfect hearty dish for a blustery winter day. I make it often this time of year. — Alberta McKay, Bartlesville, Oklahoma
TOTAL TIME: Prep: 15 min. Bake: 2-1/2 hours YIELD:6-8 servings


  • 2 pounds beef stew meat, cut into 1-inch cubes
  • 1 to 2 tablespoons canola oil
  • 1-1/2 cups chopped onions
  • 1 can (14-1/2 ounces) diced tomatoes, undrained
  • 1 can (10-1/2 ounces) condensed beef broth, undiluted
  • 3 tablespoons quick-cooking tapioca
  • 1 garlic clove, minced
  • 1 tablespoon dried parsley flakes
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon pepper
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 6 medium carrots, cut into 2-inch pieces
  • 3 medium potatoes, peeled and cut into 2-inch pieces
  • 1 cup sliced celery (1-inch lengths)


  • 1. In an oven-proof Dutch oven, brown beef in batches in oil; drain. Return all meat to the pan. Add onions, tomatoes, broth, tapioca, garlic, parsley, salt, pepper and bay leaf. Bring to a boil.
  • 2. Cover stew and bake at 350° for 1 hour. Stir in carrots, potatoes and celery. Bake, covered, 1 hour longer or until meat and vegetables are tender. Discard bay leaf. Yield: 6-8 servings.

Nutritional Facts

1 cup: 245 calories, 10g fat (3g saturated fat), 71mg cholesterol, 751mg sodium, 14g carbohydrate (6g sugars, 3g fiber), 24g protein .

Reviews for Classic Beef Stew

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amygerman15 246456
Reviewed Apr. 2, 2016

"My husband and I loved it. My picky kids really liked it too. I should have doubled the broth as someone suggested. I did use cornstarch instead of tapioca."

s_pants 244691
Reviewed Feb. 29, 2016

"Everyone loved it. I doubled the broth to begin with as suggested and also used cornstarch instead of tapioca."

chsteachermom 243883
Reviewed Feb. 15, 2016

"Made this for dinner tonight and everyone loved it!! Only changes I made is I floured the beef before browning and added a little merlot wine. It was delicious and the beef was so tender!! So worth the extra cooking time!"

dawn537464 243560
Reviewed Feb. 9, 2016

"LOVED IT. this stew is DELICIOUS and turns out PERFECT. I made it four times in two months I strayed from the recipe ever so slightly. I flowered the beef before browning, I sauteed the onions for a few minutes and added about 1/2 cup red wine t onions before I added everything else to the pot. I also threw in about a cup more broth like the other reviewers say. It will be obvious as you see how thick it becomes."

kramerstacey15 242089
Reviewed Jan. 19, 2016

"This was delicious! My entire family loved it."

Im Tee 236375
Reviewed Nov. 4, 2015

"My hubby's favorite stew! Easy and fast. Very tasty."

skipperstrucking 233694
Reviewed Sep. 29, 2015

"Great stew. Followed recipe with only one substitution (used cornstarch instead of tapioca). Used the same amount and the do the same thing. Cooking time is really long but the end result is worth the wait. several other reviews made the comment that more broth was needed. I agree, go ahead and double the beef broth from the start."

Firefly 3044 231472
Reviewed Aug. 19, 2015

"Excellent! I will definitely make this again. I needed to add extra beef broth, and I added a splash of red wine. This recipe is a keeper!"

sjpoor 231381
Reviewed Aug. 18, 2015

"The stew was a bit dry after the first baking and so added another can of beef broth. That really helped. My husband thought it was bland so he added some hot sauce to his second helping and liked it better. I have added more of the hot sauce to the left overs so will see if it tastes better tomorrow night. Very easy to make which I really liked."

poppadude 231048
Reviewed Aug. 11, 2015

"EX!!!!!.... Great recipe only change was to use cornstarch instead of tapioca...."

MY REVIEW 226983
Reviewed May. 26, 2015 Edited Oct. 28, 2015

"! This stew was awesome! it was a big hit with my family."

Zelda10 223838
Reviewed Mar. 30, 2015

"Fantastic recipe. Couldn't stop eating it. I served it with sesame bread to soak up the great sauce. It's a winner!!"

momof4busyboys 218927
Reviewed Jan. 26, 2015

"Yummy!! I made this for my parents this weekend while I was there taking care of my mom. I am going to make it for my hubby and kids now that I am back home. They are gonna love it! It did take me a while, and asking many sweet ladies who were wiser than I, to find the tapioca. Finally found it with the Jello (must of looked there 10 times before I found it). I think that was the hardest part of the recipe. This is a keeper!"

SanDiegoCathy 217776
Reviewed Jan. 13, 2015

"Very nice! The gravy is so rich and the meat very tender and good. My addition was a splash or two of Medeira."

kcallison 2239
Reviewed Nov. 23, 2014


jimsilver 1081
Reviewed Nov. 1, 2014

"an awesome recipe that shows you just how easy it is to produce a gorgeous stew,I managed it!!"

katecrid47 3576
Reviewed Oct. 6, 2014

"I made this the other night. It was awesome. Great flavor and pretty easy. I did not cook in oven, just my stove top and cooked it a little longer. Got two thumbs up around the table. Thanks for sharing!"

Coopjack 3575
Reviewed Jul. 20, 2014

"Made this with some changes based on my pantry. Here are the changes- put some flour on meat before cooking. Added all meat back in and then cooked with the onions. Then added the tomatoes, chicken Broth. Didn't have tapioca so added 2 tablespoons of brown gravy mix. Added then 1/4 cup basalmic vinegar and 3/4 cup water. Used all the rest of the ingredients and brought to a boil. Followed the rest of the recipe as listed. Definitely would make again."

KathyKr 2234
Reviewed Jan. 26, 2014

"Very good and meaty. I didn't have tapioca so I didn't add that, but followed the rest of the recipe to the letter. I might add a little V8 juice to the stew next time to give it a little more of a tomatoey flavor, but it really is wonderful as is."

destine 2232
Reviewed Jan. 23, 2014

"I made this tonight. I didn't have the can of diced tomatoes so I used fresh chopped tomatoes and a small can of V8 juice. Other than that I followed the recipe exactly. This was so good. Even my picky son ate it all up. I served it with a crusty French bread. A green salad would also be a good accompaniment."

Brwneydgirl 2229
Reviewed Jan. 17, 2014

"This is by far the best beef stew recipe I've ever had! The meat is so tender and the gravy is so flavorful. You will not be disappointed! The only changes I made were substituting cornstarch for the tapioca and it worked great. Also, I do not have a dutch oven, so I followed step one using a stock pot, then transferred the mixture to a covered casserole dish to bake in the oven."

vamanchef 932
Reviewed Jan. 10, 2014

"Ten Stars, but I did add one extra can of broth and tomatoes when I stirred in the vegies. I used a really nice chuck roast which I sliced up into stew meat."

Ceannze 1778
Reviewed Dec. 29, 2013

"I've never used Tapioca in a Beef Stew. I assume that is to thicken it--correct? Sometimes I brown my meat with flour in the oil, but you have to be careful not to burn it. Adding the Tapioca sounds easier. Also I use about 2 Tablespoons of 57 Sauce and have put a 2 cups of V-8 juice in it without using the chopped tomatoes as this recipe calls for. That's just a couple of ideas for variety~"

Colnight 1076
Reviewed Nov. 26, 2013

"Very Good and easy to make. But it's missing something."

Hannah0418 1058
Reviewed Sep. 23, 2013

"Excellent! I would cut the salt in half next time though"

bablack 2205
Reviewed Aug. 20, 2013

"This recipe is fantastic! I was so used to only cooking stew on the stove. This was the first time I had ever put beef stew in the oven and the meat turned out to be so tender and delicious. There was just so much flavor involved and I loved it! Thank you so much for this recipe!"

deannasnz 1057
Reviewed Jul. 17, 2013

"This is not exciting, but it's a good basic recipe."

joyjoy25 457
Reviewed Jan. 14, 2013

"I didn't follow the directions exactly, just cooked it in the dutch oven on the stove. I also added a few fresh tomatoes...delicious! My family (even the kids) loved it."

scotland1 2228
Reviewed Jan. 7, 2013

"I've made this stew before. It is yummy. Yes, I'll make it again."

Jermcar 1075
Reviewed Jan. 5, 2013

"Oh my gosh! This is the best stew I've ever eaten! I added one parsnip, that's all! Please try it!"

Debann507 2469
Reviewed Jan. 3, 2013

"My family loved it. Will definitely make it again."

holdosh01 1300
Reviewed Nov. 13, 2012

"Very good recipe! I changed the following...I didn't have tapioca (so I omitted) and used tomato sauce instead of diced tomatoes. I also skipped the step of adding sauce to stove to bring to boil. I just browned the beef in a skillet and added the sauce and beef in my Pampered Chef Cranberry Baker. Followed the cooking time and adding of vegetables as instructed in recipe."

kerrynjames 1056
Reviewed Oct. 21, 2012

"We loved this dish. Next time, I'm going to use about 2/3rds of the potatoes, add another can of tomatoes, and double the garlic. It's a delicious stew, but I like a little more moisture (hence my plan).

Thanks so much for the recipe!"

kshea 198369
Reviewed Jun. 3, 2012

"An old standby, great!"

Aquarelle 1007
Reviewed Apr. 22, 2012

"This is an extremely flavorful stew!"

tamarachronister 1070
Reviewed Jan. 28, 2012

"I didn't have tapioca, but it was great anyway!! I also used frozen chopped Roma tomatoes from my garden - excellent, especially on a cold day. Husband loved it too!!"

jennywrenn 931
Reviewed Jan. 9, 2012

"Very easy to make. Is a great cold weather, comfort meal. Goes especially well with garlic bread or garlic toast."

mrichards1993 1587
Reviewed Oct. 4, 2011

"Absolutely delicious!"

jslvsclf 198368
Reviewed May. 22, 2011

"The first times I made this for myself,I used all the ingredients except the salt and it was very good. When I made it tonight for someone else, I did not use the seasonings because she doesn't like them, and it was still very very good. I do hope you will post more recipes."

rosieannh 1776
Reviewed Mar. 5, 2011

"One of the best stew recipes I have ever made"

Jedinva 1299
Reviewed Nov. 6, 2010

"This is my "go-to" beef stew recipe. It works well also in the slow cooker."

samwille 1069
Reviewed Feb. 20, 2010

"This was easy and tasty. I didn't have tapioca on hand or a can of beef broth so I added the same amount of liquid and a couple of bouillon cubes. I dusted the beef with flour as I browned it and then added all the rest of the ingredients to my dutch oven at once and baked for 2 hours. Turned out perfectly."

daisey5 1055
Reviewed Jan. 30, 2010

"I cut it in half and did it in the slow cooker."

drangel 930
Reviewed Nov. 3, 2009

"Very tasty, I make this all the time. I also add about 2 T. of sugar, delicious."

sandyshores 1775
Reviewed Apr. 7, 2009

"This stew was so tastey! I will cut the vegetables smaller next time to speed up the cooking time, but all in all it was delicious! I finally found a stew I'll make again!"

jslvsclf 1703
Reviewed Mar. 19, 2009 Edited May. 22, 2011

"Excellent! A recipe I return to time and time again, knowing it will always turn out perfectly. Thank you!"

kfijan 1879
Reviewed Dec. 7, 2008

"This is easy and absolutely delicous!"

awal 2211
Reviewed Jan. 15, 2008


Could this be made in the slow cooker? DS likes stew better when the meat has cooked all day in the slow cooker. Awal"

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Wine Pairings

Light-Bodied Red Wine

Enjoy this recipe with a light-bodied red wine such as Pinot Noir.