Hearty Beef Stew Recipe
Hearty Beef Stew Recipe photo by Taste of Home
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Hearty Beef Stew Recipe

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I DISCOVERED this recipe several years ago when we belonged to a newcomers group. It's a real lifesaver when you have company...and when you live in Florida, you have company often! Put it in the oven, forget it and be gone for the day with your guests. When you return home, fix a salad, warm some bread and dinner will be ready. The men especially love it! -Virginia Brown, Hudson, Florida
TOTAL TIME: Prep: 15 min. Bake: 3 hours
MAKES:6-8 servings
TOTAL TIME: Prep: 15 min. Bake: 3 hours
MAKES: 6-8 servings


  • 2 pounds beef stew meat
  • 6 to 7 medium potatoes, peeled and cut into 1-1/2-inch pieces
  • 2 medium onions, cut into wedges
  • 8 medium carrots, cut into 1-inch pieces
  • 4 to 5 celery ribs, cut into 1-inch pieces
  • 1 can (4 ounces) sliced mushrooms, drained
  • 1/3 cup quick-cooking tapioca
  • 1-1/2 teaspoons salt
  • 1 beef bouillon cube
  • 1 teaspoon sugar
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 1-1/2 teaspoons dried thyme
  • 3 cups tomato juice

Nutritional Facts

1-1/2 cups: 349 calories, 8g fat (3g saturated fat), 71mg cholesterol, 965mg sodium, 44g carbohydrate (11g sugars, 5g fiber), 26g protein.


  1. In a 4-qt. Dutch oven or baking dish, layer the first 12 ingredients; pour tomato juice over all. Cover and bake at 325° for 3 hours, stirring occasionally, or until the meat and vegetables are tender. Remove bay leaves before serving. Yield: 6-8 servings.
Originally published as Hearty Beef Stew in Reminisce September/October 1995, p47

Light-Bodied Red Wine

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

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Mistoncat User ID: 338405 220724
Reviewed Feb. 17, 2015

"This is absolutely the best beef stew I've ever had and/or made--hands down! The thyme and tomato juice, and using tapioca for thickening are, in my opinion, what sets the taste of this beef stew apart from any other."

Dana Moore User ID: 3453436 42637
Reviewed Feb. 1, 2014

"Made this stew but I omitted the celery and mushrooms; I added celery seeds instead. Also did not have any bay leaves and I thickened with flour. Turned out pretty good. My husband in a lineman and works out in very cold temps. Sent this with him for lunch a couple of days and he said it warmed him up on the inside. Great recipe."

blhenn User ID: 5747906 16259
Reviewed Jun. 28, 2012

"This was a super easy recipe to make and I will make it again, I will tweek it to my liking though. I will add a tad more meat next time and definetly more seasoning. It was kinda bland somehow and I followed it exactly."

KristinStone User ID: 4504990 16634
Reviewed Nov. 3, 2011

"Its delicious! The only stew I make."

emi911 User ID: 1052983 40844
Reviewed Mar. 13, 2010

"I have been making this for a few years. Very easy. I also put in green beans and corn."

Pam Posada User ID: 2909700 31013
Reviewed Jan. 2, 2010

"I have been making this recipe foryears from your older low fat cookbook. We love it. Company loves it. It is so easy.We like spicy foods so I substitute hot V-8 juice and a few shakes of crushed red pepper. YUMMY"

dkekkk User ID: 2106784 16258
Reviewed Oct. 30, 2009

"It was supper easy and turned out great! My family loved it!!"

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