Essential Types of Stew You Need to Know
For an easy, stick-to-your-ribs dinner any night of the week, check out the most popular types of stew that will please everyone at the dinner table.
What is considered a stew, anyways?
The main difference between soup and stew is the amount of liquid in the pot. While soup usually contains a mixture of vegetables, grains and/or meats cooked in liquid, a stew has just enough liquid to cover the ingredients. The rich flavor comes from being simmered for a long time with the right amount of broth and spices.
There’s nothing more comforting than the aroma of warm stew on the stove. Whether it’s hearty beef stew or spicy jambalaya, there are types of stew for just about everyone.
Hosting a winter dinner party? Try elegant and comforting beef Bourguignon—a classic French stew that was popularized in America by Julia Child. This burgundy beef stew calls for beef chuck, burgundy, beef stock and hearty stew veggies like carrots and pearl onions. The red wine marinade tenderizes the meat for a fall-apart bite with rich flavors like peppercorn and thyme.
Goulash is the perfect meal-in-a-bowl with generous servings of meat, noodles, potatoes, veggies and rich spices like paprika. Hungarian goulash is a favorite in central Europe and is quick and inexpensive to prepare.
Lamb stew is a favorite St. Patrick’s day recipe with Irish roots. It usually features lamb, potatoes, onions, carrots and parsley. Lamb stew slow-simmered in dark beer is an early spring staple dinner.
Chicken stew comes in all kinds of varieties and spices. Hearty chicken stew recipes usually include slow-cooked chicken, stew veggies like carrots and onions, as well as some sort of grain. This chicken stew with gnocchi is a healthy, stick-to-your-ribs meal perfect for Sunday dinner.
Peanut stew is a staple in Africa and East Asia and has thankfully made its way West. This stew is made from peanuts, tomatoes and spices. African peanut sweet potato stew combines the salty peanut sauce with bright sweet potatoes for a sweet, rich stew perfect for family dinner—kids love this one!
It’s not chili; it’s taco stew! This spicy, flavorful stew usually combines all your favorite taco fixings like ground beef, black beans, diced tomatoes, corn and green chiles. Serve this taco stew with Fritos or cornbread for an afternoon football game or easy weeknight meal.
A classic beef stew is a slow-cooked mixture of beef and vegetables like potatoes and carrots with beef broth. Simmering it over a long period of time results in the richest, most perfect gravy to warm your bones after a day out in the cold. Choose your family’s favorite from our list of homemade beef stew recipes.
A tasty stew that’s ready in 30 minutes? It’s possible with quick chicken and dumplings. Start with a base of chicken stew and add spoonfuls of biscuit batter for melt-in-your-mouth dumplings in no time.
Cazuela is a stew that has explosive flavor in every bite. It gets its name from its South American roots; cazuela is Spanish for cooking pot. Most cazuela recipes call for corn on the cob, chicken drumsticks or thighs, butternut squash, potatoes, carrots and rice.
Stew isn’t just for the meat lovers; lentils add hearty flavor and texture to a vegan stew. Combine your favorite veggies like onions, carrots, garlic and sweet potatoes with lentils and vegetable broth in this sweet potato lentil stew.
To change up your usual beef stew routine, try substituting with pork instead. The pork can simmer in a stew without drying out and adds delicious flavor. This braised pork stew recipe could not be easier with its simple ingredients and use of chopped, frozen veggies.
Looking for a lighter stew option? Tagine is a traditional Moroccan dish with braised chicken and plenty of vegetables. This Moroccan vegetable chicken tagine has a crisp, tart bite with the added apricots and dried cranberries.
Curry is an ultra-flavorful (and sometimes spicy) stew from India. It’s packed with spices like turmeric, cumin, ginger, coriander and chilies. Use it as a filling vegetarian dish, or add some protein with this chicken vegetable curry.
Ham and bean stew is a trusted classic for a reason. With just 5 ingredients dumped into the slow cooker, it’s the easiest meal you’ll make all month. Combine cooked ham with baked beans, potatoes, chopped celery and water in a slow cooker for seven hours and voila! Dinner is served.
Branch out from your usual beef or lamb stew and indulge in a lick-the-bowl worthy sausage & kale lentil soup. Pork sausage adds just the right amount of spice to your bowl of carrots, onion, garlic, tomatoes, red bell peppers, lentils and kale simmered in vegetable broth.
This creamy stew usually served over wavy egg noodles has its roots in Russia. Beef stroganoff is a mixture of sauteed pieces of beef with mushrooms and a creamy sauce. There are countless varieties out there; one of our favorites is this easy beef stroganoff.
Oyster stew is a festive favorite around the country. New Englanders usually serve it at Thanksgiving, and Southerners save it for Christmas Eve. Simmer oysters with leeks and potatoes in a creamy sauce for this New Year’s oyster stew recipe.
Forget cooking your beef stew in red wine; beef carbonnade gets its dark color and earthy flavor from Belgian ale. It’s made with plenty of onions for meaty flavor and is the perfect dipping sauce for crusty bread. This mushroom beef carbonnade keeps well in the freezer for a hearty meal at any time.
It’s the original Hamburger Helper; hamburger stew is a delish way to use up leftover ground beef while pleasing everyone at the dinner table. It combines juicy hamburger meat with stew veggies like carrots, onions and potatoes served over long grain rice.
What are you doing this Monday? It’s time to make this classic stew traditionally made from Sunday dinner leftovers in Louisiana. To prep Louisiana red beans and rice, simmer red beans, spices, vegetables and pork bones for hours and then add your choice of meat like ham or sausage.
Break out your braising pan for this favorite beef daube Provencal stew. It’s made with beef, garlic, vegetables, wine and herbes de Provence. The French dish is simple to prepare and can be served over noodles or with fresh bread.
Cabbage roll stew is an easy and inexpensive take on deconstructed cabbage rolls. Start with diced tomatoes, beef broth and tomato sauce for the base. Then add your seasonings, chopped cabbage, ground beef, Italian sausage and onions.