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Hearty Beef Stew

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


  • 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


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

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  • Mistoncat
    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
    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
    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
    Nov 3, 2011

    Its delicious! The only stew I make.

  • johnsen
    Sep 7, 2010

    No comment left

  • emi911
    Mar 13, 2010

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

  • Pam Posada
    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
    Oct 30, 2009

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