Easy and hearty homemade beef stew made with fork tender grass fed chuck roast and Italian gnocchi dumplings, in a smoky paprika gravy with subtle hints of clove.
Homemade Beef Stew from Scratch
I’ve been dusting off the recipe files here at the Love Shack and came across this simple rustic and most tender 5 Star beef stew. I really like to make something hearty and seasonal for the holidays and comfort food is always a crowd pleaser on a chili day.
Ingredient Notes + Tips
- The meat – only use the best organic grass fed chuck roast beef you can find, it’s extremely flavorful, more nutritious and a healthier choice. Cook it low and slow for the most tender bowl of stew.
- Veggies – green peas, carrots and potatoes are classic ingredients but dumplings, or ricotta Italian gnocchi along with parsnips make a really lovely substitute.
- Smoked paprika – make sure to use the sweet not bitter kind. It adds nice depth of flavor and richness to the stew together with the cloves, thyme and bay. It can be swapped for regular or hot sweet paprika if desired.
- The Gravy – I use plain old water here but of course veggie stock or a dry red wine could be used instead. There really is no need in my honest opinion.
- Patience – as with any kind of slow cooked stew you will need patience. This is not a meal you can rush as we are using tougher cuts of meat that need to simmer slowly until they tenderize and fall apart. It will taste even better 2 days later.
- Browning – although the recipe calls for browning the chuck roast, you are free to skip this step and go for the healthier option. I’ve experimented both ways and couldn’t really tell a change in flavor. Ultimately your call!
- Storage – this is not the kind of meal that can be left out overnight. Once it has completely cooled off it can be refrigerated or frozen in lidded freezer proof containers. Remember to fully thaw it out in the refrigerator before reheating on the stove top or microwave.
P.S. This recipe can me made 100% cruelty-free and better for you by using meaty jackfruit instead of meat. Please consider making this popular Italian vegan stew instead.
Homemade Beef Stew
- 3 tbsp olive oil
- 2 tbs butter
- 3 lb chuck roast cut into 1″ cubes (organic grass fed)
- 1 medium onion diced
- 3 cloves garlic minced
- 1/3 cup all purpose flour
- 1/3 cup fresh italian parsley chopped
- 6 sprigs thyme
- 3 leaves bay
- 4 whole cloves
- sea salt to taste
- freshly cracked black pepper to taste
- 1 tbsp smoked or sweet paprika
- 1 pinch red pepper flakes
- 1.25 qt water, filtered
- 3/5 cup frozen green peas (thawed under some cold water)
- 1 cup fresh cherry tomatoes diced
- 3/4 lb gnocchi (or golden potatoes) diced
- 2 carrots (or parsnips) sliced into rounds
- Heat up a large cast iron dutch oven over medium flame. Season the beef cubes with sea salt and black pepper and toss to coat well with 2 tablespoon of olive oil. Working in batches so you don’t overcrowd the pan, brown the beef in the hot pot. Transfer to a bowl and keep warm.
- Add the 2 tbs butter and a lug of olive oil to the pot and sautee the chopped onions until translucent (about 5 min). Add the garlic and red pepper flakes and cook one more minute until the garlic is fragrant. Stir in the flour and paprika and cook for another minute or so making sure not to burn it.
- Deglaze the pot with the warm water whisking as you add it to break up any lumps that might form. Bring to a simmer.Add the beef cubes back to the pot, the bay leaf, whole cloves and thyme. Cover with a tight lid and allow it to simmer together for 2 1/2 hours stirring occasionally.
- Add the potatoes and carrots to the stew, turn the flame up to med-low and simmer partially covered for another 20 minutes or so until the potatoes are cooked through. Remove from heat. NOTE: If using potato gnocchi wait to add them in the last 5 minutes of cooking or boil separately then add them to the stew.
- Add the diced tomatoes and green peas and give the stew a good stir. Cover with the lid for a few minutes until the tomatoes release their juices and the peas are just heated through.
- Adjust seasonings to your taste and serve the homemade beef stew with crusty bruschetta and sprinkled with the fresh parsley.
- OVEN METHODPreheat your oven to 375"FFollow the above steps and after you added the beef cubes back into the stew cover with a tight lid and transfer the pot to the hot oven. Cook for 2 hours then add the carrots and potatoes or dumplings/gnocchi. Cook an additional 20 minutes or so until cooked through and the beef is fork tender.
- SLOW COOKER/CROCK POT METHODAdd the beef, onion, garlic, sea salt, potatoes, carrots, cloves, thyme and bay leaf to the slow cooker. In a bowl whisk together the water with the flour and paprika. Pour over the ingredients and drizzle with the olive oil. Cook on hight for 5-6 hours or on low for 11 -12 hours.
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