Instant Pot beef stew recipe was the recipe that won over my husband, Alex. It was his turn to cook (we are trying to have a 50/50 dinner rotation here as per marriage vows “for better and for worth” but I think I’m losing with a big bang) and his childhood’s absolute favourite is a beef stew. He pulled out a huge chunk of frozen deer meat, cut it up and it was enough for 4 stews. So, when I say this recipe is tested, it’s tested. In fact, 3 times.
First time, Alex added a bunch of spices like smoked paprika, turmeric, soy sauce and something else super complicated; and didn’t measure anything. Second time I was around, and we measured and added less spices. Third time it was my turn to cook, today, which I recorded step-by-step in my Instagram stories.
So, I made a beef stew my way – minimum ingredients and maximum flavour, the way I remember my grandma cooked in Ukraine 30 years ago. We had minimum and it was the most delicious stew! I met you, my American and Canadian friends, in the middle and added your stew’s staple, peas, at the end. But other than that, it’s my Ukrainian heritage recipe that is neither thick nor soupy, and packs so much flavour, even if you hate cooking, you will want to cook this stew. I still have a few tricks under my belt.
Nothing is sauteed, no unnecessary ingredients – the best pressure cooker recipe on the net. I mean it. Go Google yourself and I will see you in 5, you’ll be back.
So, Alex said “Wow, this was easy”. He seriously was appalled at the fact that you can throw something in the pot, close, walk away and have a meal like mama used to make on the stove, standing and stirring. I have to say “throw and walk away” is THE BEST feature of Instant Pot. You know I was so against it but it is slowly growing on me. I even made yogurt, then I turned it into cream cheese + Greek yogurt + vanilla yogurt, and all of that from a gallon of milk. Again, check out my Instagram profile – all experiments are there and will slowly migrate to the website.
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How to Make Instant Pot Beef Stew
In Instant Pot, add onion, carrot, celery and half of garlic. I usually transfer ingredients from a cutting board to the pot as I’m chopping them. Cut, no more room on the board => to the pot they go, bye-bye.
Then potatoes. I love using baby potatoes (from Costco, of course LOL) for a beef stew because they are pre-washed, don’t have to be peeled (skin contains many nutrients and vitamins) and look pretty (that’s least important but still). But you can use regular potatoes, of course.
Then meat. I used deer (venison) but you use beef or buffalo. Game meat takes longer to cook and is often tough and has game-y taste, but pressure cooking gets rid of all those problems. Perfect!
Then flavours: tomato paste, veggie stock (organic bouillon cubes + water), thyme, oregano, bay leaves, salt and pepper. That’s it! No paprika, soy sauce, Worcestershire sauce, apple cider vinegar etc., Alex. Save your money and time, seriously.
Keep reading – my 2 final flavour boosters are simple and fresh. I can guarantee you will make this Instant Pot beef stew recipe again and again!
Stir. Just in case, I’m still trying to figure out if its’ necessary.
Close the lid, set pressure vent to Sealing and press Stew for 30-35 minutes (depends on a size of a pot you are using but honestly doesn’t matter much).
Display will say ON, Instant Pot will take about 20 minutes to come to pressure, you will see a bit of steam coming out from a valve, then float valve will rise and countdown from 30 minutes will begin.
When display says OFF, stew is ready.
Now your Instant Pot needs to bring pressure down before you can open it, which will be indicated by a dropped down float valve. You can let it do it on its own which will take about 15-30 minutes – Natural Release. OR you can do Quick Release by turning pressure valve to Venting position, which takes 2-4 minutes. I recommend doing so outside. Trust me, it’s a messy process and I usually do not have time to wait.
Open the lid – oh, yeah, baby!
Add peas, frozen, from Costco haha. Now onto my 2 secret weapons – fresh garlic and dill. What did you think it was? Butterfly flower blue powder?! No, good old fresh garlic because it’s one thing to cook it, and it’s completely different experience to eat a dish with freshly grated garlic.
And dill. You have never tried dill in a stew? Try and you will be blown away, pinky promise!
Stir and serve hot.
Now, did I make you open that box finally?! Good! Go try my other Instant Pot recipes and keep being blown away how easy it is to cook healthy and delicious meals: Instant Pot chicken noodle soup, Instant Pot chili, Instant Pot steel cut oats, Instant Pot lentil soup.
Instant Pot Beef Stew
The easiest Instant Pot Beef Stew you will find on the net. And it’s the most flavourful too using my 2 Ukrainian flavour boosters at the end. Pinky promise, you will be blown away.
- Prep Time: 5 minutes
- Cook Time: 30 minutes
- Total Time: 35 minutes
- Yield: 7 (6 Qt.), 11 (8 Qt.) servings
6 Quart Instant Pot
- 1 medium onion, chopped
- 2 large carrots, chopped
- 2 small celery stalks, chopped
- 3 large garlic cloves, grated & divided
- 2 lbs potatoes, cubed
- 1.5 lbs beef, cubed
- 6 oz can tomato paste
- 1 bouillon cube*
- 2 cups water*
- 1 tsp oregano
- 1 tsp thyme
- 3/4 tsp salt
- Ground black pepper, to taste
- 3 bay leaves
- 5 peppercorns
- 1 cup frozen peas
- 1/2 – 3/4 cup dill, finely chopped
8 Quart Instant Pot
- 1 large onion, chopped
- 3 large carrots, chopped
- 4 small celery stalks, chopped
- 4 large garlic cloves, grated & divided
- 3 lbs potatoes, cubed
- 2 lbs beef, cubed
- 6 oz can tomato paste
- 2 bouillon cubes*
- 3 cups water*
- 1 1/2 tsp oregano
- 1 1/2 tsp thyme
- 1 1/4 tsp salt
- Ground black pepper, to taste
- 4 bay leaves
- 7 peppercorns
- 2 cups frozen peas
- 1 cup dill, finely chopped
- In Instant Pot, add onion, carrot, celery, 2 garlic cloves, potatoes and beef as you are cutting them. Then add tomato paste, bouillon + water or stock, oregano, thyme, salt, pepper, bay leaves and peppercorns. Stir.
- Close the lid, set pressure vent to Sealing and press Stew for 30 minutes. Display will say ON, Instant Pot will take about 20 minutes to come to pressure, you will see a bit of steam coming out from a valve, then float valve will rise and countdown from 30 minutes will begin.
- When display says OFF, stew is ready. Now your Instant Pot needs to bring pressure down before you can open it, which will be indicated by a dropped down float valve. You can let it do it on its own which will take about 15-20 minutes – Natural Release. OR you can do Quick Release by turning pressure valve to Venting position, which takes 2-3 minutes. I recommend doing so outside. Trust me, it’s a messy process and I usually do not have time to wait.
- Open the lid, add peas, remaining 2 cloves of garlic and dill. Stir and serve hot.
Store: Refrigerate in an airtight container or inner Instant Pot pot with a fitting glass lid for up to 5 days.
Freeze: Fully cook, cool completely and freeze in an airtight container for up to 3 months. Thaw on a stovetop covered on low.
*Replace with any stock.
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- Serving Size: 2 cups