In the spirit of the warm, cozy vibes, I have a comforting hug of a recipe for you: Instant Pot Beef Stew. It has the cozy richness you expect from the stick-to-your-ribs classic, made faster and easier in the pressure cooker.
This recipe is an adaptation of my Crock Pot Beef Stew.
Beef stew is one of my absolute favorite recipes to make on a chilly, cloudy day (along with this Crockpot Vegetable Beef Soup) when I can prep the beef stew earlier in the day, then take pleasure in allowing the meat to cook low and slow for hours, until it is so fall-apart tender, it slices with a spoon.
This recipe for Instant Pot beef stew is that recipe’s taste twin, on warp speed.
The pressure cooker makes that all-day flavor attainable in a fraction of the time.
Veggies and beef pieces become perfectly tender and flavorful in a scrumptious, cozy-to-your-core broth.
Every time I take a bite of this tasty Instant Pot beef stew, I feel transported to a snug room beside a roaring fire in some windswept, drizzly, fairytale part of the world.
The coast of Ireland perhaps? Or try Beef Bourguignon for a French inspired version.
You are snug and the stew is hot and ready.
5 Star Review
“Hands down the best beef stew I’ve ever made or had! The thyme flavor was an amazing addition!”— AH —
Tips for the Best Instant Pot Beef Stew
- Brown the beef so that it gets that delectable crust. Crust = FLAVOR, so don’t skip this step. It takes a little bit of patience but will be well worth your time.
- Deglaze the pot and scrape up every brown bit. Deglazing both adds richness to the stew and ensures that you don’t receive the dreaded Instant Pot “burn” warning.
- Use wine if you like. I wrote the recipe for deglazing the stew with beef broth to keep it simple, but you could certainly do an Instant Pot beef stew red wine deglaze instead.
- Pile on the veg. Forget Instant Pot beef stew with few ingredients! I loaded this soup with lots of healthy vegetables, so it’s incredibly flavorful and truly can hold its own as an all-in-one meal.
How to Make Instant Pot Beef Stew
If you love cozy, hearty, and nutritious recipes that will please everyone at your table, then this dairy-free Instant Pot beef stew is the best thing to cook in an Instant Pot!
- Boneless Chuck Roast. Chuck roast is the perfect choice for this beef stew. It’s tender, protein-packed, flavorful, and won’t dry out during cooking.
- How to make beef stew meat tender. Normally, the only way to achieve a melt-in-your-mouth texture with tougher cuts of beef (like the beef used for beef stew) is hours of low and slow cooking.
- The Instant Pot speeds the process along. Because no moisture escapes, it locks tenderness into every bite of the beef.
- Onion + Garlic + Carrots. A delicious mix of pantry staples that help build the stew’s flavors and add nutrition.
- Russet Potato. Russet potatoes hold up well during cooking, making them the perfect variety to use in beef stew. Make sure your potato chunks are similar in size so that they will cook in the same amount of time.
- Worcestershire Sauce. A dash of this umami ingredient will make the flavors pop.
- Bayleaf + Dried Thyme. For a more complex broth with that extra somethin’ somethin’.
- Tomato Sauce. Instead of making Instant Pot beef stew with tomato paste, the tomato sauce helps give the stew liquid and balances out all the other flavors (plus unless it is 100% necessary, I hate opening a can of tomato paste only to use a tiny bit!).
- Cornstarch + Water. You can add water to your beef stew with a little cornstarch (instead of flour) to help thicken it up.
- Peas. Fresh or frozen will work here.
- Brown the beef in the Instant Pot in batches so that all sides develop color.
- Sauté the onion and garlic. Stir in the beef broth, and scrape the bottom of the pot to deglaze it.
- Add the remaining ingredients. Do NOT stir! This helps avoid the burn warning.
- Cook on HIGH for 35 minutes, then let the pressure release naturally. Discard the bay leaf.
- Prepare a cornstarch slurry, and stir it into the Instant Pot. Add the peas. DIG IN!
- How long to pressure cook beef stew. 35 minutes of HIGH pressure (the manual setting), plus 10 minutes of natural release, yielded pieces of stew meat that tasted as if they’d been cooking for hours instead of minutes.
- Be sure you cut the meat to the size directed in the recipe to ensure this Instant Pot beef stew time is right for you too.
- What about the meat/stew button? The meat stew setting is a one-click approach to cooking larger pieces of meat (like those in this recipe) in the Instant Pot. Although the meat stew setting on the Instant Pot is 35 minutes long, I haven’t experimented with the setting myself, so I recommend making the recipe as directed.
Instant Pot beef stew and red wine are a delicious combo! Try this stew with a full-bodied Merlot, Malbec, Pinot Noir, Cabernet Sauvignon, or Bordeaux. You can use some of the wine to deglaze the pan, then enjoy the rest.
- To Store. Refrigerate stew in an airtight storage container for up to 4 days.
- To Reheat. Rewarm leftovers in a Dutch oven on the stovetop over medium-low heat or gently in the microwave.
- To Freeze. Freeze stew in an airtight freezer-safe storage container for up to 3 months. Let thaw overnight in the refrigerator before reheating.
Meal Prep Tip
Chop the vegetables up to 1 day in advance, storing them in separate airtight storage containers in the refrigerator.
Recommended Tools to Make This Instant Pot Beef Stew Recipe
- Instant Pot. This is the one I own and love!
- Ladle. The ideal tool for serving soups and stews.
- Extra Large Cutting Board. For recipes with lots of ingredients, this cutting board is perfect.
Check out these Healthy Instant Pot Recipes for other ideas of what you could make if you have one.
Instant Pot beef stew, I’m ready for a big bowl of your cozy, delicious comfort!
Frequently Asked Questions
Yes, for those with dietary concerns, this Instant Pot beef stew is Whole30 and Paleo friendly. Swap arrowroot for the corn starch, and omit the Worcestershire (you can splash in some coconut aminos for extra flavor instead if you like).
Yes, this beef stew is naturally gluten free…though we couldn’t resist dipping ours with hunks of crusty bread.
Yes, you can overcook stew meat in the Instant Pot if you’re not careful. While beef stew does get more tender the longer it cooks, there’s a fine line between tender and overdone. Make sure to slice your meat cubes to the recommended size in the recipe instructions and follow the cook times closely.
Instant Pot Beef Stew
- 2 pounds boneless chuck roast
- 3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil divided
- 2 teaspoons kosher salt divided
- 1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper divided
- 1 large yellow onion
- 2 cloves garlic
- 1 pound carrots about 6 medium
- 1 large russet potato*
- 1 (14.5-ounce can) low-sodium beef broth
- 1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce**
- 1 bay leaf
- 1 teaspoon dried thyme
- 1 (8-ounce can) no salt added tomato sauce
- 2 tablespoons cornstarch*
- 2 tablespoons water
- 1 1/2 cups fresh or frozen peas no need to thaw
- Fresh parsley or fresh rosemary, optional for serving
- Cut the chuck roast into 1 1/2-inch cubes, removing any large, tough pieces of fat or gristle.
- Turn the Instant Pot to SAUTE. Add 1 tablespoon of the oil. Once the oil is hot and shimmering (a drop of water should sizzle if added to the surface of the pot), add half of the beef, 1 teaspoon salt, and 1/4 teaspoon pepper. The cubes should be in a single layer and not too crowded so that they brown nicely. Let the cubes of beef cook undisturbed for 4 to 5 minutes (resist the urge to peek!), until the bottom of the cubes develop a dark-brown crust and come away from the pan easily. Turn and continue searing until dark and brown all over, about 4 additional minutes. Transfer the seared meat to a clean plate or bowl. Add another 1 tablespoon olive oil to the pot. Once hot, add the remaining beef and remaining 1 teaspoon salt and 1/4 teaspoon pepper. Sear the remaining beef. If the pan gets too dry, add a bit more oil as needed.
- While the meat browns, dice the yellow onion. Mince the garlic. Peel the carrots and cut them into 1/2-inch-thick diagonal slices.
- Remove the second batch of browned beef to the plate with the first batch. Add the remaining tablespoon olive oil and the onion to the Instant Pot. Cook, stirring occasionally, until the onion begins to soften and browns, about 6 minutes.
- While the onion cooks, scrub and peel the potato and cut it into 3/4-inch chunks. If you haven’t finished cutting the carrots, do so now.
- Add the garlic to the Instant Pot. Cook, stirring constantly until fragrant, about 30 seconds. Add the beef broth and use a spoon to scrape the brown bits from the bottom of the pan. Make sure you remove every last bit of stuck-on food so that you don’t receive a “burn” warning.
- Stir in the carrots, potatoes, Worcestershire sauce, bay leaf, thyme, and the browned beef, along with any meat juices that have collected on the plate. Pour the tomato sauce on top. Do not stir again.
- Close and seal the Instant Pot. Cook on high pressure for 35 minutes, then allow the pressure to release naturally for 10 minutes. Vent to release any remaining pressure, then carefully open the lid. Remove and discard the bay leaf.
- In a small bowl, whisk together the cornstarch and water to create a slurry. Add to the Instant Pot and stir until the stew thickens. Add the peas and stir to warm through. Serve hot, sprinkled with fresh parsley.
- TO STORE: Refrigerate leftover stew in an airtight storage container for up to 4 days.
- TO REHEAT: Rewarm leftovers in a Dutch oven on the stovetop over medium-low heat or in the microwave.
- TO FREEZE: Freeze stew in an airtight freezer-safe storage container for up to 3 months. Let thaw overnight in the refrigerator before reheating.
- *I do not recommend using Yukon gold potatoes, which are too starchy and will not hold their shape when boiled in stew.
- **To make the recipe Whole30/Paleo compliant, swap arrowroot for the cornstarch and omit the Worcestershire (you can splash in some coconut aminos for extra flavor instead if you like).
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