This beef and mushroom stew made in the Instant Pot is a hearty, comforting, stick to your ribs kind of meal that’s perfect for winter. Made with three different kinds of mushrooms (white button, shiitake and cremini) and stew beef that gets incredibly tender in the pressure cooker, it’s a straight-forward recipe with a simple ingredient list yet tremendous savory flavor.
I grew up eating two kinds of stews:
1- beef stew with big hunks of potatoes, carrots and onions
2- veal stew with carrots, tomatoes and onions
Both always served over white rice (Uncle Ben’s to be exact).
That was it. No other variations for all 18 years I lived in my parents’ house.
I liked them both, don’t get me wrong, but I don’t think I realized the versatility of stew until many years later.
I’ve more than made up for it with recipes like this Slow Cooker Lamb Stew, Turmeric Lentil Stew and Moroccan Lamb Lentil Stew to name just a few and now, this beef and mushroom stew made in the Instant Pot.
I’ve talked about eating more plant based a lot recently (especially if you follow me on Instagram and with recent recipes like Instant Pot Bean Soup and Vegan Picadillo) but on the opposite side of that spectrum, here I am with a stick to your bones kind of winter beef stew.
But that’s reality. I’ll never be 100% plant based, especially as long as I live in NY during the winter. I literally crave red meat sometimes stronger than any chocolate craving I’ve ever had.
And that’s saying something, believe me…
Have you ever looked into the blood type diet? I always chuckle when I read into that as my blood type (A+) basically tells me I should be vegan. Hahahaha.
I love plants and vegetables and no doubt advocate that we all should eat a lot more of them than typically included in the standard American diet but, there’s just no way I’ll ever give up meat, beef in particular.
Sorry, blood type diet, it ain’t happening.
In my opinion, beef and mushrooms are the perfect pair. So much so that you don’t even need a slew of other ingredients in this stew recipe for it to taste “right”.
Mushrooms, beef stew meat and some pearl onions. That’s it.
Well, besides the spices obviously.
HOW TO MAKE BEEF AND MUSHROOM STEW
I’ve talked before about how a pet peeve of mine is Instant Pot recipes that really have no business being made in a pressure cooker. Things like cheesecake, pasta, etc. Ugh, imagine me rolling my eyes as I type this because I am just thinking about those dumb recipes that take something easy and make them harder just because people want to use their Instant Pot.
Stew is not one of those recipes. Stew is perfect for a pressure cooker like the Instant Pot. It makes for the most tender pieces of beef in a fraction of the time it’d take to achieve that on the stove.
To make this beef stew with mushrooms:
- Brown the beef in the Instant Pot on sauté mode.
- Remove the beef and add a splash of broth to the pot to scrape up the browned bits.
- Add the onions to the pot and cook for a couple of minutes.
- Turn off sauté mode and add the remaining ingredients to the pot.
- Cook on manual mode for 30 minutes and let the pressure naturally release for 15 minutes before releasing the rest manually.
- Thicken with an arrowroot powder slurry if desired (this is optional) and serve garnished with fresh herbs over whatever grain/starch/vegetable you like.
WHAT KIND OF MUSHROOMS SHOULD I USE?
I used three types of mushrooms in the beef stew: white button, shiitake and cremini for a total of 24 ounces of mushrooms.
You can absolutely use different varieties and the ratio of each is up to you. Some oyster mushrooms would be great in here too and if they weren’t exorbitantly priced when I was shopping, I would’ve picked some up!
WHAT IS STEW MEAT?
Most grocery stores will sell “stew meat” already packaged. It’s basically just cut into chunks already for you (although I always end up cutting those chunks in half). I prefer the size of the beef in the stew to be about a 1″ cube. Basically bite-size.
If you can’t find beef pre-packaged as stew meat, purchase a chuck roast and cut it into cubes yourself. I like to trim most of the fat off the beef before cooking.
WHAT DO I SERVE WITH BEEF MUSHROOM STEW?
I made an orange cauliflower and potato mash to serve underneath the stew. But any of the following would be great to go with it:
- mashed potatoes
- Creamy Cauliflower Pumpkin Mash (without the topping)
- rice (brown or white)
CAN I MAKE THIS IN THE SLOW COOKER?
Yes, although I would still suggest browning the beef first on the stove top as that helps develop important flavor in the recipe.
To make this in the slow cooker, follow steps 1-5 in the recipe directions then transfer to the slow cooker. Add the remaining ingredients and cook on low for 8-10 hours. Add the arrowroot slurry (if using to thicken) at the end while the slow cooker is still on and stir until thickened.
CAN I MAKE THIS ON THE STOVE-TOP?
Yes, you can also make this on the stove-top but it will take a lot more time.
Follow the recipe as stated except after adding all the ingredients to a large Dutch oven or heavy bottomed pot, bring the mixture to a boil then reduce to a low simmer and cover with a lid. Cook, stirring here and there for 3-4 hours until the beef is tender.
You may need to use a little more broth if you make the stew on the stove top as the longer cooking time will evaporate some of the liquid.
WHAT DOES THE STEW TASTE LIKE?
Umami is the best way to describe the savory taste of this beef and mushroom stew. It’s hearty, thick, cozy and comforting with simple yet satisfyingly savory flavors of herbs, garlic and onion.
It’s really everything you could want in a winter meal and if you’re a mushroom lover like me, you will totally dig this recipe.
Love this beef and mushroom stew? More beef recipes to try:
- 2 pounds stew meat, cut into 1" pieces
- 2 tablespoons flour (use gluten-free or paleo flour blend if necessary)
- 1 tablespoon ghee (or butter)
- 8 ounces pearl onions (I used frozen)
- 24 ounces mixed mushrooms (white button, shiitake, cremini or other combination), roughly chopped
- 1 3/4 cup beef broth, divided
- salt and pepper to taste
- 1 bay leaf
- 1/2 teaspoon thyme
- 1/2 teaspoon tarragon
- 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
- 1/2 teaspoon onion powder
- 2 tablespoons arrowroot powder + 2 tablespoons water (*optional for thickening, see note)
- Place cubed beef in a large bowl. Sprinkle flour over top, gently toss to combine until flour coats all the pieces.
- Add the ghee to the Instant Pot on sauté mode.
- Once hot, add beef to the pot and brown on all sides. You'll likely need to do this in 2 or 3 batches to fit all the beef. Once browned, transfer to a plate using a slotted spoon and set aside.
- Add 1/4 cup of the beef broth to the pot and use a wooden spoon or spatula to scrape up all the brown bits from the meat.
- Add the pearl onions and cook, stirring frequently for 2-3 minutes until softened.
- Turn off sauté mode and add the remaining ingredients except the arrowroot powder and water.
- Stir to combine then place the lid on the Instant Pot. Set the dial to sealing and cook on manual for 30 minutes.
- Let the Instant Pot naturally release pressure for 15 minutes then manually release the rest.
- If thickening, mix the arrowroot powder and water in a small bowl. Turn the Instant Pot to sauté and stir in the mixture until bubbling and slightly thickened.
- Serve hot, garnish with freshly chopped parsley or other herbs.
*You can substitute cornstarch for the arrowroot powder in the same amounts to thicken. This step isn't necessary, it just makes for a slightly thicker stew.
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Amount Per Serving: Calories: 374 Total Fat: 13g Saturated Fat: 6g Trans Fat: 1g Unsaturated Fat: 7g Cholesterol: 155mg Sodium: 416mg Carbohydrates: 13g Net Carbohydrates: 0g Fiber: 3g Sugar: 4g Sugar Alcohols: 0g Protein: 53g