Instant Pot Beef Stew

This Instant Pot Beef Stew with carrots and potatoes is so delicious and cozy, and perfect for when you need a slightly quicker stew.

This Instant Pot Beef Stew with carrots and potatoes is so delicious and cozy, and perfect for when you need a slightly quicker stew. 

Do you love a good beef stew but don’t love going back and forth to the stove for a couple hours to check on things and stir? Let your Instant Pot help out. While there still are multiple steps, it’s done in under an hour and we’ve got some tips to make it even quicker if you’re in a rush.

What Type of Beef Should I Use?

I prefer boneless beef chuck, also called chuck steak. It looks like a big steak, but you don’t want to grill these because they are too tough for a quick cook. The only problem is that you need to cut the beef into smaller pieces yourself for this. If you don’t mind that, and especially if it’s on sale, go with the chuck steak.

If you prefer not to do that, you can also get stewing beef which normally comes already in chunks. This also works well and can save you some effort.

How Do I Thicken My Stew?

For this, we’re using a flour and beef stock slurry to thicken the stew after it’s cooked. To do that, you put 1/4 cup of flour into a jar with one cup of beef stock, put on the lid, and shake until fully combined.

Some people prefer to use cornstarch as their thickening agent, but I like the consistency and look of the flour slurry. Using cornstarch will give you a slightly more translucent and almost gelatinous texture. Works well for some dishes, but not my favorite here even though you absolutely could.

If you’d like to learn more about these techniques with both flour and cornstarch, check out our favorite Gravy Recipe and Cornstarch Gravy.

How to Make Instant Pot Beef Stew

First, you’ll cut your beef into chunks if it’s not already, and season it. Some recipes would have you toss it into flour at this point, but I find that doesn’t work well in the Instant Pot which is why we do the technique described above.

We will be using the instant pot on sauté for the first few steps. Add oil and once heated, brown the beef on both sides (about 3 minutes on each) and the onion, stirring occasionally. Next, you’ll want to stir in one cup of the beef stock and scrape the bottom of the instant pot to ensure nothing is stuck to the bottom – that can cause a burn warning once we get to pressure cooking.

Add in the potatoes, carrots, and more beef stock and give it a good stir. Put on the lid and pressure cook for 7 minutes. Once it’s reached pressure and cooked, leave the knob at sealing and do a natural release for 10 minutes. It’s important to do the natural release when cooking meat instead of a quick release, because the rapid temperature change with a quick release can cause you to end up with tough meat.

While the natural release is happening, make your flour slurry with the remaining one cup of beef stock. Stir it into the instant pot stew mixture and set to sauté, stirring occasionally until the stew simmers and thickens. Remove the inner pot so that it is off the heat, taste, and add more salt and pepper if needed.

If you would like additional vegetables in your stew, you can add in some frozen peas or corn after your flour slurry has started to thicken. Just eye-ball the amount you like, and stir them into the hot stew until they are warm.

Tips for Making Beef Stew Even Quicker

#1 – Buy your beef already cut into chunks. It may not be cheaper, but it will save you time.

#2 – You don’t have to brown the beef before pressure cooking, but you will lose a little of that caramelized, umami flavor from the sear.

#3 – Skip sautéing the potatoes and carrots. I would still sauté the onion though, so that your stock doesn’t take on the harsher taste of raw onion as it boils.

The beef, potatoes, and carrots can just be added to the liquid and pressure cooked from there. It’ll be slightly less tasty in my opinion, and have a little less color, but will still be tasty. Reminder – don’t try to save time with a quick release, you need the natural release to end up with tender beef.

 

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Instant Pot Beef Stew


  • Author: Christine Pittman
  • Prep Time: 20 minutes
  • Cook Time: 30 minutes
  • Total Time: 50 minutes
  • Yield: 6 servings

Description

This Instant Pot Beef Stew with carrots and potatoes is so delicious and cozy, and perfect for when you need a slightly quicker stew.


Ingredients

  • 2 lbs. stewing beef, in 1 inch chunks
  • 2 tsp. salt
  • 1/2 tsp pepper
  • 1/2 tsp. garlic powder
  • 2 Tbsp. cooking oil
  • 1 medium onion, chopped
  • 6 medium carrots, peeled and cut in 1 and 1/2 inch chunks
  • 4 medium baking potatoes, in 1 and 1/2 inch chunks
  • 3 and 1/2 cups low-sodium beef stock, divided
  • 1/4 cup all-purpose flour

Instructions

  1. Season the beef with the salt, pepper, and garlic powder.
  2. Set the Instant Pot to sauté on high. Add the oil. Once heated, add the beef in a single layer. If necessary, do this in two batches, adding more oil if needed. Cook until browned on one side, 3-4 minutes, then stir and cook until a bit more browned, 2-3 minutes more. Add the onion and cook stirring occasionally for 3 minutes.
  3. Drizzle in 1 cup of the beef stock and scrape the bottom of the pot to make sure that nothing is stuck to the bottom (if anything is stuck at all it can cause the Instant Pot to stop cooking due to a Burn notice during the pressure cooking stage).
  4. Add the carrots, potatoes, and an additional 1 and 1/2 cups of the beef stock. Stir.
  5. Put on the Instant Pot lid and make sure the knob is set to Sealing.
  6. Set the Instant Pot to cook on high pressure for 7 minutes.
  7. Once it has reached pressure and pressure-cooked for the 7 minutes, leave the knob at Sealing and allow it to do a natural release for 10 minutes. Then turn the knob to Venting and allow remaining pressure to release. Once the pressure valve has dropped, remove lid. Stir.
  8. Measure the flour into a jar. Add the remaining 1 cup of beef stock. Put lid on jar and shake until fully combined and smooth. Stir into the Instant Pot stew mixture.
  9. Set the Instant Pot to sauté and cook while stirring until it simmers and thickens.
  10. Immediately remove the inner pot of the Instant Pot so that it stops cooking. Stir again. Taste and add more salt and pepper, if desired.
Instant Pot Beef Stew

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