There’s nothing better than a steaming rich and delicious beef stew on a chilly day. This Instant Pot Beef Stew is just what you’re looking for.
Beef stew is one of those comfort foods that you have to make at least once during the fall season. It’s packed with tender beef, carrots, and potatoes that just melt in your mouth.
I used to hesitate before making beef stew because of how long it takes to make on the stove top. It meant having to babysit it for hours as it developed flavor and transformed into tasty bits.
It’s always worth it in the end, but I wished it didn’t take so long. As soon as I got my Instant Pot, I rejoiced. Beef Stew in the Instant Pot only takes about an hour, compared to the 4 hours it takes on the stove top. Winning!
If you don’t have an Instant Pot yet (go directly to Amazon and order one!), you really should consider it. We have a free Instant Pot starter guide when you join our mailing list. You can also check out our Instant Pot page for more information.
Without an Instant Pot, you can still make this recipe, but you’ll have to cook it on the stovetop. It’s all the same except the cooking time will be 4 hours on medium low heat. You can also make Slow Cooker Beef Stew. Set it to low for 6-8 hours or high for 4.
How to Make Instant Pot Beef Stew
Start by heating half the oil in the Instant Pot on saute mode. Season the beef chunks with salt and pepper. Add beef in batches, so it’s not crowded and brown well on all sides. Remove to a plate. Repeat until you’ve browned all the meat.
Add the remaining oil to the Instant Pot and whisk the bottom of the pan to remove the brown bits. This will keep it from burning as you saute the onions, carrots, and potatoes. Cook for 2-3 minutes, making sure they don’t burn. I usually have to scrap the bottom a few times with a spatula.
Turn off saute mode. When it’s cooled down a bit, add the garlic. You don’t want to add the garlic when it’s still super hot, or it will burn. And there’s nothing worse than burned garlic.
Add the beef stock, tomato sauce, worcestershire sauce, salt and pepper and cooked beef to the pot. Stir it all up really well. Scrap the browned bits off the bottom of the pot.
Lock the lid and set the valve to sealing. Press the stew button, or set to pressure cook for 35 minutes. If you make a larger amount than what this recipe calls for, you’ll need to increase the time to 40 or 45 minutes.
Allow the steam to release naturally. It takes about 20 minutes. The stew will probably be a bit liquidy, so you’ll want to thicken it with the cornstarch. But first, strain off any fat that’s come to the surface, if there is any.
To thicken the stew, turn on the saute mode. Mix the cornstarch and water together in a small bowl. Add the slurry to the stew and stir until thickened.
Adjust salt and pepper to taste before serving.
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Instant Pot Beef Stew
- 1 tbsp olive oil
- 2 lb beef stew meat cut into chunks
- 1 lb potatoes peeled and cut into thick pieces
- 6 carrots peeled and cut into thick pieces
- 1 medium onion chopped
- 1 clove garlic minced
- 3/4 cup beef stock
- 10 oz can tomato sauce
- 1/2 cup tomato juice
- 1 tbsp worcestershire sauce
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 1/2 tsp ground black pepper
- 2 tbsp cornstarch
- 2 tbsp water
- Heat 1/2 tbsp oil in the Instant Pot on saute mode. Season the beef chunks with salt and pepper. Add beef in batches and brown well on all sides. Remove to a plate. Repeat with remaining beef.
- Add remaining oil and whisk the bottom of the pan to remove brown bits. Add onions, carrots, and potatoes. Cook for 2-3 minutes, making sure not to burn. Add the garlic. Turn off saute mode.
- Add beef stock, tomato sauce, worcestershire sauce, salt and pepper. Return beef to the pot. Mix well.
- Lock the lid and set the valve to sealing. Press the stew button, or set to pressure cook for 35 minutes. Allow the steam to release naturally.
- To thicken the stew, turn on the saute mode. Mix the cornstarch and water together in a small bowl. Add the slurry to the stew and stir until thickened.
- Adjust salt and pepper to taste. Serve.