Slow Cooker Beef Stew
Old-Fashioned Slow Cooker Beef Stew requires just 20 minutes of active prep work, then your slow cooker does the rest. This easy recipe is made without wine but is still incredibly rich and flavorful!
Slow cooked beef stew is particularly delicious on a cold winter night. The melt-in-your-mouth chunks of beef, tender carrots, and potatoes that have soaked up all that flavorful broth help to warm you from the inside out.
The recipe I’m sharing today for beef stew made in the slow cooker is an old-fashioned recipe without any bells and whistles — just simple ingredients that come together beautifully when cooked low and slow.
I opted to make this beef stew without wine. Although red wine is delicious in stew, I was worried the alcohol wouldn’t cook off completely in the slow cooker with the lid on. Plus, I don’t always have wine on hand.
Don’t worry, though. The mixture of dried herbs and spices infuses the beef broth with flavor and makes for a truly superb beef stew!
Ingredients for Old-Fashioned Beef Stew
This is an easy slow cooker beef stew recipe that comes together with minimal ingredients. Below is an overview of the ingredients list:
- All-purpose flour
- Beef stew meat
- Olive oil
- Yukon Gold potatoes
- Beef broth
- Herbs and spices (garlic powder, dried thyme, dried oregano)
- Frozen peas
How to Make Beef Stew in the Slow Cooker
I love making slow cooked beef stew in my Crockpot rather than braising it in the oven. It’s nice to pop all of the ingredients into the slow cooker first thing in the morning and be able to run errands as needed — I can’t do that with the oven on!
Full instructions can be found in the recipe card below, but here’s an overview of the cooking process:
- Line your Crockpot with a slow cooker liner. Set aside.
- In a large bowl, add flour, garlic powder, and stew meat. Gently toss to coat.
- Heat a large skillet over medium heat and then add olive oil. Add beef and brown on all sides.
- Add seared beef chunks, onion, potatoes, carrots, beef broth, and spices to the slow cooker.
- Cover and cook on low for 8 hours or on high for 4 hours.
- Add peas when there’s 1 hour left to cook.
How Long Should Beef Stew Cook in a Slow Cooker?
I recommend cooking the old-fashioned beef stew on low for 8 hours if possible. The longer the beef cooks, the more fall-apart tender it will become.
However, if you forgot to put the ingredients into the slow cooker earlier in the day, the stew will also cook on high in about 4 hours.
- Swap the potatoes: Swap all or some of the Yukon Gold potatoes for peeled and roughly chopped sweet potato chunks.
- Swap the peas: If you’re out of frozen peas or you don’t like them, you can experiment with frozen green beans.
- Swap the onion: Instead of chopped onion, feel free to add 1 cup of frozen pearl onions to the stew.
- Add wine: I created this as a no-wine beef stew, but you may replace up to 1/2 cup of the beef broth with a dry red wine of your choice. Just note that the alcohol might not completely cook out of the stew!
Tips for Slow Cooking Beef Stew
- Your local grocery store should sell clearly labeled “beef stew meat.” When in doubt, head to the butcher’s counter and have them wrap some up for you.
- You’re welcome to mix and match the vegetables in this old-fashioned beef stew, but remember that different veggies will have different cook times.
- If you’re sensitive to salt, you might want to use reduced sodium beef broth and then salt the finished stew to taste. Some brands are saltier than others!
Looking for More Slow Cooker Beef Recipes? I’ve Got You Covered!
Slow Cooker Beef Stew
- ⅓ cup all-purpose flour
- 1 teaspoon garlic powder
- 1 pound beef stew meat
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 medium white onion, (chopped)
- 3 medium gold potatoes, (cubed)
- 3 carrots, (sliced)
- 2 cups beef broth
- 1 teaspoon dried oregano
- 1 teaspoon dried thyme
- 1 teaspoon salt
- ½ teaspoon black pepper
- 1 cup frozen peas
- Lightly grease your slow cooker with cooking spray or line with a slow cooker liner. Set aside.
- In a large bowl, add flour, garlic powder, and stew meat. Gently toss to coat, ensuring each piece is coated with flour mixture.
- Heat a large skillet over medium heat and then add olive oil. Add beef and brown on all sides. Remove from skillet and place onto the bottom of your slow cooker.
- Add onion, potatoes, carrots, beef broth, oregano, thyme, salt, and pepper and gently stir to combine. Cover and cook on low for 8 hours or on high for 4 hours. Add peas with one hour left to cook. Serve hot.
- Stew will keep in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to four days.
- See my tips and tricks for making this Slow Cooker Beef Stew above the recipe box.