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Instant Pot Beef Stew

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This Instant Pot Beef Stew is a delicious, healthy dinner recipe. It’s so easy to make this comfort food favorite in the Instant Pot. (gluten-free, dairy-free)

This Instant Pot Beef Stew is a delicious, healthy dinner recipe. It's so easy to make this comfort food favorite in the Instant Pot. (gluten-free, dairy-free)

When I bought my Instant Pot, one of the first things I thought to make in it was stew. I was eager to convert my classic beef stew recipe for the Instant Pot. I loved the idea of having a cozy bowl of stew in less time than the typical version takes.

After doing some research in the Instant Pot Facebook community, I learned that there are two schools of thought regarding stew using this machine. Some people use the meat/stew button and let everything cook for the recommended 35 minutes. Others like to cook the beef for 15 minutes on its own, then open the pot and add the vegetables for the remaining cook time.

This Instant Pot Beef Stew is a delicious, healthy dinner recipe. It's so easy to make this comfort food favorite in the Instant Pot. (gluten-free, dairy-free)

I like to take the simplest route when cooking, so I tried the former approach. I browned the meat and then added all the ingredients. After the 35 minute meat/stew cycle, my beef stew came out beautifully. The vegetables were tender but not mushy, and the meat was fall-apart delicious. I may try the other approach next time to see the difference in vegetable texture.

Instant Pot Beef Stew Tip

There’s one detail that’s important to note. When cooking beef in the Instant Pot, it’s best to use a natural release. If you try a quick release, some moisture will be pulled out of the meat and it’ll be tough. For that reason, let the Instant Pot naturally release its pressure, and don’t open the lid until the silver pressure indicator has dropped on its own. This takes about 30 minutes after the cook time ends in this recipe.

Check out my Instant Pot chicken stew, as well as these other healthy Instant Pot recipes, for more mealtime inspiration!

Instant Pot beef stew comes together easily in the pressure cooker

Instant Pot Beef Stew

This Instant Pot Beef Stew is a delicious, healthy dinner recipe. Pure comfort food! ($1.61 per serving)
Print Recipe
4.85 from 19 votes
Prep Time:15 mins
Cook Time:45 mins
Total Time:1 hr 30 mins

Ingredients

  • 2 tbs olive oil
  • 2 lbs stew beef cut into bite-sized pieces and sprinkled with salt
  • 1 onion chopped
  • 1/2 cup tomato sauce
  • 2 tbs balsamic vinegar
  • 2 cups water
  • 2 lbs potatoes peeled and cut into bite-sized pieces
  • 1 lb carrots cut into bite-sized pieces
  • 3 celery stalks cut into bite-sized pieces
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1/4 tsp pepper

Instructions

  • Set the Instant Pot to Saute. Add the oil and brown the meat in 2 batches. Cook each batch for 2 or 3 minutes, turning the pieces of beef several times so all sides are browned. Set the browned meat aside.
  • Turn off the Instant Pot and add the onion to the warm pot. Let it cook for a minute, stirring a few times. Then add all the remaining ingredients to the pot, including the browned meat.
  • Close the lid, set the seal, and set the pot to high pressure for 35 minutes.
  • After the 35 minute cook time, use a natural pressure release. Wait until the silver pressure indicator drops on its own (about 30 minutes). This will allow the beef to maintain as much moisture as possible. (Note: If you’re in a hurry, you can let the pressure release naturally for just 10 minutes, then release the remaining pressure by turning the vent.)
  • Serve warm.

Notes

The flavors of this stew can be adapted to suit your tastes. If you don’t like the balsamic vinegar flavor, omit that ingredient and use beef broth in place of some or all of the water. Add Italian seasonings if desired. The best thing to do is taste the stew once it’s cooked, and add spices if desired.

Nutrition

Calories: 292kcal | Carbohydrates: 22g | Protein: 29g | Fat: 9g | Saturated Fat: 2g | Cholesterol: 70mg | Sodium: 491mg | Potassium: 1112mg | Fiber: 5g | Sugar: 5g | Vitamin A: 9545IU | Vitamin C: 18mg | Calcium: 81mg | Iron: 6mg
Servings: 8
Calories: 292kcal

Price Breakdown

This recipe costs a total of $12.88 to make (assuming $3.99 per pound of meat), or $1.61 per serving. Try this delicious Instant Pot Beef Stew for an easy, healthy dinner recipe that everyone will love.

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Bowl of stew full of beef and veggies
Stew in the Instant Pot
Instant Pot beef stew in a bowl

45 Comments

  1. AnneMarie,
    First off, I want to genuinely THANK YOU for sharing your/this AMAZING, absolutely DELICIOUS recipe.
    I absolutely cannot stand cooking and haven’t enjoyed it AT ALL for years, however I LOVE to bake & am fairly excelled at doing so!!! Instant Pot has been an absolute life savior in the kitchen for me as I know that I am not a very good cook… And a lot of it is probably due to the fact that I hate being in the kitchen and also that I myself have a severely suppressed appetite and suffer from dangerously low levels of potassium & magnesium. Tonight, however, was a completely different story… I felt more in control in the kitchen and when it finished I knew just by looking at it, that it was the perfect balance of all ingredients which would hopefully equal a perfect taste… and my God, did it ever!!! For this one night I felt confidence in the kitchen! I did everything according to the recipe except for breaking down the recipe and making less than stated. Only MAJOR difference that I noticed was the prep timing listed was WAY off. I chop veggies and meat quite quickly and also have a vegetable cutting item that can dice, cut, slice, chop and everything else within SECONDS… Yet the prep time was about 45-50mins, not the 15mins stated. The 35mins was absolutely PERFECT, AFTER browning the meat for a total of 6 mins on ALL of the bite sized cut meat, next adding the onions for about 3mins THEN adding everything else to be set on the meat stew setting with the natural release (which took approx. 32-35 mind total). The total cooking time with prep was closer to 2hrs 10mins.
    However the outcome was worth it, as it was an A+, PERFECT outcome. Best stew I have EVER ate in my 35yrs! Thanks SO MUCH!

    1. I’m so glad you liked it! Thanks for the detailed feedback. I’ll make this again soon and double check how long the prep time is for me.

  2. 5 stars
    I added vegetable broth instead of water and sauteed some garlic along with the onion – Delicious! Will definitely be making again 🙂

  3. 5 stars
    It was excellent. I replaced the onion with onion powder and used vegetable broth instead of water. It had a lot of flavor and was very tender.

    1. I use fresh meat. You could also use frozen, but I’m not sure if you’d be able to brown it (which adds flavor).

  4. Do you think if I wanted to freeze, should I put all ingredients together and then freeze, or make it and freeze for later (reheat on stovetop probably)? Which would be better?

    1. I’ve made it and frozen the leftovers. They taste good, but the texture is a bit better after the initial cooking. Freezing the ingredients before cooking would probably also be a good option, although I haven’t tried it that way.

  5. I just started using an Instant Pot, so I appreciate all of your hints. You did just the type of research I always like to do before starting with a new gadget or type of recipe and now you’ve saved me the trouble. Your beef stew looks fabulous – can’t wait to try it.

  6. I’ve been wanting to use my Instant Pot more (other than as a slow cooker) and this looks like a great recipe to try! Thanks!

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