So…best ever beef dump and go beef stew…big claim, no? I’m sticking by it though because it’s pretty bad ass. I’m not saying it’s the best ever beef stew in the world – I did specify that it’s the best ever dump and go beef stew. I mean, my mom’s beef stew was pretty rockin’, I gotta admit.
I’m the type who likes to brown my meat, especially for a beef stew. But I didn’t want to fool with all that for this recipe. One night I just wanted to put the stew ingredients in the pot and be done with it.
When I did the old Google search, I saw Pinch of Yum’s life changing beef stew. (If you’ve never been to that blog, please go. My wife and I have made at least a dozen recipes from this chick and they are all crazy good! It’s legit!)
I read the recipe, it was dump and go and it was really interesting. And I had all the ingredients, even the tapioca pearls, oddly enough.
I tried it and it was delicious and it worked. Never having used tapioca pearls, I wasn’t sure what the consistency would turn out like, but no corn starch slurry, no soupy beef stew, just perfect gravy/sauce that was begging for a hunk of French bread.
Now, while it was pretty good, it’s a very, very, very basic recipe. No potatoes, no extra goodies, just your basic meat and carrot type thing. So the next few times I made it, I made it more “Jaxx”. I zhuzhed it up each time until I found what I was looking for. A little wine here, a little tomato paste there and I ended up with something that I keep coming back to.
I just want to address the elephant in the room before we get to the recipe. The liquid.
I don’t need comments or critiques or opinions about why you think or believe or swear that this is not enough liquid. I have seen many people look at Pinch of Yum’s and just declare it’s a bad recipe because there’s not enough liquid. (Again, there is not a bad recipe on that site, go check it out!)
This is the liquid you need. You do not need more liquid. I have made beef stew this way 20+ times – never a burn notice and there is always plenty of juicy goodness to go around every bowl.
The veggies and the beef let off an enormous amount of liquid. Now, if you want to go your own way because you know better, or you’ve read the Instant Pot manual, or you spend all your free time in Instant Pot groups and “they” say, go ahead and put your cup, cup and a half of liquid. I’m sure it’ll be tasty, but it will not be a stew. It’ll be a beef soup with veggies. Then you’ll have to use a cornstarch slurry to thicken it up.
This recipe, as written, is the method. If you go your own way and it doesn’t look thick and lovely like the picture on this blog, sorry.
Now that that’s out of the way, go forth and dump in your Instant Pot! Wait, that didn’t come out just right. Go forth and make this dump and go beef stew in your Instant Pot and enjoy!
Best Ever Dump and Go Beef Stew
- 2 tablespoons small tapioca pearls
- 1 small 5.5 ounce can V8 – spicy or regular
- 2 pounds beef stew meat – not teeny tiny in size
- 1 pound carrots, chunked big
- 3 medium potatoes, chunked big
- 1 medium onion, diced
- 4-5 cloves garlic, chopped
- splash soy sauce
- splash Worcestershire sauce
- 2 teaspoons tomato paste
- glug red wine, optional
- 2 teaspoons salt
- 1 teaspoon black pepper
- 1 tablespoon sugar
Place your tapioca pearls and V8 in the pot. Throw everything else in there and stir REALLY WELL. You don't want those pearls just sitting on the bottom of the pot – you could get a burn notice. Plus, you want all of the spices and tomato paste all smushed around on everything, so stir that baby up!
Pressure on high for 32 minutes. Let the pressure come down naturally for 5 minutes. Release any remaining pressure. Carefully open the lid and stir it about. Serve with hot crusty bread and enjoy!