Ben’s Beef Stew is my husband’s smash-hit gluten-free beef stew. The epitome of comfort food!
Greetings all, I hope you had a nice weekend! We had a lovely, low-key couple of days. I finally got my office organized (a task I’ve been putting off for 5 months!) Ben made a huge dent in his honey-do list (hallelujah!) and the three of us attended the 1st birthday party of Lincoln’s future girlfriend (aka my good friend Lindsey’s daughter, Lucie!)
He was dressed to impress in a hipster flannel button down that was so cute I wanted to scream. Actually I did then Ben told me I was embarrassing the family. Just kidding.
I also whipped up a batch of Ben’s famous Beef Stew over mashed potatoes. He’s made this cozy dish almost every weekend for the past month, which I’ve shared a couple of times on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram. Every time I get no less than 10 requests for the recipe, so I finally walked through it with him to get the details!
Ben’s funny in that he makes, lets be honest, really weird things like Cold Spaghetti Tacos and Chicken-Stuffed Hot Dog Buns with Pickles and Potato Chips. But he also makes inspired dishes like Chicken Piccata, which he wooed me with on one of our first dates, homemade pasta, and this Beef Stew – and they’re all created in his head. No recipe required! What a wizard.
Anyway, this beef stew is the epitome of winter warmth. Hearty and most definitely stick to your ribs. We call it beef stew but what it really is, is gravy. Thick and luscious. Meaty and amazing. Gluten-free, too!
Ben’s beef stew takes an afternoon to make. It simmers low and slow on the stove top for a few hours making it ideal for a blustery winter weekend when you just want to hunker down at home. Makes being stuck indoors actually tolerable. Trust me – you’ll be making this a lot in the cold months to come!
Start by chopping all the veggies – the smaller the better. That way they really melt into the sauce (which is important because I hate big hunks of cooked carrots!)
You’ll need 2 carrots, 2 ribs celery, 1 large shallot (or 1 small onion,) and 4 cloves garlic.
Once the prep work is done, heat 1 Tablespoon vegetable oil in a large Dutch oven or soup pot then add 1 teaspoon each dried thyme and rosemary. Let the herbs saute for about 30 seconds.
Next add all your chopped veggies, season with salt and pepper, then saute until browned and very tender, about 10 minutes. The key to this dish, Ben says, is take everything slow. No rushing allowed, so like, literally the anti-me. :) Once the veggies are tender, add 8oz sliced mushrooms then saute until tender, another 5-7 minutes.
I used sliced mushrooms for convenience sake, but when Ben makes the stew he cuts his mushrooms into sixths. “They’re more meaty that way.” Ok!
Now add 1-1/2lbs stew meat chopped into bite sized pieces. Season with LOTS of salt and pepper and a dash of red pepper flakes then brown the meat, about 8-10 minutes.
Next, whisk together 3 Tablespoons melted butter with 3 Tablespoons gluten-free (we like brown or white rice flour) or all-purpose flour in a small dish. Add to the Dutch oven then stir to coat the meat and cook for 1 minute.
Almost done! Stream in 32oz gluten-free beef broth then turn the heat to high and bring the stew to a boil.
Finally, pop in 2 bay leaves then place a lid on top, turn the heat down to medium-low, and then simmer for 2 hours, stirring occasionally. Your kitchen will be smelling Heavenly!
After two hours, take the lid off then simmer low and slow for another 1-1/2 hours, or until the beef is tender and sauce is very thick. Again, were going for a gravy-ish consistency, not soup! Add 1 cup peas then cook for 2 minutes.
Ben was pleased by this batch, can you tell? Look at that sweet face! ;)
About 45 minutes before the stew is done, make a batch of mashed potatoes, which is what Ben always serves his stew over (you could also serve it with egg noodles or gnocchi.) He whips his potatoes with milk, butter, salt, and a dollop of sour cream – a unique addition that I had never tasted before. It totally makes the mashed potatoes though – try it sometime!
Ben’s Beef Stew
Ben's Beef Stew is my husband's smash-hit gluten-free beef stew. The epitome of comfort food!
- 1 Tablespoon vegetable oil
- 1 teaspoon dried thyme
- 1 teaspoon dried rosemary
- 2 carrots, chopped small
- 2 ribs celery, chopped small
- 1 large shallot, chopped
- salt and pepper
- 8oz sliced button mushrooms
- 4 cloves garlic, minced
- 1-1/2lbs stew meat, cut into bite-sized pieces
- 3 Tablespoons butter, melted
- 3 Tablespoons gluten-free or all-purpose flour (we like white or brown rice flour)
- pinch of red pepper flakes
- 32oz gluten-free beef broth
- 2 bay leaves
- 1 cup frozen peas
- Heat oil in a dutch oven or large soup pot over medium heat. Add dried thyme and rosemary then saute for 30 seconds. Add carrots, celery, and shallots, season with salt and pepper, and then saute until vegetables are browned and tender, 10 minutes. Add mushrooms then saute until tender, 7-10 more minutes. Add garlic then saute for 1 minute, or until very fragrant. Turn heat up to medium-high then add stew meat, red pepper flakes, lots of salt and pepper, and then saute until meat is browned, 8-10 minutes.
- Whisk together melted butter and flour in a small dish then add to pot and stir to coat meat. Cook for 1 minutes then stream in beef broth. Turn heat up to high and bring stew to a boil then add bay leaves. Place a lid on top, turn heat down to medium-low, and then simmer for 2 hours, stirring occasionally.
- Remove lid then simmer for another 1-1/2 hours, or until meat is tender and stew is thickened, stirring occasionally. If stew begins to thicken before meat is tender, place lid back on top. Taste and adjust salt and pepper if necessary then add frozen peas and cook for 2 minutes. Remove bay leaves then serve over mashed potatoes.
This recipe is courtesy of Iowa Girl Eats, http://iowagirleats.com.
The flour and butter mixture give the stew a glossy richness, and a little pinch of red pepper flakes gives it warmth. Comfort food at its finest. Ben and I both hope you enjoy!