Rich and hearty Homemade Beef Stew with Sweet Potatoes is guaranteed to keep your insides warm and your heart full! Loaded with tender, melt-in-your-mouth beef roast, soft sweet potatoes and Yukon Gold potatoes all bathed in a thick, savory red gravy, this old fashioned beef stew is absolutely pure comfort in a bowl.
Stew is a big deal where I live. When the weather turns cold, you’ll see local BBQ joints start to advertise, “Stew is Back!” Instead of ice cream socials, churches get together for a Sunday night or Wednesday night “stew.”
And while the recipes might vary here and there on the finer points, traditional beef stew is where it’s at. Meat, potatoes, gravy. Cooked low and slow on the stove top in a Dutch oven (or on the cook top in a stew pot, depending from which decade you herald) and served up with cornbread, biscuits or white bread on the side.
Related Recipe: Classic Family Pot Roast
And it’s no wonder this humble one pot meal kicks up such a fuss. It is the ultimate cold weather, stick-to-your-ribs kind of food. The beef is fall-apart tender; the sweet potatoes perfectly balance the richness of the red meat, and the smooth gravy is so full of intense layered flavors that it all only gets better as it sits. …Which can only be called fortunate since this easy beef stew recipe makes plenty for leftovers, can feed a crowd and is ideal for freezing.
Ingredients for Homemade Beef Stew with Sweet Potatoes
- chuck roast – boneless chuck roast is the best cut of beef for stew with just the right fat to lean ratio
- sweet potatoes – the perfect partner for red meat
- Yukon gold potatoes – a great potato for stew since it doesn’t break down over long cook times
- onion – all about the flavor
- beef broth – brings the liquid to the dish
- dry red wine – a flavor must, use a dry wine like a pinot, Merlot or sauvignon
- tomato paste – adds depth of flavor and is a thickener for the gravy
- all purpose flour – just a little thickens the stew; by browning it, the flour also adds flavor
- Worcestershire sauce – intense savory flavor
- dried thyme, rosemary & bay leaves
- salt, black pepper, minced garlic
- olive oil
Delicious Vegetable Add-Ins: green peas, carrots, green beans, mushrooms
How to Make Easy Stove Top Beef Stew
Prep the Ingredients. Peel and chop all of the potatoes into approximately 1 inch cubes. Slice the onion into 6 large wedges. Trim most of the fat from the beef roast, then cut the roast into approximately 1 inch cubes, like the potatoes.
Brown the Meat. Heat olive oil in a large Dutch oven or pot. Add cubed beef, salt, pepper and garlic. Cook until all outsides of the beef are browned, stirring occasionally. Sprinkle the flour over the beef. Toss until all of the beef is evenly coated and flour begins to brown.
Make the Rich, Red Gravy. Pour in the red wine to deglaze, or scrape up any browned bits from, the bottom of the Dutch oven. Whisk in 1 cup of beef broth, continuing to whisk until all of the flour is dissolved. Add tomato paste and Worcestershire sauce and whisk until smooth. Stir in the rest of beef broth, dried thyme, rosemary and bay leaves. Let simmer to tenderize the beef for 30-40 minutes.
Add the Potatoes. Add chopped sweet potatoes, Yukon potatoes and onion. Allow to low simmer, stirring occasionally, for 30 minutes or until potatoes and beef are fork tender. If beef needs a little more time, simmer for another 15 minutes or so. If desired, before serving, stir in a tablespoon of chopped parsley.
Tips for Making the Best Beef Stew
- Avoid using the pre-cut “stew meat” at the grocery store. I always find it to be tough. One reason is those cubes may not all come from the same cut of meat, making it difficult to have consistently tender beef throughout your stew.
- Searing the chuck roast and browning the flour adds rich flavor to the base of the stew. When the beef roast is not seared, the meat is either boiled or steamed while cooking in the stew which doesn’t create a good beefy texture and can taste quite bland.
- The red wine really does make it better. The acidity found in the wine is necessary to balance the rich savory flavors of the beef and gravy ingredients, adding a depth and complexity of flavor to the recipe.
- Sweet Potatoes and Yukon Golds are the best potatoes for beef stew. Both potatoes hold up well to extended cooking times, getting soft without falling apart like Russet potatoes tend to do.
Preparing To Make Sweet Potato Beef Stew Ahead of Time
To make meal time easier you can prepare the potatoes, onions and beef chuck roast 1 day in advance. Cover potatoes with cold water in an air tight container in the refrigerator to keep them from turning brown. Trim & cut roast, place in a zip top bag, cover with beef or chicken broth to keep the meat moist, seal and refrigerate. Simply drain ingredients to use the next day!
Freezing Beef Stew + Reheating Leftovers
Beef Stew is perfect for freezing and reheating for a hearty meal another day. Portion out family-sized portions for easy suppers or single servings for a warm lunch, place in freezer safe containers and freeze for 2-3 months. Defrost frozen stew overnight in the refrigerator and reheat in the microwave.
More Hearty Soups & Chilis You’ll Love
- Southern Chicken & Dumplings
- Cozy French Onion Soup
- Hearty Texas Chili
- Creamy Chicken & Ravioli Soup
- Out of this World Cream Cheese Chicken Chili
If You Make This Recipe, I Can’t Wait To Hear About It!
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Homemade Sweet Potato & Beef Stew
- 2- 2.25 pound beef chuck roast, trimmed and cut into 1" cubes
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1 tablespoon minced garlic
- 2 teaspoons salt
- 1 teaspoon coarse ground black pepper
- 1/3 cup all purpose flour
- 1/2 cup dry red wine
- 2 tablespoons tomato paste
- 1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
- 4 cups beef broth
- 1 teaspoon dried thyme
- 1 teaspoon dried rosemary
- 1 medium yellow or sweet onion, sliced into 6 large wedges
- 2 medium sweet potatoes, peeled and chopped into 1" pieces
- 2 medium Yukon gold potatoes, peeled and chopped into 1" pieces
- chopped parsley, optional
- Heat olive oil in a large Dutch oven or pot. Add cubed beef, salt, pepper and garlic. Cook until all outsides of the beef are browned, stirring occasionally. Sprinkle in flour over the beef. Continue to stir until all of the beef is evenly coated and flour begins to brown.
- Pour in red wine to deglaze, or scrape up any browned bits from, the bottom of the Dutch oven. Whisk in 1 cup of beef broth, continuing to whisk until all of the flour is dissolved. Add tomato paste and Worcestershire sauce and whisk until smooth. Stir in rest of beef broth, dried thyme, rosemary and bay leaves. Let simmer for 30-40 minutes.
- Add chopped sweet potatoes, Yukon potatoes and onion. Allow to low simmer, stirring occasionally, for 30 minutes or until potatoes and beef are fork tender. If beef needs a little more time, simmer for another 15 minutes or so. If desired, before serving, stir in a tablespoon of chopped parsley.
Can I brown meat and then cook in the crock pot?
Hi, Donna! You sure can! I would also do the deglazing step too so that all that goodness that comes from browning the meat & lends flavor to the stew is included in your crock pot.