Beef Bourguignon Recipe
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Beef Bourguignon is a favorite classic beef stew made with onions, garlic, carrots, mushroom and red wine. It gets better with age so make it a day ahead and let it mingle for a while.
Classic adjective ˈkla-sik: judged over a period of time to be of the highest quality and outstanding of its kind.
When it comes to recipes, not many measure up to being called a “classic” as much as Beef Bourguignon does. A big thanks goes to the Burgundy region in France for this flavorful beef stew, and of course to Julia Child, a classic in her own right, for bringing it to our attention here in the United States.
I do love a good classic, don’t you? But sometimes a classic can be elevated and put on such a pedestal that it seems more difficult or challenging than it actually is—intimidating really. I think Beef Bourguignon may be one of those things for many people, while in actuality it really is anything but difficult. A long list of ingredients with semi-word-ish instructions is enough to make be want to pass over a recipe. I like simple. And easy. No fuss is my favorite. So believe me when I tell you that the most difficult thing about this recipe is hunting down a Burgundy wine (which is available on the cheap at most grocers). Really.
While the flavors of this savory classic are magnificently complex, the ingredients and process are anything but. If you have never made Beef Bourguignon (otherwise known as Beef Burgundy, or Boeuf Bourguignon) you must try it soon. You just must. Julia would be proud.
A few Beef Bourguignon recipe notes:
- This stew is even better made a day ahead and refrigerated. Which makes it a fabulous dish to prepare ahead of time for a dinner party. Serve it with roasted potatoes or over mashed potatoes, some crusty bread to soak up all the goodness and a big tossed salad for a meal that everyone will request over and over again.
- Any dry red wine may be used. We’ve made this with an inexpensive Burgundy wine (like $8, and that was the big bottle), and a Pinot Noir, and we both prefer the dish the cheaper Burgundy. No need to splurge on anything fancy.
- A Dutch Oven is the perfect cooking vessel for Beef Bourguignon or any beef stew. If you don’t have a Dutch Oven, consider adding one to your wish list. You could also use an oven safe heavy bottomed pot or baking dish with a tight fitting lid.
You may also enjoy these other beef stew recipes:
Beef Bourguignon Recipe
- 1/4 pound bacon, cut into 1-inch pieces
- 3 pounds boneless beef chuck, trimmed, cut into 2-inch pieces
- 2 tablespoons vegetable oil, as needed
- 3 tablespoons butter, divided
- 2 onions, finely chopped
- 3 garlic cloves, minced
- 2 carrots, sliced into 1/4-inch pieces
- 2 teaspoons dried thyme
- 3 tablespoons all-purpose flour
- 1 (750ml) bottle dry red wine (Burgundy or Cotes du Rhone are best)
- 2 bay leaves
- 1 tablespoon dried parsley
- 1 teaspoon black pepper
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1 pound mushrooms, quartered
- 1/2 pound pearl onions (or boiling onions), peeled
- Cook bacon in a large Dutch oven or heavy pot over medium-high heat. Remove bacon, set aside.
- Brown beef on all sides in remaining bacon fat over medium-high heat. If needed, brown in batches to avoid crowding the pan, adding vegetable oil, as needed if pot becomes dry. Remove beef, set aside.
- Add any remaining vegetable oil, plus 2 tablespoons butter; heat over medium-high heat.
- Add chopped onion, garlic, and carrots to pan, continue to cook over medium heat, stirring occasionally for about 5 minutes.
- Stir in dried thyme, continue cooking for about 1 minute.
- Push vegetables to side of pan, add remaining tablespoon of butter, allow to melt. Sprinkle/sift in flour and cook, stirring until beginning to brown, about 1 minute. Stir all together.
- Stir in wine, bay leaves, parsley, pepper and salt, taking time to scrape dark bits of goodness from bottom of pan. Return beef and bacon, to pan. Bring to a simmer. Reduce heat to low. Cover and cook about 2 1/2 to 3 hours, until meat is fork tender.
- Add mushrooms and pearl onions. Cover and cook over low until vegetables are tender, about 30 minutes. Skim off any fat from surface. Salt and pepper to taste. Remove bay leaves before serving.
This can be made a day ahead: allow to cool, cover and refrigerate. It is actually better when made a day ahead. The flavors mingle and deepen. Serve with roasted or boiled potatoes, or my favorite way, over mashed potatoes. Delish!