Serious Eats / Liz Voltz

Over the years, the culinary team here at Serious Eats has covered a lot of ground in the stewing department—you might say that it’s been a bit of an obsession. Beyond developing delicious recipes, we’ve done our best to explore the science behind stewing beef, from conducting experiments to determine the best way to brown beef to finding out whether marinating meat before stewing is worth the hassle. And of course, there’s the question of whether or not beef stew is actually better the next day (Kenji has published test results!).

Culinary experiments aside, our selection of beef stew recipes is substantial and varied. From an upgraded take on classic beef stew to wine-infused boeuf Bourguignon, spicy Texan chili con carne, and vibrant Guayanese pepperpot, we’ve got you covered when all you’re craving is a warming bowl of comfort.

Jamaican Oxtail

Serious Eats / Karina Matalon

This deeply flavorful Jamaican stew is loaded with tender oxtail, butter beans, and broth-thickening dumplings. Served over white rice with a side of avocado, ripe plantain, and salad or coleslaw, this is a meal that you want to relish slowly and deliberately.

Original Texas Chili Con Carne

Serious Eats / Greg Dupree

A blend of chiles and spices provide this classic Texas-style chili with maximum depth of flavor. The chili is prepared on the stovetop before going into a low oven for a leisurely three-hour simmer—perfect for a lazy Sunday. If time is of the essence, Kenji has adapted this recipe for the pressure cooker, which cuts the cooking time down to one hour.

Guyanese Pepperpot

Serious Eats / Liz Voltz

Pepperpot, a national dish of Guyana, is a delightful meat-based stew, rich with braised beef and infused with cinnamon, clove, thyme, and wiri wiri peppers, a small red Guayanese pepper that’s prized for its bright and spicy punch. Our recipe combines oxtails with bone-in chuck and cow foot, which potentially makes it the beefiest stew in this collection.

Nigerian Beef Stew

Serious Eats / Maureen Celestine

When you talk about “stew” in Nigeria, you’re not referring to a general recipe category but instead a specific group of pepper-and-tomato–based dishes made with meat, seafood, or poultry. This recipe from Ozoz Sokoh opts for beef chuck and a combination of sweet and hot peppers, which results in a stew with an intense, savory flavor.

Boeuf Bourguignon (Beef Stew With Red Wine, Mushrooms, and Bacon)

Serious Eats / Vicky Wasik

This French classic is revered for good reason: Well-browned beef, red wine, mushrooms, and onions are perfect companions. Daniel’s recipe gets a boost from two additions of aromatic vegetables, as well as a healthy splash of Cognac and dashes of soy and fish sauce.

Rich and Flavorful Guinness Beef Stew With Potatoes

Serious Eats / Vicky Wasik

Daniel’s recipe improves upon this pub classic by amping up the flavor of Guinness stout with an ounce of bittersweet chocolate and a quarter cup of strong coffee. Dashes of fish sauce, soy sauce, and Worcestershire sauce deepen the savory flavor of the stew.

The Best Chili Ever

Serious Eats / Qi Ai

As Kenji notes in the introduction of this recipe, all claims to chili perfection are provisional, as improvements can always be made. Nonetheless, this chili checks all the right boxes: a rich, complex chile flavor, robust meatiness, tender beans, and a thick, deep red sauce.

Short Rib and Barley Stew

Serious Eats / J. Kenji López-Alt

This rich and satisfying beef barley number tends to learn towards the thicker side of the soup-stew spectrum. Tomato paste and judicious amounts of Marmite and soy sauce are added for a subtle umami boost. For a more traditional take on this classic combination, see Daniel’s recipe for beef barley soup.

Goulash (Hungarian Beef and Paprika Stew)

Serious Eats / J. Kenji López-Alt

This rich, hearty, rib-sticking Hungarian-American goulash is made by stewing big chunks of beef, carrots, and potatoes in a broth flavored with onions, garlic, peppers, and a generous half-cup of sweet Hungarian paprika.

All-American Beef Stew

Serious Eats / J. Kenji López-Alt

Kenji’s thoroughly tested and upgraded recipe for classic beef stew delivers the goods: tender chunks of beef and vegetables coated in a rich, intense sauce. For the same delicious results in a fraction of the time, try this pressure cooker version.

Spanish Beef Stew With Pimentón and Piquillo Peppers

Serious Eats / Jennifer Olvera

For a change of pace, try this Spanish-inspired version of beef stew, scented with pimentón and finished with a touch of tangy sour cream.

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