Instant Pot or Pressure Cooker Beef Stew locks in all the flavor and is a quick way to get a delicious entree on the table!

If you’re a fan of stew, I’ll guide you through How to Make Beef Stew that is tender and delicious and ready a fraction of the time as ordinary beef stew recipes.

Overhead view of Instant Pot Beef Stew on a white plate.

Why You Must Make

  • This simple beef stew recipe showcases how a pressure cooker or instant pot really magnifies the flavor of all recipes. Since no steam is released during cooking, no flavor is lost, either!
  • And since the kitchen does not heat up from having the oven on for 3 hours, it’s a terrific entree even in the summer.
  • It’s just delicious!!

I took my inspiration from America’s Test Kitchens cookbook, Pressure Cooker Perfection. I combined their pot roast recipe with their method to cook carrots. The results were phenomenal. I should have saved the juices and cooked another batch of carrots!!!

Pressure cooker beef stew in a white bowl with a fork piercing a piece of stew meat.

How to Make

With all stews and pot roasts, it’s wise to brown the meat first. The browning process creates the Maillard reaction, which I’ve spoken of before. This is a chemical reaction that creates loads of flavor compounds and is why foods like grilled meats taste so wonderful!

  • Make sure the meat is dried off before browning as it will sear better. Heat the oil, then brown all sides of the cubed stew meat.
  • Remove the meat and cook the onion until softened, then add the tomato paste and thyme to brown a bit, deglaze with red wine, and finally add the broth. Make sure to stir up all the brown bits on the bottom of the instant pot after adding the liquid.
  • Add back the stew meat, then the new potatoes.
  • Seal the Instant Pot, bring to high pressure over medium-high heat, then decrease to medium-low heat and cook for 1 1/2 hours.
  • Naturally release the pressure, then remove the meat and potatoes, and add the carrot chunks to the liquid. Cook for 4 minutes on high, then use a quick release.
  • PRO-Tip: I like to use a fat separator to save the juices to add to the leftovers. If you’d like more of a gravy, these juices can be thickened with flour.
Instant Pot Beef Stew in a round white bowl with carrots and a sprig of thyme.

Frequently Asked Questions

What Cut of  Meat is Best for Stew?

For stew and pot roast, go with a chuck roast. The slow cooking makes the beef nice and tender, and it’s quite flavorful. I like to buy a whole chuck roast and cut it into 1 to 1 1/2-inch chunks.This way, I can make sure all the excess fat is removed.

How Do You Store Leftovers?

Let the leftovers cool a bit (do not leave out longer than 2 hours), then refrigerate in a sealed container for up to 3 days. To store longer, place the meat and carrots in a sealed, freezer-safe container and freeze up to 3 months. Potatoes do not freeze well, so if you decide to freeze them with the stew, they get soft and grainy. They won’t harm you, but they won’t taste as good they would in freshly made stew.

If you freeze your stew, defrost in the refrigerator overnight, then gently reheat to serve.
PRO-Tip: Note that onions lose some of their potency/flavor after being frozen. So taste and adjust your seasonings if needed after reheating.

Serving Suggestions

The nice thing about this easy beef stew recipe is that it contains your protein (beef), vegetables (carrots), and starch (potatoes)! Most of your sides are covered. But I do love something cool, green, and crisp, so a nice lettuce salad is a tasty accompaniment. If you’d like bread or rolls to sop up some of the juices, that would be an excellent menu addition, too. Here are some of my favorites:

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Instant Pot Beef Stew in a round white bowl with carrots and a sprig of thyme

Pressure Cooker Beef Stew Recipe

Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 1 hour 45 minutes
Total Time 2 hours
Yield 6

Tender, flavorful beef stew with potatoes and carrots made in an Instant Pot


  • 3 pound boneless chuck roast cut into 1 to 1 ½ inch cubes, excess fat removed
  • Kosher salt and pepper
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 onion, finely chopped
  • 2 tablespoons tomato paste
  • 1 teaspoon dried thyme (or 1 tablespoon fresh thyme leaves)
  • ½ cup red wine
  • 2 cups beef broth (chicken broth will do in a pinch)
  • 1 ½ pounds small (new) potatoes
  • 1 pound carrots, peeled and cut into pieces


  1. Pat the beef dry with paper towels. Season the beef well with salt and pepper.
  2. Heat the oil over medium-high heat in the Instant Pot. Brown the beef on all sides, then set aside.
  3. Add onion to the Instant Pot and cook until soft and browned slightly. Add tomato paste and thyme and stir for a few minutes until the color darkens a bit.
  4. Stir in red wine to deglaze the pan, scraping up the bits on the bottom of the pot. Add the beef broth and heat until it simmers.
  5. Add the beef, then the potatoes, and lock the lid.
  6. Bring to high pressure over medium-high heat, then reduce to medium-low and cook for 1 ½ hours.
  7. When the time is up, release the pressure naturally for about 15 minutes, then use the quick release to let out any residual steam. Remove the lid carefully and remove the beef and potatoes to a serving bowl with a slotted spoon.
  8. Add the carrots to the liquid in the Instant Pot. Bring to high pressure over medium-high heat. When the pressure is reached, reduce it to medium-low and cook for 4 minutes.
  9. Use the quick release for the steam, then carefully remove the lid and add the carrots to the serving bowl.
  10. Serve hot with some pan juices if desired. I like to use my OXO fat separator to remove excess fat from the pan juices.

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Nutrition Information:



Serving Size:


Amount Per Serving: Calories: 599Total Fat: 37gSaturated Fat: 15gTrans Fat: 2gUnsaturated Fat: 20gCholesterol: 188mgSodium: 567mgCarbohydrates: 9gFiber: 3gSugar: 4gProtein: 58g


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