Recipes » Easy Instant Pot Beef Stew

Easy Instant Pot Beef Stew

Easy Instant Pot Beef Stew can be made in under 30 minutes and is full of hearty beef, potatoes, carrots, green beans, and tomatoes.
5 from 10 votes
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 15 minutes
A serving of beef stew over rice in a white bowl.

Your family will love this Easy Instant Pot Beef Stew! It’s a hearty recipe made with stew beef, potatoes, carrots, green beans, and tomatoes that can be on the table in under 30 minutes when you use a pressure cooker.

I’m just going to say it – I love my pressure cooker. So there. Lots of people are scared of them, I know. They have visions of them exploding all over the kitchen. I guess I understand that. I mean, after all, I’ve seen it happen. Once. And I remember it well, too.

A serving of beef stew over rice in a white bowl.

It was on a Sunday morning when Mama was trying to get my two sisters and me dressed and ready for church. Preparations for attending church in our household were something like a three-ring circus.

We each had to have our Sunday socks and shoes, Sunday dress probably with crinolines underneath (raise your hand if you know what a crinoline is), clean white gloves, and sometimes a hat.

👒 Sunday Mornings Back in the Day

She’d get one or two of us ready and by the time she was finished with the third one, either the first or second had messed up her hair, taken her shoes and socks off, or rolled around outside on the grass in her nice clean Sunday dress and Mama would have to start all over.

Sisters

Sometimes I wonder how in the world we ever got anywhere. And it wasn’t like we’d leave the house looking a mess either. Oh, no. When we stepped out the door and headed for the car we all, Mama included, were as near to perfect as possible.

❗ Pressure Cookers Have Changed – A Lot!

Anyway, it was one of those Sunday mornings when the three of us were behaving like, well, like little girls. Besides getting everyone dressed and ready for church, Mama also had to have dinner ready when we returned. So, before she started getting us dressed, she had put some chicken on to cook in her pressure cooker.

I imagine she had plans to make something like Chicken a la King, one of my personal retro favorites, out of that chicken when we got back home. I also imagine that she was distracted beyond belief by the three squirming little handfuls that were me and my sisters when all of a sudden we heard the loudest boom coming from the direction of the kitchen.

😲 Childhood Trauma

Well, this was during the era of the Cuban Missile Crisis and me, being the biggest ‘fraidy-cat on the planet, thought for sure that the “bad guys” were coming to get us. Really…all that practicing we did at school getting under our desks and covering our heads in case of an attack. It made an impression on us little kids. Especially the ‘fraidy-cats.

Mama went running toward the kitchen into what I was sure would be her (and our) certain annihilation only to find the pressure cooker blown to bits and chicken covering every possible surface. And I do mean every surface – even the ceiling. Needless to say, we did not make it to church that particular Sunday.

A serving of beef stew over rice in a white bowl.

🦺 Modern Pressure Cookers Are Safe and Easy to Use

I know I’m not doing much to allay your fears of using a pressure cooker, but honestly the technology has come a long, long way since those days. Today’s “instant pots” have multiple safety features like relief valves that trip if the pressure gets too high.

I tried to tell my sister that the other night when she called and I told her I was making this beef stew in the pressure cooker. I could hear the fear and trepidation in her voice right through the phone line. That chicken-on-the-ceiling episode really scarred her for life :-)

The original version of this recipe came from an old cookbook that was included with the first pressure cooker I ever owned. I have no idea where the cookbook is these days and the pressure cooker was worn out and tossed a long time ago, but I still use the recipe.

If you just can’t bring yourself to use a pressure cooker you can, of course, cook this on the stovetop. It’ll just take you about 10 times as long.

🥘 About the Ingredients


Ingredients needed to make pressure cooker beef stew.

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  • Beef Stew MeatThis is typically a mix of pieces from different cuts of beef and is perfectly fine for pressure cooking. You might also consider purchasing a chuck roast and cutting it into chunks yourself.
  • Diced TomatoesCanned diced tomatoes are used for convenience. If you have nice, very ripe fresh tomatoes you can always use them! I prefer Hunt’s brand when purchasing canned tomatoes.
  • Cornstarch Used to thicken the stew at the end of cooking. It’s optional.

You’ll find detailed measurements for all ingredients in the printable version of the recipe at the bottom of this post.

🔪 How to Make Easy Instant Pot Beef Stew


  1. Cut the beef stew meat, potatoes, carrots, and onions into bite size pieces.

Pro Tip

Cut the stew meat, potatoes, and carrots into similar-sized pieces so they all cook in the same amount of time.

  1. Set the instant pot or electric pressure cooker to its Saute setting. Add the oil and stew meat. Stir and cook until the meat is well browned all over.
  2. Add the potatoes, carrots, onion, beans with their liquid, and tomatoes with their liquid.
  3. Add salt and pepper to taste. I use at least a teaspoon of salt in this recipe. That’s a lot of stew to season, you know!
  4. Place the lid on the pressure cooker and make sure it’s locked. If your model is equipped with a valve, check that it’s in place. Set it to cook for 15 minutes on high pressure.
  5. At the end of the 15 minutes cooking time, allow the pressure to release naturally for 10 minutes followed by a quick release of any residual pressure. Open the top of the cooker and set it to its Saute function.
  1. Combine the cornstarch and cold water in a small bowl. When the stew comes to a boil, add the cornstarch and water and stir until thickened. Reduce the heat to Simmer or Keep Warm.
  2. Serve over rice or noodles. I like to stir a teaspoon of prepared horseradish into my serving.

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A serving of beef stew over rice in a white bowl with a pressure cooker in the background.

🍽 How to Serve


This recipe is a classic one-pot meal with protein and veggies all cooked together. Our family enjoys it served over steamed white rice or buttered noodles. Dinner rolls or garlic bread and a light mixed green salad also pair nicely.

🍚 Storage Information


Allow the stew to cool completely before storing. For short-term storage, use an airtight container and place in the refrigerator for up to 4 days. To freeze, place in a freezer-safe container and store for up to 3 months.

To reheat – if frozen, allow the stew to thaw overnight in the refrigerator. Reheat in the microwave or in a heavy-bottomed pot over low heat on the stovetop.

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📖 Recipe

A serving of beef stew over rice in a white bowl.

Easy Instant Pot Beef Stew

Easy Instant Pot Beef Stew can be made in under 30 minutes and is full of hearty beef, potatoes, carrots, green beans, and tomatoes.
5 from 10 votes
Print It Rate It Save
Course: Soups and Stews
Cuisine: American
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 15 minutes
Total Time: 30 minutes
Servings: 6 servings
Calories: 354kcal
Author: Lana Stuart

Ingredients

  • 1 ½ pounds beef stew meat
  • 3 tablespoons oil
  • 2 large potatoes
  • 4 large carrots
  • 1 large onion
  • 14.5 ounces canned green beans with their liquid
  • 29 ounces canned diced tomatoes (2 cans) with their liquid
  • Salt
  • Pepper
  • 2 tablespoons cornstarch
  • cup cold water

Instructions

  • Cut the beef stew meat, potatoes, carrots, and onions into bite size pieces.
  • Set the instant pot to its Saute setting. Add the oil and stew meat. Stir and cook until the meat is well browned all over.
  • Add the potatoes, carrots, onion, beans with their liquid, and tomatoes with their liquid.
  • Add salt and pepper to taste. I use at least a teaspoon of salt in this recipe. That’s a lot of stew to season, you know!
  • Place the lid on the pressure cooker and make sure it’s locked. If your model is equipped with a valve, check that it’s in place. Set it to cook for 15 minutes on high pressure.
  • At the end of the 15 minutes cooking time, allow the pressure to release naturally for 10 minutes followed by a quick release of any residual pressure. Open the top of the cooker and set it to its Saute function.
  • Combine the cornstarch and cold water in a small bowl. When the stew comes to the boil, add the cornstarch and water and stir until thickened. Reduce the heat to Simmer or Keep Warm.
  • Serve over rice or noodles.

Notes

  • Cut the stew meat, potatoes, and carrots into similar-sized pieces so they all cook in the same amount of time.
  • To store, allow the stew to cool completely. For short-term storage, use an airtight container and place in the refrigerator for up to 4 days. To freeze, place in a freezer-safe container and store for up to 3 months.
  • To reheat – if frozen, allow the stew to thaw overnight in the refrigerator. Reheat in the microwave or in a heavy-bottomed pot over low heat on the stovetop.

Nutrition Information

Serving: 1 | Calories: 354kcal | Carbohydrates: 31g | Protein: 30g | Fat: 13g | Saturated Fat: 3g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 2g | Monounsaturated Fat: 7g | Trans Fat: 0.03g | Cholesterol: 70mg | Sodium: 298mg | Potassium: 1245mg | Fiber: 6g | Sugar: 9g | Vitamin A: 7429IU | Vitamin C: 39mg | Calcium: 116mg | Iron: 5mg

Nutrition information is calculated by software based on the ingredients in each recipe. It is an estimate only and is provided for informational purposes. You should consult your health care provider or a registered dietitian if precise nutrition calculations are needed for health reasons.

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Pressure Cooker Beef Stew - a hearty beef stew with potatoes, carrots, green beans, and tomatoes can be on the table in minutes when you use a pressure cooker. https://www.lanascooking.com/beef-stew-in-the-pressure-cooker/

— This post was originally published on October 22, 2010. It has been updated with new photos and additional information.

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61 Comments

  1. 5 stars
    I love poached fish or chicken, but I seem to do something wrong. I think I should have been starting with cold water instead of simmering. I am going to try your technique. And the leek sounds like a good idea also. 🙂

    Harold Burton

  2. Been cooking this way for 50 years! Don’t add the tomatoes to mine tho- may try- looks good!
    Use my Pressure Cooker for everything from vegetables to Short Ribs. Don’t know why everyone is so afraid of them. Great short cut.

  3. I have always labored under the idea that a pressure cooker exploded in our house, but my mom says, no, we moved into a house that had beetroot on the ceiling (no guesses as to what happened there). Anyway, in my early sixties, I acquired my first ever pressure cooker and I just love it. Beef stew for dinner tonight, which is how I found your blog. A lovely story, thank you.

    1. I recently got one of the new electric pressure cookers, Michele, and I really like it!! Still have my old stovetop model as well but don’t use it as much now. I’m so glad you’re enjoying yours.

  4. Fantastically simple and delicious. I love that there are no stinky spices or seasoning packets! I followed recipe except I swapped out one of the cans of diced tomatoes with a can of Ro*Tel and it was just enough heat to warm you up and make your nose run. lol