Making braised beef couldn't be easier. This low and slow cooking method requires minimal effort yet results in fork-tender deliciousness. If you need to make dinner with as little involvement as possible but still taste like you are a food magician, this is it. This recipe is both gluten-free and dairy-free.
A Few Reasons To Love Braised Beef
YOU WON'T BREAK THE BANK
Meat can add up quickly, but the beautiful thing about braising is that tougher cuts of meat work the best. And lucky for us, tougher cuts of meat are less expensive.
IT'S MOSTLY HANDS-OFF
Going back to the least involved dinner theme, once you get past the initial 10-15 minutes in the beginning, you let the oven do the rest of the work. This leaves you time to do whatever you want: binge your favorite show, take a nap, or whatever your little heart desires.
YOU REALLY DON'T NEED A RECIPE
Once you make it a few times, you will notice that the process is the same, just switch out the ingredients for a new variation.
- Chuck roast.
- Olive oil.
- Red wine vinegar.
- Tomato paste.
- Beef stock.
- Fresh rosemary.
Substitutions & Variations
Please remember that recipes are just a starting point.
How can you make this braised beef using what you already have? Here are some ideas…
- No chuck roast? - brisket or bone-in meats such as beef short ribs or beef oxtails.
- No onion? - use shallots instead.
- No carrots? - substitute winter squash, parsnips, turnips, or beets.
- No celery? - use bok choy, fennel bulb, more carrots, leek, or green bell pepper.
- No leek? - use any vegetables from the other suggestions.
- No red wine vinegar? - use another type of vinegar such as balsamic and sherry or some additional beef stock.
- No tomato paste? - you can a splash of red wine or extra vinegar (this will help to tenderize the meat).
- No fresh rosemary? - sub fresh thyme, sage, oregano, or marjoram.
- Optional add-ins - garlic, mushrooms, or Worchestershire sauce.
Frequently Asked Questions
Braising is a moist-heat cooking method that involves cooking your food at a low temperature in a small amount of liquid until the food is soft and tender.
You can use just about any liquid you have on hand: stock, white or red wine, beer, vinegar, vermouth, or even water will all work.
Because types of salt vary so much, I don't include specific amounts for salt and pepper. My best advice is to know how salty the type of salt you're using is and generously salt and pepper the meat chunks accordingly.
Although you can technically make it on the stovetop, cooking it in the oven is the preferred method. The main reason being is that you get better, consistent results with the oven. Many stovetops have hot spots, which cook your meat unevenly.
Transfer the braised beef, vegetables, and sauce to a storage container and let cool completely before topping it with a tightly sealed lid. Store it in the refrigerator for up to 1 week or in the freezer for up to 3 months. Thaw in the fridge overnight before eating.
For this recipe, you'll need a chef's knife, cutting board, dutch oven or braising pan, tongs, a wooden utensil, and liquid measuring cups.
What to Enjoy With Braised Beef
- Creamy Cauliflower Mash
- Baked Sweet Potatoes
- Massaged Kale Salad That Anyone Will Love
- Life-Changing Crispy Smashed Potatoes
Easy Braised Beef Recipe
- 2½ - 3 pounds chuck roast
- salt and freshly ground black pepper
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 onion, chopped into 1-inch pieces
- 2 carrots, cut on the bias
- 2 stalks celery, chopped
- 1 leek, sliced (about 1 cup) white and light green parts only
- 1½ tablespoons red wine vinegar
- 1 tablespoon tomato paste
- 1½ cups beef stock* see notes
- 3-5 springs fresh rosemary or substitute
- Preheat the oven to 350°F. Pat the meat dry, and cut it into chunks, removing any excess fat. Generously season with salt and freshly ground black pepper.
- Heat a dutch oven with the olive oil over medium-high heat and add the beef chunks in batches. Cook on each side for about 2 minutes until browned. Remove from the pan and set aside.
- Reduce the heat to medium and add the cut vegetables. Cook them for about 3-4 minutes, stirring occasionally. Deglaze the pan by adding the red wine vinegar (or substitute) while scraping the flavorful brown bits off the bottom of the pan. Stir in the tomato paste and continue cooking for another 2-3 minutes.
- Add the beef back in, nestle in the sprigs of fresh rosemary (or herb of choice) and pour in the beef stock, making sure that only ¾ of the meat is covered.
- Cover the pot with a lid and place on the middle rack in your oven. Bake for 90 minutes.
- Makes 4-6 servings.
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