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Two bowls of old fashioned beef stew with sliced bread served alongside.

Grandpa Henderson's Classic Old Fashioned Stove Top Beef Stew

5 Stars 4 Stars 3 Stars 2 Stars 1 Star 5 from 2 reviews
  • Author: Big Flavors from a Tiny Kitchen - Ashley Covelli (Adapted from Roy Henderson)
  • Prep Time: 5 minutes
  • Cook Time: 3 hours 5 minutes
  • Total Time: 3 hours 10 minutes
  • Yield: 8-10 servings 1x
  • Category: Soups & Stews
  • Method: Stovetop
  • Cuisine: American


My grandpa made the BEST old-fashioned stovetop beef stew! This hearty recipe makes for a perfect, cozy comfort food dinner. It makes a big batch, tastes even better the next day, and freezes beautifully. This tomato-based recipe has been a hit with Big Flavors readers for many, many years now.


Units Scale


  1. Heat oil in a large pot over medium-high heat. Once hot, add meat and cook, stirring occasionally, until brown on all sides.
  2. Add ingredients through parsley and bring to a boil. Lower the heat to low, cover, and let simmer, for 2 hours, stirring occasionally.
  3. Add potatoes and barley and simmer, covered for 45 minutes. Add peas and cook for another 15 minutes, or until potatoes are cooked through. Taste for seasoning and add salt if needed.


I like to cut the veggies while the beef is browning if I'm cooking it the same day I'm prepping. See notes in my post above for tips on prepping in advance, advice on cutting the meat, vegetable tips, and more!

This beef stew tastes even better the next day. It also freezes really well, making it a great candidate for future comfort food meals without additional cooking!


  • Serving Size:
  • Calories: 428
  • Sugar: 15.5 g
  • Sodium: 870.2 mg
  • Fat: 9.2 g
  • Saturated Fat: 2.7 g
  • Carbohydrates: 55.9 g
  • Fiber: 10.3 g
  • Protein: 33.9 g
  • Cholesterol: 74.8 mg
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