Crock Pot Beef Bourguignon

slow cooker beef bourguignon

My Crock Pot Beef Bourguignon is a fix it and forget it meal at its finest ~ this easy slow cooker beef stew is a pared down version of the fancy French dish  and I promise it will get rave reviews!

An easy and elegant slow cooker recipe for fall!

crock pot beef Bourguignon

Slow cooker meals are a lot of things, but they certainly aren’t elegant. They might be delicious, of course they’re easy,  they make your kitchen smell insane. and they make you feel all warm and fuzzy inside, but they aren’t what anyone would call fancy. And that’s ok. When you’re hungry after a long day you don’t need fancy. I’ve been thinking a lot about slow cookers lately. I’ve had one for years, but honestly it doesn’t get that much use. Most of my cooking is done from fresh ingredients in a pretty quick manner, and I don’t really need it on a regular basis. But every time I do haul it out, I fall in love all over again. And with both my daughters newly out on their own I’ve been reminded of what a godsend a slow cooker can be.

Easy Slow Cooker Recipe for Beef Bourguignon

I adapted my favorite Beef Bourguignon recipe for the slow cooker

I must say, I think it’s a rare example of an elegant slow cooked meal. I say adapted, but I really didn’t have to do anything much, and it’s true that most soups and stews can be made in the crock pot, with just a few small adjustments. Some recipes fare better than others, though, and sometimes color and texture can be sacrificed in the name of convenience. I like to choose hearty dishes like stews and dried bean soups for my slow cooker; they not only tolerate, but benefit from the prolonged cooking time.

My Slow Cooked Peach Barbecue Smothered Pork Chops is a perfect example of how long slow cooling can take a potentially tough cut of meat like pork chops, and render them fork tender.

Slow Cooker Beef Bourguignon

the secrets to making beef Bourguignon in a slow cooker?

It’s in the sauce! More specifically, it’s in the Burgundy, its namesake deep red wine that tenderizes the meat and gives the sauce a rich base. A large shot of Cognac enriches it even further, and during the long slow cooking the two produce an amazing sauce.

If you possibly can, I love to add my veggies about half way through the cooking time. This just helps them stay firmer. If this isn’t possible, it helps to keep them rather chunky so they can hold up to the long cooking.

Slow Cooker Beef Bourguignon

what else can your crock pot do?

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3.50 from 166 votes

Slow Cooker/Crock Pot Beef Bourguignon

My Crock Pot Beef Bourguignon is a fix it and forget it meal at its finest ~ this easy slow cooker beef stew is a pared down version of the fancy French dish  and I promise it will get rave reviews!
Course Main Course
Cuisine French
Prep Time 15 minutes
slow clook 6 hours
Total Time 6 hours 15 minutes
Yield 6 servings
Calories 651kcal
Author Sue Moran

Equipment

  • crock pot

Ingredients

  • 2 Tbsp olive oil
  • 2 lb stewing beef cut in large chunks
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp fresh cracked black pepper
  • 2 Tbsp flour leave out for gluten free
  • 1 bunch fresh thyme tied in a bundle (reserve some leaves for garnish)
  • 1/2 cup cognac
  • 2 cups beef stock or broth
  • 2 cups red wine Burgundy, Cabernet Sauvignon, Pinot Noir
  • 1 Tbsp (heaping)tomato paste I like the kind in the tube
  • 4 cloves garlic crushed
  • 1 yellow onion peeled, halved, and sliced
  • 3 carrots peeled and cut in 1 inch pieces
  • 1 lb small white skinned potatoes left whole if small, or cut in large chunks
  • 8 oz give or take mushrooms, dusted off and halved
  • 1 bag frozen pearl onions
  • a splash of red wine vinegar or sherry vinegar

Instructions

  • Browning the meat is an optional step, but if you have the time, I like to do it. Skip this step if you like. Heat the oil in large heavy saute pan or stock pot. Toss the meat with the salt, pepper, and flour, When the oil is nice and hot, brown the meat, in 2 batches, until browned on all sides, about 6 minutes per batch. Put the meat in the bottom of your slow cooker and top with the bundle of thyme.
  • Turn off the heat and add the cognac to the pan, and scrape up all the brown bits as the liquid bubbles. Add the wine and beef stock and continue stirring until you’ve gotten all of the good stuff off the bottom and sides of the pan, put it back on the heat if necessary. Stir in the tomato paste.
  • Add the garlic, carrots, onion, potatoes, mushrooms and pearl onions to the slow cooker. Add the liquid from the pan to the slow cooker and give everything a gentle stir to get it settled.
  • Cover and cook on low for 6-8 hours.
  • At the end of cooking, remove the bundle of thyme and taste to check the seasonings. I like to add a splash of vinegar at this point, add it according to taste. If you want a thicker sauce, stir in a knob of butter coated with flour, or sprinkle in some Wondra flour and stir well. Use corn or potato starch for gluten free.
  • Serve the stew with a sprinkling of fresh thyme leaves.

Cook’s notes

  • There is a lot of alcohol in this dish, and while much of it does cook out, even in a covered slow cooker, there will be some remaining…so save this for the adults.
  • The potatoes are not normally included in Bourguignon, but I added them to round out the stew as a complete meal. No use in using the slow cooker if you have to make a side dish!
  • If you can, I prefer to add my vegetables about halfway through the cooking process so they don’t get over cooked
  • If you love the idea of easy elegance, you might also like my Easy Cassoulet ~ it’s a scaled down version of the French classic.

Nutrition

Calories: 651kcal | Carbohydrates: 25g | Protein: 31g | Fat: 35g | Saturated Fat: 12g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g | Monounsaturated Fat: 17g | Trans Fat: 2g | Cholesterol: 107mg | Sodium: 701mg | Potassium: 1263mg | Fiber: 4g | Sugar: 5g | Vitamin A: 5141IU | Vitamin C: 20mg | Calcium: 71mg | Iron: 5mg
The nutritional information for recipes on this site is provided as a courtesy and although theviewfromgreatisland.com tries to provide accurate nutritional information, these figures are only estimates.
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59 Comments

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  • Reply
    Dee
    September 28, 2021 at 7:49 am

    5 stars
    Can you substitute brandy for cognac?

  • Reply
    Vanessa
    October 2, 2019 at 6:43 pm

    Just curious if I can get this all prepared and set it in the fridge overnight to be cooked in the am?

    • Reply
      Sue
      October 2, 2019 at 7:12 pm

      I think that should work 🙂

  • Reply
    Emory Welcher
    December 22, 2018 at 5:54 am

    Hello, I’m looking forward to trying this for Christmas Eve dinner with my partner.

    Is the cognac part of the recipe a must? Or can you skip it?

    Thank You, and Happy Holidays!

    • Reply
      Sue
      December 22, 2018 at 6:51 am

      You can skip it but it adds a really interesting depth of flavor. You can substitute red wine if you like, or leave it out.

  • Reply
    Jay
    December 5, 2018 at 1:17 pm

    I will need to double the recipe but am reluctant to double all the alcohol. Would you recommend beef bouillon as a substitute?

    • Reply
      Sue
      December 5, 2018 at 1:24 pm

      That would work fine, Jay.

    • Reply
      Anne
      December 1, 2019 at 12:48 pm

      I would like to serve 8. How would you increase the recipe?

      • Reply
        Sue
        December 1, 2019 at 3:29 pm

        I think you could go with another pound of beef, and just eyeball the extra veggies. As for the liquids, you might not need to go up a full third. You’ll need a large crock pot!

  • Reply
    Catherine
    July 19, 2018 at 6:57 pm

    Just curious, what size slow cooker is this recipe for? Thanks

    • Reply
      Sue
      July 19, 2018 at 8:46 pm

      At the time I had just a standard size crock pot, Catherine, I don’t recall the exact specifications, but it’s pretty much standard.

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