A big bowl of warming slow cooker beef Stroganoff is pure pleasure on a cold day. Succulent, tender beef with onions, mushrooms in a rich, creamy paprika-sour cream sauce.
Beef Stroganoff is an old fashioned classic dish, but have you ever tried making it in the slow cooker?
I make my quick beef stroganoff pretty often, but this slow cooker version is perfect for the days when I want to get dinner sorted in advance.
Serving beef Stroganoff was the height of dinner party sophistication in the 1970’s, along with other elaborate dishes such as prawn cocktail, Black Forest Gateau and Beef Bourguignon. It’s never gone out of style in my eyes – when you’re craving a bowl of comfort, a creamy Stroganoff fits the bill.
This isn’t one of those “dump and go” slow cooker recipes where you can just throw everything in, switch it on and a few hours later dinner is served. It does require a little prep on the hob, but I can honestly say it’s completely worth it.
Needless to say, if you own a slow cooker that sears and slow cooks then perfect! When my slow cooker eventually gives up the ghost, I’ll definitely be buying one of those models.
- A proper Stroganoff recipe needs butter and full fat sour cream. Low fat substitutes will not produce the best results, I’m afraid. This is definitely not diet food and nor should it be.
- Adding a bay leaf or two will add an extra layer of earthy, aromatic flavour. If you’re not convinced, here’s a great article on Serious Eats explaining the benefits of using bay leaves in cooking.
- Gently frying the onions in butter and oil on a low heat until they are soft, sweet and very light golden is the first step in creating a perfect beef Stroganoff. Don’t be tempted to rush this step – they need about 15 minutes to cook properly before you brown the beef.
the best cut of beef to use for stroganoff
You’ll need braising or casserole beef for this recipe. Braising beef is known in America as “chuck” steak. Try to buy the best quality beef you can afford – it will make all the difference.
The packs of diced beef you find in supermarkets are often cut into pretty small pieces that inevitably shrink during the cooking process, so I prefer to buy a large piece of casserole beef and cut it myself. But it’s entirely up to you.
step by step instructions
(scroll to the bottom of the post to find printable recipe card with ingredient amounts and detailed instructions)
- If your slow cooker needs pre heating, switch it on now.
- Melt the olive oil and 1 tablespoon of butter in a large saucepan. Add sliced onions and cook on a low heat for 10-15 minutes or until the onions are soft, translucent and beginning to turn light golden. Using a slotted spoon, remove the onions from the pan and transfer to the slow cooker.
- Place the plain flour and paprika in a bowl with some salt and pepper. Toss the beef pieces in the seasoned flour. Turn the heat up to high and add the beef to the pan in batches, frying until golden brown. Once the beef has browned, transfer it to the slow cooker.
- Add the Worcestershire sauce and mustard to the pan and the Madeira or brandy if using. Stir with a wooden spoon and cook for a couple of minutes, making sure you get all those caramelised bits stuck to the bottom of the pan.
- Stir in the beef stock, bring to the boil the. pour the mixture straight into the slow cooker over the beef and onions. Give everything a quick stir, then pop the lid on. Cook on HIGH for 4-5 hours or LOW for 6-8 hours.
- During the final 35 minutes of cooking time, place 1 tablespoon of butter and a splash of oil in a small frying pan and place over a medium high heat.
- When the butter has melted, add the sliced mushrooms and cook, stirring often, for 3-4 minutes or until the mushrooms are starting to turn crispy. Add the mushrooms to the slow cooker and cook for a further 30 minutes or until the beef is nice and tender.
In Russia, Stroganoff was originally served with very thin (matchbox) fries. As delicious as this sounds, I personally believe a decadent, creamy dish such as this was made to be served with either fluffy boiled rice or creamy mashed potatoes.
can you make beef stroganoff in advance?
Yes you certainly can make it ahead of time – it will actually taste even better after a day or two in the fridge. To reheat, place the Stroganoff in a saucepan and heat on low-medium until piping hot.
It’s important to reheat nice and slow on a low-medium heat – if the heat is turned up too high, the sour cream could split and ruin the dish.
how to thicken the sauce
If the sauce is a little too thin for your liking, you can easily thicken it up with a cornflour slurry. Simply mix a tablespoon of cornflour and a tablespoon of cold water together until smooth and lump free, then pour directly into the slow cooker, whisking well.
more delicious slow cooker recipes
- Slow cooker chicken curry
- Slow cooker beef curry
- slow cooker beef and chorizo casserole
- slow cooker butter chicken curry
- slow cooker Hunter’s chicken
did you make this reciPe?
I hope you enjoyed it! Let me know what you thought of it by leaving a comment below and rate the recipe by clicking on the stars in the recipe card.
I hope you enjoy it! Let me know what you thought by leaving a comment and don’t forget to rate the recipe! If you share a photo of your Stroganoff on Instagram, please tag me so I can see it!
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1 tablespoon butter
- 2 large onions, thinly sliced
- 600g braising or casserole beef, diced
- 1 tablespoon plain flour, seasoned with salt and freshly ground black pepper
- 1 teaspoon paprika (not hot or smoked)
- 1 tablespoon Dijon or Wholegrain mustard
- 1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
- 60ml madeira or brandy (optional)
- 350ml beef stock
- 1 tablespoon butter
- 200g mushrooms, wiped clean and sliced
- 100ml sour cream
- Freshly grated nutmeg
- 1 tablespoon freshly chopped parsley, optional
- salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
- Preheat your slow cooker if necessary. Melt the olive oil and 1 tablespoon of the butter in a large saucepan. Add the onions and cook on a low heat for 10-15 minutes or until the onions are soft, translucent and beginning to turn light golden. Using a slotted spoon, remove the onions from the pan and transfer to the slow cooker.
- Place the plain flour and paprika in a bowl with some salt and pepper. Toss the beef pieces in the seasoned flour. Turn the heat up to high and add the beef to the pan in batches, frying until golden brown. Once all the beef has browned, transfer it to the slow cooker.
- Add the mustard to the pan (it might splatter so please be careful) and cook for 1-2 minutes, stirring. Add the Worcestershire sauce, Madeira or brandy, if using and simmer for a few minutes until the liquid has reduced by roughly half.
- Stir in the beef stock, bring to the boil and pour the mixture into the slow cooker. Cook on HIGH for 4-5 hours or LOW for 6-8 hours.
- During the final 35 minutes of cooking time, place a small pan on a high heat and add 1 tablespoon of butter and a splash of oil. Add the sliced mushrooms and cook for 3-4 minutes or until they are starting to turn golden and crisp. Add the mushrooms to the contents of the slow cooker and stir. Cook for a further 30 minutes or until the beef is meltingly tender.
- When you're ready to serve, stir in the sour cream and add a good grating of fresh nutmeg. Season to taste and sprinkle with the freshly chopped parsley before serving.
Serve the Stroganoff with creamy mashed potatoes, rice or wide egg noodles.
Nutrition Information:Yield: 4 Serving Size: 1
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 443Total Fat: 26gSaturated Fat: 11gTrans Fat: 1gUnsaturated Fat: 11gCholesterol: 69mgSodium: 1023mgCarbohydrates: 30gFiber: 4gSugar: 7gProtein: 18g
Calories and nutritional information are provided by a third party application and should be viewed as indicative figures only.