Belgian Beef Stew

When we went to Belgium this past summer, the weather was in the midst of changing from spring to summer. When we arrived, the weather was dank, overcast, and in the 50’s. While we were there, a heat wave hit Europe. Suddenly it was sunny and in the mid-90’s. We got to enjoy the best of both seasons: we ate hearty stews and soups when the weather was cool, and enjoyed all the wonderful street food while the weather was warm. (I’m including gratuitous photo of the Grand Place in Brussels.)

Now that the weather here has cooled off, I look forward making all my favorite cold weather food. One addition to the list is this Belgian beef stew. We ate it for our first dinner in Belgium. My sister-in-law made it for us, and after 13 hours of traveling with a cranky toddler, this stew was heaven. I was lucky to find some good Belgian beers at World Market, and they tasted great in and with the stew.

adapted from Dutch & Belgian Food and Cooking
by Janny de Moor and Suzanne Vandyck

Belgian Beef Stew

Belgian Beef Stew


2 lbs beef stew meat, cubed
3 Tbs all-purpose flour
2 Tbs butter
2 Tbs vegetable oil
1 large onion, diced
6 oz. mushrooms, quartered
3 garlic cloves, minced
12 oz dark Belgian Beer (I used the Westmalle)
1 bouquet garni (fresh thyme and parsley sprigs tied together with kitchen twine)
2 bay leaves
2 Tbs red wine vinegar
2 Tbs light brown sugar, packed
2 slices rustic brown bread
3 Tbs dijon mustard
2 Tbs chopped fresh parsley
Salt and pepper


  1. Season beef with salt and pepper, then coat them in flour. In a large dutch oven over medium high heat, melt the butter. Add the vegetable oil. Add the beef in batches and brown on all sides. Remove beef to a plate and repeat with remaining batches. Add the onion and mushrooms to the dutch oven and cook until softened, 6-8 minutes. Add the garlic and saute a few minutes more. Return the beef to the dutch oven and stir well to combine.
  2. Pour the beer into the dutch oven and heat to just about boiling. Add the bouquet garni, bay leaves, vinegar, and brown sugar. Cover the pot, reduce heat to low, and simmer for 2 hours, or until the meat has become tender.
  3. Spread the mustard onto the bread in a thick layer. Place it on top of the stew, mustard side down. Replace the lid and simmer the stew for another 20-30 minutes, stirring occasionally. If the bread doesn’t fall apart its own, then break it up into small chunks with your stirring spoon. Remove the bouquet garni and bay leaves. Stir in the parsley. Season with salt and pepper to taste.


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Sweet Comments:

  1. This looks so rich and hearty! Just the type of thing you’d need on a cold, wintery day. Yum!

  2. When everything else is about cookies, sweet treats, mint and choco…I’m glad to stumble upon a beef dish. Something as flavorful as your post is a gem worth finding. It will surely be a hearty dinner ahead!

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