Beef Stew with Dumplings


This is a very traditional stew or casserole with lots of names I suspect, brown stew, beef casserole, beef with onion gravy, nothing fancy, no wine or garlic, just simple flavours to make a delicious dinner. Leftover meat and sauce is perfect for a pie filling too, in fact, I always make double quantities so that half can go into small pies to be frozen for another day.

I have started adding dumplings to lots of my slow cooked meals to try and fill my boys up! While the oven is on I bake potatoes to go with this and have a rice pudding bubbling away on the bottom shelf too, there’s no point wasting the oven space!

Serves 10-12.


2kg beef, diced

splash of olive oil

3 large onions, sliced

1 tablespoon English mustard

3 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce

1.5 litres beef stock

50g cornflour

200mls water

a fresh herb bouquet garni, thyme, parsley, sage and rosemary tied together with kitchen string

3 large carrots, peeled and diced

Dumplings –

300g gluten free self raising flour

100g butter, cubed

250mls water or milk


Preheat the oven to 160 degrees Centigrade.

In a large oven proof pan, heat the oil over a medium heat.

Add the onions to the pan and cook until caramelised and golden, around 30mins.

Turn the heat up high and add the beef. Keep stirring it around until it is all sealed.

Pour in the stock, mustard and Worcestershire sauce.

Make a paste with the cornflour and water, pour into the sauce, stirring all of the time until thickened.

Add the bouquet garni and submerge in the sauce.

Cover and pop in the oven for 4 hours.

Towards the end of the four hours, make the dumplings.

Measure the flour into a large bowl, add the cubed butter and rub in.

Pour in the water and form gently into a dough.

Turn the oven up to 180 degrees Centigrade.

Remove the pan from the oven, uncover and drop spoonfuls of dough onto the surface of the stew.

Return to the oven, uncovered and bake for 25-35 mins.

9 thoughts on “Beef Stew with Dumplings”

  1. Oh how I love dumplings added to slow cooked stews! One tip I got from Jamie Oliver is to add a little chopped fresh tarragon to the dumpling mix – it adds so such extra flavour!

  2. My dad’s a retired baker. He makes the best dumplings for stew EVER (not taking away from your lovely efforts) His secret is using slightly off milk, or milk with vinegar added to curdle it. Sounds irky but there’s some sort of science involved in the rising of the dumplings. Scones too 🙂

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