Looking for a budget meal this week? This Instant Pot ground beef stew with potatoes (also known as Poor Man’s Stew) is hearty and delicious using inexpensive ingredients that will feed the whole family. This one-pot dish is super easy and quick to make, so it’s great for those busy weekdays.
BUDGET-FRIENDLY GROUND BEEF STEW
With only a handful of fresh ingredients such as budget-friendly ground beef, potatoes, onions, carrots and celery, plus a few pantry items you most likely already have, this ground beef stew is very affordable and can stretch across multiple meals if you make an extra-large batch. It freezes well too, so it’s great to batch-cook ahead of time.
HOW TO SERVE GROUND BEEF STEW
The stew is made as a one-pot dish, which means that it can be served on its own. It’s kind of like a very thick soup with meat and veggies in one pot, so the only thing you might want to add is a side of bread or dinner rolls. A dollop of sour cream or some grated cheese also works really well with this ground beef stew.
If you want to stretch it out, you can serve the stew over cooked rice, pasta, couscous or quinoa. You can also serve a simple side of green beans or broccoli or a green leafy salad.
HOW TO MAKE INSTANT POT GROUND BEEF STEW
This ground beef stew recipe is super easy! You only need a few key ingredients and the dish comes together in under 30 minutes. We used a 6-quart Instant Pot Duo. You can find the full recipe ingredients and a nutritional breakdown below these step-by-step photos.
Step 1. Prepare all ingredients before you start cooking as this dish comes together very quickly.
Step 2. Turn the Saute button on Instant Pot (Normal setting). Add olive oil and onions and cook for about 2 minutes, stirring a couple of times. Then add carrots and celery and cook for 2 more minutes to soften slightly. Learn more about all the Instant Pot buttons here.
Step 3. Add the ground beef, garlic, mixed herbs, salt and pepper and stir through. Cook on Saute for a couple of minutes until all beef has changed color to brown. Press Cancel to stop the Saute function.
Step 3. Pour in the water and stir through really well, scraping the bottom with the spatula.
Step 4. Add potatoes and crumbled beef stock cube and stir through. Finish by spreading the crushed tomatoes on top, don’t stir through too much.
Step 5. Pop and close the lid. Set to Manual/Pressure Cook on HIGH pressure for 5 minutes. After 3 beeps, the Instant Pot will start building up pressure (should take about 7-10 minutes) and the cooking will commence. Once the timer goes off, allow 5 minutes for the pressure to release naturally and then do the quick release to let off the steam.
Step 6. While the stew is cooking, mix a tablespoon of flour with about 3 tablespoons of water in a small bowl into a slurry-like mixture. Set aside.
Step 7. Open the pot and stir this flour slurry into the cooked, hot stew. This will thicken the liquid. Taste for salt and pepper and season more if you like. Serve as is or with a dollop of sour cream or some grated cheese.
MORE GROUND BEEF INSTANT POT RECIPES
Instant Pot Ground Beef Stew (Budget-Friendly, One-Pot)
- Prep Time: 10 minutes
- Cook Time: 20 minutes
- Total Time: 30 minutes
- Yield: 4-6 1x
- Category: Main
- Method: Instant Pot
- Cuisine: American
Learn how to make quick and easy, budget-friendly Instant Pot ground beef stew with potatoes and carrots. Using cheap ingredients, this beef stew takes less than 30 minutes and will feed the whole family.
1 cup of water
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 medium onion, diced
2 carrots, sliced
1 celery rib, diced into small cubes
1 lb / 450-50 g ground beef
1 lb / 450-500 g white potatoes, peeled and cut into cubes
2 cloves of garlic, chopped
1 teaspoon dry mixed herbs or Italian herbs (or any dry herbs you have on hand)
1 x beef stock cube
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon pepper
1 x 14-15oz can of crushed tomatoes
1 tablespoon all-purpose flour + 3 tbsp water (for thickening the stew)
Optional: sour cream for serving
- Prepare all ingredients before you start cooking as this dish comes together very quickly.
- Turn the Saute button on Instant Pot (Normal setting). Add olive oil and onions and cook for about 2 minutes, stirring a couple of times. Then add carrots and celery and cook for 2 more minutes to soften slightly.
- Add the ground beef, garlic, mixed herbs, salt and pepper and stir through. Cook on Saute for a couple of minutes until all beef has changed color to brown. Press Cancel to stop the Saute function.
- Pour in 1 cup of water and stir through really well, scraping the bottom with the spatula.
- Add potatoes and crumbled beef stock cube and stir through. Finish by spreading the crushed tomatoes on top, don’t stir through too much.
- Pop and close the lid. Set to Manual/Pressure Cook on HIGH pressure for 5 minutes. After 3 beeps, the Instant Pot will start building up pressure (should take about 7-10 minutes) and the cooking will commence. Once the timer goes off, allow 5 minutes for the pressure to release naturally and then do the quick release to let off the steam.
- While the stew is cooking, mix a tablespoon of flour with about 3 tablespoons of water in a small bowl into a slurry-like mixture. Set aside.
- Open the pot and stir this flour slurry into the cooked, hot stew. This will thicken the liquid. Taste for salt and pepper and season more if you like.
- Serve as is or with a dollop of sour cream or some grated cheese.
Pressurizing time: 7-8 minutes | Cooking under pressure: 5 minutes (on HIGH) | Release: 5 minutes natural release, followed by quick release.
FREEZING/STORAGE TIPS: Store leftover beef stew for up to 3 days in the refrigerator. Freeze cooked stew for up to 3 months after cooling. Defrost in the fridge overnight or in a microwave.
SIDES: bread or dinner rolls, rice, potatoes, pasta or quinoa, green vegetables or a salad.
- Serving Size: 1/4 of the stew
- Calories: 393
- Sugar: 9 g
- Sodium: 1014.4 mg
- Fat: 15.5 g
- Saturated Fat: 4.4 g
- Carbohydrates: 35.7 g
- Fiber: 6.6 g
- Protein: 29.4 g
- Cholesterol: 70.9 mg
Keywords: Stew, Ground Beef, Potatoes, Beef, Instant Pot, Budget-Friendly, Cheap, Dinner, One-Pot
We love this recipe.I cook this once about every 2 weeks you can add just a little more meat and a lot more vegetables and feed a family of nine
9, wow that’s definitely a crowd to please. Glad it’s on rotation.
We really enjoyed this recipe. Made with things we usually have in the refrigerator and freezer. Easy, quick, and satisfying. Definitely going in the family cookbook.
Cheers, Curtis. It’s a great meal for using up kitchen staples 🙂
Delicious! It was also super easy. My husband was making pasties and had left over veggies cut up so I used them. This meant we had rutabaga in our stew and it was really good!
I am so happy to have run across this recipe. It really was delicious. I did sub ground venison in place of the beef- I had it in the freezer and wanted to use it up. Also subbed gluten free flour as a thickener. Other than that I followed the recipe, and will definitely be using it again.
Glad you enjoyed it, Alicia 🙂
your recipe calls for 1 cup of water on the first line. Then under the teaspoon of dry mixed herbs 1 cup of water is listed again. In the instructions there is only 1 cup of water used. Is it a typo?
It’s 1 cup only. Thanks Frank for letting us know, the list is updated now.
I was suprised at how good it was and how easy. This recipe is a keeper. The only problem I encountered was that the amount of water to add to the pot (1 cup) prior to cooking and for the slurry (1 Tablespoon of flour and 3 Tablespoons of water) is not listed in the ingredients and is vital. Thankfully it was in the detailed instructions. I did prep everything as was recommended but you can’t prep whats not included in the ingredients.
I did not use the slurry, thought it was fine just as it was.
Thanks, glad you enjoyed it! We added the water amount in the ingredients as well as instructions.
How much water for the recipe, it is not in the list of ingredients??
Apologies, this has been updated in the recipe ingredients!
how much water? recipe says pour in water but doesn’t say how much
In the ingredients list and the step-by-step photos, 1 cup of water.
“Pour in water…”
I’ve searched ingredients several times and do NOT see a listing for water…..
I’m going to use Swanson Unsalted Stock, will see how much works well.
(Swanson Unsalted is non-GMO and GF.)
1 cup of water. Stock will give it a nice flavor too, a great substitute.
Is the only liquid the canned tomatoes? No water or stock, correct?
1 cup of water. Please check out the step-by-step photos.
Step 6 says mix 1 T of water with 3 T of water. 1 T of water should say flour.
I caught that also…I have instant pots but am making this stew on the stove today. Subbed GF flour as well as Herb Ox makes GF and Sodium Free chicken and beef bouillon. I like that it is also granulated! One drawback: Package does state that product “May be produced with genetic engineering”…..Heck, I’m fine with that for the small am’t used, and I must buy GF. That it’s also sodium reduced offsets the salt from the 2 slices (diced) Applegate Sunday bacon. I reduce other salt ingredient to 1/4 tsp. We’re fine with that.
Also using a mix of ground chicken and turkey since beef is not included in our diet. Will post again after I complete the dish, with possibility of swapping out the Italian Herbs for ground cumin, dry Mexican oregano, and paprika. When I saw this recipe, it reminded me of ground beef soup that we had often in our Puerto Rican household, growing up in Washington Heights. So I chose to try to replicate the “flavor memory” that this recipe triggered..
Thanks, ladies, for posting this recipe.
Thanks for the feedback Iris.