I went ahead and tried another Instant Pot meal. I figured I can make a pretty amazing mac and cheese, so why not try beef stew? So I did.
What’s it take to make a beef stew? Some stewing beef, a couple potatoes, a sweet potato, a jumbo carrot, a cookie stalks of celery and some onion.
I browned the chunks of beef in my favourite pan while I sautéed in the Instant Pot the finely chopped onions and celery stalk. Once the beef was browned and the onions and celery were limp, I then added the coarsely chopped potatoes, sweet potatoes, and carrot.
I poured in some veggie stock, because that’s what I had on hand, but when I make the beef stew again, I’ll use beef stock to see if it adds more depth to the flavour. I also added a can of tomato soup concentrate, but again, next time I’ll make sure I have tomato paste for the stew.
I added some spices (salt and pepper, a bit of Italian seasoning, a couple bay leaves, and a shake of smoked paprika) before putting on the lid and setting the dial for 20 minutes of cook time.
I watched the Instant Pot build pressure to make sure the little vent thingy popped into place before relaxing. Then I let it cook for the 20 minutes. After the 20 minute timer beeped I let it sit and slowly depressurize. Then I released the final bit of pressure before opening the Instant Pot.
The stew was very liquidy so I added about three tablespoons of cornstarch to about a quarter cup of cold water. I mixed the cornstarch slurry into the Instant Pot of stew and then turned the dial back to sauté to bring the pot of stew back to a boil. Within minutes the Instant Pot of stew was at a boil! As the cornstarch slurry mixed into the stew broth it thickened up quite nicely.
All told, with the prep time of cutting up the veggies and browning the beef, getting the Instant Pot up to temperature and pressure, cook time, and then depressurization, thickening the stew, I would estimate it took about an hour to make the beef stew.
And of course the best part of the stew? Both kids actually enjoyed it and ate it up! And we had enough for leftovers for three of us to have enough for lunch the following day. Another Instant Pot success!