Warm up with a bowl of hearty low FODMAP beef stew. This FODMAP-friendly twist on the cool-weather classic can be made using either a slow cooker or Instant Pot.
There’s something just so satisfying about enjoying a hearty bowl of flavorful stew when the leaves start the turn, and the temperature starts to drop.
Many traditional stew recipes, although delicious, use high FODMAP ingredients like garlic or onion and can take hours to cook on the stove.
This low FODMAP beef stew recipe features classic ingredients like beef, carrots, and potatoes. Even without onion or garlic, this stew is packed with flavor thanks to umami-rich ingredients like bacon, red wine, and tomato paste.
An Instant Pot or slow cooker can be used to make this recipe. These are some of my favorite kitchen tools, and I think they can make cooking a little easier and more hands-off.
To make this recipe you’ll want to grab the following ingredients:
- Garlic-infused Olive Oil adds a hint of low FODMAP garlic flavor. I use Fody Foods Low FODMAP Garlic-Infused Olive Oil. Learn more about how garlic-infused oil is FODMAP friendly here: Low FODMAP Garlic and Onion Substitutes
- Bacon adds a boost of flavor that only bacon seems to be able to provide. I prefer to use reduced-sodium bacon to help keep overall sodium intake for general wellness in check.
- Cubed Beef is the star of this recipe’s show. Some grocery stores offer pre-cubed beef for stews, which I like to use to help save time. If that’s not available, you can use boneless beef chuck cut into approximately 1-inch cubes.
- Tomato Paste adds an extra boost of richness and umami flavor.
- Dry Red Wine, like Cabernet Sauvignon, further enhances the flavor of the beef and makes for one delicious stew gravy. Red wine is low in FODMAPs; however, alcohol can be a non-FODMAP gut irritant for some people. If you’re avoiding alcohol, you can use additional low FODMAP chicken broth instead.
- Cornstarch helps to thicken the stew. It is mixed with cold water to help prevent lumps when it is added to the other ingredients. Cornstarch is low FODMAP, but if you’re avoiding corn for other non-FODMAP reasons, arrowroot powder can be substituted.
- Low FODMAP Chicken Broth serves as the primary liquid ingredient for this stew. To save time, I use Fody Foods Low FODMAP Chicken Soup Base – about 1½ teaspoons base per 2 cups water. If I have more time, I will make my own from scratch. You can find the recipe I use here: Low FODMAP Chicken Broth.
- Soy Sauce does contain wheat, but has been laboratory-tested by Monash University and is low in FODMAPs. A low FODMAP diet does not need to be gluten-free or wheat-free unless another medical condition like celiac disease or a wheat allergy is present. Use tamari sauce if a gluten-free or wheat-free alternative is needed. I prefer to use reduced-sodium or less-sodium varieties to help keep overall sodium intake for general wellness in check.
- Baby Potatoes is a classic stew ingredient, and potatoes happen to be free from FODMAPs. Win-win.
- Baby Carrots is another classic stew ingredient, and they are also a FODMAP-free veggie. I use baby carrots to help save time, but you could also peel whole carrots and slice them into ½-inch thick pieces.
- Thyme adds a pop of flavor. If you don’t have fresh thyme, dried can be substituted.
You can make this recipe in the slow cooker or Instant Pot. I’ve included the process shots of the slow cooker method below. Find the Instant Pot instructions in the recipe card at the end of this post.
Overall, the main differences between using a slow cooker and a pressure cooker are:
- For the slow cooker method, a skillet is used to crisp the bacon, sear the beef, and prep the liquid. For the Instant Pot method, everything is done in the multi-function pressure cooker.
- For the Instant Pot method, the cornstarch is saved for the very last step. In the slow cooker method, the cornstarch is added with the other liquid ingredients.
To make this low FODMAP beef stew in the slow cooker, simply:
Cook the bacon. Heat a large skillet over medium heat. Add olive oil and bacon. Cook until the bacon is crisp. Using tongs, remove the bacon from the skillet and transfer to the slow cooker.
Sear the cubed beef. To the warm skillet, add the beef cubes. Sear on each side until just browned, about 1 minute per side. Transfer the browned beef and any remaining cooking fat to the slow cooker.
Prep the liquid. To the now-empty skillet, add the tomato paste and red wine. Whisk and gently release any browned bits from the bottom or sides of the pan. Slowly add in the cornstarch slurry, low FODMAP chicken broth, and soy sauce, whisking until smooth. Transfer the liquid to the slow cooker.
Add the veggies and cook. To the slow cooker, add the baby potatoes, baby carrots, and thyme. Stir to mix. Cook on low for 6-8 hours, high for 4-5 hours, or until the beef and veggies are tender. Season to taste with salt and pepper.
Serve. Serve warm with topped with optional chopped parsley or sliced green onion tops. The tops, or green parts, of the green onion are low in FODMAPs.
Make It A Low FODMAP Meal
A serving of this stew may be enough of a meal for some people and not enough for others. We each have unique nutritional needs. In case you’re looking to add extra food to round out your low FODMAP meal, here are a couple of ideas:
Add a serving of FODMAP-friendly fruit
According to US nutrition guidelines, 1 cup or a piece of whole fruit (like an orange) is generally considered a serving of fruit. Strawberries, grapes, or an orange are all options that contain no FODMAPs. Try adding a serving of one of these fruits as a side to your stew.
These are just a few FODMAP-friendly fruits. For a complete list of low FODMAP fruit options, check out the Monash University FODMAP app.
Add a serving of low FODMAP dairy (or dairy alternative)
In general, a serving of dairy is 1 cup of milk or 1 1/2 ounces (40 grams) of cheese, per US nutrition guidelines. Consider having a glass of lactose-free milk or a couple of slices of low-lactose cheese (like Cheddar, Swiss, or Havarti) on the side.
A low FODMAP diet aims to be low in lactose and does not need to be dairy-free unless there are other non-FODMAP reasons (i.e., allergy, protein sensitivity, dietary preference, etc.). If you do limit dairy, almond milk is one low FODMAP milk alternative. Right now, I’m enjoying Blue Diamond Almond Breeze almondmilk.
For more low FODMAP dairy (or dairy alternative) options with serving sizes, please refer to the Monash University FODMAP app.
Try a bowl of one of these FODMAP-friendly soup favorites:
- Turkey Chili with Sweet Potatoes and Lentils
- Chicken Enchilada Soup (Slow Cooker or Instant Pot)
- Greek Lemon Chicken Soup
Warm up with a bowl of hearty low FODMAP beef stew. This FODMAP-friendly twist on the cold-weather classic can be made using either a slow cooker or Instant Pot.
- 1 tablespoon garlic-infused olive oil
- 2 slices lower sodium bacon, diced
- 1 to 1 ½ pounds stew meat or boneless beef chuck, cut into 1-inch cubes
- 2 tablespoons tomato paste
- ½ cup dry red wine, like Cabernet Sauvignon (or additional low FODMAP chicken broth)
- 1 tablespoon cornstarch mixed into 1 tablespoon cold water (save for the final step, if using an Instant Pot)
- 2 cups low FODMAP chicken broth
- 2 tablespoons less-sodium soy sauce (or reduced-sodium tamari sauce for gluten-free)
- 2 cups (about ¾ pound) quartered baby potatoes
- 1 ½ cups (about ½ pound) baby carrots
- 1 tablespoon minced fresh thyme leaves or 1 teaspoon dried thyme
- Salt and pepper, to taste
- Fresh chopped parsley and/or sliced green onion tops (green parts only)
- Heat large skillet over medium heat. Add olive oil and bacon. Cook until bacon is crisp. Using tongs, remove the bacon from the skillet and transfer to the slow cooker.
- To the warm skillet, add the beef cubes. Sear on each side until just browned, about 1 minute per side. Transfer the browned beef and any remaining cooking fat to the slow cooker.
- To the now-empty skillet, add the tomato paste and red wine. Whisk and gently release any browned bits from the bottom or sides of the pan. Slowly add in the cornstarch slurry, chicken broth, and soy sauce, whisking until smooth. Transfer the liquid to the slow cooker.
- To the slow cooker, add the baby potatoes, baby carrots, and thyme. Stir to mix. Cook on low for 6-8 hours, high for 4-5 hours, or until the beef and veggies are tender. Season with salt and pepper to taste.
- Serve warm with optional garnishes.
- Press the “Saute” setting on the Instant Pot. Once hot, add olive oil and bacon. Cook until the bacon is crisp. Using tongs, remove the bacon from the Instant Pot and set aside.
- Add the beef cubes to the Instant Pot and sear on each side until just browned, about 1 minute per side. It may help to do this step in batches, using additional cooking oil, as needed, to prevent burning. Using tongs, remove seared beef cubes and set aside.
- Add the tomato paste and red wine to the Instant Pot. Whisk until smooth while gently scraping the bottom and sides of the Instant Pot to release any of the browned bits. This helps to release flavor, as well as, prevent a “Burn” message from appearing while cooking with the Instant Pot.
- Cancel the “Saute” setting. Add in the chicken broth, soy sauce, baby potatoes, baby carrots, bacon bits, seared beef cubes, and thyme. Stir to mix.
- Place the lid on top of the Instant Pot and secure. Set vent to “Sealing”. Select the “Manual” setting on the Instant Pot. Adjust the time to 35 minutes on “High Pressure” and cook. Allow the pressure to naturally release for 10 minutes before carefully switching the vent to “Venting” and releasing any remaining pressure.
- Prepare the cornstarch slurry and stir into the stew to slightly thicken. Season with salt and pepper to taste.
- Serve warm with optional garnishes.
Storage: Refrigerate leftovers in airtight containers for up to 3 days.
- Category: Main Dish
- Method: Slow Cooker, Instant Pot
- Cuisine: American
Keywords: soup, stew, winter