Easy Beef Bourguignon | Beef Stew with Red Wine

This Easy Beef Bourguignon recipe kinda has it all. A dish made from incredible, melt-in-the-mouth beef, excessive amounts of red wine and a simple yet highly effective selection of perfectly suited aromatic ingredients.

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Beautiful chunks of beef, damn-near melted onions and caramelised mushrooms all wrapped up in a red wine sauce.


When I was young, a casserole meant stewing down a bunch of random vegetables quickly and without much love or care. It was a necessity that allowed my mother to work two jobs and still provide food.

It’s a necessity that I now, as an adult, understand and appreciate a little better. But at the time, the lack of love in those meals was a frequent source of disappointment to me.

I adore food. I have since I was as young as I remember being. So perhaps it was unfair of me to expect my struggling single mother to compete. Especially given my high standards. At least for a child of that age.


As a result, I avoided stews and casseroles for a long time. They bored me, quite frankly, though it was nobody’s fault but my own. And it was only when I first started exploring French cuisine that I started to realise there was more to the world of stews than simply piling everything in and hoping for the best.

I certainly didn’t realise they could be so carefully thought out an affair. And such an intricate one. But indeed, they absolutely can.

Delicious, slow cooked pieces of beef, cooked in red wine.
Delicious, slow cooked pieces of beef, cooked with red wine.

About the dish

Beef Bourguignon. A simple stew made with beef, baby onions, mushrooms, bacon and lots and lots and lots of red wine. So much red wine, in fact, that no stock is used. Which means you end up with an extremely rich, extremely bold, extremely delicious dish.

It is made in numerous ways. Sometimes cooked on the stovetop, gradually cooking away on the heat. Other times, in a slow-cooker. Much the same approach, but quicker, easier and lazier.


And then, as we have in this instance, there are times when it is cooked in the oven. This helps the dish to cook evenly and it allows us to open up the pot at the end and really blast the heat at the top of the dish, creating extra char and texture.

In some recipes everything is cooked together, as in the examples above. In others the garnishes are cooked separately, and are carefully placed atop the dish for a more carefully constructed presentation. And arguably a better flavour and texture. Or at least a little more variety in that respect.

Easy beef bourguignon, absolutely packed with red wine.
Easy beef bourguignon, absolutely packed with red wine.

About this dish

This nice and easy version of the Beef Bourguignon is cooked with simplicity in mind. Though not to the extent that flavour is sacrificed for simplicity.

As such, we will be cooking everything together. But we will also be making sure that we pack in every bit of necessary, beautiful flavour beforehand. So that doing so is a sincere attempt at making the dish better. Cooking it this way means the flavour of the red wine and the thyme soak their way into all the other ingredients. And that the flavours of the beef and the bacon are able to spread out into the sauce.

And what you lose in texture by cooking everything at once, we will make up for by opening the lid during the last half hour of the cook. This will crisp up the top of the Bourguignon, intensifying the flavour and creating a wonderful new texture you might otherwise have to get from separately cooked pieces of crispy bacon (for example).


We will also be using beef shin where possible. I actually used a combination of shin and another, less exciting cut, because it’s what I had hanging around.

You can use whatever beef you like, as long as it’s suited to an hour or two of cooking. But shin is a wonderful option because it melts into something completely different. All of the fat and collagen in the cut breaks down into a beautiful, soft jelly. It’s tasty and literally melts in the mouth.

A quick guide | Easy Beef Bourguignon

Mise en place – beef bourguignon.

We’ll start by reducing our wine with a few aromatic ingredients. Onion, carrot, garlic, a bay leaf and some thyme. You can throw in some celery if you have some available.

It’s then a simple case of chopping everything up and making everything available for when we need it.

We’ll wash and chop up our mushrooms, then peel our tiny, baby onions. The latter takes a little while. But they do have a certain character that chopped up onion simply doesn’t have.


Then we’ll chop up our bacon, perhaps a little extra garlic and our beef, which we will season and liberally dust with flour.

We’ll fry off the bacon in oil until it starts to crisp up, followed by the mushrooms and the floured meat.

Once that begins to sear, we’ll throw the baby onions into the pot and we’ll keep going until everything is nice and colourful. Then we’ll add our red wine reduction and pop everything straight in the oven, where we’ll cook it for an hour and a half before removing the lid and cooking it for a further hour, checking the liquid level as we go so that we can top up if necessary.

Easy Beef Bourguignon Recipe | Ed-Chef

A few final things to remember

  • As long as your beef is equipped to handle a long, slow cook, you’re good to go. But cuts like shin work best of all because they change so substantially while they cook.
  • You can substitute ingredients as required. For example, in the above pictures, I actually used baby shallots instead of baby onions. Though I would recommend the traditional approach where possible.
  • Don’t rush it. Reducing the wine takes time. You really want it to take on all of those wonderful flavours. And cooking the beef takes time too. Who wants crunchy, chewy pieces of meat when they can have delicious, melting slithers of beautiful, tender beef?

Similar Recipes & Useful Sides

Easy Pork & Sausage Cassoulet – Another wonderful stew right here. This time with pork, sausage and beans.

Delicious, Fruit Moroccan Lamb Stew – A Morrocan dish this time. A lovely, fruity lamb stew in the style of a traditional tagine!

The Easiest, Tastiest Beef & Ale Casserole – And all the way back to beef! This time with ale, rather than red wine.

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Also known as bouef bourguignon, the dish is eaten all over the world.

Easy Beef Bourguignon | Beef Stew with Red Wine

This Easy Beef Bourguignon recipe kinda has it all. A dish made from incredible, melt-in-the-mouth beef, excessive amounts of red wine and a simple yet highly effective selection of perfectly suited aromatic ingredients.
Cook Time 2 hrs
Course Main Course
Cuisine French
Servings 2


  • 500 g Braising Beef
  • 1/2 btl Red Wine
  • 1 lrg White Onion
  • 1 Carrot
  • 5 cloves Garlic
  • 1 Bay Leaf
  • 1 handful Thyme
  • 2 rashers Bacon
  • 2 cups Button Mushrooms
  • 1 cup Baby Onions
  • Plain Flour
  • Butter
  • Cooking Oil
  • Salt
  • Black Pepper



  • Roughly chop your onion, carrot and 3 of the 5 cloves of garlic
  • Tie your bunch of thyme so it doesn’t separate, either with a long, strong piece of the thyme itself or with a little string.
  • In a pan on a low heat, pour in half a bottle of red wine and add the thyme, bay leaf, chopped onions, carrot and garlic. Reduce slowly for a couple of hours.
  • Peel your baby onions and chop your mushrooms either into halves or quarters, depending on their size.
  • Slice your bacon into suitably sized pieces, more akin to lardons.
  • Crush the remaining two cloves of garlic and set them aside.
  • Dice the beef into big chunks and dust generously with flour, trying to coat evenly and thoroughly.


  • Pre-heat an oven to 180c.
  • In an ovenproof pan for which you have a lid, fry the bacon in oil until it begins to cook. You want the pan on medium-high heat.
  • Add the mushrooms and the meat and fry until everything starts to brown.
  • Add the baby onions and season everything with salt. Keep stirring so that the flour doesn’t burn.
  • Once the onions have started to colour, strain the reduced wine into the pan and stir to bring to temperature.
  • Once it begins to simmer, put the lid onto the pot and transfer to the oven, cooking for roughly an hour and a half. You might want to check the liquid level as it cooks. If it reduces too far, just add a little water.
  • Once that hour and a half is up, remove the lid and cook for a further half an hour to crisp up the top layer.
  • You can then remove the Beef Bourguignon from the oven and season with any additional salt and black pepper you might require. You could also stir in a little butter at this stage if you would like to further thicken the sauce.
Keyword beef, beef bourguignon, beef casserole, beef stew, beef stew with red wine, beef with red wine, bourguignon, red wine

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