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One-pot beef stifado in a casserole pot and on a plate

One-pot beef stifado

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  • Preparation and cooking time
    • Prep:
    • Cook:
  • Easy
  • Serves 6

Make this delicately spiced stew ahead of time for last-minute gatherings. Ideal for freezing, the flavours of this Greek-style stew intensify when made ahead

  • Gluten-free
  • Healthy
Nutrition: Per serving


  • 3 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 kg stewing beef, cut into large chunks (chuck or shin works well)
  • 600g baby onions or small shallots (see tip, below)
  • pinch of golden caster sugar
  • 4 garlic cloves, chopped
  • 4 bay leaves
  • 1 cinnamon stick
  • pinch each of ground allspice and ground cloves
  • 1 tbsp dried oregano
  • 1 tbsp tomato purée
  • 1 tbsp red wine vinegar
  • 2 x 400g cans chopped tomatoes
  • 150ml red wine


  • STEP 1

    Heat the oven to 180C/160C fan/gas 4. Heat 2 tbsp oil in a flameproof casserole over a medium-high heat and brown the beef all over, removing it to a plate with a slotted spoon as you go (you may need to do this in batches). Drizzle the rest of the oil into the pan. Peel the onions (but leave whole) and add to the pan, then scatter over the sugar. Sizzle for 5 mins, stirring now and then until starting to brown. Add the garlic, bay, cinnamon stick, allspice, cloves and oregano, and cook for 1 min more. Stir in the tomato purée and cook for another minute, then tip in the beef along with any resting juices. Stir to coat in the spiced onion mixture.

  • STEP 2

    Add the red wine vinegar and chopped tomatoes. Rinse the cans out with the wine and pour it in, then add a third of a can of water. Season with salt and stir well. Bring to a simmer, stir again, then cover with the lid and transfer to the oven for 1 hr.

  • STEP 3

    Remove from the oven and stir again. If the sauce looks very thick, add a splash more water. Cover again and return to the oven for another hour, or until the meat is fork-tender – the timing will depend on the cut you’ve used. Serve hot. To get ahead, leave to cool completely, then transfer to an airtight container and chill for up to three days or freeze for up to three months. Defrost completely in the fridge overnight, then reheat in a pan over a low heat with a splash more water to loosen, if needed.

Recipe tips

To easily peel baby onions, tip in a heatproof bowl and cover with boiling water from the kettle. Leave until cool enough to handle. The skins should slip off easily, then you can add the soaking water to the pot in step two.

ONE-POT LAMB STIFADO If you prefer, use 1kg diced lamb (neck fillet or shoulder work well) in place of the beef.

Goes well with

Recipe from Good Food magazine, November 2021


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A star rating of 4.8 out of 5.5 ratings

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