Crock-Pot Beef Bourguignon reduces time spent in the kitchen but does not take short-cuts with flavor. Beef, bacon, mushrooms, carrots, and onions are slow-cooked to perfection in a rich red wine sauce.
Crock-Pot Beef Bourguignon is tagged as a special occasion dinner recipe because it's feast-worthy, much like Beef and Vegetables in a Red Wine Sauce and Black Forest Pot Roast. It sounds like something you would sit down to for New Year's Eve Dinner, Valentine's Day or an anniversary.
I'm sure Julia Child would agree. It was one of her specialties so you know it's good.
Although I'm not sure how Julia would feel about cooking it all day in a slow cooker, I'm sure she would appreciate the reasoning behind this method...more time with family and friends!
Not that you need to wait for a holiday to make it. It's special occasion worthy, but weeknight friendly because it has a time-saving twist!
Best Beef to Use for Crock-Pot Beef Bourguignon
We use a beef shoulder roast, cut into 2-inch cubes for this recipe. It's also known as shoulder clod roast. It's a type of chuck roast that is lean.
You'll often find stew meat already prepared and that will also work in this recipe.
Should you sear beef cubes first?
Yes! It will caramelize the outside of the beef and seal in the flavor. It's worth the extra step, especially if you're making Slow Cooker Beef Bourguignon for a special dinner.
Use the grease that remains in the pan used to cook the bacon or add a little olive oil to do the job.
To sear the beef cubes, blot them dry and then place them in the pan heated over medium-high heat. Cook each cube for 1-3 minutes on each side or until they brown and have a slightly crispy crust.
The Best Red Wine for Crock-Pot beef Bourguignon
A critical ingredient in Crock-Pot Beef Bourguignon is good red wine. First, never cook with anything that you wouldn't drink! The bottles you find on the grocery aisle have lots of added salt. Yuck!
Instead, buy one of these red wines:
- Pinot Noir
How to Thicken the Sauce for Slow Cooker Beef Bourguignon
Another important step in this recipe occurs at the very end. Make a slush of water and flour (or cornstarch to keep it gluten-free.) Stir the mixture into the slow cooker about 30 minutes before serving time. Magically...a beautiful, smooth and velvety red wine sauce will develop!
What to Serve with Crock-Pot Beef Bourguignon
One of the best things about this recipe is that it's truly a complete meal. Even so, consider adding these sides to the meal:
- Rolls - to sop up that wonderful sauce! Check out these homemade dinner rolls by Mom on Timeout.
- Mashed potatoes - ditto for sopping up the sauce.
- Side salad - to stretch out the meal.
- A decadent dessert, like Flourless Chocolate Cake.
And, if you happen to have leftovers, make Mini Beef Pot Pies with Crescent Rolls the next day!
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Crock-Pot Beef Bourguignon
- 6 slices bacon cut into 1 inch pieces
- 2 pounds beef shoulder roast cut into 2 inch cubes
- 1 medium onion sliced
- 3 carrots cut into 1 inch pieces
- 1 pound mushrooms quartered
- 1 cup broth chicken, beef or vegetable
- ½ teaspoon dried thyme
- ½ teaspoon salt
- ¼ teaspoon pepper
- 1 Tablespoon tomato paste
- 1 cup red wine such as Pinot Noir, Merlot or Hearty Burgundy
- 3 garlic cloves minced
- 1 bay leaf
- 3 Tablespoons flour or cornstarch
- ⅓ cup cold water
- Cook bacon over medium-high heat until crispy.
- Remove bacon to a paper towel-lined plate to drain, leaving excess grease in the pan.
- Blot meat dry with a paper towel and then transfer it (in batches) to the pan with bacon grease
- Sear beef cubes for 1 to 3 minutes on each side over medium-heat.
- As beef cubes are done, transfer them to a crock pot.
- Add bacon, onions, carrots, and mushrooms to the crock-pot.
- Pour broth over the beef and vegetables.
- Sprinkle thyme, salt and pepper over the beef and vegetables.
- Stir tomato paste, wine and garlic together in a small bowl and then pour over beef and vegetables.
- Tuck bay leaf into the crock pot.
- Cook 4-5 hours on high or 6-8 hours on low.
- About 30 minutes before serving time, stir together flour and cold water.
- Add flour mixture to the crock pot and stir into beef and vegetables.
- Remove bay leaf and enjoy.