Instant Pot Beef Stew with Bourbon and Root Vegetables

There are so many factors that determine what we eat in my house. Pleasing everyone is extremely difficult to do when I have two meat eating males in the house and one vegan who won’t even look at meat. For the most part, I’m happy to go along with either diet as long as it tastes good. Even though I grew up eating red meat almost daily, I find that with the cost of beef and the time it takes to prepare a decent meat based dinner really dissuades me from cooking with red meat on a regular basis. Chickpeas are much cheaper than beef these days…

Still, there are times when I crave a perfectly grilled steak or comforting stew and I head on down to the store to buy some premium Alberta beef. Steaks are now reserved for special occasions only, while cheaper cuts like short ribs, mince, and stew meat. Generally, the cheaper the cut of beef, the longer cooking time it will need to turn into a tasty, edible dish. As a busy mom, time is not always on my side…I usually have several appointments during the day which means making meals within the carved out little chunks of home time. This is where the Instant Pot comes in so handy! I’ve already posted my first Instant Pot made meal for Pork Medallions with Herbs and Mushrooms and it was so well read that I decided to post more of my Instant Pot experiments with you all. From the comments, I feel like I may have sold several Instant Pots and now I’m kicking myself for not being an affiliate!

This recipe began as a beef stew, but ended up as a ‘clean out the pantry/fridge’ mish mash. There were ‘elder’ cipollini onions in the pantry which was hanging out with a semi funky rutabaga. Also, I would really like to know who put two slices of cooked bacon in the fridge! It was probably me. I added bourbon because I thought it would highlight the sweetness of the rutabaga and other root vegetables and it was a nice change from the usual splash of red wine.


Instant Pot Beef Stew with Bourbon and Root Vegetables


0.0 rating
  • DF
A comforting beef stew that tastes like it's been simmering all day...but hasn't.
  • Difficulty:Easy
  • Prep Time:20 mins
  • Cook Time:40 mins
  • Serves:4

Nutrition per portion

  • 2 lbs/approx 1 kg. Stewing Beef
  • 2 slices cooked bacon; crumbled
  • 1/2 cup Flour
  • Salt and Pepper
  • Olive Oil
  • 1 medium rutabaga; peeled and cut into 2 cm dice
  • 4 carrots; peeled and cut into 2 cm dice
  • 1 cup small cipollini onions; peeled or 1 medium onion peeled and roughly chopped
  • 4 cloves garlic; minced
  • 1/2 cup bourbon
  • 2 cups beef broth
  • 1 tbsp tomato purée
  • bunch of fresh thyme
  • bunch of fresh rosemary
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 1 cup frozen peas
  1. Combine flour with salt and pepper on a plate.
  2. Pour 2 tbsp oil into the Instant Pot insert and turn on sauté.
  3. Dredge 1/3 stewing beef in the flour mixture and place in Instant Pot insert. Brown in batches, removing browned beef before starting the next batch. You can also use a separate stove top frying pan for this step.
  4. Remove all browned beef and add beef broth to insert/frying pan to deglaze. Scrape with a spatula to grab all the tasty bits.
  5. Add bourbon, garlic, tomato paste, 2 sprigs rosemary, 2 sprigs thyme, cipollini onions to deglazing pan. Leave to simmer for a few minutes, then transfer to the Instant Pot insert.
  6. Transfer beef to Instant Pot insert, wipe rim and fit lid on the Instant Pot, ensuring valve is set to ‘sealing’. On manual mode, set Instant Pot to ‘high pressure’ and add 10 minutes to the timer. After ten minutes, release the pressure and check the beef. If it isn’t tender, give it another ten under high pressure.
  7. Once the beef is tender, add the vegetables, bay leaves, and some extra herbs and cook on low pressure for 12 minutes. Release the pressure and check to make sure the vegetables are cooked through.


  1. chefkim1968

    Looks delicious, I cooked beef stew in my “knockoff” InstaPot today too! LOL! Great minds think alike!

    1. dishnthekitchen

      yay! too bad it’s not Tuesday. We could call it ‘Stuesday’. #nerd

      1. diversivore

        *snort* Stuesday. I’m on board for that.
        “Hey, what day is it today?”

  2. foodisthebestshitever

    See, pleasing everybody can be hard until you start throwing a little bourbon in your stew! Nice one B. I do love me a good stew 👌

    1. dishnthekitchen

      I know right? Bourbon makes everything better…

  3. MeaghanC

    Looks so good! Love the addition of bourbon instead of wine. Will definitely try next time I make stew.

  4. aiming4simple

    Your photos are so lovely! I’ve never cooked with bourbon, but this is tempting me to try!

  5. Teresa

    This looks terrific and you could be an InstaPot representative, for sure!

  6. diversivore

    I love a good stew. Gotta say though, I’d never thought of putting bourbon in! I love the idea. I bet it works really well with the earthy sweetness of the root veggies.

    1. dishnthekitchen

      yep, as mentioned in the post 🙂 It went especially well with the rutabaga!

  7. chef mimi

    A lovely stew! And I know what you mean – I’ve got pescatarians in my family and it does create extra work – especially for major holidays!

  8. Carnivore Confidential

    Hey there (thanks for stopping by my humble musings) … I too love a good stew (s’Tuesday … bwahahahaha) 🙂 but seriously, … please enlighten me on an “instant pot” … I feel kind of silly for asking but, I’m not familiar with that term … are you referring to a digital pressure cooker ??
    CHEERS and thanks for sharing … 🙂

    1. dishnthekitchen

      Yes, for sure! It’s an electric pressure cooker. Canadian designed. They are quite popular right now because they are ultra quick and take most of the ‘danger’ away from stove top pressure cookers.

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