Pressure-Cooker Beef Stew

1 lb small/new potatoes, scrubbed or peeled (about 8)
1 lb beef stew meat
2 large onions, peeled and cut into quarters
4 medium carrots, peeled and cut into 3-inch chunks
1 sweet potato, peeled and cut into 3-inch chunks
14-oz can petite diced tomatoes
3 beef bouillon cubes
1/2 C water
1 T Worcestershire sauce
2 bay leaves
1-1/2 t dried thyme
1/2 t cinnamon
1/4 t ground cloves
2 cloves garlic, minced
Lots of black pepper

Coarsely chop 2 of the potatoes. Place them and the whole potatoes in the pressure cooker along with the rest of the ingredients. Don’t be tempted to chop any of the vegetables smaller, or they will disappear into mush.

Bring the cooker up to pressure and cook for 16 minutes. Allow pressure to come down naturally for at least 10 minutes. (Do not use a quick-release method, or the beef will be tough.)

If the beef is not tender enough, bring it back up to pressure for a couple of minutes and let the pressure drop naturally a second time.

When the beef is done, you can stir in frozen peas, canned corn, sliced mushrooms, or fresh parsley. Just heat it gently, don’t bring it back to pressure. Add salt to taste.


This was modified from a Lorna Sass recipe, originally published in Cooking Under Pressure. Her version called for the following ingredients:

2 lbs medium new potatoes
2-1/2 lbs stew beef, in 1-1/2 inch cubes
3/4 lb small white onions
3 large carrots, in 3- to 4-inch chunks
3/4 lb parsnips, peeled and cut into thirds (if they are really large, cut into chunks like the carrots)
1-2 cloves garlic
3/4 lb mushrooms
14-oz can chopped tomatoes, including the juice
1/2 c beef stock, bouillon, or dry red wine
1 T Worcestershire sauce
2 bay leaves
1-1/2 t dried thyme
1 t dry mustard
1/8 t ground allspice

And the following items added after cooking:

1 C frozen, defrosted peas or green beans
1/4 C chopped fresh parsley
1/2 t salt, or to taste
Fresh-ground black pepper