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Make-Ahead Slow Cooker Beef Stew


"Served with fresh bread and a salad, this hearty beef stew is a family favorite. It can be made fresh, browning the meat then tossing all the ingredients together in the slow cooker, or it can be prepared ahead of time for freezing and quick assembly for a quick crock pot meal when you need it! I like to make fresh stew, but double the ingredients and freeze the second portion for a quick dose of comfort food mid-week."
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4 h 30 m servings 467 cals
Original recipe yields 6 servings


  • Calories:
  • 467 kcal
  • 23%
  • Fat:
  • 20.6 g
  • 32%
  • Carbs:
  • 43.8g
  • 14%
  • Protein:
  • 25.3 g
  • 51%
  • Cholesterol:
  • 69 mg
  • 23%
  • Sodium:
  • 1110 mg
  • 44%

Based on a 2,000 calorie diet

See full nutrition

Nutritional Information

1 Serving
Servings Per Recipe:
Amount Per Serving
  • * Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your daily values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.
  • ** Nutrient information is not available for all ingredients. Amount is based on available nutrient data.
  • (-) Information is not currently available for this nutrient. If you are following a medically restrictive diet, please consult your doctor or registered dietitian before preparing this recipe for personal consumption.

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  • Prep

  • Cook

  • Ready In

  1. Combine the flour, 1 teaspoon smoked paprika, seasoned salt, and 1/2 teaspoon black pepper in a large, resealable plastic bag. Add the beef, and seal the bag. Shake the bag thoroughly to coat the beef with seasoned flour.
  2. Heat the olive oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Shake the excess seasoning off the beef, then stir the beef into the hot skillet with the onion and mushrooms. Cook and stir until the beef is evenly browned and no longer pink. Drain and discard any excess grease.
  3. Place the beef mixture into a slow cooker. Place the potatoes, carrots, celery, garlic, Marsala wine, and Worcestershire sauce into the cooker with the beef mixture. Pour the beef broth and tomatoes into the cooker, and stir in the onion soup mix and 1 more teaspoon of smoked paprika. Cook on High for 4 to 6 hours, or on Low for 10 to 12 hours. Season to taste with salt and black pepper.
  4. For a thicker stew, combine cornstarch and water in a small bowl. Gradually stir the mixture into the stew until thickened.


  • Cook's Note
  • To freeze and make stew later, place the beef mixture into a freezer bag after Step 2, and freeze. Place potatoes, carrots, and celery into a separate freezer bag, and freeze. Mix together the garlic, Marsala wine, and Worcestershire sauce into a third small bag, and freeze. The day before you want to cook the stew, allow the three bags to thaw out in the refrigerator overnight, and place the contents of the 3 bags into the slow cooker. Then pour the beef broth and tomatoes into the cooker, and stir in the onion soup mix and smoked paprika as directed in Step 3. Finish cooking as directed in the instructions.
  • Easy Cleanup
  • Try using a liner in your slow cooker for easier cleanup.

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Read all reviews 178
  1. 255 Ratings

Most helpful positive review

This was so good! My search for a great beef stew is finally over. My husband raved about it while he was eating it, mentioned it again later that night, and then raved again when we had lefto...

Most helpful critical review

This was OK. Even after adding the flour the gravy was too thin for us. And there just wasn't much taste. Won't be making this one again I am afraid.

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Most positive
Least positive

This was so good! My search for a great beef stew is finally over. My husband raved about it while he was eating it, mentioned it again later that night, and then raved again when we had lefto...

Outstanding! I made minor changes: omitted the wine since I didn't have any and the mushrooms because I don't like them in stew, increased carrots, celery, potatoes by about 50%. This is now THE...

I really liked this. I changed a little bit but overall was the same recipe. I didn't have marsala so i used dry white wine and i used regular paprika. The flavor is great, i will make that agai...

Delicious! I made as written with a few enhancements. I added some spices from another recipe - one heaping teaspoon rosemary, one teaspoon parsley and two bay leaves. What flavor! Because ...

I really wanted this recipe to blow me away with the marsala wine and tomatoes. It was definatly really good but I would haave liked more.......... something. I read the reviews about most of th...

This is a very nice change from the bay leaf recipies I normally use. I used a Sweet Marsala and it added a really nice hint of sweetness to it. I did thicken the gravy a bit more at the end b...

Yum yum...this was so great. I used regular paprika instead of spanish and it was still awesome. Thanks for submitting!

My husband & I really enjoyed this stew! We love crock pot cooking since it's easy & typically yields enough for left overs. I left out the wine since we don't care for that flavor, used 2.5 p...

We assembled this with our cooking group then, my family tried the frozen, place everything in the crock pot method--and it was simply, delicious and full of flavor! Total time saver! I will cer...