This hearty beef stew is the perfect comfort food that combines protein packed ancient grains with a rich meld of meat, vegetables, and legumes all simmered in a decadent beefy broth. Simple, delicious and clean eat, this gluten-free one pot stew hits the spot (particularly on a cold or rainy day!)
To make this lentil quinoa beef stew, we’re going to need lentils, quinoa, and beef (just like in the title!) along with some beef bone broth, carrots, diced onion, diced butternut squash, light olive oil, bay leaves, coconut oil, and a blend of spices including: Himalayan salt, black pepper, cumin, dried oregano, dried basil, dried rosemary, fennel seeds, rubbed sage, celery seeds, and juniper berries.
To begin, we’re going to season the beef with salt and pepper and brown it in the olive oil over med-high heat. Chuck is perhaps the best cut of beef for this dish but you can always use whatever you have on hand.
We’ll continue cooking the beef until it browns completely before we remove it and set it aside.
Next, we’ll turn our heat down to low and add in the quinoa to the drippings and mix until most of the liquid has been absorbed. This should take a couple minutes.
After the quinoa has absorbed the liquid, we’ll add in the washed and drained lentils and mix it together with the quinoa and let it cook for another minute.
Just as an aside: though lentils and quinoa are naturally gluten-free and are both great options for those with Celiac disease, do be sure to check the labels of your ingredients to verify that is is indeed certified as gluten-free. The reason for this is that these products tend to be grown in close proximity to glutinous grains (such as wheat or rye) and as such are legally permitted to contain a certain percentage of those grains. Certified gluten-free products on the other hand are held to a much more rigid standard of assurance.
To the lentils and quinoa we’ll add in the onions, carrots, and butternut squash…
And mix it all together.
Into our mixture goes our herbs and spices. Be sure to keep your heat on low so that you don’t burn the lentils or quinoa.
Finally, we’ll add in the broth and allow it to simmer on low heat until the quinoa and lentils have absorbed most of the liquid and are semi-cooked.
Then we’ll add back in our meat and some more broth (and/or) water.
After all the ingredients are fully cooked, we’ll remove the bay leaves and juniper berries and add in the coconut oil and a bit more broth to bring it back to a saucy, stew-like consistency. If you prefer a thicker stew sauce, you can combine some potato starch with some beef bone broth and incorporate it into the stew.
Finally, we’ll top it off with some cilantro or parsley and allow it to sit for a while to allow the flavors to fully meld together. At this point I decided to add in some green sweet peas simply because I had them on hand and because they add a great pop of color to the dish!
All that’s left to do is serve yourself a healthy serving of this beefy lentil quinoa stew and enjoy!
Lentil Quinoa Beef Stew
- 5 qt stock pot
- 2 tbsp extra light olive oil
- 1 lb beef (cut into cubes)
- ½ cup quinoa (washed and rinsed)
- 1½ cups dried lentils (washed and rinsed)
- ½ cup carrots (peeled, chopped)
- 1 medium onion (chopped)
- 1 cup butternut squash (diced) (optional)
- 2 bay leaves
- 1 tsp ground cumin
- 1½ tsp Himalayan salt
- ½ tsp Dried Oregano
- ½ tsp dried basil
- ¼ tsp dried rosemary
- ¼ tsp celery seeds
- 1 pinch rubbed sage (optional)
- 1 tsp ground black pepper
- ¼ tsp fennel seeds (optional)
- 6 whole juniper berries (optional)
- 6 cups beef bone broth (or beef broth)
- 1 tbsp coconut oil
- water (as needed)
- Heat oil in a deep pot over medium heat. Add the beef (seasoned with 1/2 tsp salt and 1/2 tsp pepper) and brown on all sides. Transfer meat to a bowl (leaving the drippings in the pot) and set aside.
- To the pot (containing the beef drippings) add the quinoa and toss to coat. Once coated, add the lentils, onions, carrots, butternut squash and all herbs and spices along with the beef bone broth.
- Bring to a boil before reducing the heat to a low simmer. Cover and allow to simmer for 20-30 minutes until the quinoa and lentils are cooked, adding water (and/or stock) as needed. Gently turn the ingredients occasionally to ensure that they don't stick or burn, and to ensure that there is enough liquid in the pot.
- Once the quinoa and lentils are fully cooked, discard the bay leaves and juniper berries and stir in the coconut oil.
- Turn off the heat and add the cooked beef back into the pot.
- Cover the pot for at least 15 minutes to allow the ingredients' flavors to meld together.
- Serve hot or warm topped with a dollop of sour cream and chives. Store any leftovers in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to a week.
- You can add in any vegetables you like to this from chopped celery to spinach to diced potatoes or even sweet peas (like I've done in the images).
- If you prefer a thicker gravy-like stew, mix a tbsp of potato starch to 1/4 cup of bone broth and add it to the simmering stew, mixing well to incorporate it.
- To make this dish vegan/vegetarian friendly, omit the beef and replace the beef bone broth with vegetable stock or broth.