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Wholesome Hearty Hamburger Stew

This wholesome hearty hamburger stew, also known as poor man’s stew, is made in less than forty minutes with ground beef, fresh vegetables, and a perfect blend of spices, most of which you may already have on hand. It’s a comforting and nutritious meal that’s perfect for busy weeknights or a cozy weekend dinner.


Main Meal, Beef




Ground Beef Stew, Hamburger Stew Recipe, How to Make Hamburger Stew, Stew Hamburger

Prep Time

10 minutes

Cook Time

30 minutes

Total Time

40 minutes


6 servings


259 kcal


Beth Pierce


  • 1 1/2 pounds ground beef
  • 1 medium onion, chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1 teaspoon dried parsley
  • 1/2 teaspoon crushed rosemary
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried thyme leaves
  • 4 carrots, peeled and chopped
  • 2 Yukon Gold potatoes, cut into small cubes
  • 1 (14.5 ounce) can fire-roasted tomatoes
  • 1 1/4 cups low-sodium beef broth
  • 2 tablespoons tomato paste
  • 2/3 cup frozen peas
  • Salt and pepper to taste


Step 1: Brown the Ground Beef

In a Dutch oven or heavy stockpot over medium heat, brown the ground beef. When it is about halfway through the browning process, add the onion and cook until the onion is soft and the ground beef is browned, approximately 5-6 minutes. Drain any excess grease.

Step 2: Add Aromatics and Vegetables

Reduce heat to low. Add garlic, oregano, parsley, rosemary, and thyme; cook for 1 minute, stirring constantly. Add the potatoes, carrots, and fire-roasted tomatoes.

Step 3: Combine Ingredients

In a bowl or large measuring cup, whisk together the beef broth and tomato paste. Stir it into the pot. Simmer covered for 15 minutes.

Step 4: Add Peas and Finish Cooking

Add the peas and simmer covered until the potatoes and carrots are tender. Season with salt and pepper to taste.


Choosing the Right Beef

  • Fat Content: Use ground beef or chili grind beef with a little bit of fat in it, draining any excess grease after cooking the onions. The fat gives it flavor.

Preparing the Vegetables

  • Carrots: For aesthetic purposes, peel your carrots. The small amount of effort is well worth the bright, beautiful orange color.
  • Potatoes: Yukon gold potatoes are preferred for this recipe, but red potatoes or Russet potatoes work well, too.


  • Tomatoes: If desired, substitute diced tomatoes for the fire-roasted tomatoes for a slightly different flavor profile.

Storing Leftovers

Store cooled leftovers in the fridge in an airtight container for 3-4 days. Reheat gently on the stove or in the microwave before serving.


Adding More Vegetables

You can add other vegetables such as corn, green beans, or bell peppers to the stew for additional flavor and nutrition.

Making It Spicier

For a spicier stew, add a pinch of red pepper flakes or a diced jalapeno along with the other spices.

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Thickening the Stew

If you prefer a thicker stew, mix a tablespoon of cornstarch with cold water and stir it into the stew during the last few minutes of cooking.


Can I use a different type of meat?

Yes, you can substitute ground turkey or chicken for a lighter version of this stew. Adjust the seasoning as needed.

How can I make this stew vegetarian?

To make a vegetarian version, omit the ground beef and add more vegetables or use a meat substitute such as lentils or plant-based ground meat.

Can I cook this stew in a slow cooker?

Yes, you can transfer the browned meat and vegetables to a slow cooker, add the broth and tomato paste mixture, and cook on low for 6-8 hours or on high for 3-4 hours. Add the peas during the last 30 minutes of cooking.

What can I serve with this stew?

This stew pairs well with crusty bread, a side salad, or over a bed of rice or noodles.

Can I freeze this stew?

Yes, you can freeze this stew. Let it cool completely, then store it in a freezer-safe container for up to 3 months. Thaw in the refrigerator overnight and reheat before serving.

Is it necessary to use fire-roasted tomatoes?

While fire-roasted tomatoes add a unique smoky flavor, you can use regular diced tomatoes if you prefer or if that’s what you have on hand.

How do I prevent the stew from becoming too salty?

Using low-sodium beef broth helps control the salt content. Always taste and adjust the seasoning before serving.

Can I add beans to this stew?

Yes, adding a can of drained and rinsed beans, such as kidney beans or black beans, can increase the protein and fiber content.

What type of pot is best for cooking this stew?

A Dutch oven or a heavy stockpot works best for cooking this stew evenly and maintaining heat.

How do I store and reheat leftovers?

Store leftovers in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 4 days. Reheat on the stove over medium heat or in the microwave at reduced power until warmed through.

Nutrition Information

  • Calories: 259 kcal
  • Carbohydrates: 22g
  • Protein: 28g
  • Fat: 6g
  • Saturated Fat: 3g
  • Polyunsaturated Fat: 0.4g
  • Monounsaturated Fat: 2g
  • Trans Fat: 0.4g
  • Cholesterol: 70mg
  • Sodium: 242mg
  • Potassium: 1048mg
  • Fiber: 4g
  • Sugar: 5g
  • Vitamin A: 7014 IU
  • Vitamin C: 16mg
  • Calcium: 51mg
  • Iron: 4mg

This hearty hamburger stew is a delicious, comforting meal that’s easy to prepare and perfect for any occasion. Its rich flavors and wholesome ingredients make it a favorite for families. Enjoy this versatile stew with your choice of sides and toppings, and feel free to experiment with different variations to suit your taste.