Easy slow cooked Beef Bourguignon – the best recipe ever


Juli & Julia

Have you ever watched Julie and Julia? Do you remember the scenes when Julie is making Beef Bourguignon?

I have watched that film at least ten times. For me, this is one of those movies in which you find the person you identify with. Perhaps not in all areas, but in some scenes you find yourself.

30 minutes PREPARATION
600 minutes COOKING


  • 150 gr chunk of bacon
  • 1 Tbsp olive oil
  • 1kg Rumsteck or other cut of stewing beef -see instruction in the text
  • 1 sliced carrot
  • 2 sliced onions
  • 2 Tbspoon flour
  • salt and pepper according to your taste
  • 2 cups of young red wine such as Chianti
  • 2-3 cups brown beef stock
  • 1 Tb-spoon tomato paste
  • 2 cloves mashed garlic
  • 1 tsp fresh thyme
  • 2 crumbled bay leaf
  • 300 gr fresh mushrooms
  • parsley for decoration


  1. Preheat oven to the 100°C.
  2. In the frying pan sauté the bacon in the oil at moderate heat for 2 to 3 minutes. Put aside when it gets nice brown colour.
  3. Dry the beef in paper towels. That will help in getting it brown on all sides after sautéing it in the same pan where you sauté the bacon.
  4. Then add it to the bacon.
  5. In the same pan and fat sauté and brown the sliced of vegetables (carrot and one onion).
  6. In old crock pot or casserole put the beef and bacon, sprinkle with salt and pepper and sprinkle again on top of the beef with flour. Optionally, in this step, you can put casserole uncovered in the middle position of a preheated oven (180°C) for 4 minutes.
  7. Add wine and enough stock or bouillon so that meat is barely covered. Leave in the oven at 100°C overnight. The shorter version of cooking is 3h-4h also in the oven at 180°C .
  8. Tomorrow while the beef is still cooking, sauté the onion and mushrooms in butter.
  9. Add mushrooms and onion to beef and continue to cook for the next 60 minutes. After that, everything is finished.
  10. Serve in a casserole, or arrange the stew with boiled potatoes, green vegetables, noodle or rice. Decorate with parsley.

In it, Juli becomes one of the most famous bloggers ever, and Julia one of the most skillful cooks ever… but unfortunately, these are not the scenes I identified myself with … but soon they will be 🙂

Where I found myself were tears, throwing lunch into the trash … and situations where everything went wrong even when it shouldn’t have…

Beef Bourguignon Goveđi gulaš

That’s how it used to be, it’s a lot different now, and it’s probably easier for me to know that I’m not alone.

You can become a cook only if you have a strong desire and perseverance, everything else is not so important.

Julia Child

As I was annoying to both God and my family with watching the same movie over and over again… so as a present I got the best cookbook in the world … but only for one reason – they didn’t want me watching the same film for the hundredth time :).

Mastering the art of French Cooking Mastering the art of French Cooking

Mastering the art of French Cooking…by the famous Julia Child…I’m born in 1975, and the book is from 1966 …the second edition……real antiques 🙂

Old covers and even older pages were turned with special attention…so that God forbid something doesn’t get torn or someone touches the book without my presence…If someone did go near it, they would have to be supervised.

After a lot of page turning, I had to test it, and so you got:

Beef Bourguignon by Julia Child

How Julia prepared Beef Bourguignon, what I changed, what I got by following her recipe and who didn’t like it and why!

I saw a lot of different types of beef stew, and I already made some traditional recipes and posted them on my blog Crockpot beef stew  

Beef Bourguignon Goveđi gulaš

The following question always pops up…which cut of meat is best to buy for this Beef Bourguignon recipe?

The following are the most recommended ones:

  1. Rumsteck – the very best
  2. Chuck Pot Roast
  3. Sirloin Tip
  4. Top Round
  5. Bottom Round

Beef Bourguignon Goveđi gulaš

I always trim the fat and Julia also highlighted that in her book.

What is very important is cooking time. Julia recommended 3h-4h depending on the quality and tenderness of the meat, in the oven at 180°C. I also put it in the oven but overnight at 100°C.

Stew can be cooked either in the oven or on the top of the stove. The oven is better because then it is heated evenly.

How to serve Beef Bourguignon?

The best way to do it is the traditional. The traditional way is with boiled potatoes, but butter noodles, green vegetables or rice are excellent substitutes.

Drink is very important for full taste… The best choice is young red wine such as Chianti or Burgundy, Beaujolais, Cotes du Rhone…

How to make the best Beef Bourguignon ever?

Immediately preheat the oven at 180°C, in order to be ready until you prepare the rest of the ingredients.


In general, I sauteed everything separately, until they get that brown color.

Beef Bourguignon Goveđi gulaš

And my „everything“ is the following

Chunk of bacon-saute until brown and set aside.

Stewing meat Rumsteck cut into cubes of 4 cm, dry well with paper towel and in the same pan where the bacon was sauteed, saute the meat until it becomes golden brown. After that also set aside.

Vegetables (carrot and onion) saute in the same fat.

Beef Bourguignon Goveđi gulaš


The first layer in the casserole is meat and bacon. Then add salt and pepper, sprinkle the flour over the meat.

Beef Bourguignon Goveđi gulaš

Add wine, young red that we already mentioned above. Add enough stock and bouillon so that the meat is barely covered. I didn’t even forget the tomato paste, garlic, herbs (thyme and bay leaf). Then I cover the casserole and leave it over night in the oven. It was time to sleep 🙂 .

Beef Bourguignon Goveđi gulaš

And then in the morning…

I peeped into the oven, and saw that beautiful color and creamy sauce 🙂

In the meantime, I took a larger pan, sauteed the mushrooms and onions in butter, added a little bit of stock or canned bouillon to get that golden brown color.

Beef Bourguignon Goveđi gulaš

Then I put everything over the meat and vegetables and cooked for another 60 minutes.

What Julia did, and I avoided

I shortened some steps.

For example, Julia cooked the stew for 3-4h, and I cooked it over the course of the night…in that way I avoided the additional sauce thickening…my sauce thickened by itself during the night cooking…

She, on the other hand, filtered all the liquid from the pot in which she cooked the beef stew and put it in a separate pan and additionally cooked the sauce so that it could get reduced to half its volume. Her advice was that if our sauce was getting thick more slowly than it should, we should turn up the temperature or add a little bit of canned bouillon. Since we don’t have canned bouillon in Serbia, use flour or stew mixture packed as a soup bag (such as fant etc.) that you can buy in every store instead.

In the first layering step, when adding flour, she baked the meat, bacon and flour (without stirring) in the oven at 180°C for about 4 minutes. Since I prepared everything in a crock, I could not put a cold pot in a hot oven.

Beef Bourguignon Goveđi gulaš

If you want to cook beef stew for only 3-4h, you should set the oven at 180°C and cook it the entire time at that temperature.

What if you serve it right away?

You can serve it without side dishes, just sprinkle parsley across and get a good peasant bread or toast. If you like having a side dish with beef stew, you can put the stew on a bit bigger oval plate, and around it pasta or boiled potatoes or green vegetables, although the decoration is still parsley.

What if there’s some left for tomorrow?

About 15 minutes before serving it put it on the burner and let it boil. Cook it like that for about 10 minutes and stir from time to time. After that you can serve it the way I described above.

Who didn’t like Julia’s stew and why?

Who is the person that complains the most in the kitchen? Well, my husband of course. „I want this…I want that… cook this the way….“

For him, the stew was more aromatic and stronger than he was used to…it was the bacon that bothered him the most….so, if you don’t like strong and spicy things maybe you should think twice before putting the bacon in.

To me and my kids it was excellent, so I leave it to you to be the judge

Beef Bourguignon Goveđi gulaš

Bon appetit…according to the recipe Mastering the art of French Cooking… by the famous Julia Child

 Mastering the art of French Cooking Julia Child Mastering the art of French Cooking Julia Child

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