Tuscan Beef Casserole - a delicious hearty simple dish with vegetables and white beans, it's a firm family favourite.
Tuscan Beef Stew
Beef stews or casseroles always go down amazingly well in my household. It a dish that is guaranteed to get my fussy kids to eat some vegetables.
and the key to any good stew is delicious tender melt in the mouth beef with an amazingly flavoured gravy.
What is a Tuscan Beef Casserole?
Isn't it just the same as any old beef stew or casserole? I suppose it depends on who you are asking.
My mother's Irish Stew would never contain mushrooms, tomatoes or beans and while her Irish Stew was the best kind of comfort food you can think of, this Tuscan Beef Casserole is equally delicious.
Instant Pot Tuscan Beef Casserole
Own an Instant Pot or Pressure Cooker? Then you can cut down the cooking time of this casserole while still getting the yummy tender meat and flavours as if it had been simmering on the stove.
If you haven’t heard of an Instant Pot you are seriously missing out. It is the best kitchen gadget I have purchased.
A 7in1 cooker, that slow cooks, pressure cooks, sautes and has settings for soup, chilli, rice, porridge etc
Since I bought my instant pot, I use it regularly. It comes in some handy for cooking soups, stews, casseroles, curries, and I love making extra so I can freeze at least one tub of leftovers.
How to Make Tuscan Beef Casserole
Whether you are cooking it on the stovetop or in an Instant Pot (pressure cooker), the key is browning the meat and making sure you do it in two or even 3 batches if necessary.
If you overcrowd the pan, the meat won't sear and will just boil in its juices. You want the meat to get a nice browning as it is that which will add to the amazing flavour in this casserole.
I use stewing beef (or chuck beef) which is generally the best cut of beef for any kind of stew or casserole.
As well as the beef there is also the vegetables such as onion, celery and carrots the base to any good casserole, along with tomatoes and mushrooms.
Herbs and tomato paste (puree) add to the flavour along with a splash of balsamic vinegar.
Why the vinegar? It's acidic and is a great replacement for red wine, it will help deglaze the pan, to scrap all those flavours from the bottom.
The white beans you can use any type you like, I used Cannelini beans, but butter beans work really well in this dish too.
How to serve Tuscan Beef Casserole
You could quite easily dig into this dish just as it comes, the kids love it in a bowl with some crusty bread, the latter not quite Slimming Friendly. I love to serve it with my Best Ever Mashed potatoes or this Sour Cream and Spring Onion Cauliflower Mash.
It is also delicious with some rice or these Crispy Golden Potatoes.
Packed with vegetables you don't need to worry too much about the speed foods. But some extra greens on the side if you want them are perfect too, especially sauteed kale or these Sauteed Shredded Garlic Brussel Sprouts
More Casserole Recipes
Love hearty casserole recipes? Check out these:
- BEEF AND VEGETABLE CASSEROLE
- ONE POT SAUSAGE AND LENTIL CASSEROLE
- MEDITERRANEAN CHICKEN CASSEROLE
- MOROCCAN CHICKEN CASSEROLE
- CHICKEN CASSEROLE
- BRAISED BEEF
- ONE POT CAMPFIRE STEW
- BEEF AND SWEET POTATO STEW
- SLOW COOKER GUINNESS BEEF BRISKET
or head on over to my Full Recipe Index with over 850 delicious Slimming World and Weight Watchers recipes all fully searchable by meal type, ingredients, syn value and smart points etc
This recipe was originally created on 20 February 2010 and updated on the 18 October 2019
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- 600g (21oz) of lean stewing beef
- 1 large onion, finely chopped
- 3 cloves of garlic, crushed
- 2 sticks of celery, chopped
- 2 large carrots, chopped into large pieces
- 4 large mushrooms, sliced
- 1 400g (14oz) tin of chopped (diced) tomatoes
- 360ml (1.5 cups) of beef stock (use just 1 cup/240ml for Instant Pot or Slow Cooker method)
- pinch of dried mixed herbs
- 2 sprigs of fresh thyme.
- 1 tablespoon of tomato paste (puree)
- ½ tsp of onion powder
- 2 tbs of balsamic vinegar
- 1 439g (15.5oz) can of cannellini beans or butter beans
- 1.5 tbs of cornstarch (cornflour)
- cooking oil spray (I used olive oil)
- salt and black pepper to season.
- fresh parsley
Stove Top Method:
- Spray a deep pot over medium-high heat with some cooking oil spray.
- Season the beef with salt and black pepper and fry in two batches until lightly browned all over, remove and set aside.
- Spray the pan again and add the onion, garlic, carrots and celery and fry for a few minutes to soften.
- Add in the balsamic vinegar and a little bit of the stock and deglaze the pan, ensuring you scrape up any bits stuck to the bottom.
- Add back in the beef (with any juices), the mushrooms, tomatoes, tomato paste, herbs, thyme, onion powder and stock.
- Bring to a boil and then cover and simmer for 1 hour and 45 minutes until meat is lovely and tender.
- Add the beans in for the last 20 minutes.
- When casserole has cooked for the full 1 hour and 45 minutes and meat is lovely and tender.
- Mix the cornstarch with a little water to make a slurry, then add this in the casserole, stirring over medium heat until thickened.
- Taste and season with black pepper as needed. Sprinkle with fresh parsley.
- Serve and Enjoy
Instant Pot/Pressure Cooker:
- Set instant pot to saute mode.
- Season beef with salt and black pepper.
- Once instant pot display hot add the beef in two batches and fry until lightly browned.
- Remove and set aside.
- Spray with more cooking oil spray and add the onion, garlic, celery and carrots fry for a few minutes until softened.
- Add in the balsamic vinegar and a little of the stock and deglaze the bottom of the pan, ensuring you scrape any bit stucks to the bottom.
- Add in the beef, mushrooms, mixed herbs, thyme, onion powder, chopped tomatoes, tomato paste and stock and stir to combine. (Remember you are only using 1 cup of stock for Instant Pot method).
- Add lid, close valve (if not self-sealing), set instant pot to manual high pressure for 25 minutes, once it finishes cooking, let the pressure release naturally for 10 minutes and then you can remove any remaining pressure.
- Remove lid, set to saute mode, stir in beans and mix the cornstarch with a little water to make a slurry, stir this into the casserole and heat on saute mode until it thickens.
- Taste and season with salt and pepper as needed. Sprinkle with fresh parsley.
- Serve and enjoy
- Brown meat and vegetables as above, then add everything to the slow cooker (except the beans and cornstarch and cook on low for 8 hours, stir in the beans for the last hour, along with the cornstarch and leave the lid slightly ajar, this will help the gravy thicken slightly. (Note: just 1 cup (240ml) of stock is used for Slow Cooker method)
- Taste and season as needed with salt and black pepper. Sprinkle with fresh parsley.
- Serve and enjoy!!
This recipe is gluten free, dairy-free, Slimming World and Weight Watchers friendly
- Slimming World - 0.5 syns per serving
- WW Flex/Freestyle Smart Points - 4 per serving
- Gluten Free - use gluten free stock and cornstarch
*Suitable for freezing
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Nutrition InformationServing Size 1 serving
Amount Per Serving Calories 374Total Fat 7.1gSaturated Fat 2.9gCholesterol 95mgSodium 543mgCarbohydrates 34.3gFiber 10.8gSugar 8.4gProtein 43.6g