Beef Stew Without Wine

This Beef Stew Without Wine is a twist on French Boeuf Bourguignon, minus the red wine. It features beef cubes, smoked bacon, carrots, shallots, and mushrooms simmered in a flavorful blend of pure beetroot juice, chicken broth, and balsamic vinegar. It’s a delicious alternative that captures the essence of the original recipe.

Beef Stew Without Wine is based upon the famous French ‘Boeuf Bourguignon’ Stew, but this version is kid-friendly. It contains no wine; we replaced it with beet juice for the colour, chicken broth for the taste and a touch of balsamic vinegar and the usual veggies: carrots, French shallots, garlic and mushrooms. This stew will surprise even the Bourguignon-style lover! It is as rich, deep and yummy as the original, with a redder undertone.

Alcohol-Free Stew

Beef Stew Without Wine

Most people would tell you that alcohol evaporates when cooked, yes, but not completely; there is still plenty, especially for little ones.

Did you know that after 1 hour of slow cooking, 25% of the alcohol is still intact, and after 2 hours, 10% is still there? Cooking doesn’t completely eliminate the alcohol, and when kids are involved, better play safe. If you want to know more, check out this interesting article in the Washington Post.

Here is how I composed my alcohol-free Bourguignon stew. I’ve switched the core ingredient: red wine with pure Beetroot juice and Balsamic Vinegar. I needed to keep this ‘Bourgogne’ colour, which is Burgundy, in English, so there is no better way to reproduce a red wine than a red beetroot! It’s an underrated superfood with many health benefits; check it out here! Although brighter, this pure beetroot juice is also quite earthy; it needs a counterbalance of sour balsamic vinegar! Vinegar comes from the French word Vin-aigre, which means sour wine, back in the days when a temperature change or a bad cork would easily turn the wine into vinegar. This Balsamic vinegar is made of red grapes, just like red wine, so this was meant to be!

The Special Ingredient

Beef Stew for Kids

Oh yes, this is one of my favourite ingredients for dark stews. You don’t add much; just a little bit of dark chocolate at the end of the cooking makes the liquid thicker and gives it this fantastic colour! You won’t add enough to make it taste like chocolate; do not worry. It will complement the earthy beetroot and sour vinegar, bringing in the sweet and bitter twist. This kid-friendly Boeuf bourguignon magically tastes like the original one.

Variations

Beef Stew Without Wine

I’ve used French shallots for this Beef Stew Without Wine, which is milder than onions. The original recipe would use those tiny French onions, but sadly, they are not easy to find. if you know where to get some, go ahead with the small onions. I like to cut them in two so you can see them in the stew and carrots. They cook for so long, so it is better to keep them big to release their flavour into the stew slowly and not get too soft.

Toppings

Some people like to add chopped garlic and parsley at the end of cooking to give it a lovely fresh kick. However, my kid wouldn’t let me put any green stuff in his stew, so I added chopped scallions on top, which could be parsley or chives. Also, the recipe calls for a Bouquet Garni, a little mix of Mediterranean aromatics like bay leaves, thyme, parsley and marjoram (similar to oregano). So go ahead if you have a bouquet of garni; if not simply use what’s in your pantry: I’ve added bay leaves and oregano.

Other Comforting Meals

Beef Stew Kid

Beef Stew Without Wine

Beef Stew without Wine is a copycat of the beloved French stew Boeuf Bourguignon, although without alcohol. We've replaced the wine with beetroot juice, chicken broth, balsamic vinegar and another secret ingredient. It is the same colour and flavour; even the grown-ups will be pleasantly surprised by the resemblance.
5 from 20 votes
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 3 hours
Total Time: 3 hours 15 minutes
Course: Main Course
Cuisine: French
Keyword: alcohol free, balsamic vinegar, beef, beet juice, boeuf bourguignon, carrots, chocolate, dutch oven, mushrooms, shallots, Stew, without alcohol
Servings: 5 people
Calories: 483kcal
Author: Marie Breton

Equipment

  • Dutch oven

Ingredients

  • 500 g Beef Cubes
  • 250 g button mushrooms sliced
  • 125 g smoked bacon
  • 750 ml chicken broth
  • 250 ml beetroot juice
  • 100 ml balsamic vinegar
  • 75 g dark chocolate (3 pieces) over 80%
  • 8 French shallots or small French onions cut into two (or an onion).
  • 5 carrots Cut into big chunks.
  • 2 garlic cloves
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 bouquet garni or two bay leaves and thyme or oregano
  • 4 cloves stick them into a shallot and remove in the end.
  • salt and pepper

Instructions

  • Add the olive oil in the Dutch oven and sear the beef cubes (make brown) at high heat on each side.
  • Once the meat is brown, add the bacon, carrots, shallots and one garlic clove and let it cook another minute or two before adding the aromatics and all the liquids (beetroot juice, balsamic vinegar and broth). Scratch the bottom of the pan to make sure nothing sticks to it.
  • Bring to a simmer and let it half covered for 2.5 hours.
  • Add the mushrooms and let it simmer for another 30 minutes, covered.
  • Add the chocolate and garlic to the stew and let it melt, it will thicken the sauce and give color
  • Serve on potatoes, couscous or pasta with scallions or chives to decorate.

Video

Notes

Add chopped scallions, parsley or chives on top for a fresh crunch.
Served traditionally with boiled potatoes or mashed, or great also with couscous or pasta.
 

Nutrition

Calories: 483kcal | Carbohydrates: 52g | Protein: 29g | Fat: 19g | Saturated Fat: 7g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g | Monounsaturated Fat: 9g | Trans Fat: 0.004g | Cholesterol: 20mg | Sodium: 24911mg | Potassium: 1239mg | Fiber: 7g | Sugar: 34g | Vitamin A: 10452IU | Vitamin C: 11mg | Calcium: 185mg | Iron: 8mg
Nutrition Facts
Beef Stew Without Wine
Amount per Serving
Calories
483
% Daily Value*
Fat
 
19
g
29
%
Saturated Fat
 
7
g
44
%
Trans Fat
 
0.004
g
Polyunsaturated Fat
 
1
g
Monounsaturated Fat
 
9
g
Cholesterol
 
20
mg
7
%
Sodium
 
24911
mg
1083
%
Potassium
 
1239
mg
35
%
Carbohydrates
 
52
g
17
%
Fiber
 
7
g
29
%
Sugar
 
34
g
38
%
Protein
 
29
g
58
%
Vitamin A
 
10452
IU
209
%
Vitamin C
 
11
mg
13
%
Calcium
 
185
mg
19
%
Iron
 
8
mg
44
%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.
Tried this recipe?Let us know how it was!
3 from 9 Reviews

9 Comments

  • Greta

    5 stars
    I loved this Beef Stew because it was so easy to make and flavorful. I never heard about adding dark chocolate to the stew, but I tried it, and came out delicious. It was perfect and I can recommend it. Thanks x

  • Jazzmin

    5 stars
    I love that you made this stew without alcohol and used beetroot juice and balsamic vinegar. It’s so creative! I don’t consume alcohol, so this will come in handy.

  • nancy

    5 stars
    love this lovely beef stew without wine. It is perfect for little kids since I don’t like to them to have too much

    • Marie Breton

      The wine even if cooked is still in part in there, which for a mini is gigantic. I think better safe than sorry.

  • Vanessa

    5 stars
    What a delicious stew! It was so cozy served over mashed potatoes.

  • Asha

    5 stars
    Great tasting stew and a perfect meal for the cold weather we had lately. I was very pleased with the outcome.

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