Beef Burgundy in a Pressure Cooker

If there’s one recipe that everyone should make one time from scratch, it’s the classic Beef Burgundy.  It’s also one of the more time consuming recipes around, so I was looking for a way to save time.  The answer is to make beef burgundy in a pressure cooker, instead of a slow cooker or dutch oven, and cut the actual cooking time to 45 minutes.

Beef Burgundy Recipe

Quick and Easy Beef Burgundy

This is a VERY popular dish in our household during cold Chicago winters and one of my most popular pressure cooker recipes.  That’s because it’s complex, it’s flavorful, it’s warm and it’s sturdy. 

But you don’t get this qualities by taking shortcuts.  Make no mistake, there’s no such thing as quick and easy beef burgundy.  You have to put the time into making it. 

And you will be rewarded.

The Basic Beef Burgundy Recipe

The key to any beef burgundy recipe is the technique around each ingredient.  The browning of the meat, the scraping up of the fond, the reducing of the wine and more.  And then there is the long simmer to bring out the flavors.  This can take 8-12 hours in a slow cooker, but as a pressure cooker recipe (or as an Instant Pot recipe), it’s down to about 45 minutes of actual cooking.

The prep is still the prep.  It’ll take an least 90 minutes to do the mis-en-place of getting the ingredients ready, browning meat and cooking bacon before you start your pressure cooker or Instant Pot.

And I’ll say it again, do not take any shortcuts.  

The Best Beef Cut for Beef Burgundy

Beef chuck roast.  Plain and simple.  A big slab of meat complete with marbling, connective tissue and all of the tough parts that melt down during cooking.

Be sure to get a whole roast.  You can take a shortcut here and buy one of those supermarket packs of “stew meat”, bottom round or even ground beef, but the results will be sub-par.  

The first thing you’ll do is prep the beef by cutting down a large chunk of chuck roast into roughly 2″ by 2″ cubes, salt it, dredge it in flour and then browning it in the pot.  It takes time, but it’s one of the biggest payoffs both in terms of flavor and in texture.

Were you to just stick a whole large chunk of meat in there, it would be too big for the pressure cooker to completely tenderize it.  This is why you need smaller pieces.  Another reason is that doing so increases the surface area of the meat that comes in contact with the hot pan bottom.  This is where the legendary Maillard reaction takes place.  And it creates a lot of that delicious fond that flavors the final beef burgundy

Getting the Browned Bits out of your Pressure Cooker

You’ll notice after browning all of the meat that the bottom of your Instant Pot or Pressure Cooker is a complete mess.  Don’t fret.  While you may think you’ll have days of soaking and hours of scrubbing to clean it up, you’ll see that the onions and wine make quick work of it.

Each time I make this dish, I see that thick, dark brown crust on the bottom of my pressure cooker and think it’s going to take days of elbow grease to get it out.  And each time, the onions do the actual hard work.  And they build incredible flavors doing so. 

With a wooden spoon, you can start to scrape up the fond after the onions start to cook.  After about 7-10 minutes of medium heat, you’ll be able to use your wooden spoon and start scraping it all loose. 

What Wine to Use for Beef Burgundy

After the onions cook, you’ll be ready to add in about half a cup of red wine.  This will help get any last bit of fond off the pot. Turn up the heat slightly and cook the wine down until it’s syrupy.  This is another critical step to building the complex flavors.

The classic wine for beef burgundy is, well, burgundy.  The Burgundy region of france, by French law, only produces Pinot Noir.  (There’s actually a small exception for the Beaujolais region)  So you can seek out true Burgundy, or pick out any Pinot from the West Coast.

There’s one super important rule about cooking with wine: don’t cook with a wine you wouldn’t drink with dinner. 

Super cheap wine on sale?  Bad idea.

That bottle of wine you opened a few nights ago that wasn’t great and you stuck in the fridge?  Bad idea.

Cooking down and reducing a mediocre wine only makes it stronger.

Beef Burgundy in a Pressure Cooker or Instant Pot

Adapting a Beef Burgundy Recipe for a Pressure Cooker

I’ve tried out a lot of variations in this beef burgundy recipe to adapt it to your Instant Pot or Pressure Cooker.  One of the most notable differences between my recipe for slow cooker beef burgundy and this beef burgundy in a pressure cooker recipe is the cooking time.  Six hours down to 45 minutes.

Another change is to not use pearl onions.  This is kind of controversial as caramelized pearl onions add a lot of flavor and depth.  But they are also a pain to peel and are time consuming to cook.  Instead, I’m using yellow onions, which are naturally sweeter.  By cooking them a little bit longer to caramelize the flavor, and reducing the red wine in them, much of the missing flavor from the pearl onions is replaced.

One other way you can change this beef burgundy recipe is to make it a low carb soup and not adding potatoes.  If you leave the potatoes out, cut the amount of stock by 1 cup.

Also, if you’re in the market for a new pressure cooker, or looking to upgrade, the 10qt model that I have is available here on Amazon

Making Beef Burgundy in a Pressure Cooker

After you get everything all pulled together and in the pressure cooker, seal it up, raise the pressure and cook for 45 minutes.  You can either do a quick release and serve right away, or do a natural release and let the meat keep tenderizing.

If you’ve done this in a slow cooker before, I think you’ll find that making beef burgundy recipe in a pressure cooker is a huge time saver and equally as delicious.

Beef Burgundy in a Pressure Cooker
Prep Time
1 hr 15 mins
Cook Time
45 mins
Total Time
2 hrs
 

Beef Burgundy is one of the most complex and delicious stews around.  Cut the time to make it significantly with a pressure cooker or instant pot

Course: Soup
Cuisine: French
Servings: 6 Bowls
Author: Tony Bailey
Ingredients
  • 3 Pounds Chuck Roast
  • 1/4 Cup All Purpose Flour
  • 1 Tablespoon Salt
  • 3 Medium Yellow Onions about 2 cups Sliced
  • 1 Cup Chopped Carrots
  • 1 Cup Chopped Celery
  • 1/4 Cup Crushed Garlic
  • 1.5 Pounds Small Round Potatoes
  • 1/4 Cup Chopped Parsley
  • 1 Tablespoon Chopped Rosemary fresh
  • 1 Tablespoon Chopped Thyme fresh
  • 6 Slices Thick Bacon 8 if you’re a snacker
  • 3 Tablespoons Butter
  • 1 Bottle Pinot Noir / French Burgundy
  • 3 Cups Beef Stock
  • 2 Tablespoons Tomato Paste
  • 1/4 Teaspoon Baking Soda
Instructions
  1. Cut the Chuck Roast into 2″ pieces and place in a large mixing bowl. Add the salt and mix in well. Add enough flour to lightly dredge the meat all over. This is something you should do before all of the vegetable prep so that the salt can work into the meat
  2. Prepare the vegetables: slice the onions and place in a medium bowl. Put the carrots, celery, garlic, rosemary, thyme and parsley in a separate bowl. Rinse the potatoes well in a colander, slice in half and place back in the colander
  3. In your pressure cooker vessel, bring it up to medium heat (adjust so the bacon fat doesn’t smoke) and cook the bacon slices. Place the bacon on a plate with paper towels after they are cooked. Pour out the bacon fat (carefully) into a separate dish, leaving a small amount to brown the first batch of beef
  4. Raise the temperature to about medium high and place chunks of beef in one by one. After 3 to 5 minutes, turn each piece over. Once a piece is browned nicely (with a slight amount of crispy exterior), take it out and replace it with a raw piece. Keep doing this until all meat is browned. You can put it back in the same bowl.
  5. When all the meat is down, you should have a real mess in your pressure cooker. This is what you what, all of that delicious browned fond in the bottom. Reduce to medium heat and add the onions. As they start to sweat, they will naturally start to break up the fond. After about 5 minutes, add 1/2 cup of the red wine. Keep using your wooden spoon to scrape up the bottom of the pot. Soon, all of the fond will have released. Cook for another 5 minutes until the wine has evaporated
  6. Add the butter and let it melt completely into the onion mixture
  7. Add the contents of the bowl with the vegetables and herbs, the potatoes, the rest of the wine and the beef stock. Stir well.
  8. Add the tomato paste and baking soda. Stir well.
  9. Seal and pressure cook for 45 minutes

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