Beef & Butternut Squash Stew

Before leaving on our trip, I made sure our fridge was clean and mostly empty, except for a few vegetables that I knew would still be fresh when we returned. One of these vegetables is butternut squash, which I actually didn’t leave in the fridge and with which I cook a lot during the fall and winter months, as one can see in previous recipes.

Our vacation was a lot of fun and spent in the best company, my parents. 😉 Okay, I’m a bit biased, but we did have a great time. We enjoyed mostly warm and sunny weather in Florida and even had the opportunity to include some sports, beach and sightseeing. So, arriving on Monday to a chillier and very grey London was somewhat depressing. But one of the things that makes me happy is my kitchen and cooking… so I’m at it already.

Yesterday, I baked some “sourdough” grainfree bread, which is totally amazing (click here for the recipe) and made this stew for dinner.


Ingredients, for 4

  • 4-5 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1/2 kilo stewing beef, cut into 5cm (1inch) chunks
  • 1 1/2 cups dry white wine
  • 4 cups water
  • 4 garlic cloves, sliced
  • 1 large onion, chopped
  • 1 leek, chopped
  • 3 sprigs of Chinese spinach (optional)
  • 2 celery stalks (branch, not full bunch), chopped
  • 1/2 large butternut squash (approx 600-700g), cut into 1 inch chunks
  • 3 medium carrots, cut into chunks
  • a handful of fresh sage leaves
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons freshly ground rosemary
  • 1 teaspoon pimenton (or paprika)
  • 1/4 teaspoon turmeric
  • sea salt and black ground pepper, to taste
  • 12-15 “canned” artichoke hearts (we buy ours in Spain, and they come in a glass jar, not a can), cut in halves
  • zest of one lemon


In a large pot, add the olive oil, garlic and onions. Over medium heat, cook until the onion starts to become transparent, but not loose its colour. Add the meat and brown on all sides. Add the white wine and cook for 3 minutes. Add water and remaining vegetables and spices. Simmer and cook for 30-40 minutes, or until the meat and squash are tender. (If you want a thicker sauce, add 3 cups of water instead.)

Remove from heat. Add the artichoke hearts and lemon zest and allow to sit 5-7 minutes before serving.

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  1. 1.13.13
    carol said:

    I tried a variation for the slow cooker yesterday — YUM! It was somewhat different, as I left out the artichokes and added a sweet potato, had no white wine, so i put in a small bit of Tintilla de Rota. Needless to say, it was a sweet stew, much to my husband’s delight. He wants me to try the chocolate one next! Cheers Debra!

    • 1.14.13
      thesaffrongirl said:

      Hi Carol! I’m very happy that you’re trying out my recipes! I can imagine it came out sweeter with the changes, but I’m glad you still liked it. Can’t wait to hear the verdict on the chocolate recipe… Un abrazo.

  2. 3.11.13
    Arya said:

    This looks wonderful! Do you have any suggestions about how to adapt this recipe to a Dutch Oven? Thanks!

    • 3.18.13
      thesaffrongirl said:

      Hi Arya! I unfortunately do not own a Dutch oven per se. But the pot I used is similar and I would guess that you may only have to alter the cooking time a bit, or cook the meat a bit longer before adding the vegetables.

  3. 3.27.13
    Karly said:

    If I pre-make this for work lunches, will the artichoke reheat nicely or should I reheat then add?

    • 3.27.13
      thesaffrongirl said:

      Hi Karly, I usually make so much of every meal, that we have it for lunches the next day too. This one reheats fine, everything in it.

  4. 4.12.13
    Paul Swinney said:

    I am new to this website. I made this dish yesterday and it was EXCELLENT! I can’t wait to try some of the other recipes.

    • 4.13.13
      thesaffrongirl said:

      Thank you Paul. I’m so glad you liked it! And welcome onboard!

  5. 12.13.13
    Lannae said:

    Just made this. I added mushrooms. It is really tasty. I can’t stop eating it! The broth is really great.

    • 12.14.13
      The Saffron Girl said:

      Hi Lannae,
      I’m happy to hear that you liked the stew! The addition of mushrooms sounds lovely. Debra xx

  6. 4.15.14
    Holly said:

    This was very delicious and my fiance and I have been eating it all week since we made it!I also used the crock pot and I would recommend cooking the onions, garlic, beef and wine on the stove top before adding everything to the crock pot if you are taking that route!

    • 4.16.14
      The Saffron Girl said:

      Thank you Holly! I’m happy to hear that you and your fiancé enjoyed this recipe. I don’t have a crock pot and must get one, as everyone is raving about it. Thanks for the tip when using it. Debra xx