Comfort food at its best

Making beef bourguignon with cheesy mash top is comfort food at its best.

PREP TIME: 15 mins
COOK TIME: 2 -2.5 hrs low and slow, hands-off
IDEAL FOR: crowd pleaser, winter warmer, weekend meal

Comfort food, not fancy food

Beef bourguignon sounds rather fancy.

But it’s not. It’s just a lovely, rich, hearty stew... made with red wine (you have to love the French for that).

So, don’t think, you can’t make this or it will take you hours of work over a hot stove.

It’s 15 minutes of prep, then leave it to cook and work its flavour-magic.

Then add some cheesy mash and et voila!

The perfect weekend meal.

Plus, you can also batch cook and freeze.

Tips for a classic beef bourguignon

Cooking prep order

  • Start by browning the beef.
  • Crisp up the bacon.
  • Cook off the garlic and onion.
  • Add the wine and deglaze.
  • Then the herbs.
  • And then add mushrooms approx. 30 mins before you finish the dish.
  • Season to taste.

Choose the best available beef

  • Braising steak/chuck is perfect and if you can, try and buy grass-fed or at least high welfare.
  • Cut the beef into approx.. 5 cm pieces
  • Pork lardons: once again the best quality you can afford and nice thick-cut bacon cut into small pieces or pancetta.
    • As long as they have good fat content i.e. flavour
  • Wine: a Burgundy-style wine – pinot noir – but most reds will work.
    • At the very least, choose a wine you would happily drink.
  • Use a bouquet garni: it makes it easy to remove your aromatics.
  • To add a bit more depth, you could use ox or beef cheek and add star anise.
  • Make a day ahead as the flavours will intensify.
  • Reduce the sauce for a more intense flavour.
Beef bourguignon with cheesy mash top

Where does beef (boeuf) bourguignon originate

Bourguignon means, ‘of Bourgogne’, or Burgundy.

The Burgundy region is in eastern France between Lyon and Paris.

And has some fantastic wine.

Beef Bourguignon was first mentioned in cookbooks in 1903, by the famous chef Auguste Escoffier.

But probably became the most famous when Julia Child had a go at it in her cookbook Mastering the Art of French Cooking.

And if you’ve ever watched Julia and Julia, you know this was a big dish in the film.

But in France, its beginnings come a long way back as peasant food.

Like most great simple dishes from France and Italy, they usually stem from peasant food.

Where simple, quality ingredients are used to make something great.

And it usually involves one pan, cheap cuts of meat and slow cooking.


Delicious magazine

Lou’s Kitchen Corner

Beef bourguignon with cheesy mash top

Course Main Course
Keyword beef bourguignon, beef stew, one pan meal, one pan recipe
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 2 hours 30 minutes
Total Time 2 hours 45 minutes
Servings 6 people
Cost £


  • 800 g beef shin, chuck or cheek , cut into 5cm pieces (grass-fed if possible)
  • 2 tbsp oil
  • 120 g lardons (or bacon if you can't find any)
  • 100 g shallots, peeled and halved
  • 2 garlic cloves, chopped
  • 100 g button mushrooms
  • 2 tbsp plain flour
  • 1 tbsp tomato puree
  • 250 ml beef stock
  • 600 ml red wine (Burgundy if you want to be close to the original)
  • 1 bay leaf and ½ bunch thyme, tied together to make a bouquet garni

Cheesy mash

  • 1 kg Maris piper potatoes
  • 40 g unsalted butter
  • 60 ml milk
  • 1 tbsp wholegrain mustard
  • 50 g mature cheddar or the (melty) cheese of your choice


  • Heat the oven to 170°C/150°C fan.
    Pour a glug of oil into a large, lidded, flameproof casserole over medium heat.
    Toss the beef in the flour, then add to the pan in batches. Brown well, then transfer each batch to a large bowl.
    Add another splash of oil into the casserole dish and fry the bacon/lardons until crisp.
    Heat another splash of oil in the casserole. Add the bacon and fry until crisp.
    Add the butter and button onions/shallots, garlic, chopped onion and fry gently until (8-10 minutes).
    Now, add the beef back in and pour in the brand and scrape the browned bits on the bottom of the pan.
    Add the wine and bring to the boil, then add the herbs and bring back to the boil. Cover, transfer to the oven and cook for 2½-3 hours until the beef is tender.
    NB: 30 mins before you serve, add the button mushrooms and stir in.

Cheesy mash top

  • Put the potatoes in a large pan of cold salted water.
    Cover, then cook gently for 10 mins. Drain and leave to steam dry in the pan for 10 minutes.
    Mash then beat in the butter, milk, mustard and two thirds of the cheese.
    Season to taste.


  • Spoon the mash on top of the bourguignon in the casserole dish, sprinkle with the rest of the cheese, then grill for 5 minutes until the cheese is golden and melted.
    Serve with greens.