An EASY, step-by-step recipe for how to make Beef Pot Pie from scratch. Fall-apart tender beef cubes in the tastiest gravy, vegetables, and a tasty rich gravy, all encased in a flaky homemade pie crust. This one is 10/10 comfort food.
Why I’m Sure You’ll LOVE This Recipe
It’s all about layers of flavor, my friends. Starting with the beef, we’re not just throwing it in there and hoping for the best. We’re browning it, which unlocks a ton of savory goodness right from the start. Those brown bits at the bottom of your pot? Flavor goldmine.
And let’s talk about that wine deglaze. It does more than just add a hint of richness; it lifts all those tasty bits stuck to the pan into the sauce, making sure nothing goes to waste. Now, combine that with beef broth and herbs like thyme and parsley, and you’re building a depth of flavor that’s just unbeatable.
The vegetables also play their part. Carrots bring a touch of sweetness, balancing out the savory elements, while the peas add a pop of color and texture. Then you’ve got that gravy. Oh, that gravy. It’s thick, it’s luscious, and packed with flavor thanks to the browned butter.
Finally, that crust. When it comes out of the oven, golden and flaky, it’s not just a lid; it’s a key player. Here’s my favorite Pot Pie Crust Recipe. It soaks up some of that delicious filling, giving you a perfect bite every time.
Gather Your Ingredients
Before starting, make sure you have all the ingredients on hand, each serving its own unique purpose in the recipe.
- Olive Oil or Avocado Oil: Used for sautéing and browning the beef and vegetables.
- Beef Stew Meat: The star of the dish, providing rich flavor and protein.
- Kosher Salt: For seasoning and enhancing flavors.
- Black Pepper: Adds a slight kick and depth of flavor.
- Onion: Offers sweetness and aroma.
- Carrot: Adds color and natural sweetness.
- Minced Garlic: Infuses the dish with robust flavor.
- Red Wine: Used for deglazing and adding depth; can be substituted with beef broth.
- Beef Broth: Provides liquid for simmering and flavoring.
- Potatoes: Adds heartiness and starch to the filling.
- Fresh Thyme and Parsley: Contribute aromatic notes and freshness.
- Frozen Peas: Add color and sweetness, along with nutritional value.
- Butter: Base for the gravy.
- All-purpose Flour: Thickens the gravy.
- Pie Crust: Forms the flaky and delicious top layer. I like to just do a one-crust pot pie, but feel free to use a bottom crust, to if you like.
- Egg: For egg wash, gives the crust a golden finish.
Variations and Substitutions
Feel free to get creative or adapt the recipe to suit your preferences with these alternative ingredients.
- Meat Options: Instead of stewing beef, you could cut a chuck roast into bite-sized pieces or use leftover roast beef.
- Vegetable Swaps: Try parsnips instead of carrots, or add mushrooms, or corn as you like.
- Broth Variations: Chicken or vegetable broth can be used in place of beef broth.
- Herb Choices: Rosemary and/or bay leaf can be used as alternatives to thyme and parsley.
- Crust Alternatives: Use a puff pastry sheet instead of a traditional pie crust for a shortcut.
Grab these Tools
To ensure a smooth cooking process, have the following kitchen tools ready.
- Large Pot or Dutch Oven: For browning the beef and simmering the filling.
- Rimmed Bowl: To temporarily hold the browned beef and its juices.
- Separate Pan: For preparing the gravy.
- Whisk: To mix the gravy and avoid lumps.
- Wooden Spoon: For stirring the filling mixture.
- Deep-Dish 9″ Pie Plate or 8″x8″ Square Pan: To assemble and bake the pot pie.
- Rolling Pin: For rolling out the pie crust.
- Knife or Scissors: To trim and create slits in the crust.
- Pastry Brush: For applying the egg wash.
- Measuring Cups and Spoons: For accurate ingredient measurements.
How to make Beef Pot Pie: Easy Step-by-Step Directions
Follow these steps to create a delicious and hearty Beef Pot Pie that’s perfect for any occasion.
- Brown the Beef: Heat oil in a large pot and sear the beef until all sides are brown. Creates a gorgeous layer of flavor. Work in batches to avoid overcrowding the pan.
- Sauté Veggies: In the same pot, cook the onions and carrots until tender. This forms the base flavor of the filling.
- Add Garlic: Briefly cook the garlic to release its aroma, enriching the filling’s flavor.
- Deglaze with Wine: Add wine to the pot and scrape up any brown bits. This adds depth of flavor and enriches the sauce.
- Simmer Mixture: Return the beef to the pot, add broth and thyme, then simmer. This allows flavors to meld and the beef to fully tenderize.
- Add Potatoes: Incorporate potatoes into the stew and continue simmering. They absorb flavors and add texture.
- Prepare Gravy: In a separate pan, make a roux with butter and flour. Cook it until deeply golden brown, then add cooking liquid from the beef mixture. This creates a thick, flavorful sauce.
- Combine Everything: Mix the gravy into the beef and vegetable stew, then stir in peas and parsley. This completes the filling. Now you can pour it into a pie plate.
- Roll and Place Crust: Roll out your pie dough to cover your baking dish, then place it over the filling.
- Crimp and Vent: Seal the edges of the crust and make small slits on top. This allows steam to escape during baking.
- Apply Egg Wash: Brush beaten egg over the crust for a golden finish.
- Bake the Pie: Place the dish in the oven and bake until the crust is golden brown. This fully cooks the crust and finishes the pie.
- Cool and Serve: Allow a few minutes for the pie to cool, which makes it easier to slice and serve.
Make Ahead and Storage
Keep your Beef Pot Pie fresh and delicious with these storage and make-ahead tips.
- Make-Ahead Filling: Prepare the beef and vegetable filling up to 3 days in advance. Store it in an airtight container in the refrigerator.
- Freeze the Filling: For longer storage, you can freeze the filling for up to 3 months. Thaw it in the refrigerator before using.
- Assemble in Advance: Assemble the entire pot pie but skip the egg wash. Cover tightly and freeze for up to 2 months. Apply egg wash just before baking.
- Leftover Pot Pie: Store any leftover baked pot pie in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 3 days.
- Reheat Leftovers: For best results, reheat the pie in the oven at 350°F until warmed through.
By following these storage and make-ahead guidelines, you can enjoy a scrumptious Beef Pot Pie whenever the craving strikes.
How to Serve This Beef Pot Pie Recipe
Once your Beef Pot Pie is ready, it’s time to dig in! To make the experience even better, consider these serving suggestions:
- Fresh Greens: A simple green salad with a light vinaigrette balances the hearty flavors of the pot pie.
- Crusty Bread: A side of warm, crusty bread can soak up any extra gravy and add another texture to the meal.
- Beverage Pairing: A full-bodied red wine or a robust ale complements the rich flavors of beef and gravy.
- Garnish: A sprinkle of fresh parsley or chives on top can add color and freshness.
5 Common Mistakes People Make with Beef Pot Pie
- Underseasoning: If the filling tastes bland, keep adding small pinches of salt, stirring it through and tasting it until it tastes rich and vibrant.
- Undercooking the Filling: Rushing the simmering process can result in tough meat and undercooked vegetables.
- Overworking the Dough: If using homemade crust, overworking the dough can make it tough instead of flaky.
- Skipping the Cooling Step: Failing to allow the pie to cool before cutting can result in a runny filling.
- Improper Oven Temperature: Baking at the wrong temperature can leave you with a burned crust or undercooked filling.
- Can I use a store-bought crust? Absolutely, a store-bought crust can save time. Just make sure it’s thawed properly if it’s coming from the freezer.
- Can I make this pot pie in advance? Yes, you can prepare the filling in advance and store it in the fridge for up to two days before assembling and baking.
- How do I store leftovers? Leftovers can be stored in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 3 days or frozen for up to 2 months.
- Can I freeze the whole pot pie? Yes, you can freeze the unbaked pot pie. Just make sure to wrap it tightly and bake it directly from the freezer, adding extra time to the baking process.
- What can I use instead of red wine? Beef broth can be used as a substitute for red wine for deglazing the pan.
Should you Chill the Filling Completely Before Adding the Crust?
Cooling the filling first ensures a flaky crust and allows you to make decorative crimping that won’t just collapse in the oven.
If you’re short on time, you can skip the cooling step and just top with the rolled-out pie crust. Cut slits in the top but don’t bother crimping it (the butter will melt too fast from the hot filling, and the crimps won’t hold).
Why Make the Gravy Separately vs. Whisking Some flour Into the Pot?
Making gravy with a roux in a separate pot has several advantages over simply whisking flour into the pot.
A roux provides better control over gravy consistency, enriches the flavor, minimizes clumping, and offers predictable thickening.
Cooking flour with fat in a roux eliminates the raw flour taste and enhances the flavor profile by allowing you to cook the roux to various stages, from blonde to brown. It’s also easier to incorporate into a liquid, reducing the risk of lumps.
In contrast, a quick method like whisking flour into cold broth to create a slurry does thicken the sauce but may not offer the same smooth, rich texture and could leave a raw flour taste.
The choice between the two methods often boils down to what you prioritize: flavor and texture or convenience.
Beef Pot Pie
For the Filling:
- 3 tbsp Olive oil or avocado oil divided use
- 1 ½ lbs Beef stew meat cut into bite-size pieces
- 2 ½ tsp Kosher salt divided use
- ½ tsp Black pepper
- 1 Large onion finely chopped
- 1 ½ cups Chopped carrot from 3 carrots or about 18 baby carrots
- 2 tsp Minced garlic
- 1 cup Red wine or additional beef broth
- 2 cups Beef broth plus more as needed, see notes
- 2 ½ cups Cubed potatoes from about 2 medium potatoes
- 1 tbsp Minced fresh thyme or dried thyme
- 1 cup Frozen peas
- 1 tbsp Minced fresh parsley or 1 tsp dried parsley
For the Gravy:
- 4 tbsp Butter
- 4 tbsp All-purpose flour
- 2 cups Cooking liquid from the beef and vegetable if you can’t get 2 cups, top it up with more broth
- Additional salt and pepper to taste
For the Crust:
- 2 unbaked 9" pie crust thawed if frozen, or homemade
- 1 Egg beaten (for egg wash)
Make the Filling
- Brown the Beef: Heat olive oil over medium-high heat in a large pot or Dutch oven. Add beef seasoned with salt and pepper and brown on all sides. Transfer to a rimmed bowl, including any juices, and set aside.
- Sauté Vegetables: In the same pot, add more oil, onion and carrots plus more salt; cook on medium-high heat until onions are tender, about 7 minutes. Add garlic and cook for another minute.
- Deglaze and Simmer: Add red wine to the pot to deglaze, scraping up any brown bits from the bottom. Add the beef back into the pot along with beef broth and thyme. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat and cook at a simmer for 1 hour. Add potatoes and continue to simmer until the beef is tender, about half an hour more.
Prepare the Gravy:
- In a separate pan, melt butter over medium heat. Whisk in flour and cook until it turns a light caramel brown. Carefully scoop cooking liquid from the beef and vegetable mixture, or as much as you can get then top it up to 2 cups with more broth. Whisk the liquid into the butter mixture; stir constantly until thickened.
- Combine: Mix the gravy base back into the beef and vegetable mixture. Stir in the frozen peas and parsley, plus remaining salt to taste.
Assemble and Bake
- Prepare Pot Pie: Spoon the beef mixture into a deep-dish 9” pie plate or 8”x8” square pan. Transfer to the freezer for 30 minutes to help it quickly cool down before adding the crust.
- Preheat Oven: Preheat your oven to 400°F (200°C).
- Top and Seal: Roll out the crust to fit over the pan and place it over the filling. Crimp the edge if desired. Make small slits in the top crust to allow steam to escape. Brush the top with the beaten egg.
- Bake: Bake in the preheated oven until the crust is golden brown, about 30-35 minutes.
- Cool and Serve: Let the pot pie cool for a few minutes before serving.
Last Updated on October 2, 2023 by Jennifer Pallian BSc, RD