When grass-fed beef stew meat was on sale at my local grocery store this week, I immediately knew I wanted to come up with an Instant Pot Hawaiian Beef Stew!
I’ll confess, I didn’t even realize that beef stew was a Hawaiian thing until I noticed it on the menu of one of my favorite food carts here in Portland. And that was after recently traveling to Hawaii! The tomato-based stew is rich and delicious, and it’s usually served with a big bowl of rice alongside.
My favorite thing about this recipe is that the stew will stay warm all day long, waiting until dinnertime. It works perfectly for a busy day — you’ll take about 20 minutes to put it together, then walk away while it pressure cooks to doneness on its own.
I based this recipe on this one by the famous Hawaiian chef, Sam Choy. I scaled it down, adapted it for the Instant Pot, and employed some of my favorite time-saving ingredients, the reduced-sodium bases from Better Than Bouillon.
You can choose to thicken the stew at the end of cooking (I did, by adding some cornstarch and simmering for a minute), or just enjoy it as is. Either way, it’s delicious. Let me know if you try it out!
Instant Pot Hawaiian Beef Stew
- 2 pounds beef stew meat
- 1 teaspoon Diamond kosher salt
- 1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
- 1 tablespoon vegetable oil (such as avocado oil)
- 2 cloves garlic crushed
- 1 medium yellow onion diced small
- 1 bunch inner leaves of a celery stalk chopped
- 3 teaspoons Better Than Bouillon Beef Base (reduced sodium)
- 1 teaspoon Better Than Bouillon Chicken Base (reduced sodium)
- 3 cups water
- 3 stalks celery sliced 1/4 inch thick
- 3 medium carrots peeled and roll-cut into 1/2-inch pieces
- 3 medium Yukon Gold potatoes peeled and cut into 1-inch pieces
- 1 14.5-ounce can no-salt-added petite diced tomatoes (fire roasted or regular)
- 6 tablespoons tomato paste (half of a 6-ounce can)
- 1 1/2 tablespoons cornstarch (optional)
- Sprinkle the beef stew meat all over with the salt and pepper.
- Select the Saute setting on the Instant Pot and heat the oil. Add half of the beef and sear for 3 minutes. Using tongs, transfer the beef to a dish, then repeat with the remaining half of the beef.
- To the now-empty pot, add the garlic, onions, and celery leaves. Sauté about 4 minutes, until onions are beginning soften and the garlic is not burned.
- Add the beef base, chicken base, and water. Use a wooden spoon to scrape any browned bits from the bottom of the pot. Stir in the seared beef, celery, carrots, and potatoes. Add the tomatoes and tomato paste on top. Do not stir in the tomato products -- leave them on top of the other ingredients.
- Secure the lid in its sealed position. Cancel the Saute program, then select the Manual or Pressure Cook setting and set the cooking time for 20 minutes at high pressure. (The pot will take about 10 minutes to come up to pressure before the cooking program begins.)
- When the cooking program ends, let the pressure release naturally.
- Open the pot, and stir the stew to incorporate the tomato paste and diced tomatoes.
- Optional thickening step: Spoon out a few tablespoons of the stew liquid into a small bowl and stir in the cornstarch, then add the mixture back to the pot. Select the Saute program and bring to a boil for about 1 minute, stirring often, to thicken the stew. Once thickened, turn off the pot, or turn it back to the Keep Warm setting.
- Serve the stew piping hot, with rice on the side if you like.