Beef stroganoff is a hearty dish with chunks of sirloin steak and chopped mushrooms tossed in a savory cream sauce. The meat is seared until golden brown and simmered in a rich gravy. It’s hard to resist this quick and satisfying dish when served on buttered egg noodles.
Looking to switch things up? Give my chicken stroganoff a try!
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This savory beef stroganoff recipe satisfies both steak and pasta cravings. Thickly-sliced mushrooms paired with a luxurious sauce make for the ultimate comfort food. Selecting the proper cut of steak and using a simple sauteing technique provides tender and flavorful pieces of beef. The sauce is thickened with roux and sour cream to add a rich and creamy coating.
The trickiest part of this recipe is incorporating the sour cream. Care must be taken when adding dairy products to hot liquids to prevent clumping. I remember a few occasions where I didn’t temper the cream properly, resulting in food being thrown away and a sad phone call for takeout. After realizing my avoidable mistake, I’ve learned simple ways to prevent curdling.
- Beef: The most crucial decision for stroganoff is which cut of beef to use. Select a steak with a strong flavor, minimal connective tissue, and beautiful marbling.
- Aromatics: Sauteed diced white onions and minced garlic adds earthy allium flavor.
- Mushrooms: Use brown mushrooms for a more robust umami flavor. Other types of mushrooms can be used, like white or baby bella.
- Gravy: A combination of beef broth, mustard, sour cream, and flour creates a rich, creamy, and tangy sauce.
Types of beef you can use
- Tenderloin: Extremely tender, marbled, and juicy. Although on the pricier side.
- Sirloin: Intense beef flavor, less tender than tenderloin but a nice alternative.
- Ribeye: Higher amounts of marbling, strong beef flavor, and more chewy texture.
Prepare the beef
The beef strips sear no more than 5 minutes until medium-rare, so it must be very tender to start. I typically use sirloin steak. It’s a more affordable cut that has good taste and texture. I recommend marinating the steak pieces for at least 30 minutes if you have time. The brine helps break down some meat proteins, making it more tender, juicy, and flavorful.
The trick to a quick and easy beef stroganoff is to cut the larger piece of meat into smaller slices. Look for the direction that the muscle fibers are running. Slice the steak against the grain to create tender pieces. Target about ¼-inch thick and 2-inch long strips. This makes the meat simple to chew and stays juicy after searing.
Cooking the meat
Use a large stainless steel skillet or nonstick pan to cook the beef. Heat over medium-high; this will quickly sear the pieces. Add the olive oil, then once it’s hot, add the meat in a single layer for maximum contact with the pan. This kickstarts Maillard browning on the surface. Cook until lightly golden brown, about 2 minutes. Saute until medium rare, then season the beef with salt and pepper. Remove meat from the pan to prevent overcooking while preparing the vegetables and sauce. Now you’re ready to make the sauce!
Saute the mushrooms and aromatics
There will be delicious juices left in the pan from searing the beef. Cook the onions and garlic in the same pan with melted butter. Add in the sliced mushrooms, sauteeing until most moisture has been released, concentrated down, and the fungi are tender.
Ensure to cook off all excess moisture from the mushrooms to help with browning. When mushrooms are cooked, their savory taste is enhanced, adding depth to the dish.
Cook the sauce
Sprinkle the flour over the mushrooms mixture, then stir, and cook for 1 minute. The roux is a thickening agent. Briefly cooking the flour removes the raw wheat taste. Gradually whisk beef broth to the hot roux to help the starches absorb and swell. Bring to a rapid simmer over medium-high heat.
Stir and cook until the sauce is thickened, about 2 minutes. Stir in the sour cream and mustard over low heat, or take the pan off the stove. This prevents crudling of the dairy. Add more salt and pepper to taste. Add the beef to warm right before serving.
- Use ground beef instead of steak for a quick and affordable option. I recommend 80 to 85% lean beef.
- For convenience, you can use cream of mushroom soup as the base of the sauce. You can skip adding in the flour.
- For an extra tangy, umami taste, stir in some Worcestershire sauce.
- For a vegetarian version, use all mushrooms, tofu, or seitan. Use vegetable broth or stock.
- Chicken or turkey thighs or breasts can be used as a poultry option. Use chicken broth or stock.
- Use pork tenderloin instead of beef for a lean yet flavorful version.
- Seafood like shrimp or scallops pair well with the tangy sauce. Use vegetable or fish stock.
- Large egg noodles are a classic pairing to toss with the sauce.
- Fluffy mashed potatoes soak up the sauce.
- Steamed white rice or brown rice.
- Sauteed green beans or broccoli.
- A refreshing Caesar salad and garlic bread.
More beef recipes
Frequently asked questions
A Russian dish consisting of sauteed pieces of beef served with a mustard and sour cream-flavored sauce. A roux made with flour and butter is added and mixed with beef broth or stock to thicken the sauce. There are many variations, often adding mushrooms or other vegetables.
Yes! Buttermilk will add a tangy fermented flavor, similar to sour cream. Start with using ¼ cup and increasing to taste. The liquid is denser, so less may be needed to add richness and flavor to the dish. Greek yogurt is also a good substitute.
It’s best to use stewing beef like Chuck, which has more connective tissue and fat that will benefit from low and slow cooking. Cut into 1 1/2-inch cubes, then cook on high setting for about 4 to 5 hours or low setting for 7 to 8 hours.
How to prevent the stroganoff sauce from curdling
There are natural acids in sour cream due to the fermentation process. The presence of these acids makes a specific protein in milk called casein very unstable when heated. To prevent the proteins from curdling, temper the cream by gradually stirring in cold sour cream into the hot food over low heat or off the stovetop.
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- 1 ½ pounds sirloin steak, ribeye, or filet mignon
- 1 teaspoon kosher salt, divided
- ½ teaspoon black pepper, divided
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1 tablespoon unsalted butter
- 1 cup diced yellow onion, ¼" dice
- 1 tablespoon minced garlic
- 8 ounces brown mushroom, ½" thick slices
- 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
- 1 ½ cups unsalted beef broth, or stock
- 1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
- ½ cup sour cream
- 2 teaspoons chopped parsley
- Prepare the Beef – Slice the steak against the grain into about ¼-inch thick and 2-inch long strips.
- Cook the Beef – Heat a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add the olive oil. Once hot, add the beef slices in a single layer. Sear until lightly golden brown, 1 to 2 minutes. Saute until medium rare, for about 1 to 2 minutes. Season with ½ teaspoon salt and ¼ teaspoon black pepper. Transfer to a clean plate.
- Cook the Aromatics – Melt the butter over medium heat. Add the garlic, and saute until fragrant, 30 seconds. Add the onions, and saute until tender, about 2 minutes.
- Cook the Mushrooms – Add the mushrooms and saute until tender, about 2 minutes.
- Make the Sauce – Add the flour, stir, and cook for 1 minute. Slowly stir in the beef broth. Bring to a rapid simmer over medium-high heat. Stir and cook until the sauce is thickened, about 2 minutes.Reduce the heat to low and stir in mustard, sour cream, ½ teaspoon salt, and ¼ teaspoon pepper. Taste and season with more salt and pepper as desired.
- Warm the Beef – Add the cooked beef to the sauce, and heat until warmed, 1 to 2 minutes.
- To Serve – Garnish with parsley. If desired, serve with egg noodles, mashed potatoes, or rice.
- Storing: Refrigerate in an airtight container for up to 5 days.
- Reheating: Cover and microwave on high setting in 30-second increments until hot.
- Make it Gluten-Free: Make a slurry by combining 1 tablespoon of cornstarch with 2 tablespoons of water. Stir into the simmering stock, cooking until thickened, 30 to 60 seconds
Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000-calorie diet. All nutritional information is based on estimated third-party calculations. Each recipe and nutritional value will vary depending on the brands you use, measuring methods, and portion sizes per household.
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