Beef Bourguignon: pure French comfort food


When you think of French cuisine, you probably think of cheese, wine and… Beef Bourguignon! This delicious stew from Burgundy has been popular in France for centuries and is appreciated worldwide for its rich flavor and warm comfort. In this blog we delve deeper into the history of Beef Bourguignon, share the recipe and give you tips on how to prepare the perfect dish. We also share the best side dishes, wines and restaurants where you can taste this dish.

The history of Beef Bourguignon

Beef Bourguignon has a rich history dating back to the Middle Ages. The dish was originally prepared with inexpensive cuts of beef, such as the brisket and shoulder, that were braised in red wine from the Burgundy region. The dish was often served during parties and celebrations and was loved by the locals. Later, in the 20th century, the dish became popular in the United States thanks to celebrity chef Julia Child, who introduced Beef Bourguignon in her cookbooks and television shows. Since then, Beef Bourguignon has become a dish appreciated worldwide.

making beef bourguignon

The Beef Bourguignon recipe

Beef Bourguignon is an easy dish to make, but it does take some time and attention to prepare it perfectly. Below you will find the recipe:


  • 1.5 kg beef (breast or shoulder), cut into cubes
  • 2 bottles of red wine (preferably from the Burgundy region)
  • 4 medium onions, chopped
  • 4 carrots, sliced
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 200 g mushrooms, sliced
  • 2 tbsp flour
  • 2 tbsp tomato puree
  • 2 tbsp butter
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 2 sprigs of thyme
  • 2 bay leaves
  • Salt and pepper to taste

Preparation method:

  • Heat the butter and olive oil in a large pan over medium heat.
  • Add the onions and garlic and fry until soft.
  • Add the carrots and mushrooms and fry for a few minutes.
  • Remove the vegetables from the pan and set them aside.
  • Add the beef to the pan and brown on all sides.
  • Sprinkle the flour over the beef and stir well.
  • Add the tomato puree, thyme, bay leaves and vegetables back to the pan and stir everything together well.
  • Pour the red wine into the pan.
  • Bring to the boil and simmer over low heat for 2-3 hours, or until the meat is tender and falling apart.
  • Season everything with salt and pepper.
  • Remove the bay leaves and thyme sprigs from the pan and serve the Beef Bourguignon with mashed potatoes, baguette or rice.

Beef Bourguignon

Tips for preparing the perfect Beef Bourguignon

To ensure that your Beef Bourguignon turns out perfect, we have listed a few tips below:

  • Use good quality red wine from the Burgundy region for best results.
  • Brown the beef on all sides to develop the flavors.
  • Let it simmer over low heat for at least 2-3 hours so that the meat becomes tender.
  • Add the vegetables later in the process so that they do not become too soft.
  • Season the dish with salt and pepper before serving.

The best side dishes and wines for Beef Bourguignon

Beef Bourguignon is a dish that goes well with various side dishes and wines. Below are a few suggestions:

  • Mashed potatoes: The creamy mashed potatoes form a perfect base for the dish.
  • Baguette: A crusty baguette is perfect for dipping in the sauce.
  • Rice: If you prefer not to have mashed potatoes, rice is a good alternative.
  • Regarding the wine: we recommend a red Burgundy wine, such as a Pinot Noir or a Beaujolais. These wines have a light, fruity taste that goes well with the dish. We have listed more recommendations for good wines in the next paragraph.


Which wines go well with Beef Bourguignon?

Because Beef Bourguignon is a classic French dish made with beef braised in red wine, it goes well with many red wines. The wines we have listed are a good addition to the Beef Bourguignon.

Pinot Noir

This light to medium-bodied red wine with its earthy, fruity and spicy flavors pairs well with Beef Bourguignon.


Syrah is a full-bodied wine with a spicy, smoky flavor that pairs well with the rich and savory flavors of Beef Bourguignon.

Cabernet Sauvignon

This full-bodied wine has a bold flavor profile that goes perfectly with the Beef Bourguignon.


Merlot is a medium-bodied wine with a soft texture and fruity flavors that can complement the complex flavors of Beef Bourguignon. Ultimately, the best pairing of wine with Beef Bourguignon depends on personal preferences. It is always a good idea to try different wines so that you know for sure which wine you like best with this delicious dish.

Go to these 3 restaurants for a good Beef Bourguignon

Don't feel like making the Beef Bourguignon at home? Then treat yourself to a delicious Beef Bourguignon at one of these restaurants.

Josephine Chez Dumonet

The Beef Bourguignon is a true French classic, and that is why it is not surprising that the tastiest Beef Bourguignons can be found in Paris! Josephine Chez Dumonet is a French restaurant where they serve authentic French food, including the Beef Bourguignons.

Pierre Rotterdam

Would you rather look for Beef Bourguignon a little closer to home? At the Pierre in Rotterdam, the Beef Bourguignon in classic style is on the menu. This dish is served with mashed potatoes or fries, and is loved by many visitors!

The Golden Real

Would you like to try the Beef Bourguignon in a historic place in the capital? This is possible at De Gouden Reael! This restaurant is located on Realen Island and, in addition to a French menu, also has delicious wine pairings. So double the enjoyment!

Frequently asked questions about Beef Bourguignon

What is the difference between Boeuf Bourguignon and Beef Bourguignon?

There is no difference between Boeuf Bourguignon and Beef Bourguignon. They are the same dishes, but with different names. Boeuf Bourguignon is the French name for the dish, while Beef Bourguignon is the English translation.

What are the basic ingredients for Beef Bourguignon?

The basic ingredients for Beef Bourguignon include beef, red wine, beef stock, onions, carrots, garlic, mushrooms, tomato paste, thyme, bay leaves and bacon. Some recipes also call for pearl onions or other vegetables.

Can I make Beef Bourguignon in advance?

Yes, you can make Beef Bourguignon in advance. The dish is actually even tastier if it is made a day in advance, because the flavors have time to develop properly. Store the dish in the refrigerator and reheat it before serving.

Is Beef Bourguignon a healthy dish?

Beef Bourguignon is a hearty, flavorful dish that can be high in calories and fat, depending on the ingredients used. However, it can be made healthier by using lean cuts of beef, reducing the amount of bacon and serving it with a variety of vegetables.

What are some variations of Beef Bourguignon?

Some variations of Beef Bourguignon include different meats, such as lamb or venison, or different vegetables, such as parsnips or turnips. Some recipes also call for a dash of brandy for extra flavor.

Can I prepare Beef Bourguignon in a slow cooker?

Yes, Beef Bourguignon can be made in a slow cooker for added convenience. Simply brown the beef and bacon in a frying pan and add it to the slow cooker together with the other ingredients. Cook on low for 6 to 8 hours or on high for 4 to 5 hours, until the meat is tender and the flavors have come together.

Can I freeze Beef Bourguignon?

Yes, Beef Bourguignon can be frozen for up to 3 months. Just make sure the dish has cooled completely before storing it in a freezer-safe container. When you are ready to serve it, thaw the Beef Bourguignon in the refrigerator overnight and then reheat it on the stove or in the oven.

How Long Should I Cook Beef Bourguignon?

Beef Bourguignon is usually cooked for several hours to meld the flavors and tenderize the meat. A good rule of thumb is to cook it for at least 2 to 3 hours, but it can be cooked up to 6 hours or longer for maximum tenderness.

Which cut of meat is best for Beef Bourguignon?

The best cuts of beef for Beef Bourguignon are generally tougher cuts of meat with a lot of connective tissue, such as a roast or beef brisket. These cuts benefit from long, slow cooking in liquid, which breaks down the tough fibers and tenderizes the meat.

Beef Bourguignon is a delicious classic French dish that is perfect for cold weather or special occasions. It takes some time and effort to prepare the dish, but the result is a rich and flavorful stew that is sure to impress guests. Whether you make it on the stove or in a slow cooker, Beef Bourguignon is definitely a meal worth the extra effort. It's no wonder the tender beef, savory sauce and aromatic vegetables have been a beloved favorite for generations.

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