Crock-Pot Beef Stew With Gnocchi


A Simple Twist: A Classic Beef Stew Without Potatoes

I've enjoyed making classic beef stew for many years with simple ingredients like potatoes, carrots, celery, and tomatoes. I never tried making it any other way because that is how I've always enjoyed it, simple and delicious. Until one day, I started preparing my beef stew and then realized I was out of potatoes.

Instead of running to the store, I decided to start checking my cupboards for something to substitute for the potatoes. Not thinking I would actually come up with anything, I pulled out a bag of store-bought potato gnocchi. So I figured I would give it a try.

Not only did it turn out to be the best beef stew I had ever made, it was probably the best beef stew that I had ever tasted. The gnocchi had soaked up all the flavors from the beef, broth, vegetables, and other ingredients. It was just so gooey and delicious, just like potato dumplings.

I don't know why I had never thought of using potato gnocchi in a beef stew before. Who knew that gnocchi could be so flavorful?

Making a beef stew in the Crock-Pot (or slow cooker) is so simple and effortless. Just throw in all of your ingredients in the morning and set it to cook on low. There's no need to check on it while it's cooking. Just leave it alone for the day, and let the appliance do the work.

When it's time to eat, your beef will be fall-apart tender, and the rest of your ingredients will be full of flavor from simmering in the juices all day. There's nothing more comforting than a delicious bowl of hearty stew on a cold day.


Cook Time

Prep timeCook timeReady inYields

20 min

8 hours

8 hours 20 min

4-6 servings


  • 2 Tbsp olive oil
  • 1 lb stewing beef, cut into 1/2-inch pieces
  • 2 large carrots, peeled and cut into 1/2-inch pieces
  • 2 celery stalks, cut into 1/2-inch pieces
  • 1/2 package (500g) potato gnocchi
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 1 onion, diced
  • 1 2/3 cups diced tomatoes, canned or fresh
  • 1/4 cup flour
  • 1/2 cup beef stock
  • 1 Tbsp Worcestershire
  • 1 Tbsp balsamic vinegar
  • 1/4 cup dry red wine
  • 1 bayleaf
  • 1/2 tsp thyme
  • Salt and pepper, to taste


  1. Heat olive oil in a pan or skillet.
  2. Add the beef chunks and brown on all sides.
  3. Remove the beef from the pan and sprinkle with flour. Stir the beef until it is coated in flour.
  4. Add the onions to the pan and cook until clear. Add the garlic and cook for 1-2 additional minutes.
  5. Add the beef to the Crock-Pot. Top with the onions and the garlic. Add the tomatoes, carrots, and celery.
  6. Pour the beef stock in the Crock-Pot and add the Worcestershire, balsamic vinegar, and red wine.
  7. Add the bay leaf and sprinkle with thyme, salt, and pepper.
  8. Place the lid on the Crock-Pot and cook on low for around 7-10 hours.
  9. About 1/2 hour to 1 hour before serving, add the uncooked gnocchi to the Crock-Pot. Place the lid back on and let it simmer until the gnocchi is tender and flavorful. If you are in a rush, another option is to boil the gnocchi before adding it to the stew. Let it simmer in the stew for about 10 minutes to allow the gnocchi to absorb the flavors.
  10. Serve with freshly baked bread, a warm biscuit, or garlic toast. Enjoy!

One of the best things about stew is that it's so versatile. You can make substitutions and add your favorite ingredients. If you are vegetarian, you can add more vegetables to your liking or substitute the beef with tofu. Feel free to use this recipe to create your own. Also feel free to share your substitutions in the comments. I would love to hear them!


Jennifer C (author) on January 19, 2019:

Flourish, glad to hear! Thanks for your comment :)

FlourishAnyway from USA on January 18, 2019:

This is a recipe I think my family would enjoy. Thanks for sharing it.

Poppy from Enoshima, Japan on December 03, 2018:

This looks amazing. I just bought a slow cooker and I'll definitely add this recipe to my list. I adore beef stew as well and my mum used to make gnocchi when I was a child, though she stopped making it because my brothers didn't like it (the little weirdos).

Liz Westwood from UK on December 01, 2018:

You have inspired me. Only yesterday I was thinking that I should use my slow cooker again.

Debra Roberts from Ohio on December 01, 2018:

ohhhh, just like my Grandmother used to make!!!!

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