Skip to Content

Quick and Easy Beef Bourguignon

This Quick and Easy Beef Bourguignon is ready in a fraction of the time of the classic French dish, but it’s still got all the flavor and melt-in-your-mouth tender beef!

Need a last-minute dinner idea for Valentine’s Day? This simple and delicious Beef Bourguignon is sure to impress whoever you’re cooking for and is the perfect dinner for a date night, special occasion, or any night of the year!

That’s right…you can make Beef Bourguignon for an easy weeknight dinner!

What is Beef Bourguignon?

Beef Bourguignon (sounds like bore-geen-yawn) – also sometimes called Beef Burgundy – is a stew of beef and vegetables (usually mushrooms, onions, and carrots) simmered in red wine and beef stock flavored with a little bacon, tomato paste, garlic, and thyme.

The most famous recipe for this dish has got to be Julia Child’s recipe from Mastering the Art of French Cooking – and oh, yes, it’s amazing.

The ingredients and the process for her recipe are actually quite simple. The thing is, it takes several hours to cook. Worth it? Absolutely (and I highly recommend trying it sometime)!

But, often, we just don’t have that kind of time on our hands.

Enter this little gem of a recipe that I found in Cooking Light magazine many years ago (I made just a few minor changes). It cuts the total time waaaay down to only 40 minutes – prep time and all – yet you still get a flavorful dish with super tender meat.

The secret? Beef tenderloin (or filet mignon), which is a tender cut of beef that cooks very quickly. Sure, it’s a little pricey, but you only need a pound and a half for this recipe. And it’s totally worth the end result!

quick and easy beef bourguignon in a pan with a serving spoon

Due to the quick cooking time, this version of Beef Bourguignon doesn’t contain carrots, but you could easily just cook some up on the side if you’d like some.

Ingredients you need:

  • Frozen pearl onions
  • Beef tenderloin or filet mignon
  • Bacon
  • Butter
  • Fresh mushrooms
  • Garlic
  • Fresh thyme
  • Sugar
  • Tomato paste
  • Red wine
  • Beef stock or broth (I use roasted beef base + water)
  • Salt and pepper

Here’s a look at how to make Quick and Easy Beef Bourguignon:

two images showing the steps to make quick and easy beef bourguignon
two images showing the steps to make quick and easy beef bourguignon
two images showing the steps to make quick and easy beef bourguignon
two images showing the steps to make quick and easy beef bourguignon
two images showing the steps to make quick and easy beef bourguignon
two images showing how to make quick and easy beef bourguignon
two images showing how to make quick and easy beef bourguignon

Yep, there’s a lot of little steps, but they’re all very fast and easy!

Tips & Tidbits:

  • You can use jarred pearl onions (drained) instead of frozen. If you do, omit the step of microwaving them.
  • You can use either beef tenderloin or filet mignon. A filet mignon is a cut taken from the small end of a beef tenderloin.
  • Pat those beef cubes dry with a paper towel before cooking to help ensure that they get nicely browned (which adds flavor). If they are wet, they will steam (bye-bye brown!).
    • Make sure that pan is nice and hot before adding the beef cubes. You need it to sear quickly (no more than a minute to a minute and a half per side) so that it doesn’t overcook.
  • Traditionally, Beef Bourguignon is made with Burgundy wine. Use any dry red wine that you like and that you would drink (read: no cooking wine), such as Cabernet Sauvignon (my favorite) or Pinot Noir.
  • Be sure to use a beef stock or broth that has lots of good flavor. Generally, stock is more flavorful than broth. I love using Better Than Bouillon roasted beef base mixed with water (#notsponsored).
  • Because tenderloin and filet mignon are such lean cuts of beef, they are at their most tender, flavorful best when cooked to medium-rare (a warm, red center; internal temperature of 130°F to 135°F) and really no more than medium (a warm, pink center; internal temperature of 140°F to 145°F).
    • That being said, if you enjoy your meat cooked more well-done, who am I to tell you that you can’t cook it longer? Go ahead and cook it how you like it (but don’t say I didn’t warn you)!
  • This dish is most definitely best when served immediately. I will flat out admit that it’s not a make-ahead dish nor is it great for leftovers because it’s really hard not to overcook the meat when you reheat it. I recommend just making as much as you need for dinner. If it’s just me and David, I halve the recipe.
medium-rare piece of beef tenderloin on a fork being taken out of a bowl of quick and easy beef bourguignon

Traditionally, Beef Bourguignon is served over boiled potatoes, mashed potatoes, or hot buttered egg noodles. You could even use rice. I’ve tried each, and my favorite – hands down – is mashed potatoes. SO, SO GOOD!

And hey, since we’re going all French with this recipe, why not whip up a batch of my Easy Chocolate Mousse for dessert?

Happy Valentine’s Day, everyone! I hope your day is filled with love, happiness, and yummy food. In my opinion, one of the best ways to show someone you care is cooking a meal for them!

I hope you try this recipe for Quick and Easy Beef Bourguignon and love it as much as I do. Thanks for visiting today!

michelle signature

image that states follow now cook this on pinterest for more simple and delicious recipes, click here
image that states if you make this recipe, please leave a star rating and comment below, thanks

Quick and Easy Beef Bourguignon

This Quick and Easy Beef Bourguignon is ready in a fraction of the time of the classic French dish, but it's still got all the flavor and melt-in-your-mouth tender beef!
Print Pin Save Rate & Comment
Author: Michelle / Now Cook This!
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 30 minutes
Total Time: 40 minutes
Servings: 4
Estimated Calories: 473

Ingredients

  • 1 cup frozen pearl onions
  • pounds beef tenderloin, or filet mignon
  • 1 slice bacon
  • 3 tablespoons butter, divided
  • 8 ounces fresh mushrooms, quartered
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • ½ teaspoon chopped fresh thyme
  • ½ teaspoon sugar
  • 1 tablespoon tomato paste
  • ½ cup red wine, such as Burgundy, Cabernet Sauvignon, or Pinot Noir (don't use a sweet red wine)
  • 1 cup beef stock or broth, I use 1 cup water mixed with 1 teaspoon roasted beef base (such as Better Than Bouillon)
  • 2 tablespoons cold water
  • 2 tablespoons flour
  • salt and pepper, to taste
  • additional chopped fresh thyme, for garnish, optional

Instructions

  • Place the onions in a microwave-safe bowl; microwave on HIGH for 4 minutes; set aside.
  • Cut the beef tenderloin into 2-inch cubes. Take one of the cubes and finely chop it along with the slice of bacon.
  • Pat the beef cubes dry with a paper towel and season with salt and pepper. You want the beef cubes dry so that they sear and get a nice brown color in the pan. If they are wet, they will steam instead.
  • Heat 1 tablespoon of the butter in a large skillet over medium-high heat (I use a 12-inch skillet). Make sure the pan is nice and hot before adding the beef. You need it to sear quickly so that it doesn't overcook.
  • Add the beef cubes in a single layer, then leave them alone for a minute to a minute and a half until the bottoms are nicely browned. Turn them over and cook for another minute to minute and a half until nicely browned on the other side. Remove the beef cubes from the pan to a plate; set aside.
    Note: At this point, you just want to quickly get some nice color on the beef. It will finish cooking later on in the sauce. If you don't have a pan large enough to hold all the beef cubes in a single layer without overcrowding the pan, brown the beef in 2 batches (an overcrowded pan will cause the meat to steam rather than sear).
  • Reduce the heat to medium. Add the chopped beef and bacon to the pan; cook, stirring occasionally, for 3 minutes until browned.
  • Add 1 tablespoon of the butter to the pan along with the mushrooms; season lightly with salt and pepper. Sauté, stirring occasionally, for 5 minutes or until they have cooked down a bit and are lightly browned.
  • Add the remaining tablespoon of butter to the pan along with the garlic, thyme, and sugar; sauté, stirring constantly, for 1 minute.
  • Add the tomato paste; cook, stirring constantly, for 1 minute.
  • Add the wine, stirring to scrape up any browned bits from the bottom of the pan. Increase the heat and bring to a boil; cook for 2 minutes or until the wine has reduced by half.
  • Add the onions and the beef stock or broth. Bring to a boil; cook for 1 minute, stirring occasionally.
  • In a small bowl, mix together the cold water and flour until smooth. While stirring, add the flour mixture to the pan. Bring back to a boil, if necessary, and cook for 1 minute, stirring constantly, until the sauce has thickened.
  • Return the browned beef cubes to the pan along with any juices on the plate, Reduce the heat a bit and simmer until the beef is heated through to medium-rare (a warm, red center, internal temperature of 130°F to 135°F), about 2 to 3 minutes. Be very careful not to overcook the meat so it remains melt-in-your-mouth tender!
    Note: If you like your meat cooked more, go ahead and cook it to your desired level of doneness. Just know that it may not be as tender or as flavorful as cooking it to medium-rare or, at the most, medium (a warm, pink center; internal temperature of 140°F to 145°F).
  • Taste the sauce and season with salt and pepper, if needed.
  • Serve over mashed potatoes, boiled potatoes, or hot buttered egg noodles and garnish with additional chopped fresh thyme, if desired. Serve immediately.

Notes

  • This dish is most definitely best when served immediately. It’s not great for making ahead or for leftovers because it’s really hard not to overcook the meat when you reheat it. I recommend making only as much as you need for dinner. 
  • You can use jarred pearl onions (drained) instead of frozen. If you do, omit the step of microwaving them.  
  • Calorie estimate is for the Beef Bourguignon only and does not include anything you serve it with, such as mashed potatoes or egg noodles. 
Did you try this recipe? I’d love to see it!Share it on Instagram, tag @nowcookthis and use the hashtag #nowcookthisrecipes. Thanks!
Recipe Rating