Sautéed beef and mushrooms are enveloped in a beautifully spiced and seasoned creamy sauce and then ladled over egg noodles for this soul-satisfying cold-weather meal. Whether you’ve been inside all day or escaped to get to work or walk the dog, beef stroganoff is the kind of comfort food we need. We crave. We deserve. This classic beef stroganoff recipe comes together much more quickly than you might think, making it a great weeknight beef dinner!
Beef stroganoff is presumably Russian in origin, but it has kind of cemented itself into the American food lexicon. It’s a dish made with beef and mushrooms, bound together in a rich, creamy sour cream-based sauce, and usually served over noodles, egg noodles in particular. The spices in beef stroganoff include paprika, thyme, and parsley, which give the sauce a wonderful flavor and beautiful color as well. You also might see it called Hungarian beef stroganoff. It is similar to Hungarian Beef Goulash, but this dish contains sour cream, which traditional Hungarian Goulash does not.
Potatoes also are terrific partners for stroganoff, like Herb Mashed Potatoes or just a big Baked Potato. And then there are so many side dish possibilities! My family has never had just one serving of this classic beef stroganoff recipe. It’s a second helping of food, for sure.
Table of Contents
Beef Stroganoff: Tender wavy egg noodles are studded with lots of sautéed beef and mushrooms, and coated with a creamy sauce in this cool weather family favorite.Tweet This
- Butter – The butter in this recipe is divided into three different uses: first, it is used to sear the beef, next, it is used to sauté the shallots, and finally, it is combined with flour to make a roux.
- Beef broth – Good quality broth makes a difference in this kind of recipe. And, go with less-sodium broth so you can control the saltiness.
- Parsley – This is one recipe where using fresh parsley is definitely necessary.
- Shallots – Add a subtle, oniony sweetness. You can substitute ½ cup chopped onions if that’s what you have on hand.
- Beef tenderloin or flank steak – Beef stroganoff can be made with almost any type of beef, but I like using tenderloin or flank steak because they have the best flavor and texture at the best price point.
- Mushrooms – I like using cremini mushrooms, but you could also use a mixture of wild mushrooms.
- Thyme – I like using fresh thyme, but you could also substitute in ¾ teaspoon dried thyme.
- Flour – The flour and butter get cooked together to make something called a roux, which thickens the sauce and gives it the creamiest texture.
- Sour cream – Makes the sauce thick and creamy and adds a nice acidic note.
- Dijon mustard – Adds a little spiciness.
- Paprika – This will give your dish complexity without making it outright spicy.
- Egg noodles – You can serve beef stroganoff with anything you’d like. But egg noodles are traditional for a reason!
How to Make Easy Beef Stroganoff Sauce
- Sauté the vegetables: Sauté the shallots, then add the mushrooms and thyme and cook until tender. Remove from pan and set aside.
- Make the roux: In the same pan, combine a bit more butter and some flour; stir until golden brown.
- Make the sauce: Pour in the beef broth and bring to a simmer, stirring and scraping the bottom of the pan to release any browned bits.
- Finish and serve: Return the meat and mushrooms to the pan. Add the sour cream, mustard, and paprika, stir to blend, and remove from the heat. Serve warm over egg noodles or potatoes.
Sometimes beef stroganoff is made with expensive cuts of beef, like filet mignon, sometimes leaner, less expensive cuts of beef, like top round, and I have even seen recipes that call for ground beef. That means that any type of beef will work, depending on the method.
I landed somewhere in the middle, with your choice of tenderloin or flank steak. I like these cuts for this dish because they are moderately priced cuts of beef that become nice and tender after a quick searing before being simmered in the sauce.
If the beef is tough in your beef stroganoff, it is likely that you are using the wrong cut of beef. I would suggest using beef tenderloin or flank steak cut into small strips against the grain of the meat. Cutting against the grain tenderizes the meat. Also, make sure not to overcook the beef or cook it at too high a temperature, which can dry it out and make it tough.
Beef stroganoff originated in Russia. The dish is named after Count Pavel Stroganoff, a wealthy Russian aristocrat born in the eighteenth century. According to Bon Appetit, the dish is inspired by a French beef dish, which was altered by adding Russian sour cream. Because of Russian immigration to the US, beef stroganoff became an American classic in the 1940s and ’50s.
- The sauce is thickened by making a roux, which is simply a mixture of a little fat and a little flour. The flour is toasted in the butter so the raw taste is cooked out, and then this mixture will thicken the sauce.
- Make sure to cut the meat across the grain, which enhances tenderness.
Make-Ahead Beef Stroganoff
This is a great recipe to make ahead. Make the beef in the same way and store it in the fridge for up to 36 hours before serving. Heat the stroganoff on the stove over medium-low heat, stirring often, until just warmed throughout. If you are planning to make it ahead, don’t add the sour cream until you’ve heated the dish through in the stove, then stir it in just until warmed right at the end.
You can cook the egg noodles in advance, but it’s definitely preferable to make them right before serving. Quickly boil up the noodles while you heat up the beef stroganoff on the stove.
What to Serve With Beef Stroganoff
More Comforting Beef Recipes
- Strip Steak Diane
- Cheesy Beef and Hash Brown Casserole
- Cheesy Ground Beef Quesadillas
- One-Skillet Beefy Enchilada Casserole
- Hungarian Goulash
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- 4 tablespoons unsalted butter (divided)
- 2 cups less-sodium beef broth
- ¼ cup chopped fresh parsley
- 2 shallots (thinly sliced)
- 1 ½ pounds beef tenderloin or flank steak (cut across the grain into ⅛-inch thick strips)
- 1 pound sliced cremini mushrooms (or a mixture of wild mushrooms)
- 2 teaspoons minced fresh thyme (or ¾ teaspoon dried thyme)
- 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
- ½ cup sour cream
- 1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
- ½ teaspoon paprika
- 1 package (12-ounce) wide egg noodles
- Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil.
- Pat the beef dry and season it with salt and pepper. Melt 1 tablespoon butter in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add the meat (in batches if necessary) and cook, stirring occasionally (or turning) for 3 minutes, until the meat is browned on all or at least most sides. Transfer to a plate and pour off any remaining fat from the pan.
- Return the pan to medium-high heat. Melt 1 more tablespoon of the butter, then add the shallots and cook, stirring often, until they are slightly soft, about 2 minutes. Add the mushrooms and thyme leaves, season with salt and pepper, and sauté for another 7 minutes until tender and lightly browned and the mushroom juices evaporate. Add the cooked mushrooms to the beef on the plate.
- Return the pan once more to medium-high heat (don’t clean the pan!). Add the third tablespoon of butter, and when it is melted, stir in the flour. Stir for about 2 minutes until the flour turns golden brown. Add the beef broth and bring to a simmer, stirring and scraping the bottom of the pan to release any browned bits. Return the meat and mushrooms, along with any accumulated juices, to the pan. Add the sour cream, mustard, and paprika, stir to blend, and remove from the heat.
- Meanwhile, add the noodles to the boiling water and cook for 8 or 9 minutes, or according to package directions, until tender. Drain and transfer to a shallow serving bowl. Add the remaining tablespoon of butter and toss until the butter melts and coats the noodles.
- Pour the stroganoff mixture over the hot noodles, and sprinkle over the parsley. Serve hot.
Nutrition information is automatically calculated, so should only be used as an approximation.