Spiced Beef Stew with Carrots and Chickpeas

Spiced Beef Stew with Carrots and Chickpeas
Photo: Con Poulos
Prep Time:
40 mins
Total Time:
3 hrs 25 mins

This hearty dinner recipe combines beef with bell pepper, carrots, chickpeas, and Ethiopian berbere seasoning—a spice blend of up to twenty ingredients including chile, paprika, ginger, and garlic. The result is a fragrant stew that will perk up winter palates and delight the senses. To soak up every delicious drop, serve it over a bed of fluffy couscous.


  • 2 pounds beef chuck (preferably grass-fed), cut into 2-inch pieces

  • Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper

  • Unbleached all-purpose flour, for dusting

  • 3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil

  • 1 red onion, chopped

  • 1 red bell pepper, ribs and seeds removed, chopped

  • 2 tablespoons tomato paste

  • 2 teaspoons berbere seasoning

  • 2 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce

  • ¾ cup dry red wine, such as Cabernet Sauvignon

  • 3 ½ cups low-sodium chicken broth

  • 4 carrots (8 ounces), peeled and cut into 1 ½-inch pieces

  • 1 can (15.5 ounces) chickpeas, drained and rinsed

  • Fresh mint leaves, for serving

  • Cooked couscous, warmed, for serving


  1. Generously season beef with salt and pepper. Dust with flour and shake off excess. Heat a Dutch oven or other heavy-bottomed pot over medium-high, and swirl in 2 tablespoons oil.

  2. Add half of beef in a single layer and cook, turning a few times, until browned in places, 5 to 7 minutes. Transfer to a plate, leaving fat in pot. Brown remaining beef; transfer to plate.

  3. Preheat oven to 350°F. Swirl remaining 1 tablespoon oil into pot, still over medium-high heat. Cook onion and bell pepper until onions are golden, 3 to 4 minutes. Add tomato paste and berbere seasoning and cook, stirring frequently, until tomato paste is caramelized, 1 minute. Add Worcestershire sauce and wine; boil until mostly evaporated.

  4. Return beef and any accumulated juices to pot along with broth. Bring to a boil. Cover pot, transfer to oven, and cook 1 1/2 hours. Remove pot from oven and stir carrots into stew. Cover and continue cooking in oven until beef is fork-tender and carrots are easily pierced with the tip of a knife, about 1 hour more. Stir in chickpeas; return to oven for 5 minutes more, just to heat through.

  5. Ladle stew into shallow bowls, sprinkle with mint, and serve. Cooled stew can be transferred to an airtight container and refrigerated up to 2 days, or frozen up to 3 months.

Cook's Notes

Beef chuck is our preferred cut for this recipe because of its marbling; the fat imbues the broth with a buttery taste as it melts. Lamb shoulder is also a great substitute for the beef in this recipe.

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