Beef Stroganoff

beef stroganoff in a white skillet
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Our easy beef stroganoff recipe is as classic as they come—thin strips of sirloin steak and mushrooms bathe in a savory sour cream-based sauce, served over buttery egg noodles. 

Nostalgia is Served.  

We share a lot of comfort-food recipes here, don’t we? Particularly this time of year, they’re reflective of what we’re craving, and therefore what we’re cooking. We assume that the same goes for you. In some ways, then, today is just a normal day here at TMP, because we’re back at it with another beefy comfort food recipe. Or is it THE comfort food recipe? Beef stroganoff is a take-no-prisoners, soul-soothing, household-uniting kind of supper. Just thinking about cooking it feeds the hungriest parts of our selves. 

Apparently it inspires hyperbole, too. What we’re saying is, we cannot recommend strongly enough that you make this beef stroganoff recipe for dinner soon. No, scratch that—not soon. Make it ASAP.

beef stroganoff topped with fresh parsley

Beef Stroganoff (Or Should We Say Stroganov?)—A Brief History

You might—like we do—associate creamy bowls of beef stroganoff with your parents generation, or even your grandparents generation. Although steak stroganoff did have a heyday here in America in the 1950s and ‘60s, this sour cream-tinged, quick-to-make classic beef stroganoff recipe goes back way, way further. Its origins are as Russian as the name “stroganoff” implies. The beefy recipe was likely created in the early 1800s for members of the wealthy Russian Stroganov family to indulge in.  It seems likely that the dish was created by a French chef—browning the meat quickly, and making a pan sauce flavored with Dijon are both classically French techniques—working in St. Petersburg with Russian ingredients (hello, sour cream!). Beyond that, food scholars don’t know all of the details of what inspired its creation. But, we DO know for sure that we’re glad it exists. 

How to Make Beef Stroganoff

In his authoritative tome, American Cookery, James Beard says of beef stroganoff “Properly done, this is a dish that is cooked quickly, often at the table, and served at once.” We’re not sold on the cooked “at the table” part, but we agree that beef stroganoff is a dish that’s meant to come together fast, and be enjoyed right away! Here’s how to make it: 

  1. Slice the sirloin steak into thin strips. This is easiest to do if the steak is quite cold.  
  2. Sear the steak strips in a hot pan! You might want to work in batches, so that the pan stays hot. 
  3. Sauté some mushrooms (we like cremini, but white button mushrooms work, too) and onions in butter, and add a little garlic. 
  4. Roux time! Add a little flour, and whisk it in to make a roux—the base of your creamy beef stroganoff sauce. 
  5. Add all of the things that give this easy beef stroganoff recipe its big, bold flavors—beef broth, thyme, Worcestershire sauce, spicy Dijon mustard, and sour cream. 
  6. Add the beef to the mushroomy stroganoff sauce, and admire your handiwork. 
  7. Serve! We love it over buttered egg noodles, because that's how Grandma made it, but it's also nice with rice. 
easy beef stroganoff in a white skillet topped with parsley

Stroganoff Sauce 101: A Few Handy Tips

Our beef and mushroom stroganoff recipe is inherently simple, but there are—as there always are—a couple of trip points to know about. Both have to do with making sure that the stroganoff sauce thick and creamy: 

  1. Consider the roux! The first step towards making your beef stroganoff sauce is making a roux, which simply means a thick paste of flour + fat that forms the base of most creamy sauces, including the famous French mother sauces.  Don’t be intimidated, though—just be sure that when it comes time to whisk the flour into the sauce (you’ll do it after the onions and mushrooms have been cooked in butter) you give it a good whisk and a little time—you want to cook out the flours’ rawness and create a cohesive roux before proceeding to the next step. 
  2. Use full-fat sour cream, and don’t let it boil! After you add the sour cream to the sauce, you’ll want to warm it through (of course) but be careful not to let the sauce fully boil or you’ll run the risk of curdling the sour cream. We say to use full-fat because full-fat sour cream is sturdier than low-fat, and therefore less likely to curdle. 

All the Tools You’ll Need to Make Stroganoff: 

More Easy Beef Recipes We Love: 

Steak always feels a little special. Here are four of our very favorite ways to serve it—weeknight-friendly steak! What’s not to love? 

Well, That Was Easy!

Homemade stroganoff is easier than you’d think, right? And such a payoff! We hope this was a big hit in your home. Snap a photo of your finished beef stroganoff, and maybe even a video of the beautiful people you feed it to. Tag us on Instagram using @themodernproper and #themodernproper. Happy eating!

beef stroganoff in a white skillet topped with parsley

Beef Stroganoff

Serves 6

Ingredients

1.5 lbs chuck or sirloin steak, sliced very thin
2 tsp salt, divided
2 lbs white button or cremini mushrooms, sliced
2 tbsp olive oil
1 large yellow onion, diced
2 cloves garlic, minced
4 tbsp unsalted butter
1/4 cup flour
2 cups beef broth
2 tbsp fresh thyme
1 tbsp Worcestershire sauce
1 tbsp Dijon mustard
1/2 cup full fat sour cream
1/2 tsp pepper
parsley, finely chopped (optional)

Method

  1. Slice the steak against the grain into ¼ inch thick strips, discarding any excess fat and sprinkle with 1 ½ teaspoon salt.
  2. In a large skillet heat 1 tablespoon olive oil high heat. Working in small batches cook the beef by resist the urge to move the meat around (similar to our Philly cheese steak recipe). You are looking for a nice brown sear, about 1-2 minutes. Flip the beef and continue cooking until both sides are nice and browned. Remove from pan and repeat with remaining meat. Once finished, set meat aside. Note: Add more olive oil to the pan, if it gets too dry.
  3. In the same pan add the butter. Once melted melted, add the onions and mushrooms and cook until the onions soften and the mushrooms have released all of their liquid and start to brown, about 5 minutes. Add garlic and sauté for 1 more minute.
  4. Add the flour to the onion mushroom mixture stirring, for 1 minute. Slowly add the beef broth, a little at a time and stir until fully incorporated. Add the thyme, salt and pepper and simmer, stirring often, until it begins to thicken, about 5 mins. Add the Worcestershire sauce, sour cream and Dijon mustard, stirring until the sauce is combined. Bring the sauce to a gentle simmer and allow to cook until the sauce thickens. Add meat back into the sauce along with fresh parsley and serve with noodles or mashed potatoes. Enjoy!