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Julia’s Beef Bourguignon and Garlic Mashed Potatoes

Your Tuesday NEEDS this hearty comfort dish.

Julia's Beef Bourguignon and Garlic Mashed Potatoes | #recipeJust trust me, it does.

I was feeling a little Julia Child-inspired, so I decided to make her famous beef bourguignon. But, I didn’t stop there, I also made her garlic mashed potatoes (which just may be the best I’ve had).

Sooo, just FYI, this is not a meal that you can just “whip up.” It will take hours, but it will be worth every second. Plus, it makes at least 6 servings, so you can enjoy the fruits of your labor for the whole week!

Julia's Beef Bourguignon and Garlic Mashed Potatoes | #recipeFor real though, this is a perfect dish for Fall, and it’s packed with so much flavor that it will blow your mind.

Stewy, stick-to-your-ribs dishes that cook for hours in the oven are what this season is all about. Well, that and pumpkin (can you even believe I’m posting a recipe free of pumpkin, right now?).

Julia's Beef Bourguignon and Garlic Mashed Potatoes | #recipeI stuck pretty true to Julia’s original recipe, but you know I can’t help but change up a few things here and there. One thing I did, which was weird but also turned out awesome, was use a chunk of salt pork (skin cut off) instead of bacon. It was kinda perfect because it added all the porky flavor, and then seasoned the whole thing for me, so I didn’t have to add much additional salt!

Oh, and I so need to talk about these potatoes for a minute. I am obsessed with them. I love love love the garlic sauce in ’em. It’s such a brilliant way to make your potatoes creamy and garlicky. And these potatoes make the best base, ever for the delicious, rich beef bourguignon.

Basically, I can’t say enough good things about this dish. It’s a classic for a reason. Though you may spend an entire day laboring over all of it’s components, it’s going to be one of the best meals you will ever eat!

Julia's Beef Bourguignon and Garlic Mashed Potatoes | #recipe

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Julia's Beef Bourguignon and Garlic Mashed Potatoes

Yield: 6 servings


for the beef bourguignon:

  • 1/2 tbsp olive oil
  • around 8 ounces of salt pork, any skin removed, and sliced into 1/2-inch strips
  • 3 lbs beef for stew (This will usually be sold in chunks in the meat department; if it's not, cut your meat into about 2-inch chunks. The cuts you're looking for are: rump, chuck, sirloin tip, top round, or bottom round.)
  • salt and pepper
  • 1 large carrot, sliced
  • 1 red onion, sliced
  • 2 tbsp all-purpose flour
  • 2 and 1/2 cups red wine (preferably a Beaujolais, Cotes du Rhone, Bordeaux-St, Emilion, Burgundy, or Chianti)
  • 1 cup beef stock
  • 1 tbsp tomato paste
  • 1-2 tsp fresh thyme leaves
  • 1-2 dried bay leaves, crumbled
  • 2-3 cloves garlic, smashed

for the onions:

  • 1 and 1/2 tbsp unsalted butter
  • 1 and 1/2 tbsp olive oil
  • about 2 dozen small white boiler onions, peeled
  • 1/2 cup beef stock
  • 3-4 fresh parsley sprigs
  • 2 fresh bay leaves
  • 3-4 fresh thyme sprigs
  • salt and pepper

for the mushrooms:

  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 2 tbs unsalted butter
  • 1/2 lb white mushrooms, wiped clean with a damp paper towel

for the garlic mashed potatoes:

  • 2 heads of garlic, cloves separated
  • 4 tbsp unsalted butter
  • 2 tbsp all-purpose flour
  • 1 cup hot whole milk
  • salt and pepper
  • 2 and 1/2 lbs baking potatoes
  • 4 tbsp unsalted butter
  • 3-4 tbsp heavy cream
  • 1/4 cup minced parsley


for the beef bourguignon:

  1. Preheat oven to 450 degrees.
  2. Heat the olive oil in an enamel Dutch oven over medium-high heat. Add in the salt pork and cook for 5-8 minutes until browned, and fat has accumulated at the bottom of the pan. Remove from the loan with a slotted spoon and set aside.
  3. Pat the beef dry with a paper towel, and lightly sprinkle with salt and pepper. Make sure the fat is super hot, then add in the beef, in batches so as not to crown the pan, and brown on all sides. Set the browned beef aside, and add the chopped carrots and onion to the fat and cook for a couple minutes until lightly browned.
  4. Slice the cooked salt pork into lardons (about 1-inch long and 1/4-inch thick). Add the salt pork and beef to the vegetables. Sprinkle the flour all over and toss to coat. Place the pan in the oven uncovered to cook for 4 minutes. Remove from oven, toss again, and place back in the oven for another 4 minutes. Remove it from the oven, and reduce the heat to 325 degrees.
  5. Add in the wine, stock, tomato paste, herbs, and garlic and carefully stir to combine. Cover and place in the oven to 3 to 3 and 1/2 hours.
  6. While the meat is cooking, prepare the onions, mushrooms, and mashed potatoes.

for the onions:

  1. Heat the butter and oil in a skillet over medium-high heat. Add in the onions and salute for about 10 minutes, rolling the onions around, until slightly browned.
  2. Add in the stock. Tie together the herbs with some butcher's twine, and add those in, too. Reduce the heat to low, cover, and simmer for 40-50 minutes until tender. Set aside.

for the mushrooms:

  1. Quarter the mushrooms.
  2. Heat the oil and butter in a skillet over high heat. When the foam from the butter begins to subside, add in the mushrooms. Shake the mushroom around for about 5 minutes until browned. Remove from heat and set aside.

for the garlic mashed potatoes:

  1. Fill a medium sauce pan with water and bring to a boil. Drop the garlic cloves into boiling water and boil for 2 minutes. Peel the cloves.
  2. Empty the water from the sauce pan. Add in 4 tablespoons of butter and heat over low heat. Add in the garlic cloves, cover, and cook for 20 minutes, until tender.
  3. Stir in the flour, and stir over low heat until it froths. Add in the hot milk (just heat it for a bit in the microwave),  salt, and pepper, and puree in a blender. Return to pan and simmer for 2 more minutes. Set aside.
  4. Boil some salted water in a large pot.
  5. Peel and quarter your potatoes, then add to the water. Cook until fork tender.
  6. Press the potatoes through a potato ricer, mash by hand, or add them to the bowl of your mixer and mix until smooth. Return the potatoes to the pan and cook out any moisture over medium-low heat.
  7. Mix in 4 tablespoons of butter, 1 tablespoon at time. Mix in the garlic sauce, and then the cream. Stir in the parsley. Season to taste with salt and pepper.

to serve:

  1. Skim the fat off of the top of the beef bourguignon. Serve over the potatoes, placing the onions and mushrooms around. (You can also add the onions and mushrooms straight to the beef and stuff now, if you want.)
  2. Sprinkle with more parsley. Serve with a nice glass of the wine you cooked it in!

slightly adapted from Julia Child's Mastering the Art of French Cooking

Julia's Beef Bourguignon and Garlic Mashed Potatoes | #recipe


53 Responses to “Julia’s Beef Bourguignon and Garlic Mashed Potatoes”

  1. Sarah@WholeandHeavenlyOven — October 28, 2014 at 5:02 am

    I am ALL about filling and stick-to-your-ribs kinda dinners these days—no matter how long they take to make. This dish looks SO warm and cozy and I’m loving the sound of that beef!

    • Rachael replied: — October 28th, 2014 @ 12:09 pm

      It's just the season for it, ya know?
      Thanks, Sarah!

  2. Kiran @ — October 29, 2014 at 12:16 pm

    This looks so warm, cozy and inviting, Rachael. What a delicious Julia Child’s signature menu you’ve created 🙂

    • Rachael replied: — October 29th, 2014 @ 12:50 pm

      Thank you so much, Kiran!

  3. CakePants — October 29, 2014 at 1:33 pm

    I don’t even usually eat beef, but this looks too good to be true! Those mashed potatoes *definitely* need to happen ASAP…what a beautiful meal!

    • Rachael replied: — October 29th, 2014 @ 2:58 pm

      Thank you!! The potatoes are freaking magical. The garlic sauce is out of this world!

  4. Jess+@+whatjessicabakednext — October 29, 2014 at 3:07 pm

    This is definitely my idea of the most perfect autumn/fall dish! It looks so delicious and warming and perfectly comforting! Love the idea of the garlic mashed potatoes- so good.

    • Rachael replied: — October 29th, 2014 @ 4:26 pm

      Thanks, Jess! It's been cool and rainy here in Seattle, and I've eaten this three nights in a row for dinner 😛 Haha
      It's so fitting for the weather!

  5. — October 30, 2014 at 11:52 pm

    Everything I know about beef bourguignon I learned from the movie Julie & Julia…which is to say, not much! These pictures make it look ah-mazing and I may need to get over my fear of scary french dishes and give it a try!

    • Rachael replied: — October 31st, 2014 @ 11:05 am

      Yes! It's actually pretty simple, there are just a bunch of steps (in Julia Child's version). You could totally skip the mushrooms and onions and it would be beyond easy!

  6. Amy @ Chew Out Loud — November 13, 2014 at 11:35 am

    Totally YUMMO!  This is one of my all-time faves for serving friends on the weekend!  We make this almost every year for friends, and they love it.  I personally love that it can be made a day ahead…stress free!  Your pix are super pretty 🙂

    • Rachael replied: — November 13th, 2014 @ 11:51 am

      Yes, I loooove that most everything can be prepared ahead of time! Makes it a perfect dish for entertaining!

      And thank you so much <3

  7. Karen — December 30, 2014 at 5:11 pm

    Just made this. Had the dish in the oven for 3hrs as needed but the sauce came out very thick. How often do you guys check it and if it looks a bit thick do you just add some more stock?

    • Rachael replied: — December 30th, 2014 @ 5:51 pm

      Hi, Karen!
      I actually never checked mine, and never needed to add any liquid, but I would definitely suggest loosening it up a bit with some stock if it’s too thick for your tastes 🙂 I would say up to another 2 cups of stock, if needed! You could even do it at the end now, and then simmer it for like 10 minutes or so!

  8. Suelan Toye — February 14, 2015 at 11:26 am

    Just finished making your take on JC’s famous dish for a Valentine’s dinner party tonight. I loved putting the ingredients together and it smells good. Having a glass of red and going to watch JC make her signature stew. Bon appétit!

    • Rachael replied: — February 14th, 2015 @ 1:20 pm

      Aw how fun! I hope you and your guests enjoyed it!

  9. Kerry — February 22, 2015 at 11:31 am

    Looks wonderful. If you make it the day before would you cook it to the end then just reheat the next day? Looking for a stress free dinner party! Also is it enough for 6 adults or should I add a bit extra? Thank you very much. Xx

    • Rachael replied: — February 22nd, 2015 @ 12:52 pm

      Hi Kerry,
      You could definitely make it all the day before! It all should re-heat super well!
      I’d say it’s definitely enough f the stew for 6 adults, but I might add a bit more potato to the mashed potatoes.Serve it with an easy green salad and you have a perfect meal!

  10. tammy — March 13, 2015 at 9:55 am

    have always wanted o make this recipe–I cook a great deal and am always looking for something different well I followed your recipe to the T and it was absolutely fabulous !!! WELL DONE !!

    • Rachael replied: — March 13th, 2015 @ 11:42 am

      I’m so glad, Tammy! It’s a classic and a keeper, that’s for sure 🙂

  11. Erica — August 17, 2015 at 1:15 pm

    Darn! I can see the pics and the blogging but no recipe.

    • Rachael replied: — August 17th, 2015 @ 1:22 pm

      That’s so weird, Erica! It shows up just fine for me 🙁

  12. Stacey — August 21, 2015 at 9:34 am

    Where’s the recipe?

    • Rachael replied: — August 21st, 2015 @ 2:08 pm

      It appears on the page :/

  13. Dara — August 21, 2015 at 6:00 pm

    Looks delish. I’d love to try but I can’t find the recipe on this page.

    • Rachael replied: — August 21st, 2015 @ 7:44 pm

      Hm, I really don’t know why it isn;t showing up for some people 🙁 I can see it just fine.

  14. Dara — August 22, 2015 at 7:15 am


    if it helps, I can see it when I am on my computer, but was unable to when I was on my iPhone.

    • Rachael replied: — August 25th, 2015 @ 11:43 am

      Thanks, Dara. Yes, it appeared to an issue with the mobile version of my website, and my recipe plugin. I have disabled the mobile version, so it should work on mobile devices again 🙂

  15. Samantha — September 24, 2015 at 11:10 am

    so I noticed that it says salute for 10 mins on the onions lol I’m sure you meant sauté but I found it kind of funny and needed the laugh. I’m gonna be making this tonight 🙂

    • Rachael replied: — September 26th, 2015 @ 12:50 pm

      Ahahah! Nono, please “salute” the onions LOLL
      My mistake!

  16. Pingback: Fall to do List 2015 | dillie & dallie

  17. Carrie — December 9, 2015 at 6:27 am

    I’m going to make this on Friday for a dinner party on Saturday—how long should the re-heat take on Saturday? And do I reheat it on the stove or in the oven?   I’m only planning to cook the meat the day before–not the onions/mushrooms./potatoes .  Is there any way to make the potatoes ahead of time without them becoming gummy?  

    • Rachael replied: — December 9th, 2015 @ 12:24 pm

      The potatoes won’t be gummy at all if you make them ahead of time. Just reheat them in the microwave and stir in a bit of butter of cream.

      As for the reheating of the meat, it’s probably easier on the stove, but you could also do it in the oven. It will probably take like 15-20 min on the stovetop.

  18. Magen — December 12, 2015 at 11:27 pm

    I’m planning on making this for our French themed Christmas dinner 😍 but I don’t have a Dutch 
    Oven.  My calphalon pot allows me to put it in the oven up to 400 degrees, but I’d rather toss it all
    In the crockpot.  Is it possible with this recipe? If do can I have the suggested cooking times?

    • Rachael replied: — December 14th, 2015 @ 10:43 am

      You could put in the crockpot, but It would be very important to still brown the meat up, first! Follow through step 4, then you can put everything in the crockpot on lo6 for 6-8 hours, or high for 3-4 🙂

  19. Ellie — January 31, 2016 at 2:06 pm

    This recipe was fantastic! It is one of the best things I have ever made. Thanks for sharing! 

    • Rachael replied: — January 31st, 2016 @ 9:09 pm

      That’s awesome to hear, Ellie! I’m glad you loved it as much as I do!

  20. Rich — April 5, 2016 at 7:08 pm

    Outstanding!  I made this with an elk tenderloin and it was a huge hit.  The combination of the wine, slow cooking and spices removed the “gaminess”, from the meat. Love the fact that the onions potatoes and mushrooms can be prepared last (with the guests viewing) as this allows for the social aspect of cooking. Thank you! 

    • Rachael replied: — April 7th, 2016 @ 10:59 am

      Elk sounds like a lovely substitution! I’m so glad the recipe impressed you as much as it has me!

  21. leona — April 11, 2016 at 3:37 pm

    Just checking on the garlic for the potatoes. Do you actually use two whole bulbs of garlic? That sounds like a lot of garlic. Thanks The recipe sounds fabulous.

    • Rachael replied: — April 11th, 2016 @ 3:58 pm

      Yep! And they really aren’t that garlicky. It works really well 🙂 Just sounds like way too much, haha

  22. Lillie McPherson — June 17, 2016 at 4:14 pm

    Mine burned like crazy. The best only change I made was bacon. What went wrong?

    • Rachael replied: — June 17th, 2016 @ 4:35 pm

      Did you reduce the oven temperature to 325?

  23. Lillie McPherson — June 18, 2016 at 2:28 pm

    I sure did. I mean I definitely did it, but everything is digital so I suppose it could have not taken. Early on there was even an explosion type sound. Like the top popped up and down. I will definitely try again and watch much more closely. I just have a traditional Dutch oven. No enamel. 

  24. Vuthy — August 31, 2016 at 12:02 am

    Hi! First, thank you for taking the time to write this up and for the beautiful photos! I’m drooling. I’m looking to make this to impress a dinner date, but want to only make half the serving (3). I plan on just cutting all the ingredients in half, but keeping all the instructions and cooking times the same. Do you think this will be okay? Any advice? Thanks so much!

    • Rachael replied: — August 31st, 2016 @ 1:58 am

      This should work, but I would watch the heat and cooking time once it’s in the oven to make sure it doesn’t burn.:)
      I hope the date goes awesome!

  25. Laura — September 6, 2016 at 8:54 am

    I make this dish every year and not Julia’s version. My biggest critique of this is the option (is it an option?) of serving the pearl onions and mushrooms on the side. THE BEST PART IS THE PEARL ONIONS SOAKING UP THE RICH GRAVY!  You haven’t lived until you’ve tried it with the pearl onions after they soak up the sauce. They are amazing.  This is the recipe I use when making this dish.  Nothing against Julia. She’s amazing. But this recipe develops a silky smooth sauce that is amazing. I can’t say enough about the pearl onions and the tender beef that sits in all of that reduced wine.  I make it every year in December and have friends over to enjoy it. And every year they start begging for it when December roles around. 

  26. Yoshundra — October 9, 2016 at 12:58 pm

    Can I substitute the salted pork with anything that’ s not pork?

    • Rachael replied: — October 26th, 2016 @ 8:32 am

      Hi Yoshundra!
      Unfortunately, the recipe won’t turn out the same without the pork, but you could try just leaving it out and correcting the salt levels after.

  27. Cynthia — January 8, 2017 at 6:34 pm

    This is one of my favourite recipes. Julia Child is very inspiring, her philosophies and simplicity are what I enjoy the most. I like making this the day before so I can whip up the final steps just before my guest arrive. Have you ever tried her chocolate mousse? Divine! 

  28. Wendy — March 18, 2017 at 12:25 pm

    I can’t use red wine. Can I substitute all beef Stock?

  29. Shannon — March 24, 2017 at 8:33 am

    What is salt pork?

  30. Lisa H — July 26, 2017 at 10:28 pm

    I’m dying to make this recipe but only have a cast iron Dutch oven. Do you think that would be an acceptable substitute?

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