Our best beef recipes range from Russian beef Stroganoff and a Russian beef stew to a côte de bœuf recipe courtesy of French Michelin-starred chef Pierre Gagnaire in Paris and an ox tail stew from Jerez in Southern Spain. We’ve got Thai beef curries, Cambodian barbecue, and a few sausage roll and beef pie recipes.
This compilation of our best beef recipes includes everything from hearty slow-cooked dinners that will comfort and keep you warm now the cool weather is approaching in the northern hemisphere to spicy beef curries and barbecue recipes for our readers in the southern hemisphere where the weather is warming up. The curries make you sweat, which keeps you cool.
Before I tell you more about our best beef recipes, I have a favour to ask. Grantourismo is reader-funded. If you’ve used and liked our recipes, please consider supporting Grantourismo by supporting our original, epic, first-of-its-kind Cambodian culinary history and cookbook on Patreon for as little as the price of a mango smoothie or two a month. Or, you could buy us a coffee. Although we’ll use our coffee money to buy cooking ingredients for recipe testing instead.
You can also support our work by using links on the site to book accommodation, rent a car or hire a motorhome or campervan, purchase travel insurance, or book a tour on Klook or Get Your Guide; shopping our Grantourismo online store (we have fun gifts for foodies designed with Terence’s images); or buying something on Amazon, such as these award-winning cookbooks, cookbooks by Australian chefs, classic cookbooks for serious cooks, cookbooks for culinary travellers, travel books to inspire wanderlust, and gifts for Asian food lovers. Now let me tell you about these best beef recipes.
Best Beef Recipes – Beef Stroganoff, Beef Stews, Beef Curries and More
Authentic Russian Beef Stroganoff Recipe
This authentic Russian beef Stroganoff recipe is one of our best beef recipes, making the deliciously rich and creamy braised beef and mushroom dish that was cooked centuries ago in the grand kitchen of St Petersburg’s glorious pink Stroganov Palace. Better known as a retro classic of the Seventies, beef Stroganoff is rich in history and incredibly comforting. It’s the dish that you need to make right now. This beef Stroganoff is fantastic with shoestring fries (the dish’s traditional side) or creamy mashed potatoes. Russians also enjoy buckwheat kasha, rice or pasta with their beef Stroganoff. A Russian garden salad is a must.
Cote de Boeuf Recipe Courtesy of Chef Pierre Gagnaire in Paris
This côte de bœuf recipe from superstar French chef Pierre Gagnaire became one of our most memorable souvenirs of our stay in Paris in the spring of 2010, and remains one of our best beef recipes. The chef’s cooking tips for his cote de boeuf recipe were: “serve it with pommes frites!” and “cook it bleu (rare)!” although he said he preferred to eat his côte de bœuf with pomme noisettes (potatoes carved into a hazelnut-shape), cracked black pepper, sauce béarnaise, and a fresh green salad, or perhaps just with potato Dauphinoise (layered slices of potato baked in milk and/or cream and a little cheese). The bone-in ribeye steak is a delicious cut of meat but it is also an expensive cut, so if you’re unsure about oven temperatures or how to judge the doneness of the meat, use a meat thermometer. You don’t want to get this wrong.
Traditional Russian Beef Stew Recipe for Solyanka
My traditional Russian beef stew recipe makes solyanka, a delicious hearty stew or heavy soup that’s a little sour, a little sweet, and a whole lot saltier back in its day. It’s another of our best beef recipes. First mentioned in print in the 15th century, solyanka is thought to be centuries older. An ancient dish made for modern times, it was invented to use leftovers and it’s a one-pot dish that is filling and comforting. Garnish with plenty of fresh fragrant dill and eat it with sour cream, dill pickles, a Russian garden salad, and black bread. Solyanka is quintessentially Russian, which means don’t even think about washing it down with anything but vodka.
Rabo de Toro Oxtail Stew Recipe from Jerez in Southern Spain
This Rabo de Toro oxtail stew recipe from Jerez in Southern Spain is a classic slow braised dish that requires a long cooking time, but rewards with rich, robust flavours. It was inspired by the rabo de toro that we ate at Bar Juanito in Jerez and it’s another of our best beef recipes. Just like the Moroccan tagine that Terence made in Essaouira on the same tip, this rabo de toro oxtail stew recipe is not something you start thinking about making at 6.30pm and expect to serve the same night. If you attempt this dish at 6.30pm, you had better have the number of a pizza place on speed dial. However, while these are dishes that do take time, they don’t necessarily require effort, or the expertise of a Michelin-starred chef. Terence has found the best way to cook this dish is in a Dutch Oven as the wide base and heat retention promotes even cooking. If you want to make it in a pressure cooker, just half the time and test it to make sure the oxtail is fall-apart cooked.
Cambodia’s Rich and Spicy Saraman Beef Curry Recipe
The Cambodian Saraman beef curry or cari Saramann is the richest of the Cambodian curries and the most complex. A cousin of the Thai Massaman curry and beef Rendang of Malaysia, its time-consuming nature makes it a special occasion dish for Cambodians, particularly in the Cham Muslim communities of Cambodia. The similarity between Cambodian Saraman curry and Thailand’s Massaman curry (also written as Mussaman curry) lies in the base curry paste with just a few ingredients setting the Saraman curry apart and that’s the use of star anise, sometimes turmeric, and dry roasted grated coconut. The latter is what the Saraman curry has more in common with Malaysia’s beef Rendang, the dry roasted coconut helping to give the curry that beautiful rich, thick gravy that has you adding yet another spoonful of rice to your bowl just to mix it with the sauce. It’s easily another of our best beef recipes.
Southern Thai Beef Massaman Curry Recipe
An authentic beef Massaman curry is our favourite kind of Thai curry. It’s the earthiness of Southern Thailand’s beef Massaman that makes this the most moreish of curries and another of our best beef recipes. While the prep list is long and the cooking time requires the patience of a saint, it’s by far the most rewarding to make. There are different stories as to how this ‘foreign’ curry ended up a staple curry in the Thai cooking canon. The most exotic story suggests it travelled from Persia to the court of Ayutthaya in the sixteenth century. Another story goes that it was brought to Thailand by Arab or Indian traders. While it’s said that the use of Middle Eastern spices like cardamom and cloves is an indication of that ‘foreign’ influence, cardamom was grown in Cambodian before the Thais (Tais) arrived in the region. Another indication of its roots in India, Persia (now Iran) or the Arab world is the version that uses lamb instead of beef or chicken, but we adore melt-in-your-mouth beef.
Beef Panang Curry Recipe for a Traditional Thai Phanaeng Nua
This beef Panang curry recipe makes a traditional Thai phanaeng nua that often simply appears as a ‘Penang curry’ in Thai cookbooks. This recipe comes courtesy of one of our favourite Thai chefs, Ian Kittichai, and it’s easily another one of our best beef recipes. Named after the island of Penang in northern Malaysia, just over Thailand’s southern border, the curry paste for an authentic Thai Beef Panang curry usually has different ingredients to a Thai red curry – most notably, less, if any, shrimp paste and often includes the addition of nutmeg and peanuts, sometimes in the paste, but more commonly sprinkled over the dish. We love the fact that chef Kittichai uses beef short ribs and while they’re more fiddly to tackle when you eat, the fact it’s a drier curry makes it a little easier to grab those bones and chow down.
Beef Lok Lak Recipe for Cambodian Pepper Beef
This Beef lok lak recipe delivers a delicious traditional Cambodian pepper beef dish, made with Kampot pepper, in a more contemporary form, however, you can still use this to prepare the dish in the more traditional manner. This local favourite was one of the inspirations for the creative Cambodian canapés we created for our New Year’s Eve spread one year. It’s believed that Cambodia’s beef lok lak is of Vietnamese origin as there’s a near-identical Vietnamese dish called thit bo luc lac. The Vietnamese dish has virtually the same name, which translates to ‘shaking beef’, because the cook has to shake the wok back and forth to evenly sear the beef. It’s thought that the French, who popularised beef in Indochina, might have brought beef lok lak to Cambodia from Saigon via Phnom Penh or vice versa. I believe the dish has a longer history.
Sour Beef Soup with Morning Glory for Samlor Machou Kroeung Sach Ko
This Cambodian sour beef soup with morning glory recipe makes a wonderful green vegetable-driven broth called samlor machou kroeung sach ko in Khmer. It’s super-easy to make and if you’re not a fan of tang you can easily adjust the seasonings to suit your taste. We like to use a good quality cut of Australian beef (Cambodian beef can be too tough), marinate the beef in the kroeung before frying it, and then quickly stir-fry it to medium-rare to medium only, not well-done, as some recipes recommend. There are two directions to take at this point. Some recipes call for the fish sauce and/or prahok (fermented fish paste), salt, palm sugar, and tamarind juice to be thrown in at this stage and to continue to stir-fry the meat in the seasoning for at least ten minutes. We prefer to start with a good cut of beef and cook it for less time. This is easily another of our best beef recipes.
Pepper Steak Pie Recipe for a Cambodian Beef Lok Lak Meat Pie
Our pepper steak pie recipe also makes a Cambodian beef lok lak meat pie that is inspired by the popular street food-style dish, above. Typically eaten for lunch, but also acceptable for dinner or breakfast, when a fried egg on top of the stir-fried beef is compulsory, lok lak is one of those dishes that is as popular with foreigners as locals. Cambodia’s lok lak typically consists of chopped beef steak stir-fried in a wok or pan with onion, garlic, soy sauce, sugar, pepper, and salt. Although these days many Cambodian cooking class instructors and chefs will also add tomato sauce and stock powder, which isn’t really needed. There’s plenty of flavour in there already. Lok lak was traditionally served on a bed of crunchy green tomatoes, which provide the perfect contrast and balance to the peppery beef, although these days cooks might use red tomatoes or a salad of lettuce, tomato and onion. The beef might be served on its own or on a mound of steamed rice and there’s nearly always fries on the side. That was the inspiration for this lok lak meat pie and it’s another of our best beef recipes.
Homemade Curried Beef Sausage Rolls Recipe
Our homemade curried beef sausage rolls recipe is another of our best beef recipes, flavoured with Cambodia’s aromatic spice paste called kroeung that’s used in the Saraman curry, above, to makes a spicy beef sausage roll. If you’re not familiar with Cambodia’s Saraman curry, it is the richest and most complex of Cambodian curries and is a cousin to the Thai Massaman curry. Another pandemic cooking tip: along with minced beef, I recommend always keeping some puff pastry in the freezer too. If you love a good sausage roll you are going to love our spicy beef sausage rolls.
Cambodian Beef Skewers Recipe for Sach Ko Ang
This Cambodian beef skewers recipe makes sach ko ang in Khmer and its another of our best beef recipes. Typically eaten with pickled vegetables, the skewers are a classic late afternoon or early evening snack in Cambodia. Some locals slide the meat off the skewer into a buttered baguette to make a meal out of them. Skewered barbecue meats are found right across Southeast Asia, but what makes these special is the kroeung or herb and spice paste that they are marinated in. It’s distinctly Cambodian. To eat these skewers with a baguette, you place the skewer inside the baguette, hold onto the baguette tight, and pull the skewer out so the meat slides off. You can then add your pickled veg and chilli. You won’t find wine at a local Siem Reap street food joint, which is even more of a reason to make these lemongrass beef skewers at home and crack open a bottle of pinot noir, which we reckon is the perfect match.
Cambodian Beef and Pork Belly Skewers Recipe for Sach Ko Chror Nouch
This Cambodian beef and pork belly skewers recipe makes sach ko chror nouch. Different to the beef skewers marinated in kroeung, above, these are called ‘stuffed beef skewers’ because the beef is wrapped around pork belly or pork fat. They’re so luxurious they are often served at Cambodian weddings. This dish launched Terence’s series on the best Cambodian barbecue recipes early last year. You need to marinate these beef pork belly skewers in yellow kroeung, a herb and spice paste that’s pounded in a mortar and pestle, although you can also make it in a blender. Here we grill them over a traditional clay brazier on the balcony, but you could use an outdoor barbecue or grill. Terence also likes to use a stovetop Korean BBQ grill pan. The pan has a removable grill top and he likes to place some crushed charcoal briquettes on the bottom of the pan so when the pork belly fat drips onto the charcoal it creates a bit of smoke. We like using these coconut charcoal BBQ briquettes. They’re good long-burning briquettes made from coconut shells.
Cambodian Grilled Beef Salad Recipe for Nhoam Sach Ko
This Cambodian grilled beef salad recipe makes nhoam sach ko, a simple but refreshing salad made with lightly grilled marinated beef, infused with fresh fragrant herbs, in a classic Cambodian dressing of lime juice, fish sauce and garlic. It’s a fantastic dish to share alongside a few other barbecue dishes, a soup and a curry or two, and it’s another of our best beef recipes. While you could eat this Cambodian grilled beef salad on its own with steamed rice – salads such as these are nearly always eaten with rice in Cambodia – it’s a dish that in a Cambodian home or restaurant is typically shared as part of a family-style meal alongside a soup, perhaps a plate of stir-fried vegetables, such as morning glory in garlic, a Cambodian curry, and another Cambodian barbecue dish or two, such as these grilled ribs.
Please do let us know if you make our best beef recipes in the comments below, as we’d love to know how they turn out for you.