On a cool evening, nothing sounds quite as enticing as a big pot of stew. Hearty ingredients, fragrant spices, and deeply rich flavor. Stews are great one-pot camping meals because they can be adapted to include any leftover ingredients you might have on hand. A few extra potatoes? Stick or two of celery? Half bag of baby carrots? Into the stew it goes!
While you could theoretically make this stew in any large pot, we prefer using a cast-iron Dutch oven for a couple of reasons. First off, cast iron does an incredible job retaining heat, so if you’re cooking with a camp stove, you’ll need less fuel to maintain temperature.
A Dutch oven is also perfect for cooking over a campfire, which we would highly recommend if possible. Like with most any stew, the longer you cook it, the more robust and flavorful it will become. So get your Dutch oven set up over the campfire at a low simmer and we guarantee you’ll be in for a treat.
Start off by heating a tablespoon of oil in your Dutch oven over medium-high heat. If you’re cooking over a fire, set the Dutch oven on top of the grill grate for this phase if possible. There’s a lot of stirring that needs to happen and it is best to have the pot on a solid surface.
Add in the mushrooms and saute until browned (1). Add the onions, celery, carrots, potatoes, and salt (2). [NOTE: If you are in a rush, the smaller you chop your ingredients the faster they will cook – especially the potatoes]
Once everything starts to pick up a little color, add in the tomato paste and stir for a minute before adding in the flour. Stir to coat the vegetables in the flour (3), then add the red wine, and liquid aminos or soy sauce. Be sure to scrape the bottom of the pot as the liquid goes in, to lift up the fond that has developed. That stuff is pure flavor.
Simmer until the red wine has almost entirely evaporated. Add in the vegetable stock, thyme, and bay leaf. If you’re using the campfire tripod, now is the time to hang the pot up. Cover and simmer for 10 minutes, then remove the cover and continue cooking. This will allow the liquid to evaporate and the sauce to thicken (4). Once the vegetables are tender, it’s ready to eat!
- 2 tablespoons oil
- 8 oz mushrooms, halved or quartered
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1 small onion, chopped
- 2 large carrots, sliced
- 1 celery stick, sliced
- 8-10 baby potatoes, cubed
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 tablespoon tomato paste
- 2 tablespoons flour
- 1/2 cup red wine
- 1 tablespoon liquid aminos, or soy sauce
- 2 cups vegetable stock
- 1 teaspoon thyme
- 1 bay leaf
1. Heat 1 tablespoon oil in a large pot. Add the mushrooms and saute until browned, about 5 minutes. Add the onion, carrot, celery, potatoes, and salt and saute 2-3 minutes. Add garlic and tomato paste and saute 1 minute more.
- Adding the flour. Stir to coat the vegetables in the flour, then add the red wine and liquid aminos or soy sauce.
- Simmer until the red wine has almost entirely evaporated. Add vegetable stock, thyme, and bay leaf. Cover and simmer for 10 minutes, then uncover to let the stew thicken a bit, about 10 minutes. Once the vegetables are tender, check the seasoning and divide among bowls. Enjoy!