This Hawaiian Beef Stew is a new tropical twist on traditional Hawaiian local beef stew. Made easy in a slow cooker, this version is a delicious blend of sweet, savory, salty, and umami - you'll love the mango and pineapple in it!
🎥 Recipe Video
Why You'll ❤️ Hawaiian Stew
"Think Hawaiian local beef stew amped up with tropical fruit, aromatics, herbs, and spices for a delicious umami flavor! It's easy and delicious in the slow cooker too!"
Local Beef Stew
Hawaiian Beef Stew is called local beef stew on the island. According to the locals, the main difference between mainland beef stew and Hawaiian beef stew is that "local beef stew" is made with tomato paste and tomatoes added for a slight sweetness.
Our take on this tradition: add tropical fruits and Asian fusion flavors like ginger, soy, and garlic to really amp it up!
Seriously good flavor! Think traditional beef stew but amped up with fire-roasted tomatoes, pineapple, mango, and loaded with chunks of tender beef, vegetables, herbs, and spices. A perfect combination of salty and sweet, savory and umami. Oh yeah.
Many ingredients for this stew may already be in your pantry or fridge! The dried mango may not be, but it is easy to find in your local grocery store.
Sear the beef and vegetables ahead of time (optional), the add most of the ingredients into the slow cooker to cook on low for approximately 6 to 8 hours.
You'll love this healthy homemade stew recipe!
- It's high in protein and vegetables, with only 372 calories per serving.
- To make this gluten-free use tamari or coconut aminos instead of soy sauce.
- To reduce sugar and carbs, omit the pineapple, pineapple juice, mango, and potatoes. Replace 1 cup of pineapple juice with beef broth.
🥘 What You'll Need
Here are the ingredients you will need to make Hawaiian beef stew:
Unrefined Coconut Oil or Olive Oil - is used for searing beef stew meat and vegetables. Use your preferred oil.
Beef Stew Meat - purchase pre-cut stew meat at your local grocery store. Otherwise, choose your favorite cut of steak, or a boneless chuck roast and cut it into bite-size pieces.
Ground Black Pepper
Onion - choose your favorite kind, it is suggested to use yellow, white, or sweet onion in this recipe.
Garlic - mince fresh garlic or use store-bought. pre-minced garlic.
New Baby Potatoes - use these kinds of potatoes, or you can use your preferred kind. Be sure to cut larger potatoes into bite-size pieces before slow cooking.
Beef Broth - use low sodium, reduced fat, or any other preferred kind of beef broth. Substitute with vegetable broth if you would like!
Fire-Roasted Diced Tomatoes - you can find these canned at your local grocery store in with the other canned tomatoes.
Dried Mango - be sure to get it unsweetened to reduce the sugar in this recipe.
Soy Sauce - use tamari or coconut aminos for a gluten-free version.
Ginger Paste - you can normally find this near the fresh produce section near the fresh herbs. If you can't find paste, grate fesh ginger.
Green Bell Pepper - you can substitute with a different colored pepper if preferred.
No Sugar-Added Pineapple Chunks - feel free to use any variety of canned pineapple chunks. In this recipe, no sugar added is used to reduce sugar content. Drain and reserve the juice.
Optional - coconut milk, cornstarch (optional thickener)
For exact ingredient quantities, please see the recipe card below!
🔪 How To Make It
Here are the step-by-step instructions for making Hawaiian beef stew:
Sear The Beef
Dry the beef cubes with paper towels. Season the beef chunks with half a teaspoon of salt and half a teaspoon of pepper.
Heat the oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Working in several batches, place beef in a single layer (do not overcrowd). Sear the beef for 3 to 5 minutes, turning it, so they brown on all sides. Remove the beef and set aside.
Time-saver option: only sear half of the beef cubes with minimal flavor loss. Or, skip the browning step and add 2 teaspoons of beef bouillon base.
Add the onion, celery, and carrots to the skillet. Saute until the vegetables start to brown, and add one-quarter cup of beef broth to de-glaze the bottom of the pan. Saute for 2 to 3 minutes and loosen the bits off the bottom of the pan.
Time-saver option: do not saute the vegetables and de-glaze the pan, place the raw vegetables directly into the crockpot.
Add Ingredients To Crock Pot
Transfer the onion, celery, and carrots to the crockpot. Top with the seared beef (plus any reserved juices). Add potatoes, garlic, beef broth, diced tomatoes, tomato paste, reserved pineapple juice, dried mango, soy sauce, ginger, and bay leaves.
Cover and cook on low for 6 to 7 hours or until the beef and vegetables are tender.
Add Bell Pepper and Pineapple
Add bell pepper and one and a half cups of pineapple in the last hour of cooking.
Add Optional Step
Thicken The Stew
In a small microwave-safe bowl, heat coconut milk in a microwave for 1 to 1 and a half minutes until very warm. Whisk in the cornstarch with the coconut milk. Add mixture to the crockpot. Stir well to incorporate.
Let the stew continue to cook with the lid off until thickened, about 15 to 30 minutes.
Stir in the green onions, and adjust the salt and pepper to taste.
🥗 How To Serve It
Here are a few ways to serve this Hawaiian beef stew:
Served over rice which is the way it is served traditionally in Hawaii.
Serve with your favorite fresh bread.
Garnish the top with fresh sliced green onion, freshly chopped parsley, sour cream, or shredded cheese.
Here are a few ways you can vary or make substitutions to this recipe:
- Add brown sugar or brown sugar substitute to add a bit more sweetness to your stew. Start with 1 to 2 tablespoons and increase to your desired taste.
- Make it spicy by adding crushed red pepper flakes, chipotle, or your favorite hot sauce!
- Substitute the beef stew meat with either pork, chicken, or cubed spam.
- Omit the stew meat and replace the beef broth with vegetable broth to make it vegetarian!
💭 Top Tips
- Dutch ovens and slow cookers help beef tips break down and tenderize in time, but an instant pot can help by cutting the time in half, but still aid in the tenderizing process due to pressure cooking.
- For best results, beef stock will add broadness and flavor to your stew, yet broth, beef base, and boullion are much easier options as well. Stock will add more protein yet lighten the sodium content that broth may bring to a recipe.
How To Store
To store leftovers, let the stew cool completely before placing a cover on top to allow heat and moisture to escape. Refrigerate for up to 4 days.
How To Reheat
Reheat your leftovers in a microwave-safe bowl, covered on high, until they have reached your desired temperature. You may also reheat your leftovers on low, in a small sauce pot on the stove as well.
How To Freeze
Cool your leftovers first before placing them into an air-tight container or freezer bag. Place your leftovers in the freezer and store them for up to three months.
Time is ultimately the number one secret ingredient to tenderize your beef stew. "Slow and Low," for 6 to 8 hours, is what we recommend here at seekinggoodeats.com. A dutch oven or slow cooker are the recommended methods for beef stew, so check out our recipe below for guidance!
Vinegar adds the acidity stew needs to help balance both sweet and savory components brought through the ingredients in the recipes. Examples may be brown sugar and soy sauce as leading components. Vinegar also aids in the breakdown of stew meat when cooked over time.
Russets, White, and Yukon Gold potatoes are best used for most stew types because their skins break down easily over time. I generally feel that these types of potatoes hold up to longer cooking times as well, as do those that may break apart much more easily.
✔️ More Stew Recipes
If you are looking for more delicious stew recipes, check out these chilis and stews:
- Slow Cooker Pork Stew with Apples and Cider
- Leftover Lamb Stew
- Irish Stew (Slow Cooker)
- Lamb Stew Recipe
- Easy White Chicken Chili
- Chipotle Peach Vegan Chili (Crock Pot)
- No Bean Chili Recipe (Slow Cooker)
Hawaiian Stew (Slow Cooker)
- 2 tablespoons unrefined coconut oil or olive oil (unrefined has a coconut taste)
- 2 pounds beef stew meat
- kosher salt
- ground black pepper
- 1 large onion (chopped)
- 2 stalks celery (chopped)
- 2 cups carrots (peeled and sliced in ½ to ¾" pieces)
- 2 teaspoons garlic (minced)
- 3 cups new baby potatoes (halved)
- 2 cups beef broth
- 1 (14.5-ounce) can fire-roasted diced tomatoes
- 2 tablespoons tomato paste
- ¾ cup dried mango (unsweetened)
- 2 tablespoons soy sauce
- 2 teaspoons ginger paste
- 2 bay leaves
- 1 green bell pepper (cut into 1" pieces)
- 1 (20-ounce) can no sugar-added pineapple chunks (drained, save the juice)
- ½ cup green onions (sliced)
- optional: ½ cup coconut milk
- optional thickener: 2 tablespoons corn starch
- Dry the beef cubes with paper towels. Season the beef chunks with ½ teaspoon salt and ½ teaspoon pepper.
- Heat the oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Working in several batches place beef in a single layer (do not overcrowd). Sear the beef for 3 to 5 minutes turning to brown all ides. Remove the beef and set aside.(Time saver option: only sear half of the beef cubes with minimal flavor loss. Or, skip the browning step and add 2 teaspoons beef bouillon base)
- Add the onion, celery, and carrots to the skillet. Saute until the vegetables are starting to brown, add ¼ cup beef broth to de-glaze the bottom of the pan. Saute 2 to 3 minutes and loosen the bits off the bottom of the pan.(Time-saver option: do not saute the vegetables and de-glaze the pan, place the raw vegetables directly into the crockpot)
- Transfer the onion, celery, and carrots to the crockpot. Top with the seared beef (plus any reserved juices). Add potatoes, garlic, beef broth, diced tomatoes, tomato paste, reserved pineapple juice, dried mango, soy sauce, ginger, and bay leaves.
- Cover and cook on low for 6 to 7 hours or until the beef and vegetables are tender. Add bell pepper and 1½ cups pineapple in the last hour of cooking.
- Optional: In a small microwave-safe bowl, heat coconut milk in a microwave for 1 to 1½ minutes until very warm. Whisk in the cornstarch with the coconut milk. Add mixture to the crockpot. Stir well to incorporate. Let the stew continue to cook with the lid off until thickened, about 15 to 30 minutes.
- Stir in green onions. Adjust salt and pepper.
- Don't miss all of our helpful hints, substitution ideas, cooking tips, and other delicious recipes that can be found in our post. Check it out!
- NOTES: Browning the beef and vegetables is optional but does give the stew a nice flavor. If you choose not to brown, add a little flavor boost to taste with beef bouillon base, extra soy sauce, or Worcestershire.
- VARIATIONS: Add coconut milk for more coconut flavor. Whisk cornstarch with warmed coconut milk or stew juices as a thickener.
- SERVING SUGGESTIONS: Garnish with fresh green onion or parsley and crusty bread.
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