Food blogger Sara Welch enjoys a good beef stroganoff, but as the busy mom of three young kids, she doesn't have time for recipes that require lots of work. So she tested, and gradually improved upon, a slow-cooker beef stroganoff recipe of her own, until she found the perfect balance of flavor and ease.
"Beef Stroganoff is a classic dish that a lot of people enjoy, but it can be time consuming to get the meat perfectly tender," Welch, the blogger behind Dinner at the Zoo, told TODAY Food. "In my version, the slow cooker does most of the work which makes the process much easier."
Welch's dish recently appeared on the Slowcooking subreddit, where it immediately began trending, with Redditors creating their own versions of the recipe and sharing posts about their results.
"First time trying stroganoff," wrote on Reddit user. "This one's a keeper!"
"I've made this exact recipe before several times," said another. "It's always a delicious comfort food!"
Always on the hunt for simple weeknight recipes, I decided to try out this Reddit-favorite slow-cooker dish —and was not disappointed.
Prepping the dish is simple: Lots of hearty ingredients like stew meat, beef broth and mushrooms get tossed into the slow cooker and cook on low for most of the day. Close to dinner time, when it was time to add cornstarch to thicken the sauce, the beef was falling apart as I stirred.
After thickening the sauce, I added cream cheese and sour cream, per Welch's instructions, then cooked some egg noodles and a side of broccoli while I waited for the mixture to combine.
Overall, it was minimal work in the kitchen for maximum flavor. The stroganoff, a dish with roots in mid-19th-century Russia, was hearty and satisfying, and my family went back for seconds without me needing to tell them there was more available in the slow cooker.
"The recipe was tested multiple times to try and create the best rendition of this dish as possible," said Welch, who is thrilled to see her creation getting attention on Reddit.
"I typically serve my Stroganoff with a veggie on the side, such as asparagus, green beans or broccoli, she added. "A green salad with a loaf of bread also pair nicely with the meal."