This hearty vegetable stew combines nutritious vegetables, herbs, red wine, and chocolate in one pot to create a rich, comforting, and filling dinner. It is packed with flavor and has an unforgettable aroma that will make your mouth water as soon as it starts to cook!
We love one-pot soup recipes because they are easy to prepare and cook and do not require much cleaning afterward! For more delicious one-pot stew recipes, try our vegan pot roast, jackfruit stew, vegan shepherd’s pie, and vegan pot pie.
What to expect?
This thick and hearty veg stew combines nutritious vegetables, aromatic spices, and flavorful seasonings in one pot. Adding red wine and decadent chocolate adds to the flavors to give the stew richness, increase the depth of flavor, and add color. Over time, the intensity of the flavor increases, making it a perfect wholesome meal for batch cooking in advance!
Here is why you will love this vegetable stew recipe:
- It does not require any fancy ingredients. You can easily find everything in your pantry or local grocery store.
- It is very flavorful, rich, and packed with nutritious vegetables.
- It is easy to batch cook and store leftovers in the freezer for up to six months.
- It only requires one piece of equipment, saving you time cleaning the dishes.
- It is versatile and can be used or customized in many ways. See our Variations and Serving Ideas sections for more creative ways to prepare and use this vegetable stew!
This recipe uses many ingredients, but all are easy to find in your local grocery store and may already exist in your pantry! We also provide our recommendations and alternatives to make the most delicious stew.
- Onion (medium) – Preferably use a red, purple, or yellow onion. Do not use shallots or scallions.
- Garlic cloves (finely chopped)
- Button mushrooms – You can use champion mushrooms or small portobello mushrooms.
- Carrots (medium) – We recommend using young carrots with lots of greens as they are sweeter than large carrots.
- Celery stalk
- Red kidney beans – You can also use other types of kidney beans as well as chickpeas or cannellini beans.
- Sieved tomato puree – It is better than thin tomato sauce. You can also use equal parts tomato paste and water.
- Red wine – Necessary to give the stew a deep dark color and flavor. Do not use white wine, which will not work for this recipe.
- Worcestershire sauce – Yes, there is a vegan version. You can also use soy sauce or a combination of soy sauce and traditional balsamic vinegar.
- Dark chocolate (cubes) – The chocolate adds depth and flavor to the stew, so you will not want to skip it!
- Oregano (dried)
- Sweet smoked paprika powder – The smokiness will help bring out the chili flavor.
- Bay leaves
- Fresh parsley
- Thyme (dried)
- Vegetable broth
- Corn starch
🛒 You can find detailed measurements for all ingredients in the printable version of the recipe card at the bottom of this post.
Preparing the ingredients
- Peel and chop the onion and garlic. Make sure to chop the garlic finely.
- Wash and chop the potatoes and celery ribs.
- Wash, peel, and slice the carrots and the parsnip.
- Rinse and slice the mushrooms.
Making vegetable stew
- Heat an enameled Dutch oven over medium heat and add oil. Add the chopped onion and cook for 1-2 minutes. Then add the finely chopped garlic and cook for a few seconds.
- Add the sliced carrots, parsnips, celery, and mushrooms, then season with a couple pinches of salt and black pepper. Stir and cook for 5-6 minutes.
- Add sweet smoked paprika, thyme, oregano, parsley, bay leaves, dark chocolate, and Worcestershire sauce. Mix well until the chocolate melts completely.
- Add the red wine and cook the stew for 5-6 minutes until the wine is reduced by nearly half. Stir occasionally.
- Pour in the tomato puree and vegetable broth. Stir well and bring the stew to a boil.
- Add the potatoes and stir well. Cover with a lid and cook over medium-low heat for approximately 10-12 minutes until the vegetables are almost tender.
- In a separate bowl, mix the cornstarch and water. Do not add the cornstarch directly to the pot. Once thoroughly combined, add the cornstarch slurry to the stew and vigorously stir for a couple of seconds.
- Bring the stew back to a boil to activate the cornstarch (it will only thicken over heat). Make another round of slurry if you desire more thickness.
- Finally, add the kidney beans, stir well, and cook for two more minutes. Remove the bay leaves before serving.
- Do not add the cornstarch directly – To avoid lumps in your stew, you will need to combine the cornstarch and water in a separate bowl, then add it back to the stew. You can always make and add more slurry if needed. We used cornstarch to thicken the stew in this recipe, but there are many different ways to do so. Check out our guide with 20 ways to thicken any soup.
- Pre-cook dried beans – If you use dry beans versus canned beans, pre-cook them and add them to the soup once they are soft. Cooking and draining them in advance eliminates the foam that typically gets released into the cooking water when beans are cooked dry.
You can customize this vegetable stew in many ways to cater to your tastes and preferences. It will surely be delicious and filling no matter how you make it! Here are a few different variations to try next time you make this recipe:
- With other vegetables – Throw in root vegetables such as rutabaga, celeriac, or leafy greens such as spinach or kale. We love to use frozen vegetables like green beans and peas. Other delicious additions include butternut squash, cauliflower, zucchini, and bell peppers. Just make sure to keep the overall proportions the same!
- With other legumes – Add different types of legumes such as sweet peas, corn, chickpeas, cannellini beans, or other types of kidney beans to load your stew with extra protein.
- With other herbs and spices – Put a twist on your vegetable stew by adding herbs and spices such as cumin or paprika. A pinch of ground ginger or cinnamon is also delicious!
- Fresh vs. dried herbs – Instead of dried herbs, use their fresh counterparts for a fresher, more flavorful taste.
- With jackfruit – Add jackfruit and tomatoes to add more texture and flavor as we do in our vegan beef stew recipe.
- With portabello mushrooms – In place of the button mushrooms, use large cap portobello mushrooms and add beetroot to make a vegan pot roast.
- As a filling – Use the stew as a pie filling for a vegan shepherd’s pie or vegan pot pie.
This stew is already a filling meal as-is. However, you can make this soup even more filling and delicious by pairing it with one of the following sides or toppings:
- With bread – Although potatoes are already in the stew, it is pretty satisfying to dunk in a slice of cornbread, biscuits, or garlic bread.
- Soup and salad – Add more green veggies by serving your stew alongside a crisp green salad or Caesar salad.
- With chips – Use tortilla chips or our rice paper chips as a side or for dipping.
- Spice it up – Give your stew an extra kick by sprinkling red pepper flakes on top before serving.
- Cast-iron Dutch Oven – We use a 3-quart / 2.8-liter enameled oven in this recipe.
- Stockpot – You can also use an instant pot or any other heavy-bottomed casserole dish if you do not have a Dutch oven.
This vegetable stew is great for batch cooking and preparing in advance. The flavor also intensifies over time, making leftovers even more delicious! However, it is important to note that it needs to cool to room temperature before storing it in the refrigerator or freezer.
In the refrigerator: Once the stew has cooled to room temperature, move it to an airtight container and store it in the fridge for 3-4 days.
In the freezer: Once the stew has cooled to room temperature, move it to a freezer-safe container or ziplock bag and freeze for up to six months.
Reheating: If refrigerated, reheat leftovers on the stovetop in a small saucepan over medium heat or in the microwave. If frozen, thaw the stew overnight in the refrigerator before reheating it on the stove or microwave. Adding a small amount of veggie broth may be necessary to loosen it up, as it will thicken as it cools.
The only ingredient in this recipe that is not gluten-free by default is the Worcestershire sauce (or soy sauce, if you use it). When purchasing, be sure to check the packaging to ensure there is no cross-contamination. However, there are a few vegan and gluten-free brands.
No, boiling the vegetables before adding them to the soup is unnecessary, as they cook while in the pot.
The difference between the stew and soup lies in the consistency. Stews are thick, chunky, and robust, while the soup is light and watery, like a broth.
THANK YOU so much for visiting our website. Please comment below if you have tried this recipe. We LOVE hearing from you! If you loved the recipe, please don’t forget to give us a ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ RATING. We appreciate all of our readers.
The Best Hearty Vegetable Stew
- 2 Tbsp Olive oil
- 1 Onion (medium)
- 4 cloves Garlic (finely chopped)
- 3.5 oz Button mushrooms
- 1 lb Potatoes
- 3 Carrots (medium)
- 1 Parsnip
- 2 Celery stalk
- 14 oz Red kidney beans
- 1 cup Sieved tomato puree aka Tomato sauce
- ½ cup Red wine
- 1 tsp Worcestershire sauce
- 2 cubes Dark chocolate
- 2 tsp Oregano
- 1 tsp Sweet smoked paprika powder
- 2 Bay leaves
- 1 Tbsp Parsley (fresh)
- 1 tsp Thyme (dried)
- 2 cup Veggie broth
- 1 Tbsp Corn starch
- ½ cup Water
- Salt and Pepper to taste
- 1 tsp Sriracha (or any other chili paste) optional
Preparing the vegetables
- Peel and chop onion and garlic. Wash and chop potatoes and celery. Wash, peel, and slice carrots and parsnip. Rinse and slice mushrooms.
Making the stew
- Heat an enameled Dutch oven to medium heat and add oil. Cook the chopped onion for 1-2 minutes, add the finely chopped garlic, and cook for a few seconds.
- Now, add the sliced carrots, parsnips, celery, and mushrooms. Season it with salt and black pepper. Stir and cook for 5-6 minutes.
- Add sweet smoked paprika, thyme, oregano, parsley, bay leaves, dark chocolate, and worcestershire sauce. Mix well until the chocolate is completely melted.
- Now, add red wine. Cook the stew until the wine is reduced to nearly half of the size. It will take about 5-6 minutes. Stir occasionally.
- Pour tomato puree and vegetable broth into the pot. Stir well and bring the stew to a boil.
- Add the potatoes. Stir well, put a lid on, and on medium-low heat cook until vegetables are almost tender (10-12 minutes).
Thickening the stew
- To avoid lumps, you need to use a separate bowl to mix the cornstarch and water. If it is thoroughly combined, you can add the mixture back. Stir vigorously for a couple of seconds. The cornstarch is only activated (starts to thicken the stew) if you bring the stew back to a boil. You will see the result almost immediately. If you are not happy with the thickness, make another round.
Finishing the stew
- Add kidney beans, stir well, and cook for another 2 minutes.
- Once ready, remove the bay leaves.