The number of calories in 2 cups of homemade beef stew can vary greatly depending on the specific ingredients and amounts used in the recipe. However, on average, 2 cups or about 470 grams of homemade beef stew contains approximately 500-800 calories.
Calories in Beef Stew Ingredients
To estimate the calories for a homemade beef stew recipe, you need to look at the calorie contents of the main ingredients:
|Ingredient||Calories (per 100g)|
|Beef chuck, braised||276|
The calories in beef stew come mainly from the beef and potatoes. Vegetables like carrots, onions, and tomatoes contribute smaller amounts of calories. The broth also contains minimal calories.
By calculating the calories based on the grams or amounts of each ingredient used in the recipe, you can get an estimate for the total calories in 2 cups of the finished stew.
Calorie Estimate for 2 Cups of Beef Stew
To estimate the calories in 2 cups of homemade beef stew:
- A typical recipe uses around 300g stewing beef. At 276 calories per 100g, this provides around 828 calories.
- A standard recipe uses 300g potatoes. At 87 calories per 100g, this provides around 261 calories.
- A typical recipe uses 1 cup each of carrots and onions. Carrots provide around 41 calories per 100g, so 1 cup (about 120g) provides around 49 calories. Onions provide about 40 calories per 100g, so 1 cup (about 160g) provides 64 calories.
- Other ingredients like tomatoes, broth, seasonings add minimal calories, estimated around 20-50 calories total.
Adding up the major ingredients:
- Beef: 828 calories
- Potatoes: 261 calories
- Carrots: 49 calories
- Onions: 64 calories
- Other ingredients: 50 calories
- Total: Around 1252 calories
For a 2 cup (470 gram) serving, this equals around 500-800 calories on average.
The actual calorie count can vary based on the exact quantity of each ingredient, type of beef used, cooking method, and any other ingredients added to the stew. More or less potatoes, a fattier cut of beef, added oils/butter during cooking, and thickening agents like flour or corn starch can increase the calories. Using leaner beef, more vegetables, and reduced sodium broth can lower the calorie count.
Nutrition Details for Homemade Beef Stew
In addition to calories, a 2 cup serving of homemade beef stew can provide:
- 30-40g protein
- 15-20g fat
- 45-60g carbohydrates
- High amounts of vitamins and minerals like B vitamins, zinc, selenium, iron, and potassium
Beef, potatoes, carrots, tomatoes, and onions are all nutritionally dense foods. Exact nutrition facts vary based on the ingredients and recipe, but beef stew provides high nutrition in addition to calories.
Ways to Reduce Calories in Beef Stew
If you want to cut down on the calories in homemade beef stew, try the following substitutions or recipe adjustments:
- Use a leaner cut of beef like sirloin or round instead of chuck or brisket
- Trim off any visible fat from the beef before cooking
- Use less potato, or replace half the potatoes with lower calorie vegetables like cauliflower
- Increase low calorie vegetables like mushrooms, celery, green beans
- Use reduced sodium broth or season with herbs instead of salt
- Avoid adding flour, corn starch, or cream for thickening
- Spoon off any visible fat before serving
Making these simple swaps and reducing oil, butter, and sodium during the cooking process can cut down at least 100-200 calories per serving.
Calories in Beef Stew at Restaurants
When dining out, stew calories will vary depending on the restaurant:
- Homestyle or family restaurants – 600-800 calories for a 2 cup serving. These restaurants tend to use higher fat cuts of beef and generous amounts of oil and butter.
- Fast food restaurants – 300-500 calories per 2 cups. Chains use leaner beef and less sodium and fat.
- Upscale steakhouses or gastropubs – 700-1,000+ calories. Top restaurants often emphasize rich, bold flavors including adding cream, flour, or bacon to amp up the calories.
To reduce calories when ordering beef stew out, choose establishments that emphasize health-conscious preparations or look for menu indicators like “lean,” “low-fat,” or “light.”
Tips for Lightening Up Beef Stew
When making beef stew at home, keep these tips in mind for a lighter, lower calorie preparation:
- Choose a lean cut of beef like round, sirloin, or 95% lean ground beef
- Trim excess fat and remove skin from poultry
- Use cooking methods like searing, broiling, or grilling to preserve moisture and avoid adding extra oil or butter
- In the slow cooker, place a layer of vegetables on bottom to reduce need for oil
- Boost flavor with herbs, spices, broth, wine, acid instead of salt
- Skip added oils, butters, and creamy thickeners
- Use smaller amounts of calorie-dense potatoes or replace partially with cauliflower
- Increase low calorie vegetables like mushrooms, zucchini, greens
- Chill stew after cooking so fat rises and can be removed before serving
Following these tips allows you to keep the hearty, comforting flavors of classic beef stew intact while lightening up the calorie load.
Sample Stew Recipe with ~500 Calories Per Serving
Try this recipe for a homemade beef stew with around 500 calories per 2 cup serving:
- 1 lb lean beef stew meat
- 2 cups chopped cauliflower
- 1 cup diced onion
- 1 cup sliced mushrooms
- 1 cup diced carrots
- 6 small new potatoes, halved (about 2 cups)
- 1 14oz can no-salt-added diced tomatoes
- 1 cup low sodium beef broth
- 1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
- 2 teaspoons oregano
- 1/2 teaspoon thyme
- 1 bay leaf
- 1/4 teaspoon black pepper
- Heat broth in a skillet. Season beef with pepper and sear briefly in the hot broth, about 1-2 minutes per side.
- Transfer beef to slow cooker and add remaining ingredients.
- Cook on low setting for 8-10 hours.
- Discard bay leaf before serving. Spoon 1 cup of stew into a bowl.
Nutrition per 1 cup serving:
- Calories: 253
- Protein: 21g
- Fat: 7g
- Carbs: 24g
This lighter beef stew packs great flavor into fewer calories by using lean beef, reducing oil and butter, minimizing potatoes, adding more veggies, and seasonings instead of salt. Enjoy a hearty bowl of stew without all the extra calories!
The calorie content of homemade beef stew can vary widely based on the specific recipe ingredients and amounts used. On average, a 2 cup serving provides 500-800 calories. Calories come mainly from the beef and potatoes. Choosing leaner cuts of beef, reducing sodium and oil, minimizing calorie-dense potatoes, and adding more non-starchy vegetables can create healthier, lower calorie beef stew recipes. When made with sensible ingredients, beef stew can be part of an overall balanced diet.