Pot-au-feu, a quintessential French dish, is more than just a stew – it’s a celebration of hearty flavors and simple, wholesome ingredients. This slow-cooked marvel, featuring tender beef and a medley of vegetables, is a staple of French home cooking and a testament to the beauty of comfort food. Growing up, pot-au-feu was a Sunday lunch favorite in my family. The aroma of the simmering broth and the anticipation of gathering around the table makes this dish not just a meal, but an experience. Let me share with you how to bring this piece of culinary tradition to your home.

Traditional French Pot-au-Feu Recipe – A Hearty Beef Stew

Preparation Time: 30 mins | Cooking Time: 3 hours | Serves: 6-8


  • 1 kg beef chuck, cut into large pieces
  • 500 g beef marrow bones
  • 3 carrots, peeled and cut into chunks
  • 3 turnips, peeled and cut into chunks
  • 2 leeks, white part only, cleaned and cut into chunks
  • 1 onion, peeled and studded with 2 cloves
  • 1 bouquet garni (thyme, bay leaf, parsley)
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • Mustard and pickles, for serving


  1. Prepare the Broth:
    • Place beef and marrow bones in a large pot. Cover with cold water, bring to a boil, and skim off any foam that forms.
  2. Add Vegetables and Seasonings:
    • Add carrots, turnips, leeks, onion, and bouquet garni to the pot. Season with salt and pepper. Reduce heat and simmer gently for 3 hours, or until the meat is tender.
  3. Serve:
    • Remove the meat and vegetables from the broth. Serve the broth as a first course, followed by the meat and vegetables as the main course. Accompany with mustard and pickles.

Pot-au-feu is typically enjoyed with crusty bread and a robust red wine. It’s a meal that brings people together, perfect for a cozy family dinner or a casual gathering with friends. Savour the simplicity and richness of this traditional French fare. Bon appétit!

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