Beef and Butternut Squash Stew recipe - Gluten Free, paleo, whole30 (2024)

Published by Sheena Strain, last updated


Delicious Healthy Beef and Butternut Squash Stew! It’s an Paleo, Whole30, and Gluten Free recipe that can be made in a slow cooker or crockpot, or on the stove.

Beef and Butternut Squash Stew recipe - Gluten Free, paleo, whole30 (1)

How to Cook Beef and Butternut Squash Stew

This is my easy version of a beef and butternut squash stew recipe, it’s quick to make and tastes fabulous!

I used an enameled cast iron pot to cook this in, it’s my favorite pot of all time.

I often use ready chopped beef and butternut squash to save time in the chopping and peeling.

I always saute the onions and brown the beef as it really adds to the flavor.

And lastly make sure you add in the butternut squash near the end of the cook time so that it’s not overcooked.

Beef and Butternut Squash Stew recipe - Gluten Free, paleo, whole30 (2)

How to Cook Beef and Butternut Squash in a Slow Cooker

This is also a breeze to cook in your slow cooker. It will take about 3-4hours on the high setting and about 5-6 hours on low.

like before I saute the onions and brown the beef before I add it to my crockpot, and then I add the butternut squash about 30 minutes before the end of the cook time.

*This post may contain Amazon affiliate links*

Beef and Butternut Squash Stew recipe - Gluten Free, paleo, whole30 (3)

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Beef and Butternut Squash Stew

Delicious Healthy Beef and Butternut Squash Stew! It’s Paleo,Whole30, Gluten Free, Low Carb. Can be made in a slow cooker or crockpot, make it TODAY!

Prep Time: 15 minutes

Cook Time: 3 hours

Total Time: 3 hours 15 minutes

Total Carbs: 16 g

Protein: 34 g

Servings: 8

Beef and Butternut Squash Stew recipe - Gluten Free, paleo, whole30 (4)

4.98 from 67 votes



  • 2lbButternut Squash, peeled and cubed
  • 3 – 4tbspOlive Oil
  • 1large onion, chopped
  • 2lbbeef chuck
  • 32ozBeef Stock *see notes for whole30/paleo, gluten free
  • 2clovesgarlic, crushed
  • sprig fresh thyme, or dried
  • sprig of rosemary, or dried
  • 1tspsalt
  • 1tsppepper



  2. Prepare the squash by peeling it, removing the seeds and cutting it into cubes.

  3. If your beef is not already cut into pieces then cut it up into cubes, and the same for the onion.

  4. Heat the oil on a medium heat in large pan with a solid bottom (like a Dutch Oven) then add the onion and saute for a couple minutes, now add the beef and brown it for a couple of minutes.

  5. Add the beef stock, herbs, salt and pepper.

  6. Cook it on the stove top on a low simmer for one to two hours with a lid on the pot, do not boil and check after one hour for doneness.

  7. Finally add the butternut squash and cook for a further 30 minutes or until beef is tender.


  9. Follow the directions as before and saute the onions and brown the beef.

  10. Now you want to add the beef, onions, butternut squash and all remaining ingredients into the slow cooker.

  11. Cook it on low for 5 – 6 hours, or high for about 3 – 4. how long it takes will depend on the heat of your slow cooker, I would check it after 3 hours so see if the meat is tender and the squash is soft.

  12. NOTE – I have two slow cookers and the newer one is hotter on the high and low settings than the older model.

Recipe Notes

*I have found it hard to find store bought paleo or whole30 beef broth for this recipe so you would need to use homemade beef broth, or you could just use water as an alternative, it won’t be quite as rich but it will work.

You will need a decent sized pan with a heavy bottom, or Dutch oven, to cook this stew on the stovetop. If your pan is very thin your stew will almost certainly burn before it is cooked.
Alternatively you can cook it easily in a slow cooker, that would work well too.

Nutrition Facts

Beef and Butternut Squash Stew

Amount Per Serving

Calories 282Calories from Fat 72

% Daily Value*

Fat 8g12%

Saturated Fat 3g19%

Cholesterol 88mg29%

Sodium 561mg24%

Potassium 880mg25%

Carbohydrates 16g5%

Fiber 2g8%

Sugar 3g3%

Protein 34g68%

Vitamin A 12055IU241%

Vitamin C 25.1mg30%

Calcium 75mg8%

Iron 3.9mg22%

* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.

Nutritional information on Noshtastic is provided as a courtesy and is approximate only. We cannot guarantee the accuracy of the nutritional information given for any recipe on this site.

Author: Noshtastic



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About Sheena Strain

Sheena Strain is the proud owner of Noshtastic, a gluten free website that specializes in easy family meals including Low Carb, Keto, Paleo, Whole30, and many pressure cooker recipes.

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  1. Anna says

    Beef and Butternut Squash Stew recipe - Gluten Free, paleo, whole30 (5)
    This recipe is amazing! It’s become a staple at my house. I do like to add more meat but haven’t found the right cooking time to make it soft. I’d like to double the meat and I double the seasonings and liquid but keep it to 2lb squash. Any ideas on the cook time for the meat to keep it tender? Thank you!!


    • Sheena Strain says

      Hi Anna,
      so glad you like it! The cook time should be the same regardless of the amount of meat you use. What may change the time it takes to cook is the cut of meat you use, so if you use ready cut up stewing beef I find the quality can vary a lot and as a result so can the cook time. My favorite cut to use is a chuck roast and I cut it up myself into even sized chunks. My best advice is to check the meat as you go for tenderness and if you find that it’s not getting as tender as you like choose a different cut of beef next time and see if that helps.


  2. Krys says

    If you have it available I recommend heading to your local butcher shop for beef bone broth. This recipe is amazing and the bone broth is paleo and adds a depth of richness to the dish that kicks it up quite a few notches.


  3. Paul says

    I love mushrooms with my beef.
    Any suggestions on when to add them?


    • Sheena Strain says

      Hi Paul! So I would say that depends on how you like your mushrooms, do you like them just cooked (that’s my preference) or do you want to add more mushroomy flavor to the stew and don’t mind if they are much softer? If you are slow cooking and want them ‘just cooked’ add them in about 20-30 minutes before the end, if you want to add flavor I’d add them in near the start but they will be super soft. If cooking on the stove cook them for 30 minutes, or for just cooked add them in the last 10 minutes or so. I hope that helps!


      • Danny says

        Beef and Butternut Squash Stew recipe - Gluten Free, paleo, whole30 (6)
        I sautéed my mushrooms (sliced portobellos) in garlic butter and added when I added the butternut squash. Last 30)


  4. Amie Lawson says

    I am making this right now, and I am using Trader Joe’s Organic Beef Bone Broth. I am following the AIP diet, and I have used the Chicken bone broth with no issues. For your receipt I just didn’t add pepper. It smells delicious cooking right now, cannot wait to taste it!


    • Sheena Strain says

      I hope you love it Amie!


  5. Crystal says

    Making this tomorrow! Inherited a huge butternut squash and I’m on a diet lol this looks great! May substitute the beef broth for water anyways and throw some extra butter in 😀


    • Sheena Strain says

      Hooray! I hope you like it 🙂


  6. Amber says

    What is the serving size?


    • Sheena Strain says

      Hi Amber! the servings for all recipes are up in the recipe card right alongside the prep time, calories etc, it can be easy to miss. This recipe makes about 8 servings as written, I don’t know the actual amount per serving.


  7. Valerie says

    Beef and Butternut Squash Stew recipe - Gluten Free, paleo, whole30 (7)
    Came out WONDERFUL! We browned the meat and the onions in the Instant Pot and then added everything else. Cooked it on low as a slow cooker for 5 hours 30 minutes. It’s DELICIOUS! Thanks so much for this easy and yummy recipe.


    • Sheena Strain says

      Yay, so glad you liked it!!


  8. Erna says

    Beef and Butternut Squash Stew recipe - Gluten Free, paleo, whole30 (8)
    I don’t have a slow cooker. How to cook on stove or oven?


    • Sheena Strain says

      Hi Erna,

      Directions to cook it on the stove are in the recipe card at the end of the post.


  9. Maria says

    Beef and Butternut Squash Stew recipe - Gluten Free, paleo, whole30 (9)
    Hi there! I just wanted to comment that this stew is absolutely delicious! I discovered it when I recently had to go on the GAPS diet. During the early stages of this very restrictive diet it is very overwhelmingtrying to find recipes that meet the diet restrictions. I have made this twice now! Itfreezes beautifully too which is fabulous because when I’m just too tired to find something to eat, can reach for this. I did add some mushrooms and peas just to help beef it up a bit more in hopes that my hubs would also enjoy it and he loved it.. So thank you for sharing!


    • Sheena Strain says

      Hi Maria, I’m so glad you like it! I did the GAPS diet a couple of years ago and it was a big help at the time, I hope that it works well for you.


  10. Wanda says

    Beef and Butternut Squash Stew recipe - Gluten Free, paleo, whole30 (10)
    I made this in the slow cooker a few days ago. It was pretty good. I added yucca root (I know, starchy and carbs) for added heartiness though. I was going to add carrots also, but my slow cooker was already too full – lol! I typically try to follow a Paleo plan so this was great and easy!


  11. Jennifer says

    Can I use organic frozen butternut squash instead of fresh?


    • Sheena Strain says

      Hi Jennifer, yes I think that would work ok I think but not sure on the timing for cooking it from frozen.


  12. Sharon McFadden says

    Beef and Butternut Squash Stew recipe - Gluten Free, paleo, whole30 (11)
    I love this recipe. I make it in the Instant Pot. So simple and good. Thank you!


    • Sheena Strain says

      I’m so glad you like it Sharon! I have an IP version on my pressure cooker site, If you’ve not visited there I think you’d find lots of recipes you like! It’s at


  13. Jenny says

    HI! When you make this on the stove top, when you add the butternut squash do you continue to cook on low/simmer? At this point do you uncover it or keep it covered? Thanks!


    • Sheena Strain says

      Hi Jenny, I usually cover it on low. If you have a lot of liquid in there you could uncover it towards the end to reduce it a little.


  14. Alicia says

    I cannot wait to make this one! Do you add the butter butternut squash for the whole time in the slow cooker or more towards the end? You mention adding it for the last 30 minutes on the stovetop but not in the slow cooker directions.


    • Sheena Strain says

      Hi Alicia, I have it in the directions to add the squash and the meat at the same time in the slow cooker simply because it’s a much lower temp than stovetop (at least on my slow cooker) and root vegetables tend to take a bit longer in there. I would check the stew after 3hrs and see how it’s looking.


  15. Julie Gulkis says

    Hi! Will this freeze well?


    • Sheena Strain says

      Hi Julie, yes, it should freeze very well 🙂


  16. Jessica Duncan says

    How is whole 30 approved if it has the sugar in it?? It looks so good I really want to make it this weekend, but I just started whole 30 so I want to make sure im doing it right haha


    • Sheena Strain says

      Hi Jessica, this recipe has no added sugar. Did you mean to ask about different recipe?


      • Jessica Duncan says

        I was just looking at the nutrition facts picture that is right above the recipe, is that wrong? Like I said, Im super new to this haha! I’m probably wrong and I still want to make it!


        • Sheena Strain says

          Ah, gotcha! So there are carbohydrates/sugars in this from the squash, most vegetables have naturally occurring sugar, there is no added sugar in the recipe.
          You’re not allowed added sugars such as honey, coconut sugar, regular white sugar and so on while on whole30, natural sugars/carbs in fruit and vegetables are fine. Read up on the Whole30 website, it tells you what you can and can’t have.


  17. Katie says

    Beef and Butternut Squash Stew recipe - Gluten Free, paleo, whole30 (12)
    I came across this recipe on Pinterest, and couldn’t wait to make it. This is amaziI found this recipe ng, and we will having it regularly.


    • Sheena Strain says

      Hi Katie, glad you like it, it’s one of my favorites for sure!


  18. Colleen says

    This sounds really good. I don’t cook much with beef broth, and the last time I did, the food tasted too beefy. What brand of broth do you use? Also, is it Whole30 compliant?


    • Sheena says

      Hi Colleen, I mostly use Swanson or any other GF brand I can find in store. I have not found one in stores or online that is whole30 compliant sadly so when I’ve done whole30 I made my own beef broth, or I used water instead.


  19. Katie says

    This looks sssoooo yummy! If I am in a rush in the mornings, but want to do this in the slow cooker, do you think I would be able to brown the beef and onions the night before, and then toss it all in together in the morning?


    • Sheena says

      Hi Katie,

      I think you would be able to do that, yes! If you are going to be out all day I would cook it on low, you could even skip the browning part if you were short of time, it wont be quite the same but it will still taste great.


      • Katie says

        Thanks, Sheena! I have this planned for Tuesday and I can’t wait! 🙂


        • Sheena says

          Katie, that’s wonderful, I hope you enjoy it!


          • Katie says

            Beef and Butternut Squash Stew recipe - Gluten Free, paleo, whole30 (13)
            Sheena, I had to report back – this stew was DELICIOUS. 🙂 Even my boyfriend, who isn’t a fan of stew, had two bowls! We doubled it and made it in the slow cooker, on high for the first hour to bring it up to temp and then on low for another four hours. So simple and amazing; it’s definitely a keeper!! Thanks for the fabulous recipe!

          • Sheena says

            Katie, thank you so much for coming back to let me know how it worked out and that you loved the recipe, your comment just made my day! 🙂

  20. Brenna says

    Do you do something with the stock afterwards to make it more gravy like?


    • Sheena says

      Hi Brenna, sometimes I do make it into gravy! 🙂 If you wanted to thicken it I think the simplest thing would be to pour off the liquid from the stew into another pan to make the gravy. I would mix 1 – 2 tbsp of cornstarch (or arrowroot for paleo) with the same amount of cold water and add it to the stock in the pan and stir it on a medium heat until it thickens, then pour it over the meat again.


      • Pam says

        cornstarch would not be Paleo .. could use arrowroot powder instead …


  21. Lindsay says

    Beef and Butternut Squash Stew recipe - Gluten Free, paleo, whole30 (14)
    When you simmer the stew, do you leave it covered or uncovered?


    • Sheena says

      Hi Lindsay! I usually cover it when I’m simmering it.


  22. Saskia says

    I’m definitely trying this one! Any suggestions what to serve with it?


    • Sheena says

      Hey Saskia,
      The last time we had it I don’t think I served it with anything as there’s meat and vegetables in the stew, but I think a green vegetable like green beans or broccoli would complement it nicely, I hope you enjoy it!


  23. Carrie @Frugal Foodie Mama says

    I never would have thought to add butternut squash to beef stew! What a perfect meal for a cool fall day. 🙂


  24. Sharon @ What The Fork Food Blog says

    Beef and Butternut Squash Stew recipe - Gluten Free, paleo, whole30 (15)
    This stew looks fabulous! Your pictures are gorgeous too, they make me just want to reach right in and take a bowl for myself 🙂


  25. Amanda | The Chunky Chef says

    Beef and Butternut Squash Stew recipe - Gluten Free, paleo, whole30 (16)
    Gorgeous photos!! I love butternut squash, but my husband doesn’t… though I think pairing it with beef would be a great way to show him how awesome it is 😀


  26. Krista @ Joyful Healthy Eats says

    I am a lover of all squashes, not so much pumpkin on the savory side but definitely on the sweet! But this stew sounds incredible, love the sweet savory combo!


  27. Sara says

    This looks great, I’m also a big butternut fan, in fact I have one waiting to be used right now!


Beef and Butternut Squash Stew recipe - Gluten Free, paleo, whole30 (2024)


Is butternut squash okay for Paleo diet? ›

Butternut squash makes a great addition to any Paleo meal, and adds Vitamin C, Vitamin A, minerals, and fiber to a dish. It's a very versatile vegetable, with a unique texture once it's been cooked, and these recipes showcase the many ways you can use butternut squash in your Paleo cooking.

How do I thicken my Paleo stew? ›

A quick and easy paleo-friendly way to add more thickness to your soups is to grind down 1-2 cups of nuts. Use cashews, peanuts, almonds, or any other nuts that you have at home. Almond flour is also a commonly available substitute that you can find in almost any grocery store today.

Can I use flour instead of cornstarch in beef stew? ›

If you need to substitute cornstarch to thicken liquid in a recipe that calls for ¼ cup (four tablespoons) flour, you only need two tablespoons cornstarch. If you're substituting flour for cornstarch to thicken the sauce in your recipe, substitute two tablespoons all-purpose flour for every one tablespoon cornstarch.

Is butternut squash anti-inflammatory? ›

It contains zeaxanthin and lutein, two powerful antioxidants that support vision. Butternut Squash's high antioxidant content may have anti-inflammatory benefits, helping to reduce your risk of inflammation-related disorders like rheumatoid arthritis.

When should you not use butternut squash? ›

How Long Does Butternut Squash Last?
  1. Fridge: 4-6 days (not recommended)
  2. Room temperature on the counter: 2-3 months.
  3. In the freezer: 8-12 months.
Sep 6, 2023

What is a paleo flour substitute for thickening? ›

Instead of cornstarch, use arrowroot flour or tapioca flour. We found that arrowroot flour works well to thicken sauces and gravies and helps to lighten the texture of baked goods. Tapioca flour works well in coatings, such as velveting chicken for stir-fries.

How do you thicken stew without gluten? ›

Mix one teaspoon cornflour with a tablespoon of room temperature water and add to your stew. Then bring to the boil and cook until desired thickness is reached. Cornflour is a great gluten-free thickener. It has a slightly more gelatinous texture, so only add a teaspoon at time or your sauce may become a bit goopy.

How do you thicken stew with gluten free options? ›

Arrowroot starch works in these sorts of dishes, too. Some sauces are thickened by starting with a “roux” (a butter + flour mixture), traditionally made with wheat flour. White rice or sweet rice flour is a perfectly good substitute.

What is the secret to tender beef stew? ›

The most important key to making stew meat tender is being sure to cook it for a long time. If you want super tender beef, you'll need to cook it on a low heat in a Dutch oven on the stove or a slow cooker for at least a few hours.

When should I add potatoes to stew? ›

Your onions will be fine, but mushy potatoes and carrots are a no-no. Instead, add them about 20 minutes before the end of cooking. When they're tender, the stew is done.

What is the best thickener for beef stew? ›

The three main thickening agents for gravies are flour, cornflour and arrowroot. The first two are normally used in savoury dishes while arrowroot tends to be used in sweet dishes – that said, arrowroot will work in a savoury dish as it has no flavour.

Is it necessary to peel butternut squash before cooking? ›

It's important to note that while many people choose to remove butternut squash skin (and this is best practice for soup making, where you want smooth results), you can 100% eat roasted butternut squash skin. Slice butternut squash into crescents and roast it with the skin on.

Do I have to peel butternut squash for soup? ›

Do you have to peel butternut squash for soup? No. There is no need to peel the squash. Not only is this a fussy process, but the squash skin is completely edible and will blend into the soup once cooked.

Do you peel butternut squash before cooking? ›

Use a sharp knife (or a sturdy vegetable peeler) to carefully remove the skin. Alternatively, the skin can stay on because it's edible when roasted! But if adding to a soup (or recipe where it won't be roasted), remove and discard.

What vegetables are paleo compliant? ›

Fill up your cart with any and all vegetables; from broccoli, cauliflower, peppers and carrots to lettuce, kale, and avocado…the list goes on and on! Of course, any and all fruits are welcome on the paleo diet including apples, oranges, pears, strawberries, blueberries, raspberries, and more.

What vegetables are not allowed on the paleo diet? ›

These are beans, lentils, and peas. Legumes are not paleo because they were only introduced into the human diet about 5,000 to 7,000 years ago. Legumes are difficult to digest and can contain unhealthy fats.

What non starchy vegetables are paleo? ›

Non-starchy vegetables are generally free to eat on a paleo diet. These include lettuce, spinach, kale, green beans, cabbage and celery.

Is butternut squash a good or bad carb? ›

Butternut squash is a low-calorie food and is packed with nutrients. While it's higher in carbs than some other veggies, its low glycemic index (a ranking of how carbs affect blood sugar) still makes it a healthy choice for most people.


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