Classic Beef Stroganov

 Beef Stroganov is a well-known Russian dish, which become extremely popular in many countries. It consists of fried beef cubes mixed with sour cream sauce. Various explanations are given for the name, one says that such dish was firstly appeared at the count Alexander Stroganov’s dinners, who was the Russian minister of the interior from 1839, the member of the state Council from 1849 and the governor general of Novorossiia from 1855. The sauteed beef was among other different dishes, which were served at ‘open tables’ when all decorous and presentable people could came in straight from the street and tried any meal.
 The first known Beef Stroganov recipe doesn’t contain onions or mushrooms, only floured beef cubes, which fried and sauced with mustard, bouillon (stock) and some sour cream. Thus, you may guess that it’s not the best recipe. The dish becomes much tastier and aromatic if you add onions and mushrooms (it tastes fantastic with cep mushrooms, even if you add only one), such recipe is considered now as classic Beef Stroganov.
Beef Stroganov

Classic Beef Stroganov

  • Servings: 4
  • Difficulty: moderate
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You can also serve the beef with buckwheat instead of mashed potatoes.
IngredientsRussian Beef Stroganov
500g beef fillet, cut into medium cubes
2 medium brown onions, thinly sliced
200-300g mushrooms, sliced (cep mushrooms or brown champignons)
2-3 Tbsp plain flour
150-200ml sour cream
2 tsp dijon mustard
2-3 Tbsp beef stock
butter or sunflower oil
sea salt, black pepper to taste
mashed potatoes, chopped dill or parsley, rye bread, for serving
  1. To make the sour cream sauce, in a small bowl, combine the sour cream with mustard, add stock to make it more thin (it should be liquid like kefir).
  2. Mix the flour with a good pinch of salt. Lightly flour beef cubes from all sides, shake off any flour excess. Heat the heavy frying pan, when it’s hot, add butter or sunflower oil. Then sear beef cubes in 2 or 3 batches, so you don’t overcrowd the pan and steam the meat. Cook for 2-3 muntes or just until browned. Transfer to the plate.
  3. In the same frying pan (reduce the heat to medium), add a knob of butter, mushrooms and onions. Fry onion until it’s soft. Then add fried meat, season with salt and pepper. Reduce the heat to medium-low, you need to warm the meat mixture for 2-3 minutes. Now add the sauce, stirring continuously for 1-2 minutes. Remove the pan from the heat, cover with lid and let it rest for few minutes.
  4. Serve with mashed potatoes, sprinkle with dill or parsley. Enjoy!
You can keep the dish in the fridge up to 1-2 days. Keep the fried meat and sour cream sauce separate in the different containers. Just mix it together and rewarm before serving (but don’t let the sauce bubble).


  1. Amanda says:

    Ohh I love a good meat dish. I like that you added dijon mustard too with the sour cream. I’d eat this with a nice rye bread and really enjoy it. I also like the idea of adding mushrooms. Mushrooms and meat are a marriage made in heaven. They really bring out the flavors in each other. Great recipe! Enjoy the week.

    • milkandbun says:

      Thank you so much, Amanda! I love meat dishes too, especially if they don’t require much time to prepare 😀 And sometimes meat turns out very hard, so don’t brown the beef cubes in this recipe too long. 🙂

  2. Ginger says:

    I love the dish – and I agree with Amanda that the mustard seems like an excellent addition! We always eat it with rice, are mashed potatoes how you would eat it in Russia? Imagine – I might have been living a lie! 😉

    • milkandbun says:

      Yep, it’s served with mashed potatoes most of the time. Sometimes with buckwheat, and rarely with rice. So, try with potatoes on side (mashed or boiled), may be you will love it more.. 🙂

      • Ginger says:

        I’m intrigued by the buckwheat, though! It it just boiled? I’d love to hear more about it because it’s not something I use very often!

    • milkandbun says:

      Hi Ginger! Sorry for the late reply.
      First, you need to wash the buckwheat under the running water, then keep it for a while to dry. Next step is optional.
      Heat the frying pan (without any oil), add buckwheat and fry it for 4-5 minutes. This step helps to make the buckwheat more flavorful and nice crumbly.
      Now, you need to boil slightly salted water (1 part of buckwheat : 2 parts of water), add buckwheat and bring it to boil on a medium-high heat. Reduce the heat, add a knob of butter and simmer for 10-12 minutes.
      Turn off the heat. Cover the pan with a lid and let it rest for 10-15 minutes. Optional, but preferably, to cover the pan with wool cloth or at least with few kitchen towels; it helps to prove the buckwheat and makes it more crumble and tasty.

      • milkandbun says:

        When it’s ready you may add a knob of butter. Season with more salt, if needed. I make buckwheat as a side dish for sausages, roast chicken..
        Also it’s can be seasoned with sugar (instead of salt) and eat for breakfast. 🙂

  3. trixpin says:

    Your recipe for stroganov sounds much better than the original one. No onions? Really?
    I don’t know that I’ve ever made a proper, stick-to-the-recipe version though – I tend to just go slap dash when it comes to beef stews. It’s about time I tried to do it properly so thanks for sharing your wonderful recipe!

    • milkandbun says:

      Thanks a lot for the lovely comment, Trixy! The dish tastes much better with onions, but you can easily omit them. 🙂 I don’t follow recipes exactly too, but here the main point is not to simmer the meat in the sauce, as usual it does in many stews.

    • milkandbun says:

      One of the important point in the recipe is to fry meat (very fast about 2-3 minutes) to keep it tender and juicy, and only after that add sauce. And of course no need to simmer it for hours. 🙂 You can add some tomato paste to the sour cream sauce, the quantity totally depends on your taste.
      Thanks for the attention to the recipe! 🙂

  4. Liz says:

    Love beef stroganoff (stroganov?) and always asked for that when my birthday rolled around when I lived at home. What fun to have a more authentic recipe. Yum!

    • milkandbun says:

      You can call it both Stroganoff or Stroganov. The dish name came from the member of the important Russian family (in the XVI-XX centuries) – the count Alexander Stroganov. So, Stroganov was his family name. 🙂

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