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Seared Beef with Cipolline Onions and Horseradish Dumplings has chunks of beef chuck roast, cipolline onions, and mushrooms combined in a beefy gravy, and topped with soft horseradish dumplings.
Delicious, hearty comfort food
We’re always looking for easy comfort food recipes that the whole family will love! This Seared Beef with Cippoline Onions and Horseradish Dumplings is a great stovetop meal that makes enough for a hearty family dinner – plus leftovers to enjoy the next day when you don’t have time to cook!
Super tender chunks of beef are simmered in a rich, delicious gravy along with little round cipolline onions that also cook up soft and tender. To complete this hearty dish, we add flavorful savory horseradish dumplings on top of the beef, onions and gravy – making this a complete meal in one!
Why You’ll Love Seared Beef with Cipolline Onions and Horseradish Dumplings
- The flavors of the seared beef and tender onions and mushrooms in a rich, beefy gravy are incredible – plus savory, horseradish-infused soft dumplings complete the meal.
- It’s easy enough for a family meal any day of the week, but it’s also a great menu idea for a cool-weather dinner party entree.
- This recipe makes a big pot full, so you can enjoy leftovers the next day.
“We made this last night and it was out of this world! The dumplings were to die for! Thank you so much for the recipe!!” – Lisa
Key Ingredients & Substitutions
- Cipolline (or cipollini) Onions – Look for bags in the produce aisle alongside other onion varieties. (They look like mini yellow or Vidalia onions, not the round white pearl onions. See our note below about substituting pearl onions.)
- Beef Chuck Roast – This flavorful cut of beef gets super tender as it cooks and is the ideal choice for this recipe.
- Salt & Pepper
- Olive Oil
- Mushrooms – We chose baby Bella (also called Crimini) mushrooms for their earthy flavor, but white button mushrooms can also be used. We like to keep the mushrooms whole in this recipe, so look for packages with smaller sized mushrooms.
- White Wine – Used to deglaze the pot while the onions and mushrooms caramelize.
- Granulated Sugar – Used to assist in caramelizing the mushrooms and onions.
- Beef Stock
- Port Wine – Used to flavor the gravy.
- Fresh Thyme – Tied into a bundle to infuse the gravy and also used to season the dumplings.
- Bay Leaves
- Gravy Seasoning Sauce – Such as Kitchen Bouquet or Gravy Master. Either brand is usually sold in the spice aisle at the supermarket.
- All-Purpose Flour – To thicken the gravy & to make dumplings.
- Baking Powder & Baking Soda
- Greek Yogurt
- Prepared Horseradish – Found in the deli aisle or refrigerated aisle, this is basically grated horseradish root mixed with vinegar as a stabilizer. Do not buy the creamy horseradish sauce (sometimes also labeled as ‘prepared’ so it gets confusing!) – the creamy version doesn’t have the same intense flavor.
Can I use pearl onions instead of cipolline onions?
- Cipolline (or cipollini) onions are larger than pearl onions with a wider, flatter shape. They are also considered a yellow onion, while pearl onions are a small white onion.
- Pearl onions can be used in place of the cipolline, but just note that the flavor will be different (slightly sharper and not as sweet and mellow) and the cooking time will be less since they are smaller. (See Chef’s Tip below.)
Cipolline onions come in various sizes. The larger the onion, the longer this dish will take to cook.
We could only find very small cipolline onions in our local market at this time of year. So, we adjusted the cooking time at the end so the onions did not overcook.
**You will need to adjust your final cooking time based on the size of the onions you are able to find at the market. Large will take longer, small will take less time than the recipe instructions state.**
Special Tools Needed
- Medium pot
- Cutting board & sharp knife
- Dutch oven or oven-safe heavy-bottomed pot with lid
- Butcher’s Twine – to tie the fresh thyme
- Medium mixing bowl
How do I make Seared Beef with Cipolline Onions and Horseradish Dumplings?
- Blanch & peel the onions.
- Sear the beef.
- Sauté the mushrooms and onions.
- Combine the gravy ingredients in a Dutch oven.
- Add beef and simmer for two hours or until tender.
- Taste and season if needed.
- Add roux (flour & butter) to thicken the gravy.
- Add in the onions & mushrooms.
- Mix dumpling dough, then drop by spoonfuls into the hot beef mixture.
- Cover and simmer for 15 minutes or until dumplings are cooked through.
- Serve your Seared Beef with Cipolline Onions and Horseradish Dumplings in bowls immediately.
This seared beef with cipolline onions and horseradish dumplings is a recipe that my husband Jack has made for us many times over the years. You can change up the flavors in both the gravy and the dumplings if you’d like – just follow the same method in the recipe and swap in your favorite herbs and seasonings!
Frequently Asked Questions
- Can I prepare this dish ahead of time? While we think this recipe is best freshly cooked, you could cook the chuck roast with the onions and mushrooms ahead of time. Then, before serving, reheat completely through and add the dumplings so they are freshly cooked just before serving.
- I don’t like to cook with wine. What can I substitute instead? You can deglaze the pan with more beef broth instead of the white wine. While the port adds a unique flavor and the alcohol cooks off as it simmers, if you still prefer not to cook with it, just add in more beef broth.
- How do I reheat the leftovers? So the dumplings don’t overcook, we often microwave individual portions to reheat.
- My dumplings soaked up most of the gravy. What can I do? Add a little bit of beef stock while you reheat to loosen the gravy.
This post originally appeared on A Family Feast in June 2014. We’ve updated the post but the delicious recipe remains the same.
Click here for more delicious Beef Recipes!
- 2 pounds cipolline onions
- 2 1/2 pound chuck roast cut into about 16 pieces
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
- 5 tablespoons softened butter divided
- 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
- 1 pound whole baby bella or button mushrooms
- 1/2 cup white wine
- 1 tablespoon sugar
- 2 quarts beef stock
- 1/2 cup port wine
- Small bunch of thyme tied together with twine
- 2 bay leaves
- 1 teaspoon gravy flavoring such as Kitchen Bouquet
- Additional 1 teaspoon salt, as needed
- Additional 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper, as needed
- 2 tablespoons flour
To make the Dumplings
- 1 1/4 cups flour
- 1 tablespoon baking powder
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1 tablespoon fresh thyme
- 1/3 cup Greek yogurt
- 1 tablespoon prepared horseradish
- 2 tablespoons milk
- Bring a medium pot of water to a boil and plunge in all of the onions; skin, root and all. Boil three minutes then plunge into cold water. Drain and bring to the cutting board. Cut off the root end and squeeze from the other end and the onion will pop out. If the other end has a long stem, you may want to trim a little off so the stem does not hold the onion from sliding out. Set onions aside.
- Salt and pepper both sides of the cut up beef.
- In a large Dutch oven or heavy bottomed pot over medium high heat, place two tablespoons of butter with the two tablespoons of olive oil. Once hot and starting to get frothy, add half of the beef (do not crowd meat) and sear on all sides. Once browned on all sides (8-10 minutes per batch), repeat for second half of beef. Set all of the seared beef aside.
- Reduce heat to medium and add one more tablespoons of butter and then add onions. Sauté three minutes then remove to a separate bowl. Add whole mushrooms and sauté for three more minutes. Add onions back in with mushrooms and add white wine and sugar. Cook for two minutes scraping up and bits from the bottom. Scoop onions and mushrooms out to a bowl and refrigerate until later in this recipe. Save the liquid left in the pot.
- To the liquid left in the pot, add reserved beef and any liquid from the beef, beef stock, port wine, thyme bundle, bay leaves and kitchen bouquet. Bring to a boil, lower heat and cover. Cook on simmer for two hours.
- After two hours, remove cover and taste. If needed, add additional salt and pepper.
- Mix last two tablespoons of softened butter with two tablespoons of flour to form a paste and add to hot stock and beef. Stir to combine and add in reserved onions and mushrooms along with any liquid in the bowl. Bring back to hot.
- While beef is reheating, in a medium bowl, sift flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt. Stir in thyme, yogurt, horseradish and milk to form a gooey dough.
- Drop by spoonfuls into the hot beef mixture, close lid and reduce to a simmer. Cook covered for 15 minutes.
- Serve the dumplings in a bowl with the beef and onions.
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Cipolline onions come in various sizes. The larger the onion, the longer it will take to cook at the end of this recipe. We could only get very small onions in our local market at this time of year. We adjusted the cooking time at the end so the onions did not overcook. **You will need to adjust your final cooking time based on the size of the onions you are able to find at the market. Large will take longer, small will take less time than the recipe instructions state.**