Beef Stroganoff (sort of)

A very simple recipe from my childhood. These days my mother might be embarrassed by it, but it was fast, easy, and cheap. She called it Beef Stroganoff but, of course, it isn’t. It’s not a gourmet feast but it is a comforting hot meal that’s a little different.

This dish is best served with some kind of noodle. Egg noodles were our standard, but others will work fine. You can even use lasagna noodles broken up a bit. In a pinch, a well drained package of ramen will do (don’t use the little included spice packet).

I have only seen three sizes of canned beef stew; standard soup can, large soup can and the big Dinty Moore can. It either needs to be a canned stew or a very thick home-made stew. Think chunks of beef and vegetables in a thick beef gravy.

Sour cream is best but plain yoghurt is fine. If you use home-made stew, just use the can size as a guideline. These are all approximate measurements and you should modify them to your taste.

For canned stew I suggest starting with the following proportions then add more dairy until the gravy is a darkish khaki color.

  • Standard can – ¼ Cup of dairy
  • Large can – ⅓ Cup of dairy
  • Dinty Moore – ½ Cup of dairy

Serve with:

  • Noodles,
  • Rice,
  • Dumplings (my local food bank has some big potato dumplings that are perfect)
  • Toast,
  • Stale bread.


  • Beef stew
  • Sour cream or plain yoghurt (For pity’s sake please don’t use flavored, sweetened yoghurt.)


  1. Heat the stew in a pot on medium.
  2. Add the sour cream.
  3. Stir well.
  4. Take the pot off the heat.

Serve over noodles.


  • This is a dish that can be modified a lot. Some canned vegetables will make it go further. If you have leftover beef or vegetables such as; celery carrots onions potatoes turnips, parsnips will all add flavor and bulk. BUT if you do add stuff don’t forget to add a bit more dairy.
  • If you use yoghurt, you might want to give the recipe a bit of a Middle-Eastern twist by adding some cumin and ground coriander seed.
  • Processed and canned foods usually have high levels of salt (sodium). The added dairy means that each portion will contain less. Still not great for folks with blood pressure and heart problems but slightly more manageable.

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