Recipe: Pressure Cooker Belgian Beer Beef Stew (Carbonnade)

I cooked more elaborate meals and was more experimental and adventurous in my culinary endeavours during the year I was on maternity leave, than I ever have been in my life.

There’s one simple reason for this – I was bored! Intellectual power that would otherwise be used in work or study had no other outlet, and so I spent all this intellectual power in meal-planning, curating the perfect shopping list, and cooking.

Now that I’ve been back at work for over a year, I think we’ve probably eaten the same seven meals every week – I no longer have the time to spend on planning and cooking new dishes.

Yet there are some recipes trialled during my year of maternity leave that were real successes which have been added to my standard repertoire. Case in point – this Belgian Beer Beef Stew, which I believe is more commonly known as carbonnade.

It is very meat-heavy so rather than eating it by itself, I do tend to make a big batch and serve it up with a lot of green veggies on the side. Great served on top of some buttered pasta as well!

Note – this recipe is for a Phillips All-In-One Pressure and Slow Cooker.


All the ingredients (spot the baby in the background of the photo!)
  • Approximately 1kg of beef chuck steak (I got mine marked down – freshness doesn’t matter so much in this dish because you cook it for so long!)
  • 1/4 cup of plain flour
  • About 100gm of butter
  • About six rashers of bacon (I use short-cut – you can use whatever cut you prefer)
  • A whole head of garlic
  • Two onions – I used red onions for the sweetness
  • One bottle of Belgian beer (I used Hoegaarden)
  • One cup of stock (I used chicken because that’s what I had – but beef would suit best)
  • Two tablespoons of dark brown sugar
  • One lemon
  • Two dried bay leaves
  • Fresh parsley


Dice up the beef into small chunks – about 5cm cubes work well. Coat the beef in the plain flour.

While you’re doing this, heat up a drizzle of olive oil in the Phillips All-In-One Pressure Cooker on the High Saute/Sear mode.

Sear and seal the beef in the cooker, then remove from the pot.

Add the butter into the pot, keep it on the High Saute/Sear mode. Add in the bacon (diced), garlic (diced), and onions (sliced) and cook until softened and smoky. Add half the bottle of beer, and keep cooking on High Saute/Sear mode until it reduces by half.

Return the beef to the pot, with the other half bottle of beer, stock, juice from one lemon, brown sugar, bay leaves, and parsley. Add pepper and salt to taste. Let the liquid reduce to half again, then put the cooker in Manual Pressure Cooker mode for half an hour, and put the lid on.

Once the pressure cooker has finished, release the steam and open the lid. If the mix is still too liquidy, put the cooker back on Saute/Sear mode to reduce it down. Importantly – add more salt and pepper to taste as appropriate!

Serve as you wish – I served it here with some buttered pasta underneath to soak up the delicious stew juices, and with some green beans. You might also like to serve it on a bed of rice with steamed broccoli, or even just with some fresh crusty bread and a side salad.


Recipe: Pressure Cooker Chicken, Chorizo and Chickpeas (adapted from Serious Eats)

Note: this recipe is adapted from Serious Eats 30-Minute Pressure Cooker Chicken With Chickpeas, Tomatoes, and Chorizo Recipe to better suit an Australian audience on a budget using the Phillips All-In-One Cooker. Budget and grocery shopping notes are in italics.

Total cost for six serves: approximately $19 (not counting vegetable and carb sides), or $3.17 per serve.


  • Tablespoon of olive oil
  • Two chorizo sausages
  • Two medium-sized brown onions
  • Tablespoon of paprika
  • Tablespoon of dried chilli flakes
  • Drop of liquid smoke
  • Two cans of chickpeas
  • Two cans of diced tomatoes
  • 1kg of chicken pieces
  • 350ml of chicken stock
  • Half a lemon
  • Parsley to garnish
  • Salt and pepper to taste


Slice the chorizo into thin slices.
You can buy chorizo on half-price sale at least once every two months at either Coles or Woolworths. When they go on sale, I’ll usually buy a dozen and freeze them to use over the coming weeks. This takes the cost down to $1.50 per chorizo, rather than $3 per chorizo.

Set your pressure cooker to Sauté/Sear – High Temp for two minutes. Heat up the olive oil in the pot, and leave the chorizo in to fry until slightly crispy.

Slice the onion into thin slices, and add to the pressure cooker. Add another three minutes to the Sauté/Sear – High Temp mode.

After three minutes, add the washed and rinsed chickpeas, diced tomatoes, and chicken stock and stir.
Canned goods like chickpeas and diced tomatoes go on sale regularly, it’s worth stocking up when they hit about $1 a can. Alternatively, you can buy them for about 90c a can regularly at Aldi. You can also make your own chicken stock to save money, or buy it from Aldi for about $2 for a litre. 

Add the paprika, dried chilli flakes, and a drop of liquid smoke. 
The original recipe calls for fire-roasted tomatoes – as that’s a bit harder to find in Australia for a good price, I added a drop of Tone’s Liquid Smoke instead. You only need a single drop or two for it to add a wonderful smokey flavour to whatever you’re cooking. A $6.99 bottle can last you an entire six months because you use it so sparingly!

Add 1kg of chicken pieces, and close the pressure cooker. Set it to Manual Pressure Cooker mode for twenty minutes. 
The original recipe calls for an entire chicken cut into pieces – that’s a bit too fiddly for me, so I used 1kg of chicken thigh cutlets (six cutlets in total) instead. This was $8.50/kg, but you could go even more budget and opt for chicken drumsticks, wings or maryland (ranges from $3.50/kg – $6/kg).

While the pressure cooker is doing its thing, prepare your sides. I like to just steam up whatever veggies are on special that week – green beans, asparagus, broccoli, etc., or you can prepare a simple salad instead. You’ll also want some carbs to soak up the yummy sauce – rice, cous cous, or use spaghetti as I did as I had an unused half pack. 

Release the pressure in the pressure cooker, and open the lid. Keep it on a high temperature (back to Sauté/Sear – High Temp Mode) and stir until the sauce thickens up. 

Squeeze the juice of half a lemon into the pot, and more salt and pepper to taste if needed. 
The recipe calls for sherry vinegar to taste, but I’ve substituted with lemon juice. I don’t know about you, but sherry vinegar isn’t an ingredient that I cook with regularly, so lemons off the neighbour’s tree is my preference!

Serve topped with parsley in bowls on top of your carb base, with veggies on the side.