Marks Daily Apple
Serving up health and fitness insights (daily, of course) with a side of irreverence.
2 Feb

Beef Stroganoff

Beef StrogranoffOnce thought of as an impressive gourmet dish for dinner parties, Beef Stroganoff is actually easy enough to make any night of the week. It’s essentially nothing more than thin strips of beef simmered in a creamy sauce. But what a delicious sauce it is, meaty and rich, and still guaranteed to impress.

There are several ways to make the creamy sauce, depending on how your body feels about dairy and how you feel about the flavor of coconut milk. This recipe combines 1/2 cup (125 ml) coconut milk with 1 cup (250 ml) whole cream for a decadent-tasting sauce with light coconut flavor. The whole cream can be omitted and 1 1/2 cups (375 ml) of coconut milk can be used instead. You could even omit both the coconut milk and cream and simply serve the meat and simmered stock with a dollop of sour cream. The dish will turn out great no matter what.

Beef Stroganoff was first made in Russia centuries ago. Way back then, stroganoff was served without a carb companion, unless some fried potatoes could be found. Rice and noodles were not part of the original dish so there’s no reason to add them now. The tender beef and mushrooms and flavorful sauce are hearty enough and so delicious that you won’t want a noodle to get in the way.

Serves: 4

Time in the Kitchen: 35 minutes


  • 1 tablespoon coconut oil (15 ml)
  • 1 1/2 pounds (680 g) beef tenderloin or sirloin, cut into 1/4-inch thick slices (6 mm) that are 2 to 3 inches in length (5 cm to 7.6 cm)
  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter (30 m)
  • 1/4 cup finely chopped shallots (60 ml)
  • 8 ounces cremini or white mushrooms, thinly sliced (230 g)
  • 1 cup beef stock (250 ml)
  • 1/2 cup coconut milk (125 ml)
  • 1 cup heavy cream (250 ml)
  • 1 tablespoon Dijon mustard (15 ml)
  • Chopped fresh parsley or dill for an optional garnish


Lightly season the beef with salt and pepper. Heat the coconut oil in a large skillet (12-inch or more) over high heat until the skillet is very hot. Add half of the beef strips, cooking for 1 minute on each side to brown. Put the cooked meat in a bowl. Let the pan heat up again before browning the rest of the meat. Add the second batch of meat to the bowl.


Turn the heat down slightly to medium-high. Add the butter. When it melts, add the shallots. Sauté for just a minute or two then add the mushrooms. Cook the mushrooms until soft and lightly browned, about 5 minutes.

Saute Mushrooms

Add the beef stock and coconut milk, scraping the bottom of the skillet to release all the tasty bits stuck to the pan. Boil for 5 minutes.

Whisk in the heavy cream and mustard. Boil for 3 to 5 minutes to thicken the sauce slightly.

Step 3

Add the meat and any juice that’s collected in the bowl with the meat. Simmer just a few minutes to heat the meat back up.

Step 4

Add sea salt to taste and serve. Add chopped parsley or dill for garnish if desired.

Beef Strogranoff

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  1. That looks great, and so easy!

    Kathleen wrote on February 2nd, 2013
  2. Mmmm, putting this one on my menu plan for next week!

    Sis wrote on February 2nd, 2013
  3. How serendipitous that I just bought some beef and mushrooms.

    Back in my vegan days I would make stroganoff sauce with coconut milk and lime juice, finding it decently mimicked sour cream. Of course, then I’d pour it over noodles. :(

    Violette wrote on February 2nd, 2013
    • Coconut milk and lime juice ~= sour cream.

      Useful tip, thanks! (Sadly, I can’t tolerate dairy…)

      Violet wrote on February 3rd, 2013
    • I’m used to Stroganoff with noodles too. I used spaghetti squash as a substitute and it was pretty tasty.

      Jen wrote on February 15th, 2014
  4. Fantastic recipe! I will try it tomorrow.
    Thank you!

    Sabine wrote on February 2nd, 2013
  5. Lovely recipe, thank you!

    mars wrote on February 2nd, 2013
  6. Wow. I’m actually drooling. Damn you! 😉

    Dano wrote on February 2nd, 2013
  7. I think I know what’s for dinner tonight! You don’t need noodles, but it you want to add some veggies or please picky eaters, I can see this being perfect on some strips of zucchini sautéed until tender in ghee or coconut oil.

    Jessica wrote on February 2nd, 2013
    • This recipe also works served over baked spaghetti squash, and it can be made with ground beef if that’s what you have around. I also did it once with London broil, but that cut turned tough when cooked like this.

      PhilmontScott wrote on February 26th, 2013
  8. Funny, but in Sweden this dish is always made with pureed tomatoes (and no mushrooms) in the sauce. That’s kind of what makes it Beef Stroganoff… But I’ll try this as well. Love adding mushrooms to meat! :-)

    Liesel wrote on February 2nd, 2013
  9. Mmm this looks wonderful. Gotta try it out.

    Chika wrote on February 2nd, 2013
  10. An option for those that don’t do dairy and don’t enjoy coconut milk: I added some leftover butternut squash soup to beef and mushrooms the other night, and it came out tasting exactly like stroganoff. Of course, making butternut squash soup first definitely lengthens and complicates the recipe…

    Kathryn wrote on February 2nd, 2013
    • That sounds good! I love mixing things together and finding that they taste exactly like other seemingly unrelated foods. That happened to me once when I mixed some leftover chicken with smoked gouda cheese, mustard, mayonnaise, and a little honey, and it tasted exactly like Chick-fil-a.

      Alyssa wrote on February 2nd, 2013
    • Thanks for the tip! I roasted and puréed butternut and used it instead of cream/coconut milk- yum!

      Not exactly like stroganoff but delicious!

      SophieE wrote on February 5th, 2013
  11. This sounds really good. I will probably use sour cream and/or a little heavy cream rather than the coconut milk. I enjoy drinking coconut milk, but I don’t really care for the flavor in my food. The mustard is a great idea since stroganoff can be pretty bland. We have a great little Russian cafe where I live that serves stroganoff with mashed potatoes and dill pickle slices. Surprisingly, it makes a terrific combination.

    Shary wrote on February 2nd, 2013
    • One caveat: Use real sour cream. Check the label to make sure there’s nothing else in it. You might have to go to a specialty store like Whole Foods to get the real deal. The low-fat or “light” stuff and even some brands of full fat sour cream contain preservatives and various other ingredients that cause it to curdle easily.

      Shary wrote on February 2nd, 2013
      • You can get sour cream starter from They have a simple one for sour cream and buttermilk, so you can use your own grass fed cream.

        Auggy wrote on February 3rd, 2013
        • Assuming you can *get* grassfed cream… and probably that it’s raw, too boot. I wish!

          Fyre wrote on February 16th, 2013
  12. Full fat plain yogurt makes a great sub for sour cream if you can’t find real sour cream.

    jennifer wrote on February 2nd, 2013
    • I was making stroganoff one night and realized too late I was out of sour cream…but fortunately had Greek style yogurt on hand. It was perfect.

      lorena wrote on February 6th, 2013
  13. Looks great, will give it a whirl. Have a great weekend everyone.

    rodneyhilton wrote on February 2nd, 2013
    • Oddly enough, I have to go to my regular grocery store for sour cream–Daisy brand is not organic, but it is one of the few brands (including the organic ones that I’ve looked at) that has no additives.

      Susan wrote on February 2nd, 2013
  14. I can’t eat dairy…any substitute necessary for the heavy cream? Any help would be appreciated.

    Christie wrote on February 2nd, 2013
    • I’ve been messing around with marscapone cheese lately. Made an eggplant mushoom dish with it. I noticed I got a creamy consistency without going through the hassle of reducing cream. If you tolerate good Tiramisu, it might be worth a try, as Tiramisu has marscapone cheese in it. Marscapone is like a cross between cream cheese and butter, with a rich texture and mild flavor. It melts easily but doesn’t stand up to heat like butter does.

      I hope your system can tolerate it, because it’s delicious!

      Kenny wrote on February 7th, 2013
    • I used all coconut milk. It was SO GOOD. So, freaking good. And I didn’t even have the mustard.

      Aretha wrote on March 10th, 2013
  15. Didn’t have the Beef but had a Pork Loin. That worked great with this.

    Jeff wrote on February 2nd, 2013
  16. Just made paleo stroganoff last night to serve today! Used top round for meat. Our family is paleo/primal. Our guest were not even aware they were eating primal meal.

    Rollo wrote on February 2nd, 2013
  17. One of the things that I like about this recipe is that while is does not require noodles, I can easily add noodles for the non-Primal members of my household. If they want pasta, we can still all be eating the same thing.

    PhilmontScott wrote on February 2nd, 2013
  18. We made a rendition of this a couple months ago and served it over mashed cauliflower. The mashed cauliflower spread out the richness of it and the young grandkids ate it up!

    Marie wrote on February 2nd, 2013
  19. The process is the base with which I prepare thai curries, pork’s filet mignon, chicken-alla-pizzaiola, veal with gorgonzola, and many others: just change the ingredients and you can invent dozens of quick, easy, tasty and (depending on the ingredients of course) healthy recipes.
    One suggestion: soak the meat in the cream (or coconut milk) for one hour before you squeeze and sauté it: it will be much more tender :)
    P.S. My wife also makes an interesting version of it with salmon, broccoli and paris mushrooms.

    primal_alex wrote on February 2nd, 2013
  20. Yum! That looks delicious. Now, if I can just get my children to like mushrooms!(Or let them spend ages picking them out!)

    Grokesque wrote on February 3rd, 2013
    • Blend those mushrooms up in the food processor with a little coconut oil to make a mushroom paste. You can add it to all kinds of dishes. You will get the flavor and the kids don’t know they are in there! Use to do this with my finicky step kids.

      Claudette wrote on February 4th, 2013
  21. Looks great. I usually skip the cream and serve with cauliflower rice. primal alex – your wife’s recipe sounds good. I haven’t tried that combo before

    Gary Conway wrote on February 3rd, 2013
  22. Beef stroganoff is a regular in our house, but my version is even easier: I always use leftover steak or roast beef. You just warm it up in the sauce. Never had any complaints.

    Wenda wrote on February 3rd, 2013
  23. this looks so lovely, I think I will be sharing this recipe with my class this week for sure. Thanks for sharing.

    Angie wrote on February 3rd, 2013
  24. just made this with chicken livers and hearts, and lambs kidneys – delicious – my sister and I have secret offal eating parties away from the rest of our families !!

    alison wrote on February 3rd, 2013
  25. My Mom used to make this with ground beef, a ton of veggies and sour cream added at the end. Plus herbs, of course. It’s fabulous and so easy to make!

    Felicia wrote on February 3rd, 2013
  26. Oh Yum!!! I just fixed this for dinner, and it is devine! I didn’t use any coconut oil or milk, however, as hubby isn’t into all of this “healthy” stuff yet … I just used light EVOO to fry everything, and made a mess of the whole kitchen with the spatter! This recipe is a keeper, for sure. It hopefully will help “reel” hubby into eating better, as I made it with his favorite cut of meat, top sirloin.

    NMCynthia wrote on February 3rd, 2013
  27. Made this last night. Put it over zucchini noodles. Great recipe, thanks.

    Dale wrote on February 3rd, 2013
  28. Served this over kelp noodles, great recipe. Thanks

    Shaggywillis wrote on February 4th, 2013
  29. Making this tonight! I miss my stroganoff. Anybody have a mashed cauliflower recipe that isn’t watery? I have not been impressed with my effords so far, and I am a damn good cook!

    Claudette wrote on February 4th, 2013
    • Try Mark’s cauliflower turnip mash. I haven’t tried it yet, but it sure looks and sounds good!

      Kevin wrote on February 5th, 2013
    • Roast the cauliflower. Roasting should help dry out the cauliflower as cauliflower contains a lot of water.

      greg wrote on February 7th, 2013
    • The secret to non-watery cauliflower is to STEAM it ’till tender, then pull it out of the pot, empty the steaming water, and toss the cauliflower into the bottom of the pot on the lowest heat, with the lid off. Let the cauliflower sit in there and dry out for 15 minutes or so while you’re doing other food stuff. After the cauliflower dries out for a while, put it in the food processor, then season the resulting fluffy mash with butter or oil, salt pepper etc.

      Two critical things.
      1) Never ever boil the cauliflower. It soaks up way too much water and you can’t get it to dry out.
      2) If your stove doesn’t have a very ‘low’ low heat, make sure to check on the drying cauliflower and turn it so it doesn’t stick to the pot and burn while it’s drying out.

      I have also rescued soggy (boiled) pureed cauliflower by wrapping the puree/mash in a kitchen towel and wringing out the excess water, but it is easy to scald your hand that way!

      Jessica wrote on February 14th, 2014
  30. I think this would be perfect on top of mashed root veggies like parsnips, carrots, and turnips!

    Madam von Sassypants wrote on February 4th, 2013
  31. Claudette, it’s tricky but use less water when steaming the cauliflower, drain thoroughly and let it sit with the pan open for a few minutes to let the steam out. Then drain it again before adding your milk/cream/coconut milk/etc. You could also add in a root vegetable like parsnips or turnips to give it more body if you want. Hope this helps!

    Felicia wrote on February 4th, 2013
  32. This was delicious over roasted spaghetti squash and with some sauerkraut on the side. Not as traditional as the pickles would have been, but a similar acid to cut and complement the creaminess. I wasn’t sure about the coconut milk but found that I like it even better than the traditional recipe’s sour cream or all cream approach. It was subtler and super-silky. I added a big spoonful of gelatin at the stock step because I didn’t have any homemade broth. Divine texture.

    Sally wrote on February 4th, 2013
  33. Is there a variation on Beef Stroganoff that doesn’t use sour cream or yogurt?

    riverside rheumatologist wrote on February 4th, 2013
  34. I made this last weekend for the first time in about 4 years, and I knew something was missing from it, but couldn’t figure it out. Now I know it was the mushrooms, I completely forgot them, but they go so well with the meat in this dish! I am really quite curious to try this dish with coconut milk, can’t say I can really imagine how that would taste, but I’ll keep an open mind.

    David Novak wrote on February 5th, 2013
  35. I made this lastnight. This is at the top of my list…simply amazing. Absolutely loved it. Will maybe add a bit more mushrooms next time, but thats it. Looking forward to leftovers for lunch today!

    Rob Yamry wrote on February 5th, 2013
  36. Certainly a higher quality mushroom would make this amazing!

    Jessica wrote on February 5th, 2013
  37. Maan Health is your lifelong partner in wellbeing, creating healthy and natural products to rejuvenate your body and invigorate your mind. We trust in the healing power of our own bodies, especially when powered by natural ingredients from Mother Earth. Many of our products include time-proven European, Ayurvedic and Chinese herbs, used safely and effectively for centuries. We also incorporate the latest encapsulation and freeze drying techniques to deliver nutraceuticals such as probiotics, antioxidants and omega-3 effectively.

    Caitlyn Wang wrote on February 5th, 2013
  38. Made this last night and the whole family loved it – even Odin (age 3) finished every last drop! MMM.

    Kati wrote on February 6th, 2013
  39. arghh….laptop somehow knocked me offline. It’s like the good old days.

    Important secret ingredient (use for just about any savory dish): freshly grated nutmeg. Grate over finished dish right before serving.

    lorena wrote on February 6th, 2013

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