I'm making a braised beef stew with a chuck roast and the recipe calls for browning the beef chunks in the oven at 550F for approximately 10 minutes. While the beef developed a rich browned exterior, the interior temp reached as high as 170F when I pulled it from the oven.

Will this result in overcooked, dry beef after I braise it? I usually brown my beef on the stovetop before braising and never reach an interior temp over 130 degrees during the browning phase.


2 Answers 2


It may make a difference in the timing to what I can only call the 'last turn' [having no science to wave at] when at around the 4-hour mark a braise goes from perfectly converted collagen & ultimately soft juicy beef, into strands of inedible string.

At the point you've finished browning, what you're looking at would be way overdone for a steak, but barely started for a braise, so the term 'overdone' is really relative to the end point, not the start point.

I would err on the side of caution in your long-cook phase, if you're cooking stovetop. Depending on how long you would normally give it - for me, as I say the break-point is about 4 hours at a stovetop simmer, then I'd start testing it from maybe 3 hours & see how it's getting along.
If you're not in a position to actively supervise, then 2 hours today & another 2 tomorrow tends to be pretty safe. Tomorrow's timer starts from when you put heat under, not when it reaches boiling. Drop it in the fridge in between, once cool enough. Many 'stews' will benefit flavour-wise from that approach too.

If it's going to be entirely done in the oven, as these times tend to be shorter because of evaporation, then your original cook time will probably be fine.


Assuming a general answer to this question is better than one specific to your times/temperatures.

The point at which you might consider beef overcooked during frying/searing would depend entirely on how thick your beef was before cooking, how long and what temperature you cooked at. If the chunks were too small, cooked for too long and/or at too high a temperature then it is entirely possible to cook to a point at which people would consider the beef overcooked if they were eating a steak.

However, in this case you are making a stew. One of the characteristics of stews is that they are typically made by cooking for an extended period of time (usually at least 1 hour) at a gently boiling/simmering heat. This allows the collagen in the meat to be broken down and produce the tender meat characteristic of stews and casseroles.

Because of this extended heating, matter what temperature you seared your chunks to internally, the temperature of the stewing process will dominate and your chunks will reach approximately 100 C (212 F; the boiling point of water) and be maintained at this temperature for a long time. However, as mentioned above, this doesn't matter, as this is exactly what you aim to achieve to produce the tender stewed meat.

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service and acknowledge you have read our privacy policy.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.