Beef Plov (Beef Rice Pilaf) Recipe

This Beef Rice Pilaf is the best I've tried. This recipe makes a big batch which is great since it reheats really well. Step-by-step photo instructions.

This Beef Rice Pilaf is the best I’ve tried. I appreciate discovering recipes that are a hit with my whole family (it’s never awesome to be in the kitchen for hours and then be the only one eating what you made because you feel too guilty to toss your efforts into the waste receptacle (doesn’t that sound better than garbage can?).

This recipe makes a big batch which is great since it reheats really well. That’s my favorite way to eat it; crisped over a skillet and served with a pickle. I’m not sure why but I crave pickles with plov.

We’ve been looking for a great beef plov recipe for a L-O-N-G time! Plov is originally an Uzbek dish, but every Ukrainian I know makes and loves plov and this is more the Ukrainian version. P.S. I do have a chicken plov recipe posted here (if you wanted a quicker plov recipe).

I discovered this recipe through Olga’s Blog. Guess what, she’s a nurse too! I guess nurses make good food ;), or maybe we just happen to have a lot in common. Olga is such an inspiration. I don’t think I would have ever gotten to know her if not for blogging. Olga your recipe was deeee-licious. My husband (being Mr creativity) tossed in some coriander which added a nice floral somethin’ somethin’.  It’s a new favorite in our house!

Ingredients for Beef Rice Pilaf:

1 1/2 lbs Beef chuck, beef sirloin or good quality beef stew meat
1/3 cup canola oil, or extra light olive oil (not extra virgin)
2 medium onions, finely chopped
3 medium carrots, cut into matchsticks or grated
1 tsp salt for the meat and veggies + 1 1/2 tsp salt for the rice
1/2 tsp freshly ground black pepper
1 tsp paprika
1 tsp cumin
3-4 bay leaves
1 3/4 cups hot water for braising meat
3 cups long grain rice (Basmati or Jasmin rice work great!)
4 cups hot water when cooking rice
1 head of garlic
1 tsp ground coriander

beef-plov

How to Make Beef Rice Pilaf:

1. Trim beef of excess fat and sinews (aka the chewy stuff), pat the meat dry with a paper towel and chop into 1/2″ to 3/4″ pieces.

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2. Preheat your dutch oven (or your large soup pot with a heavy bottom), to high heat. Once it’s hot, stir in your 1/3 cup canola oil. Once oil is hot, add chopped meat and saute uncovered 7 min over high heat until meat is browned, stirring every minute or so so it doesn’t scorch to the bottom of the pan.

Note: it’s important to preheat the dutch oven first for the meat to sear over very high heat, otherwise it will juice out and become dry. 

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3. Reduce heat to medium and Add chopped onion, stirring often until onion is softened (5 minutes). Stir in sliced carrots, 1 tsp salt, 1/2 tsp pepper, 1 tsp paprika, 1 tsp cumin, 3-4 bay leaves and continue to cook over medium heat 5 minutes until carrots are softened.

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4. Add 1 3/4 cups hot water, cover & simmer over medium/low heat 45 min or until meat is tender.

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5. Meanwhile, rinse rice until water runs clear, then drain and set aside (this gets rid of the starch so you won’t end up with a sticky rice). Did I ever tell you I love my OXO strainer? This thing is so versatile (from sifting flour, rinsing and draining, to wearing it as a helmet and chasing your toddler around the house?

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6. Spread rice over the meat and add 4 cups hot water. Sprinkle the rice with 1 1/2 tsp salt (DO NOT STIR), bring to a boil then reduce heat to medium and Let cook uncovered until most of the water is absorbed (10 min).

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7. Cut off the head of your garlic to expose the cloves. Put your head of garlic, cut side down into the center of the rice and sprinkle the top of the rice with 1 tsp ground coriander

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8. Poke 7-10 holes through the rice to allow steam to escape to the surface,  reduce the heat to low, then cover and cook an additional 15 minutes or until rice is cooked through. Remove the garlic head and bay leaves and stir everything gently to combine and you’re done.

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You should make it. As soon as possible. If you share my pickle cravings, add them to your shopping list for this one!

This Beef Rice Pilaf is the best I've tried. This recipe makes a big batch which is great since it reheats really well. Step-by-step photo instructions.

Beef Plov (Beef Rice Pilaf) Recipe

4.9 from 75 reviews
Prep time:
Cook time:
Total time:
This recipe makes a big batch which is great since it reheats really well. That's my favorite way to eat it; crisped over a skillet and served with a pickle.
Author:
Skill Level: Medium
Cost To Make: $12-$14
Serving: 10-12

Ingredients

  • 1½ lbs Beef chuck, beef sirloin or good quality beef stew meat
  • ⅓ cup canola oil, or extra light olive oil (not extra virgin)
  • 2 medium onions, finely chopped
  • 3 medium carrots, cut into matchsticks or grated
  • 1 tsp salt for the meat and veggies + 1½ tsp salt for the rice
  • ½ tsp freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 tsp paprika
  • 1 tsp cumin
  • 3-4 bay leaves
  • 1¾ cups hot water for braising meat
  • 3 cups long grain rice (Basmati or Jasmin rice work great!)
  • 4 cups hot water when cooking rice
  • 1 tsp ground coriander
  • 1 head of garlic

Instructions

  1. Trim beef of excess fat and sinews (aka the chewy stuff), pat the meat dry with a paper towel and chop into ½" to ¾" pieces.
  2. Preheat your dutch oven (or your large soup pot with a heavy bottom), to high heat. Once it's hot, stir in your ⅓ cup canola oil. Once oil is hot, add chopped meat and saute uncovered 7 min over high heat until meat is browned, stirring every minute or so so it doesn't scorch to the bottom of the pan. Note: it's important to preheat the dutch oven first for the meat to sear over very high heat, otherwise it will juice out and become dry.
  3. Reduce heat to medium and Add chopped onion, stirring often until onion is softened (5 minutes). Stir in sliced carrots, 1 tsp salt, ½ tsp pepper, 1 tsp paprika, 1 tsp cumin, 3-4 bay leaves and continue to cook over medium heat 5 minutes until carrots are softened.
  4. Add 1¾ cups hot water, cover and simmer over medium/low heat 45 min or until meat is tender.
  5. Meanwhile, rinse rice until water runs clear, then drain and set aside (this gets rid of the starch so you won't end up with a sticky rice).
  6. Spread rice over the meat and add 4 cups hot water. Sprinkle the rice with 1½ tsp salt (DO NOT STIR), bring to a boil then reduce heat to medium and Let cook uncovered until most of the water is absorbed (10 min).
  7. Cut off the head of your garlic to expose the cloves. Put your head of garlic, cut side down into the center of the rice and sprinkle the top of the rice with 1 tsp ground coriander.
  8. Poke 7-10 holes through the rice to allow steam to escape to the surface, reduce the heat to low then cover and cook an additional 15 minutes or until rice is cooked through. Remove the garlic head and bay leaves and stir everything gently to combine and you're done.

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  • Vic Sullivan
    November 5, 2017

    Made a superb Pork Fillet pilaf from the Redmond recipe book using the pilaf program in our new RMC-M90E multi-cooker. Was thinking of modifying the Redmond recipe but aware the ratio of rice to water (and total weight of recipe) was critical to success. Rather too much rice and not enough meat for the carnivores in our family!
    Almost tempted to restore our French cast iron casserole dish to its former glory and try your recipe in that.
    May have a try to modify your recipe to make it similar to that for the pork fillet.
    Appreciate any ideas or suggestions 🙂
    thanks
    Have rated the recipe five for excitement and challenge together with other comments Reply

    • Natasha
      natashaskitchen
      November 5, 2017

      Hi Vic, I haven’t tried this recipe in a multi-cooker so I can’t really advise on modifications for that. Do you enjoy using your multi-cooker? It’s something I’d like to try out in the future! 🙂 Reply

      • Vic Sullivan
        November 5, 2017

        Thanks Natasha – before attempting to make your beef recipe I am trying this pork recipe with extra pork.

        The larger ingredient volumes are for my 5 litre model against the smaller amounts on the Redmond website that seem to be for a smaller model.

        Ingredients for Pork Pilaf – http://multicooker.com/ci/receipts/pork_pilaf/
        Pork (fillet) 500 250 g
        Polished rice 500 200 g
        Carrots 200 250 g
        Onions 200 200 g
        Garlic 15 20 g
        Vegetable oil 70 20 mL
        Water 700 250 mL
        Salt
        Spices

        On the spice side I added two tablespoons of Pataks Jalfrezi paste and one desert spoon of Geta Lime and Chili Chutney! Honestly it was quite subtle!

        Fresh pilaf that is not a rice pudding is a delight to eat. I am increasing the pork by about 250 gms and suspect this may give the need for slight extension of the cooking time but must avoid overcooked rice!

        Learning curve….. three English medium eggs equal five American ones. Cake making in the multi- cooker was from very runny doughs until I weighted the eggs to check. With runny doughs use self raising flour plus the baking powder in the recipe. You don’t get a sponge or even the promised cake but a tasty pudding instead.

        We got the multi-cooker as our slow cooker was just 3 litre capacity with simple on/off hi-lo switch.

        Multi-cooker temperature control superb and better than main ovens. Makes splendid yoghurt. Almost tempted to make bread again as the yoghurt setting would be fine for proving dough. Reply

  • Natasha R.
    October 25, 2017

    This plov recipe is ok. Not the best one I’ve had, it’s a bit bland. But all the other recipes I’ve made here have been amazing. My favorite website!
    I followed the recipe entirely but my rice came out half under-cooked & half mushy. Not exactly sure why, but I suspect that my cast iron pot was too big. Reply

    • Natasha
      natashaskitchen
      October 25, 2017

      Hi Natasha, thank you for writing in. It could be due to a number of things – hopefully this helps! 🙂 Maybe a different variety of rice was used, possibly not having a a tight fitting lid, or cooking over too high of heat which would cause the water to dissolve too quickly? The larger pot size might possibly do it since there is more surface area but if there is a tight fitting lid, it should be ok. Reply

  • Anna
    October 4, 2017

    So I’ve got company coming for dinner on Friday but no time to cook. I’m thinking of preparing this on Thursday and reheat on Friday. What would you say is the best way to reheat so it doesn’t lose its freshness and dry out? Reply

    • Natasha
      natashaskitchen
      October 5, 2017

      Hi Anna, I love reheating plov on a skillet, adding more oil as needed to keep it moist. I love when the rice gets a little crispy on the pan 🙂 Reply

  • Alex
    September 24, 2017

    I have yet to try this recipe, but I have some Russian friends who make plov but aren’t willing to give up their recipe. Although I know they use garbanzo beans instead of onions. Could you use pickled carrots instead of adding pickles? Reply

    • Natasha
      natashaskitchen
      September 25, 2017

      Hi Alex! That is so unfortunate that they won’t share with you. Bummer!! I haven’t seen garbanzo beens used – sounds interesting but I can’t imagine they add more flavor than onion. Hmmm… With the pickles, I just serve them on the side but I think any pickled vegetable would probably taste good with plov. These marinated tomatoes are completely amazing with plov 😉 Reply

      • Vera
        October 24, 2017

        You’ve never heard of garbanzo beans in Plov? To me Plov isn’t plov without lots of garbanzo beans and garlic, the Beans give it a nutty flavor, a lot of people put raisins into it too which is gross to me, anyway thank you for this recipe, it looks super easy to make. I will be adding the Garbanzo beans to it and more garlic. Reply

        • Natasha
          natashaskitchen
          October 24, 2017

          I’ll have to try adding garbanzo beans next time! Do you use canned garbanzo beans? Also, do you add the whole garlic head with the ends trimmed or do you chop and add it? Thank you Vera for sharing your version! Reply

  • Faye
    September 11, 2017

    This was most excellent! Made it the other day and could not wait for dinner the next day so we could have it again as it was soooo delicious!!
    My dad used to make plov all the time and his is very good, and this matches it.
    The only thing I have to say is that you do not have to throw the garlic away. You can squeeze the garlic into the plov and it will give an additional delicious flavour. Kind of like a roasted garlic would. I will in fact add another whole head of garlic next time as I know my dad always cooked with 2-3 garlic heads.
    In addition, for some reason, despite washing my rice over and over, the dish still came out with more of a sticky rice consistency..which in fact I enjoyed, but my husband is a fan of the traditional version.
    I rinsed the rice at least 5 times and thought the water was pretty clear. Any suggestions of how to remedy the rice situation for the future?
    Will definitely make this recipe again!! Reply

    • Natasha
      natashaskitchen
      September 11, 2017

      Hi Faye, I’m so happy you loved the recipe!! I think you would also appreciate our buckwheat beef plov and you’re absolutely right about the garlic – we started keeping it in the dish later on when we figured out how absolutely delicious it is! Reply

  • Barbarainnc
    September 2, 2017

    Made this tonight. It was so good. Froze 4 cartons for later. I used a 10 oz bag of matchstick carrots, alot easier than cutting them up. I made non, last night. So we had a delicious meal. Thanks for posting your recipe. 😊 😊 😊 Reply

    • Natasha's Kitchen
      September 2, 2017

      You’re welcome! I’m glad you enjoy the recipe! Thanks for sharing your tip and great review with other readers! Reply

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