“Beef Tips” Two Ways: Meaty and Veg

Rich, hearty and full of flavor, this recipe for Beef Tips in Mushroom Wine Sauce is classic comfort food. A few easy tweaks gives you a meaty version and a vegetarian version.

When daughter #1 first became vegetarian, I panicked. I wanted to respect her wishes, but I was worried. Would she get enough protein and nutrients? How would I share my (mostly meat based) family cooking heritage? How much extra time would it take to prepare meals for her?

I’ve calmed down quite a bit since then. We’ve figured it out, thanks to lots of reading up and advice from veg friends and D#1’s doctor. And partly because I’ve figured out how to transform favorite recipes and cook veg and meat versions of them for the same meal. This way everyone is happy. This recipe is one of those dual recipes.

My husband and daughter #2 love beef. And even though I’m a pescatarian, I have to admit that there is something about a dish with a rich, hearty gravy to warm the soul on a cold winter evening. That’s why I experimented with two versions of this dish.

I’ve tried to simplify this as much as possible. Do all of your chopping first and divide the vegetables each in half. This is most of the work and will make cooking much quicker. 

Meaty Tips

Start by cooking the meat version, as the beef will take longer to cook. While the beef is cooking, you’ll have plenty of time to whip up the veg version so they will be done at the same time.   

Don’t be afraid to generously season the sirloin tips. And when you are searing them, learn to love the brown bits at the bottom of the pan (a.k.a.fond). This will make your gravy tastier. 

And let’s talk about the elephant in the room: Vegetable stock. I use vegetable stock for both versions mostly out of convenience. Plus, my carnivores have never complained!! If you prefer, you could substitute a cup of Beef stock in the meaty version. 

Veg Tips

When I was testing this recipe, the biggest problem I found was that the veg version lacked the richness I was looking for. Finally, I stumbled upon Better than Bouillon vegetable base. I admit that I add this to many of my veg dishes.  In this one, it really helps that deep, rich flavor I was looking for.

If you do not want to use the beefless tips, I have had good luck replacing with an additional 16 oz. of mixed mushrooms. Just add all of the mushrooms at the same time

Beef version (left) and Veg version (right). Can you tell the difference?

Beef Tips in Mushroom Wine Sauce

Prep Time: 30 min      Cook Time: 45      Total Time: 1 hour 15 min
Serves: 8

Ingredients

  • 1 lb. Sirloin Tips, cut into 1” pieces
  • 1 tsp. salt or to taste
  • 1 tsp. pepper or to taste
  • 1 9oz. pkg Gardein Beefless Tips
  • 1 Tbsp. olive oil
  • 4 Tbsp. butter, divided
  • 2 medium yellow onions, chopped, divided
  • 4 cloves garlic, minced, divided
  • 12 oz. mushrooms, sliced, divided
  • 4 Tbsp. flour
  • 1 c. red wine, divided
  • 2 c. vegetable stock, divided
  • 2 Tbsp. soy sauce, divided
  • 1 Tbsp. Worcestershire sauce (for the meaty version)
  • 1 Tbsp. Better than Bouillon Vegetable base (for the veg version)
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 2 sprigs of fresh thyme
  • 1 Tbsp. chopped fresh parsley

Instructions

Meaty version
  1. Season beef tips generously with salt and pepper. Heat oil in a large, deep skillet or dutch oven over medium-high heat. Sear beef tips on all sides and remove from pan. 
  2. Add 2 Tbsp. of butter to pan. When melted, add 1 onion. Cook 4-5 minutes until soft and translucent. Add 2 cloves of garlic and cook for 30 seconds.
  3. Add ½ of the mushrooms and cook for an additional 4-5 minutes until mushrooms are brown. Sprinkle in 2 Tbsp. of flour and cook for 1 minute.  and cook for 1-2 minutes. 
  4. Stir in ½ c. red wine , 1 c. vegetable stock, 1 tbsp. soy sauce, Worcestershire sauce, 1 bay leaf, 1 sprig of thyme and seared beef tips. 
  5. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat and let simmer 25 minutes until the beef is tender
Veg version
  1. In a second large, deep skillet, melt remaining 2 tbsp. butter. When melted, add remaining onion. Cook 4-5 minutes until soft and translucent. Add remaining garlic and cook for 30 seconds.
  2. Add remaining mushrooms and cook for an additional 4-5 minutes until mushrooms are brown. Sprinkle in 2 Tbsp. of flour and cook for 1 minute.  and cook for 1-2 minutes. 
  3. Stir in ½ c. red wine, 1 c. vegetable stock, 1 tbsp. soy sauce, 1 bay leaf, 1 sprig of thyme and Gardein beefless tips. Season with salt and pepper to taste.
  4. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat and simmer 10 minutes until sauce is thick and tips are heated through.

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