Beef Stew Instant Pot with Eggplant, Zucchini and Tomatoes (Greece)

This traditional Cretan dish is a Mediterranean Diet favorite that will warm you and fulfill you. Rich enough to serve as an entree for a Sunday dinner, yet, quick and simple enough to enjoy any night of the week. Serve with crusty sourdough bread for sopping up the delicious sauce from your bowl. I also recommend the Greek Salad or Cucumber-Tomato Salad with Feta and Fresh Mint to go with this meal.  This Beef Stew Instant Pot version was adapted from an original stovetop recipe, Beef Stew with Eggplant, Zucchini, and Tomatoes (Greece)

Beef Stew Instant Pot with Eggplant, Zucchini and Tomatoes

In the original version of this recipe, it needed to simmer on the stovetop for 45 minutes. Now, to get tender delicious beef it only takes 20 minutes in the Instant Pot. The flavor comes out magically the same. The only difference between this beef stew instant pot recipe and the original ingredient-wise is it has a little less extra virgin olive oil. The reason for this is because it comes out a little too oily in the Instant Pot with the normal 5 Tablespoons of oil. The beef has fat in it so that contributes as well.

There are some very Cretan characteristics to this dish that I love. First of all, it’s a one-pot meal which is very typical of Cretan food. Extra virgin olive oil, onions, tomatoes, and herbs are the beginning to so many traditional Cretan one-pot meals. Second, it’s the specific herbs in this recipe that give it a very Cretan taste. If you have ever been hiking in the mountains in Crete, the gentle mountain breeze brings you scents of thyme and sage mixed with the scent of wildflowers. Along the sides of the path, you can find bush after bush of sage and thyme. I would always stop and just rub a little on my fingers and smell their potent aromas. Because these herbs grow so abundantly in the Cretan mountains, they are dried and used in a plethora of traditional recipes.

Here are the original and slow-cooker versions of this recipe:

Slow-Cooker Beef Stew with Eggplant, Zucchini, and Tomatoes (Greece)

(Original) Beef Stew with Eggplant, Zucchini, and Tomatoes (Greece)

beef stew instant pot

Beef Stew Instant Pot with Eggplant, Zucchini and Tomatoes (Greece)

George Zikos
3.90 from 10 votes
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 20 minutes
Total Time 30 minutes
Servings 6
Calories 310 kcal


  • 2 pounds lean beef, cut into bite-sized cubes
  • 2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • 2 onions, chopped
  • 1 pound zucchini, sliced
  • 1 pound eggplant, cubed
  • 1 tsp thyme, dried
  • 1 tsp sage, dried
  • 2 tbsp fresh mint, chopped
  • 1 pound tomatoes, chopped
  • 2 cups water
  • salt and pepper, to taste


  • Set the Instant Pot to saute. Add extra virgin olive oil.
  • Saute the stew beef and the onions for 2 minutes.
  • Add the rest of the ingredients to the Instant Pot and stir very well.
  • Place the top on the Instant Pot, secure it, and make sure it is set to "sealing".
  • Set the manual timer for 20 minutes. Walk away and when the time is up, carefully release the pressure valve so that the steam is released.
  • Let the food cool down for 5 minutes. Serve with bread and salad.
  • Enjoy!


Calories: 310kcalCarbohydrates: 14gProtein: 35gFat: 13gSaturated Fat: 4gPolyunsaturated Fat: 1gMonounsaturated Fat: 7gTrans Fat: 1gCholesterol: 94mgSodium: 222mgPotassium: 1102mgFiber: 5gSugar: 8gVitamin A: 344IUVitamin C: 26mgCalcium: 74mgIron: 5mg
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About the Author: George Zikos
George studied International Business in Greece in 2015 for three semesters. His family is from the island of Crete, and he lived with them for a whole summer. During that time, he started working for Mediterranean Living and contributing his firsthand experiences of the traditional Cretan diet. He learned fluent Greek along the way, being fully immersed in a traditional Cretan village. He is since graduated with a business degree from Worcester State University. George loves language and traveling, so he completed a TEFL certificate program at the Boston Language Institute in order to teach English abroad and travel the world. He currently works full-time blogging, recipe formulating, and social media marketing for Mediterranean Living. His passions include language, gardening, hiking, skateboarding, and watching sports. He dreams of living in Crete one day, after he travels the world learning as many languages and cultures as possible.


  1. Tammie June 4, 2019 at 7:44 pm - Reply

    The recipe does not show tomatoes in the ingredients but it does have tomatoes correct? How many?

    • George Zikos June 6, 2019 at 1:58 pm - Reply

      It says 1 pound of tomatoes, chopped, in the ingredients. You can add as much as you want however depending on how tomatoey you like it.

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