If you’re in the mood for a hearty stew, why not give this mulligan stew with ground beef a try? It’s affordable and adaptable – use this opportunity to clean out your fridge in the most delicious way.

Mulligan stew with ground beef: Click through for easy + affordable recipe!

What Is Mulligan Stew?

Mulligan stew, also known as hobo stew, originated in the early 1900s in the United States. The name “hobo stew” comes from the fact that this stew was commonly eaten by American hobos, who would scrounge together whatever ingredients they could find – vegetables and meat – and make a communal pot of soup.

History buffs: Do an image search of hobo stew history and be prepared to be fascinated.

Ground beef mulligan stew: Simple, affordable, and so hearty! Click through for recipe.

Keeping that history in mind, you can imagine that there are many variations on mulligan stew, especially in its conception. It’s made with whatever is on hand, whatever can be found.

Today, most mulligan stew recipes are similar, consisting of seasoned broth, a variety of vegetables, and meat.

This recipe is unique in that it uses ground beef instead of stew meat. 

Mulligan stew with ground beef: Try this if you're looking for a hearty stew!

Mulligan Stew With Ground Beef

There are many options for meat in this beef stew recipe. But this is Cheap Recipe Blog, after all. We’re all about the ground beef because it’s affordable and tastes great.

By all means, add some stew meat or even chopped steak. Both will taste great. This is a great chance to use up bits of frozen meat in your fridge.

What you'll need to make homemade mulligan stew (hobo stew) - click through for recipe!

Ingredients: What You’ll Need

This mulligan’s beef stew is super adaptable. By nature, it involves adding lots of different kinds of vegetables to a simmering pot. Here’s an adaptable list of ingredients:

  • Beef broth base: Instead of buying cans or a carton of beef broth, I opted to use beef broth base – a powdered bouillon. Another affordable option is beef-flavored Better Than Bouillon. I almost always substitute a broth paste or broth powder when a recipe calls for beef broth or chicken broth. It’s so much cheaper!
  • Beef: This recipe uses ground beef instead of beef stew meat. However, you can make mulligan stew with ground beef, stew meat, beef roast, steak – or a combination of some or all of these. If you have a bit of frozen stew meat waiting to be used up, you can cut it up and add it to the stew during the ground beef browning process. The ground beef tastes great on its own and is very affordable. Extra stew meat would only make it better!
  • Flour: This recipe is thick and stew-like. Just 1/4 cup of all purpose flour (or sub gluten free) works as a thickening agent to add some heft to the base of this stew. The flour can be omitted for paleo or Whole 30 diets, but keep in mind the stew will be less thick.
  • Vegetables: This is a very hearty stew full of meat and a variety of both frozen and fresh vegetables. The vegetable base is onions and garlic. Then fresh carrots, celery, and potatoes (yellow or russet potatoes) are added. I also used 2 cups of frozen mixed vegetables (the standard green bean, carrot, corn, and pea mixture). Some recipes call for lima beans and fresh tomatoes. Keep in mind, this recipe is flexible in terms of what vegetables you’re using.
  • Flavorings and seasonings: You’re gonna love the flavor of this soup! I added a variety of ingredients that flesh out the flavor of the soup. Try to stay true to the ingredients here, and note my substitution recommendations:
    • Tomato paste: This stew has a subtle tomato flavor. Tomato paste is recommended but you could substitute tomato sauce, tomato juice, tomato soup – with slightly different results, of course.
    • Apple cider vinegar: Or sub red wine vinegar
    • Worcestershire sauce
    • Italian seasoning
    • Fresh cracked black pepper: Lots of it!
    • Fresh parsley: Added right at the end

Scroll down for full list of ingredients and detailed recipe. 

If you’re looking for another hearty, veggie-packed stew, check out this Midwestern booyah recipe.

How to make mulligan stew with ground beef. Add this soup recipe to your meal rotation.

Serving Suggestions

Serve this hearty ground beef stew with crusty bread, homemade buttermilk biscuits, cornbread or garlic bread.

Keep leftovers sealed and refrigerated and use within 2 to 3 days. This stew can also be frozen.

So are you convinced to try this mulligan stew recipe with ground beef yet? Believe me when I say the ground beef really works in this recipe. It also helps keep this stew very affordable.

In the mood for a thick, hearty stew? Try this simple and affordable mulligan stew!

Mulligan stew with ground beef: Try this if you're looking for a hearty stew!

Mulligan Stew With Ground Beef

Yield: 6 to 7 servings

A lower-cost alternative to canned or boxed beef broth is to use water + 2 to 3 tablespoons of beef broth powder or beef flavored Better Than Bouillon.


  • 1 lb. lean ground beef
  • 1 medium yellow onion, chopped
  • 3 cloves garlic, finely chopped
  • 1/4 cup all purpose flour (or sub gluten free)
  • 6 to 7 cups of beef broth (use water + 2 to 3 tablespoons beef bouillon powder to save money)
  • 4 ounce can tomato paste
  • 3 carrots, peeled and chopped
  • 3 celery stalks, chopped
  • 2 small yellow potatoes, diced
  • 2 cups frozen mixed vegetables (corn, green bean, peas, and carrots)
  • 1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar (or red wine vinegar)
  • 2 teaspoons Italian seasoning
  • Salt and pepper
  • 1/2 cup chopped fresh parsley plus more for garnish


  1. Place ground beef and chopped onion in a large Dutch oven. Brown meat over medium-high heat, breaking up meat as it cooks. Add garlic. Add flour and mix well until the flour is absorbed into the meat.
  2. Turn heat down to medium. Add beef broth and tomato paste. Add chopped vegetables and remaining ingredients except for the parsley. Simmer for 40 minutes, until vegetables are tender. Taste, add more seasonings, if desired. Add parsley right at the end and put more on top for garnish, if desired.

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