Cumin beef stroganov with soy-caramelized onions

July 16, 2020

Stroganov is a dish we ate fairly often in my house growing up. My mom actually preferred mushrooms or chicken to the traditional beef but in any case, egg noodles + creamy sauce = pure comfort.

Over the last couple years, stroganov fell out of rotation on my dinner table. In fact, until now, I’d never attempted make it myself! A creamy beef noodle dish, as comforting as it is, paled in comparison to all the more “exciting” cuisines I was experiencing in my New York City home.

Well, a couple years ago I went to Brazil for the first time with my boyfriend to visit his family (I feel like I’m becoming that meme about recipe bloggers who bore you with their personal stories when all you want is the recipe - I promise this is not a tangent but rather an integral part of my pre-recipe soliloquy). I was SO ready for some crazy food adventures and to eat things I’d never heard of so you can image my shock when we went to a simple boteco for lunch and I found out that estrogonofe de carne, aka Brazilian beef stroganoff, is one of the most popular and beloved dishes in the country! It’s much different from the Russian-style stroganov I grew up eating but in any case, it reminded me that all it takes for an old dish to become exciting again is a new perspective.

The below beef stroganov recipe is not traditional and instead takes some inspiration from the cumin beef/cumin lamb dishes of Northwestern China that I’ve fallen in love with.

So without further ado…

Cumin beef stroganov with soy-caramelized onions


1 lb beef sirloin, cut into cubes or strips

2-3 tsp cumin (seeds if you have them, powdered works too)

2 tsp smoked paprika

1 tsp chili flakes (optional)

1 large onion, halved and sliced thinly into rounds

6 tbsp unsalted butter, divided

1 tbsp soy sauce

1 cup sour cream

1 cup warm beef or chicken broth

1 package (12oz) of wide egg noodles

Salt + cracked black pepper taste


Bring a pot of salted water to a boil.

Season the sirloin with salt, pepper, 1-2 tsp cumin and 1 tsp smoked paprika.

Heat 1 tablespoon of butter or oil in a skillet on medium-high. Add the meat and brown on each side until it’s almost all the way cooked through. Remove from the skillet and set aside.

Add 2 tablespoons of butter to the same skillet, reduce the heat to medium, and add onion. Cook for about 10 minutes until it’s softened, then add soy sauce. Continue cooking the onion until it’s almost caramelized.

Once the onions are almost done, you can add the egg noodles to the water. Cook them according to directions.

Add 1/2 cup of broth to the onions as well as the seared meat and simmer for a couple minutes. The meat should be tender - if it’s not, continue adding broth and simmering. Then add 1 cup of sour cream, stirring until it’s well-incorporated. Add the remainder of your spices plus chili flakes if you’re using them, salt to taste and a healthy amount of cracked black pepper. Taste, taste, taste! And adjust accordingly.

The sauce should be decently thick but if it looks TOO thick, add more broth or even pasta water.

Drain the egg noodles when they’re done and toss them around with a couple tablespoons of butter. Plate up the noodles and top them with your stroganov. Garnish with dill if you feel like it!

Subscribe for *exclusive* content

recipes, restaurants, wine and more