Ultra-Comforting Ostri (Spicy Georgian Beef Stew) Recipe

Oh, ostri. You chunky, spicy, hearty thing, you. From kharcho to lobio to chkhirtma to ajapsandali and back again, Georgia knows a thing or two when it comes to soups and stews. And ostri is king. While not found in the same popularity as those mentioned above, it’s easily in my top five favorite Georgian dishes. This ostri recipe especially perfect this time of year when it’s freezing cold out. Tbilisi has already had snow twice, and we are expecting a few more flurries in the coming days and weeks.

Another thing I love about ostri, is it’s pretty simple to make and doesn’t require too many ingredients not found outside the Caucasus, so it’s quite accessible. This stew is all about fresh ingredients and tender, juicy meat that’ll cook low and slow all day, leaving you with the most savory smelling house you can imagine. Its key characteristic is its spice, so don’t be shy on the pepper flakes, adjika, and chili pepper. This stew comes together with pretty basic ingredients, but the real star of the show is the beef, heat, and tomato.


  • 1 kg beef stew meat such as clod or chuck

  • 1 tbsp olive oil

  • 1 tsp salt

  • 1 tsp pepper

  • 1 heaping tbsp adjika see notes for sub

  • 4 bay leaves

  • 1 heaping tbsp butter

  • 2 medium onions chopped

  • 4 medium tomatoes diced

  • 1/2 tbsp tomato paste

  • 1 whole chili (serrano preferred) chopped

  • 1 tbsp crushed red chili flakes