Stews and soups are easy on your budget and provide a hearty and flavorful meal packed with nutrients. Choose cheaper cuts of meat when cooking with your crock pot. The low temperatures and long cooking time works to make the meat tender; you won’t even need a knife to cut it!
1 ½ lbs. beef stew meat (top round, or beef chuck) cut into 2-inch cubes
½ cup gluten free flour (for covering beef)
5 grinds of Steakhouse Grinder (or similar—optional)
Salt and pepper to taste
1 large Ziploc plastic bag
2 tablespoons vegetable oil (or olive oil), divided
1 medium onion
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 bay leaf
1 can diced tomatoes (including the juice)
4 cups low-sodium, gluten free beef broth
3 large carrots, peeled and sliced (as you prefer)
3 large potatoes, peeled and cut into large pieces
2 large parsnips, peeled and sliced (optional)
1). Pour 1 tablespoon of vegetable oil into crock pot, then brush oil on the sides and bottom to make sure the entire inside of the pot is covered. Or use non-stick spray to cover the entire inside of the pot. This will keep stew from sticking to the sides and bottom of the crock.
Carrots, potatoes, parsnips and tomatoes in pot.
2). Put carrots, potatoes, parsnips and tomatoes into the crock pot, stir together.
3). In a large mixing bowl, whisk together flour, salt, pepper and Steakhouse grinder spices. Pour flour and spice mix into a large Ziploc bag, add meat and shake, till meat is thoroughly covered with flour mixture. Set aside.
Browning the meat
4). Heat 1 tablespoon of oil in a large frying pan over medium high heat. Sauté onions and garlic until tender, about 5 minutes; then add meat (covered with flour) and cook till browned, about 5-10 minutes. Stir meat to keep it from burning and/or sticking to the pan. Pour meat mixture into crock.
5). Put the frying pan back on the heat and fill with about ¼ cup of beef broth or water, let boil. While the broth boils, scrape the bottom of the pan to remove cooked on bits of meat and then pour this liquid into the crock.
6). Add broth and stir until everything is evenly mixed.
7). Set the crock pot to cook for 5 hours on high or 8-10 hours on low.
8). When stew is done, remove bay leaf and serve.
This recipe can also be made on the stove in a stock pot or Dutch oven. Follow the recipe, but put the tomatoes, juices, broth and meat mixture into the stock pot (or Dutch oven) and bring to a boil. Turn down the temperature and let simmer for about an hour (until meat is tender). Then add carrots, potatoes and parsnips and cook until vegetables are tender (about 20 minutes) more.
You can easily keep the stew in the refrigerator for about 3 days, no longer. The stew freezes well—you can keep up for up to 2 to three months.
Variations: You can add any root vegetables you prefer to this recipe. You can also use different spices, such as Italian spices, to change the flavor.
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