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Crockpot Beef Stew

Posted Nov 20 2012 11:08pm

We get a lot of requests for more recipes.   And with good reason.  Cooking with my crockpot is the best!  I would much rather throw dinner together at 10:00 in the morning than at 5:00pm.  It seems like there is always a ton going on at that time of day, kids are getting tired, cranky, bored, _______ (insert a behavior of your child that makes it difficult for you to get dinner ready) and pretty soon making dinner sounds about as fun as dusting your blinds.   

This recipe is one of my favorites.  The flavors are so good and it is packed full of veggies.  The beef gives it the substance to make you feel like you are eating something really hearty and filling, but you are using a lean cut and so you don't get all of the fat.  Because you are cooking in slow and low, the meat becomes very tender.  Serve it with some warm crusty bread and your family will call you Paul Dean. Or Pioneer Woman.  Or just plain A-mazing.  And let's be honest, you will probably be calling yourself amazing that you made this delectable healthy dinner with very little effort.  

To start you will need stew meat.  You can buy this in your meat department already cut up in pieces.  To make enough stew to feed 6 people you will want about 1 1/2 pounds.  The meat that I bought had pieces that were too big for bite size pieces so I quickly cut them up.  

Next put your meat in a ziploc bag, along with 1/4 cup of flour.  Shake to coat. 

This next step is voluntary.  I have made it both ways and it turns out great either way - so it just depends how much time you want to spend on the stew.  If you have more time, then place your meat in a pan with a little olive oil.  Cook until browned.  

If you don't have much time, you can skip the browning step and just put the meat in your crockpot.  

Next chop up your veggies - we like carrots, potatoes, celery and onions.  Put them in the crockpot. 

Next put 1 can of diced tomatoes with the juice in.  Also add 2 bay leaves.  

Next you will add beef broth and seasonings.  I always make my own beef broth using beef bouillon paste - and then I added some Worcestershire sauce to it for some extra savory flavor.  I have experimented with different seasonings, but the one that I keep coming back to is a packet of Beef Stew seasoning.  Any brand.  It gives the stew a really good flavor and helps to thicken it up.  

Then you put the lid on and let it do its thing for 8-9 hours on low.......or 6 hours on high.  Low and slow is always best if you have time.  Then serve it up warm and give yourself a pat on the back in between shoveling in spoonfuls of the stew.  

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