Unfortunately I’m writing this post on September 24th and it already feels like we’re well into fall in Manitoba.
Our summer this year was absolutely unforgettable, but so far September’s weather has felt downright wintery.
So, normally when we’d all still be outside bbq’ing for dinner and enjoying the end of the summer veggies I’m pulling out the slow cooker for a nice warm beef stew.
Now, don’t get me wrong- I LOVE a nice beef stew! I’m just not quite ready to be eating it yet!
The recipe I made today requires slightly more labour than some of my other versions. The great thing is, whether you take your time to build the layers of all your tasty stew flavors, or need a quick chop and dump dinner, this recipe can really be used for both with just a few simple swaps. The “made with love version” is what we’ll call this one, but I’ve included some notes that will show you where to save a little time if you need.
Slow Cooker Beef Stew
Prep time: 10-30 mins
Makes 1 large slow cooker full
- 2lbs stewing beef cubes
- 2tbsp flour
- 1 tbsp canola or olive oil
- 1 whole onion, diced
- 4 stalks celery, chopped into 1″ chunks
- 8 medium carrots, chopped into 1″ chunks
- About 6 medium potatoes chopped into 1″ chunks
- 2 bay leaves
- 1 sprig dried rosemary
- 1 cup red wine (or you can use a little extra beef broth)
- 4-6 cups beef broth
- 1 tbsp corn starch mixed with 1/4 cup cold water
- Salt and pepper to taste
1. Heat oil in frying pan over medium heat. Add diced onion and sautee until onions are browned and translucent. Chop your celery, carrots, and potatoes while your onions cook. To save a few minutes, skip browning the onions and put them into the pot raw.
2. Place onions in slow cooker pot with other veggies.
3. Pour flour and beef pieces into bowl and toss them around to coat the beef in flour. Place beef chunks into heated frying pan and brown. I prefer to only brown my beef chunks on 2 sides so they still fall apart nicely in as the stew cooks. If you brown the meat really well on all sides you’ll have chunks of beef that hold together a little better. You can also put the beef into the slow cooker un-browned as well, it just really falls apart as it cooks.
4. Place browned meat into slow cooker pot. Keep frying pan on the heat and pour your red wine into the pan to deglaze it. This means you’ll let the wine boil and as it does you’ll take a wooden spoon and scrape up all of the browned bits that accumulated on your pan as you cooked the onions and beef. There’s tons of flavor in there!
5. Pour the wine, beef broth, cornstarch, and herbs into your slow cooker pot.
6. Cook on low for at least 6 hours. Add salt and pepper if needed right at the end of cooking so you get just the right amount!
7. Enjoy! I served mine with some simple whole wheat bannock, but dinner rolls, or a slice of whole grain bread is delicious as well!
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