Slow-Cooker Beef Stew

Slow Cooker Beef Stew [paleo-friendly, grain-free, dairy-free] | Lexi's Clean Kitchen

This Slow-Cooker Beef Stew is the perfect healthy comfort food for cold days! It’s hearty, flavorful, packed with veggies, and easy to make right in your crock pot. Make it for a cold winter night, or a festive St. Patrick’s Day meal! Beef stew is a simple recipe that will wow everyone who tries it.

Traditional Beef Stew Recipe

The Slow Cooker is an amazing phenomenon in my opinion. Even those friends of mine who aren’t big cookers use it! Throw all the ingredients in with the right flavor combo and BOOM: the perfect stew. It’s hands off, easy to use, and safe!

What is Irish stew made of?

Filled with beef, carrots, mushrooms, onions, and potatoes is the perfect main dish for your St. Patrick’s Day celebrations. The beef is so tender, it just melts in your mouth!

Tips For Slow Cooker Beef Stew

  • Brown your meat
  • Don’t use too much liquid
  • Don’t skimp on the cook time
  • Layer your beef and veggies
  • Set it and forget it! The beauty of a slow cooker!

Ultimate Slow Cooker Beef Stew

This stew is: hearty, flavorful, tender melt-in-your-mouth beef, and packed with veggies! It is also paleo-friendly, dairy-free, whole30 compliant and has no sugar added… does it get any better than that? I love making this soup at the beginning of the week and enjoy it all week long!

What defines a stew?

  • In a stew you aren’t looking for the consistency of a soup, so minimizing added liquids is helpful!
  • Beef stew doesn’t need to be super, super thick. You’ll most likely be using potatoes, and their starch will naturally thicken your stew! If not, don’t worry, this stew thickens whithout it, too.

What kind of beef is used for stew?

You can buy beef stew meat, which is cut and cubed and is generally chuck or round! Beef round cuts (bottom and eye) are generally leaner than chuck (shoulder, leg and butt) and very well-suited to stew.

I always add beef stew meat to my ButcherBox order in the cold weather months. Each month, ButcherBox  curates a one-of-a-kind selection of the healthiest, tastiest meats, humanely raised and free of antibiotics and hormones. Or you can customize your box and select your favorite cuts and get 20% more meat.The price works out to less than $6.00/meal and shipping is always free. You can also space it out so it’s not every 4 weeks, too! ButcherBox delivers your meat for the month, saves you money, and is the best quality! Order Today and get this amazing deal:

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Can you put raw meat in a slow cooker?

You certainly can, but for this beef stew recipe, we prefer to sear the meat first to bring out the amazing flavor that you’ll get!

Easy Beef Stew

Tools used to make this easy slow cooker beef stew recipe:

  • Slow Cooker: Inexpensive and works great. I’ve had mine for years!
  • Cast Iron Skillet: I like a nice, hot cast iron skillet to sear our stew meat!
  • Chef’s Knife: My go-to chef’s knife. Use whatever you have on hand!
  • Tongs: To easily flip the meat while searing.
  • Cutting Board: A good cutting board, of course! To chop all those veggies!

Want other slow cooker recipes? Try these favorites:

If you like this beef stew recipe, make these other St Patrick’s Day Favorites:

Slow-Cooker Beef Stew

Prep Time 10 min Cook Time 8 hr Total Time 8:10 Serves 6

Ingredients

Directions

  1. Heat oil over medium-high heat in a large skillet. Sear meat for about 3 minutes on each side, until brown. Set aside.
  2. Place meat and vegetables in the crockpot
  3. Add in broth, tomato paste, tapioca, and spices
  4. Mix well to combine
  5. Set on low for 8-10 hours
  6. After 7 hours, taste and adjust spices to your liking (i.e. add additional salt, cayenne, or red pepper flakes)
  7. Remove bay leaf and serve hot
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There may be affiliate links in this post! By clicking on them, or purchasing recommended items I may receive a small compensation, at no cost to you! However, I only recommend products I absolutely love and use in my own home! Thank you for supporting Lexi's Clean Kitchen when you shop! See my privacy policy for more information about this, the information we save, and more!

Slow Cooker French Onion Soup (Gluten-Free)

This gluten-free and healthy Slow Cooker French Onion Soup is comfort food at it’s finest. It’s made using simple ingredients you likely already have in your pantry, is largely hands-off cooking, is an economical meal and is so rich and flavorful. It can be eaten as is as a light soup, or more traditionally topped with melted cheese and either store-bought or homemade bread.

Slow Cooker French Onion SoupSlow Cooker French Onion Soup

French Onion Soup is such a classic comfort food, it’s hard not to love. If you’ve only eaten it at restaurants you might think it’s difficult to make because it’s SO rich and flavorful, but truly it isn’t that hard at all! And we’ve made it even easier by throwing the whole thing in the slow cooker for easy, hands-off cooking! This Slow Cooker French Onion Soup is a great example of taking really basic pantry items like onions, broth and a few other simple ingredients and turning it into something amazing by slow and low cooking. Recipes using pantry staples are a great to have in your back pocket on days when you don’t have time to run to the grocery store but still want to be able to cook up a great meal for your family.

Crock Pot French Onion Soup

What is French Onion Soup Made Of

Traditionally French onion soup is made by slowly caramelizing onions on the stove top, which can require lots of babysitting and stirring to make sure the onions don’t burn. The onions are then coated in flour and simmered for longer with broth. This Slow Cooker French Onion Soup recipe however takes all the amazing flavors of this bistro classic and tosses them all in the slow cooker to make while you are busy doing other things! The first step is to cook all the onions for about 6 hours, which doesn’t require any stirring. This step can have some wiggle room if you are about and about because it’s hard to burn onions in the slow cooker, so if you aren’t home during the end of the 6 hours of cook time, the onions will likely be fine for 2-3 hours after. Next you simmer the onions in the broth for the remainder 2 hours of cooking time. Classic French onion soup is topped with a large crouton-like piece of bread and cheese. We’ve given directions on how to do this, but truly you can leave this off and this soup is still really flavorful!

What is the best onion to use for French onion soup

This Slow Cooker French Onion Soup recipes uses two kinds of onions. Yellow onion are more sweet with a really bright flavor and red onions have more depth with a touch of bitterness. Together they make a really nuanced and flavorful french onion soup!

Healthy Slow Cooker French Onion Soup

Can you cook French Onion Soup in the Instant Pot?

The short answer is: yes! We’ve included the directions for cooking this soup in the Instant Pot in the notes section of this recipe. However we have to say that it is a little bit more hands on cooking than the slow cooker version.

If you like this slow cooker SOUP recipe, try these other favorites:

Want to try other crock pot comfort food favorites? Try these:

Watch the video:


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Split Pea and Ham Soup

This Split Pea and Ham Soup is the perfect meal to use up leftover baked ham (but don’t worry there is an option to use ham steak as well)! It’s a comfort meal in a bowl: warm, hearty and so delicious! This one pot meal is easily going to be your new favorite soup!

Split Pea Soup

Split Pea and Ham Soup

I’ve been wanting to make a Split Pea and Ham Soup recipe for so long now! While we were planning out our holiday menu for LCK the first thing I thought after we decided we were making a Maple Glazed Ham was SPLIT PEA SOUP! And this one does not disappoint. It’s so flavorful and the ultimate comfort food! The whole thing simmers away in one pot on the stove, and while it has some cooking time to it, it’s really easy to put together.

We use of course the leftover ham bone from our baked ham, but you can easily swap it out for a store-bought ham steak. This soup has such a classic flavor but we have two secret ingredients that really make this soup special: a pinch of nutmeg really rounds out the flavor of the soup and a touch of apple cider vinegar at the end of cooking brightens everything up! We know you are going to love this comforting soup as much as we do!

Split pea soup recipe

Additionally if you are looking for a Split Pea Soup recipe and prefer to leave the ham out all together, this recipe will work well without the meat. Just make sure to use a high-quality vegetable stock, or better yet a homemade one!

This soup takes about an hour and a half to cook. If you don’t have all that time before you want to get dinner on the table and you have an Instant Pot go ahead and use that! We’ve included directions for that in the recipe! The peas don’t hold their shape as well in the Instant Pot so this soup is slightly pureed, but just as tasty.

Split pea soup with ham

If you like this soup recipe, check out these others:

Watch the video here:

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Split Pea and Ham Soup

Prep Time 00:15 Cook Time 01:30 Total Time 01:45 Serves 6

Ingredients

  • 2 tablespoon grass-fed butter
  • 1 large onion, diced
  • 2 carrots, diced
  • 2 stalks celery, diced
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 teaspoon fine sea salt
  • 1 tablespoon fresh thyme leaves (or 1 teaspoon dried)
  • Pinch ground nutmeg
  • 1 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 16 ounces green split peas, sorted, rinsed and drained
  • 1 (leftover) hambone from Baked Ham (see note)
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 4 cups chicken stock
  • 2-3 cups of water plus additional
  • 2 cups leftover ham, diced, plus any from hambone
  • 1 teaspoon apple cider vinegar
  • Additional Salt and Pepper, to taste

Directions

  1. Heat a large dutch oven over medium heat and add butter.
  2. Once hot, add onion, carrots, and celery and cook until beginning to soft, about 8-10 minutes.
  3. Add garlic, and all spices and saute for 1 minute more.
  4. Add peas, hambone, bay leaf and broth and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to a simmer, cover and cook for 1 hour.
  5. Uncover and add diced ham and cook until desired consistency, stirring occasionally, about 30-45 minutes.
  6. Add apple cider vinegar, and additional salt and pepper. Remove the hambone and chop up any leftover meat and add to the pot. Serve immediately.

Recipe Notes

  1. If you don’t have a leftover hambone replace all of the liquid with stock and use equivalent amount of smoked boneless ham steak.
  2. Want to make this vegetarian? Leave out the ham bone and ham and swap the stock out for a high quality vegetable stock, or better yet a homemade one!
  3. To make in the Instant Pot (Please note this version is a more pureed version than the stove top):

    1. In a 6 or 8 Quart Instant Pot press the saute function and add butter.
    2. Once hot, add onion, carrots, and celery and cook until beginning to soft, about 8-10 minutes.
    3. Add garlic, and all spices and saute for 1 minute more.
    4. Add spices, peas, hambone, bay leaf and broth (making sure it doesn't go above 1/2 way up the Instant Pot) and set to manual pressure for 20 minutes.
    5. Use the natural release function for 15 minutes, and then release the remaining pressure.
    6. Add apple cider vinegar, salt and pepper to taste.
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There may be affiliate links in this post! By clicking on them, or purchasing recommended items I may receive a small compensation, at no cost to you! However, I only recommend products I absolutely love and use in my own home! Thank you for supporting Lexi's Clean Kitchen when you shop! See my privacy policy for more information about this, the information we save, and more!

Turkey Wild Rice Soup

This Turkey Wild Rice Soup recipe is the perfect lunch or dinner to whip up after a great Thanksgiving meal. If you don’t have turkey leftovers, no problem because it also works great with leftover shredded chicken as well! This easy to prepare soup is full of veggies, it’s warm and hearty and so delicious!

healthy leftover turkey soup

Turkey Wild Rice Soup

I found myself a few weeks ago with a lot of unseasonal turkey leftovers thanks to our recipe testing and preparation for all of our new 2018 Thanksgiving recipes. I whipped up this soup because Mike and I needed to eat dinner and we loved it so much I decided I should share it here!

I love the heartiness and the different texture of the wild rice and that it is chock full of veggies! If you are able to utilize the leftovers of a turkey carcass to make bone broth with, like I did, it takes it up to another level! The better the broth, the better the soup so make sure if you aren’t making your own to buy a good quality brand!

Leftover turkey soup with rice

How do you make turkey soup from leftover turkey?

You’ll want to pick off as much of the meat as possible from the turkey after it has been carved. If you are able to, pick all the meat from the turkey while it’s still warm because it is much easier to do! Our recipe calls for about 2-3 cups of leftover turkey meat. Once you’ve picked off meat from the turkey you should make a bone broth with it to use in your soup!

Once you’ve got your meat and your broth your ready to make the soup! And we aren’t reinventing the wheel here: You saute your aromatics, add some spices, meat, rice and broth and simmer away until the rice is fully cooked through and you have a flavorful dinner on your hands!

Chicken broth

How do you make homemade turkey broth?

I made a super quick turkey bone broth with the leftover carcass and it was so simple! I used the Instant Pot, of course, but you can also do this on the stove top. I put the whole carcass, a few aromatics, spices and water in the Instant Pot and cooked on high pressure for 50 minutes. It might have been the best broth I’ve ever tasted and was just so perfect in this soup. I’ve included instructions for both in the notes of the recipe if you want to make your own as well, but if you aren’t going to you can use regular bone broth or stock.

Turkey Bone Broth from Leftover Turkey Carcass

  • 1 turkey carcass
  • 1 large onion, halved
  • 2 large carrots, halved
  • 2 teaspoons peppercorns
  • 6-8 cups water (depending on your size of Instant Pot)
  • 1 teaspoon white vinegar
  1. For Instant Pot: Combine all ingredients in a 6 or 8 quart Instant Pot and cook on high pressure for 50 minutes. Use the natural release function.
  2. On Stove Top: Simmer all ingredients away for 4-6 hours.

Healthy turkey vegetable soup

What vegetables are good in turkey soup?

We choose to include onions, carrots, celery and mushrooms! But if you have other leftover veggies like green beans you can add those in at the very end of the cooking time just to reheat!

If you like this soup recipe, check out these others:

Turkey Wild Rice Soup

Prep Time 00:10 Cook Time 01:10 Total Time 01:20 Serves 6

Ingredients

  • 1 tablespoon butter or avocado oil
  • 1 large onion, diced
  • 3 large carrots, sliced to 1/4"
  • 3 celery stalks, diced
  • 1 cup baby bella mushrooms, diced
  • 3 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon pepper
  • 1 teaspoon dried thyme
  • 1 teaspoon dried parsley
  • 5 cups turkey bone broth or regular broth 
  • 1 teaspoon fish sauce
  • 1 cup wild rice
  • 2-3 cups shredded cooked turkey breast (leftover thanksgiving turkey works great for this, or shredded chicken works as well)

Directions

  1. In a large dutch oven or stock pot, over medium heat and add butter/oil.
  2. When hot add onions, carrots, celery and salt and pepper to the pot and cook until beginning to soften, about 5 minutes.
  3. Add the mushrooms and garlic and cook another 5 minutes.
  4. Add thyme, parsley and 4 cups of the turkey bone broth, fish sauce, and rice.
  5. Bring to a simmer and then cover and simmer for 30 minutes.
  6. Add the turkey and simmer, uncovered, another 30-50 minutes, until the rice is cooked.
  7. Taste and adjust seasoning and add more broth if needed.

Recipe Notes

  1. This recipe was developed for thanksgiving leftovers, but it will work great with leftover chicken as well!
  2. To make Homemade Turkey Bone Broth:
  • 1 turkey carcass
  • 1 large onion, halved
  • 2 large carrots, halved
  • 2 teaspoons peppercorns
  • 6-8 cups water (depending on your size of Instant Pot)
  • 1 teaspoon white vinegar
  1. For Instant Pot: Combine all ingredients in a 6 or 8 quart Instant Pot and cook on high pressure for 50 minutes. Use the natural release function.
  2. On Stove Top: Simmer all ingredients away for 4-6 hours.
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There may be affiliate links in this post! By clicking on them, or purchasing recommended items I may receive a small compensation, at no cost to you! However, I only recommend products I absolutely love and use in my own home! Thank you for supporting Lexi's Clean Kitchen when you shop! See my privacy policy for more information about this, the information we save, and more!

Hot and Sour Soup (Vegetarian)

This vegetarian Hot and Sour Soup is a super flavorful and easy weeknight dinner that comes together quicker than it takes to order from your neighborhood takeout! It’s packed full of veggies, is so warm and comforting, and a healthier option because you control the ingredients that go in to it!! It’s my new favorite vegetarian soup that I know you are going to absolutely love!!

Hot and sour soup recipeHot and Sour Soup

When we were in Toronto visiting family a few months back, our cousin Maggie (hi love!) made a hot and sour soup that was hearty and flavorful, and totally veggie-packed. You all have been asking me for some comforting warm soup recipes, so I knew this is the one I wanted to share!

There are many different recipes and versions of Hot and Sour Soup, but today we are focusing on making a vegetarian version with a ton of veggies, and making it as easy as possible to prep for a quick (and flavorful) weeknight dinner.

Easy hot and sour soup

The “hot” in this soup traditionally comes from using fresh ground white pepper, and the “sour” comes from using vinegar. The soup is also made rich and flavorful from mushrooms. Traditionally this would be dried mushrooms (along with some other ingredients like dried lily buds) but we are trying to keep this really approachable using easy to find ingredients at the store, so we opted for fresh shiitake mushrooms. They’re cooked separately first to evaporate the water in them and concentrate their flavor.

We use veggies as the bulk in this recipe, with carrots, shredded brussels sprouts (a fun unique addition), napa cabbage, and zucchini that are poached in the soup, but feel free to substitute in what you like or have on hand. The soup is slightly thickened using a bit of arrowroot and then finally you are going to stir in some scrambled egg to make fine “ribbons”. We wait until the end to add white vinegar (though you can also use unseasoned rice vinegar if you have that) and ground white pepper to let those flavors shine through.

Hot and sour soup recipe

Add in tofu if desired, cilantro and some red pepper flakes to add a bit more heat to it! I generally avoid soy, but occasionally will use tofu if it fits a recipe, like this soup. If adding tofu, make sure you buy a non-gmo one if possible! AND, if tofu isn’t your thing, you can totally leave it out. We loved this as a vegetarian soup, and didn’t feel it lacked anything but if you wanted to make this meal using meat traditionally some pork might be added, but chicken would also be delicious in this.

If you like this soup recipe, try these others:

 

Hot and Sour Soup

Prep Time 00:05 Cook Time 00:30 Total Time 00:35 Serves 4

Ingredients

  • 1 tablespoon and 1 teaspoon avocado oil, divided
  • 5 ounces shiitake mushrooms, sliced
  • 1 onion, small dice
  • 1 teaspoon fine sea salt
  • 3 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1” ginger, grated
  • 2 large carrot, cut into matchsticks
  • 2 cups shredded brussels sprouts (see note)
  • 1 cup napa cabbage, finely sliced 
  • 1 medium zucchini, cut into matchsticks
  • 6 cups chicken bone broth or veggie stock
  • 1 teaspoon fish sauce (optional, leave out for vegetarian)
  • 1 tablespoon arrowroot
  • 1/4 cup coconut aminos
  • 3 eggs, beaten and whirled in
  • 1/4 cup white vinegar
  • 1 teaspoon white pepper
  • 2 scallions, sliced thin, for garnish
  • Cilantro, for garnish
  • 1 cup firm tofu, drained and diced (optional)
  • Red pepper flakes, to taste 

Directions

  1. Heat a large heavy bottomed pot over medium high heat and add oil.
  2. Cook mushrooms until all the liquid has evaporated, about 5 minutes.
  3. Add onion, salt and 1 teaspoon avocado oil and cook until the onion has softened, about 5 minutes.
  4. Add garlic and ginger, cook 1 minute.
  5. Add carrot, brussels sprouts, cabbage and zucchini and cook 5 minutes.
  6. Add bone broth / stock and fish sauce and bring to a boil. Lower heat and simmer until vegetables are cooked through, about 10 minutes.
  7. In a small bowl whisk together arrowroot and coconut aminos. Add to soup and bring to a boil.
  8. In a bowl scramble eggs and add to boiling pot and immediately stir until the eggs have cooked into ribbons.
  9. Remove from heat and add vinegar, white pepper, scallions, cilantro and tofu.
  10. Taste to season (we like to add a touch of red pepper flakes for a bit more heat) and serve immediately with garnish of choice.

Recipe Notes

  1. Looking to cut down on prep time? These days you can find prepped veggies in the grocery store and we were able to find shredded brussels, sliced cabbage and match stick carrots at our local grocery store.
  2. I generally avoid soy, but occasionally like a soup with tofu in it. If adding tofu, make sure you buy a non-gmo one if possible! AND, if tofu isn't your thing, you can totally leave it out or add a different protein of choice!
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There may be affiliate links in this post! By clicking on them, or purchasing recommended items I may receive a small compensation, at no cost to you! However, I only recommend products I absolutely love and use in my own home! Thank you for supporting Lexi's Clean Kitchen when you shop! See my privacy policy for more information about this, the information we save, and more!

Easy Black Bean Soup (VEGAN!)

This Easy Black Bean Soup recipe is a delicious and quick weeknight dinner or lunch meal prep. It’s vegan, takes about 30 minutes and so hearty! Garnish with your favorite toppings and you have a warm, quick satisfying meal! I am literally in love with this soup. Mike also loved it cold as a black bean dip!

black bean soup recipe

Quick Black Bean Soup

Come the cooler weather and all I’m craving for dinner is a warming soup! You all know I love this chicken soup, or really any of these other ones, but every once in a while I’m craving something hearty and this Quick Black Bean Soup does the trick! Mike loves it too! While beans and legumes aren’t an every day food for us, when my gut health is in check I find I can tolerate them from time to time. Definitely do what is best for your health! We also love how economical this soup is to make, with staple ingredients. This serves about 6 portions, so if you have some leftover it’d be a great meal to bring for lunch later in the week.

We wanted to make this a really quick weeknight dinner soup, we opted for use of canned black beans. Just make sure to drain and rinse them really well! This one is also a bit on the grown-up side with the spice, so feel free to omit the jalapeño and lower the chipotle powder, if necessary, for those who don’t love the heat.

how do i make black bean soup?

How do you make black bean soup out of canned black beans?

We loved how quick this soup is thanks to canned black beans. To make simply:

  1. Saute your aromatics.
  2. Add your spices, seasoning and stock and beans and cook for 10 minutes.
  3. We puree some at the end, but this is optional!

Tools we used for this recipe:

canned black bean soup

If you like this soup recipe, check out these others healthy soups we love:

 

Easy Black Bean Soup (Vegan)

Prep Time 00:10 Cook Time 00:25 Total Time 00:35 Serves 6

Ingredients

  • 1 tablespoon avocado oil
  • 1 medium yellow onion, diced
  • 2 carrots, peeled and diced
  • 1 celery stalk, diced
  • 1 jalapeño, fine dice with seeds (optional)
  • 6 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 teaspoons salt
  • 1 or 2 teaspoons chipotle powder (choose your heat level, or omit. We use 2)
  • 2 teaspoons cumin
  • 2 teaspoons oregano
  • 1 teaspoon smoked paprika
  • 1 teaspoon coriander
  • 1 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 2 tablespoons lime juice
  • 1 quart (4 cups) vegetable stock
  • 3-14.5 ounce cans black beans, drained and rinse
  • for garnish: cilantro sprigs, cotija cheese (optional: leave out for vegan) and avocado

Directions

  1. Heat a large dutch oven over medium heat. Once hot add oil, onion, carrots and celery and cook until soft, about 5-7 minutes.
  2. Add jalepeño, garlic and all seasoning and spices and cook for 1 minute to toast them (be careful not to breathe in any spicy steam).
  3. Add in lime juice, vegetable stock and black beans. Raise the heat to high to bring to a boil. Lower heat to medium and continue to cook for 10-15 minutes, until the vegetable stock reduced and the soup has thickened slightly.
  4. If you want to puree the soup (we do), reserve 1-2 cups on the side. Using  an immersion blender, puree the soup. Stir in the reserved soup.
  5. Garnish with cilantro, avocado and cotija cheese, if using.
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There may be affiliate links in this post! By clicking on them, or purchasing recommended items I may receive a small compensation, at no cost to you! However, I only recommend products I absolutely love and use in my own home! Thank you for supporting Lexi's Clean Kitchen when you shop! See my privacy policy for more information about this, the information we save, and more!