There's nothing like a hearty stew to warm you up on a chilly day. Unlike many stew recipes that require long prep times and expensive spices, these five simple, savory recipes from Circle of Moms' Recipe Swap community are a perfect mix of easy prep and great flavor. Enjoy!
1. Easy Beef Stew
In response to Patricia B.'s request in the Recipe Swap community for an easy beef stew recipe, several moms chimed in with their favorite recipes, including Dianne F., who provided this dish, which can be made on the stove top or in a crock pot.
- 2 pounds beef, cubed
- 4 potatoes, cubed
- 1 onion, chopped
- 3 stalks celery, chopped
- 3 oz. tomato paste
- 10 oz. can of tomato sauce
- 1/2 cup butter
- 1/2 cup flour
- Salt and pepper to taste
"Dredge beef in flour and brown in butter, remove from pan. Sauté onion till transparent in what's left of the butter. Add tomato paste and sauce and cook for 3-4 minutes stirring constantly, then add 4 cups of water and stir well or whisk. Add all other ingredients and simmer on low for 1-2 hours. Can also put into the crock pot. Serve over rice or with bread and butter."
2. Lentil Stew
Looking for a hearty vegetarian stew? Try Lara P.'s winter lentil stew recipe, which she recommends serving over quinoa.
- 1 cup of dry lentils
- ½ cup chopped corn
- ½ cup of chopped celery
- ½ cup chopped onion
- ½ cup of chopped carrots
- 1 garlic clove
- ½ cup of red wine
- Dash of soy sauce
- Sprinkle of oregano
"In a large pot, on high temp, pour some grape seed oil with onion, garlic, celery, carrots and corn. When the ingredients have softened add the wine and soy sauce and turn down the heat to medium-high. Then add the lentils, oregano and 4 cups of water and cook for 45 minutes to 1 hour."
3. Sweet Potato and Pork Stew
If you're a fan of easy slow cooker meals, you'll love Abbe W.'s pork and sweet potato stew. Get it started in the late morning and let it cook on low until dinner.
- 1 large sweet potato, peeled and cubed
- 1 lb. cubed, raw pork
- 1 can diced tomatoes and green chilies
- 1/4 C orange juice
- 1 garlic clove
- 2 scallions, chopped
- 1/4 tsp cumin (or to taste)
- 1/4 tsp black pepper
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 1 1/2 tbsp fresh lime juice
- 2 tbsp fresh cilantro, chopped
"Combine all ingredients except lime and cilantro in a slow cooker. Cook on low for seven hours. Stir in lime and cilantro, and cook for a few minutes longer. Add water to achieve desired consistency. Soup will be thick and chunky."
4. New Orleans Seafood Gumbo
Jamillah C. calls this stew "a great, quick version of New Orleans Seafood Gumbo." Yum!
- 2 tbsp oil
- 1 clove garlic, peeled and crushed
- 1 large onion, peeled and chopped
- 1 red pepper, seeds removed and diced
- 1 green pepper, seeds removed and diced
- 8 oz (250g) okra, sliced
- 14 oz (400g) canned plum tomatoes, chopped
- 1/2 tsp allspice
- 1/2 tsp cayenne pepper
- 1lb (500g) peeled prawns - large
"Heat the oil in a large pan and fry the onion and garlic until softened. Add the peppers and okra and cook for 5 minutes. Add the tomatoes, allspice, and cayenne pepper and simmer for about 25 minutes, until the gumbo is thickened. Add the prawns — heat through and serve with boiled rice."
5. Crock Pot French Beef Stew
While a traditional Boeuf Bourguignon recipe includes a generous amount of red wine, this Crock Pot Beef Bourguignon, from Tiffany T., is a stripped-down version that uses just a half a cup of wine.
- 2 pounds lean stew beef
- 1 package onion soup mix
- 1 can golden mushroom soup
- 1/2 cup wine
- 1 small can mushrooms with juice
"Mix all ingredients and cook in crockpot on low all day. Serve over rice or noodles."