Slow Cooker Irish Beef Stew

Irish Beef Stew

 

This stew is the perfect alternative to corned beef on St. Patrick’s Day, especially if you don’t have all day to cook. Slow cooker recipes are great for entertaining a crowd.

Some people put potatoes into their stew, which I think is just a waste of perfectly good potatoes. Stew just cries out for creamy mashed potatoes. I made a delicious horseradish and green onion mash, which was absolutely amazing with the beef and the broth of the stew.

One other note about the onions… I got a new crockpot recently and for whatever reason it does not like cooking onions unless they have already been softened a bit. To make this stew turn out, I sautéed the onions in the same pan I browned the beef in and deglazed it after all that. If your slow cooker isn’t as moody, feel free to skip that step, but it really does help add some extra flavor to the stew.

The result is a great combination of tender beef, wonderfully flavored veggies and the broth is so flavorful I can’t even put it into words. The broth and potatoes I used to sop it up were probably my favorite part.

 

Slow Cooker Irish Beef Stew

  • 2 Tablespoons olive oil, divided
  • 2 Tablespoons unsalted butter, divided
  • 1 1/2 pounds stew meat,
  • 2 Tablespoons all-purpose flour (I used Bob’s Red Mill GF Blend)
  • 1/2 Tablespoon garlic powder
  • 1 teaspoon smoked paprika
  • kosher salt & pepper, to taste
  • 4 large carrots, peeled & cut into 1/2 inch pieces
  • 1 large onion, diced
  • 4-8+ cloves garlic, minced
  • 1/2 cup frozen peas
  • kosher salt & pepper, to taste
  • 1 large bay leaf or 2 small
  • 1 (6 ounce) can tomato paste
  • 1 Tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 1/2 cups beef broth
  • 1/2 cup rich red wine (I used Pinot Noir)
  1. Place the carrots and peas into the crockpot.
  2. Rinse the meat and pat dry with paper towels. Cut into 1 inch pieces. Toss and coat beef with flour, garlic powder, paprika and salt and pepper, to taste. (I recommend using a large bowl or large plastic bag.)
  3. In a large skillet, heat 1 Tablespoon olive oil and 1 Tablespoon of butter over medium-high heat. Add beef and sauté in batches until brown on all sides, about 5 minutes per batch. Add more butter and oil as needed and make sure not to over crowd the pan. When beef is browned, add to crock pot.
  4. When done browning the beef, add in onion, sauté until softened and starting to brown. Add in garlic and brown until fragrant, about 1-2 minutes. Use a generous drop of beef stock or wine to deglaze the pan and add everything to the crock pot.
  5. Add the rest of the ingredients (bay leaf, tomato paste, Worcestershire sauce, broth, wine) to the crock pot. Stir together.
  6. Cook on high for 4-6 hours or 6 to 9 hours on low.

Slow-Cooker Chicken Chili Tacos

Chicken Chili Tacos

A couple years ago I went to my friend Nancy’s Super Bowl party. We spent the weekend coming up with all kinds of delicious ideas. She decided to make one of the day’s main bites to eat (BBQ pulled pork sandwiches) in the crock pot and just let people serve themselves whenever they wanted. Genius! I don’t eat pork like that, so I didn’t try any, but I liked the idea. I easily could have done BBQ chicken sandwiches here, but tacos are more my style. It would be really easy to prep a taco bar with all the fixings before the big game and allow your and your guests to eat at leisure.

I totally had delicious salsa to put on the tacos, but I totally got distracted by the amazing guacamole. The avocados in these parts are pretty phenomenal at the moment (that and I make delicious guac). Fear not, the salsa will find a home in the leftovers, if it doesn’t meet some tortilla chips first.

Another slow cooker recipe that would be perfect for Super Bowl Sunday, or any day really, I would also recommend my Tri-Tip tacos! They are delicious.

If a taco bar seems like a bit too much work, this recipe could easily be turned into an real chili recipe. You would just have add some more tomatoes/salsa. I would recommend a 15 ounce can of diced tomatoes (look for fire-roasted or chiles) and their juice and a second can of pinto beans (also drained and rinsed).

Slow-Cooker Chicken Chili Tacos
Loosely inspired by Martha Stewart.

  • 2 pounds boneless, skinless chicken breasts or thighs (or a mix)
  • 6-8 garlic cloves, minced
  • 16 ounce jar prepared tomato salsa, plus more for serving
  • 1 large onion, diced
  • 1-16 ounce can pinto beans, rinsed and drained
  • 1-2 Tablespoons canned chipotle chiles in adobo, chopped
  • 1/2 Tablespoon smoked paprika
  • 1/2 Tablespoon Chipotle powder
  • 1 Tablespoon chili powder
  • Kosher salt and ground pepper
  • hard corn taco shells
  • Cilantro, shredded cheese, guacamole, lime wedges, and sour cream, for serving (optional)
  1. In slow cooker, combine chicken, garlic, salsa, onion, chiles, pinto beans, chili/chipotle powder, paprika, 1 teaspoon salt, and teaspoon pepper. Cover; cook on high, 4 hours (or on low, 6 hours).
  2. Transfer chicken to a cutting board, and shred, using two forks. Return shredded chicken to crock pot and stir with juices. Serve in taco shells, with toppings, if desired.