Slow cooker beef stew is aromatic and appetizing. It simply has no substitute as it is robust and full of character. It is very easy to make, can be partially prepared (and refrigerated) ahead of time. When you are ready to cook, combine the ingredients and turn the appliance on. Slow cooking excels at producing rich and elaborate sauces. This recipe uses aromatics such as onions, garlic, celery, carrots as well as spices like dry mustard, thyme and pepper. The final flavor is also enhanced by adding brown sugar, Worcestershire sauce and balsamic vinegar. They help in bringing out the sweet and sour taste of the sauce. All of the ingredients participate in creating the natural flavor of this dish.
Slow cooker beef stew is my family’s most favorite cold weather dish. The aromas, the richness of the sauce, and most importantly, tenderness and flavor of the beef are unforgettable and hunting. Slow cooking has a huge advantage in cooking beef as the long process always results in soft and juicy meat.
Serve this stew with mashed potatoes and beet salad and your dinner will be perfect.
- In a large non-stick skillet add oil (let it warm up) and beef (in batches). Turn the heat up to high and sear the meat on all sides until brown. Transfer to slow cooker.
- Reduce heat to medium, add onion and let it cook until soft but not brown. Add carrots and celery and continue cooking for additional 5 min, stirring frequently. Add garlic, mustard, thyme, salt, and peeper. Cook for an additional 1 min. Add tomato soup and Worcestershire sauce. Stir and cook until thickened. Add brown sugar and balsamic vinegar. Stir well.
- Pour mixture over meat, cover, and cook on high for 5-6 hrs or on low for 10-12 hours. Serve warm.
Regular tomato soup (32oz (946ml )) can be used instead of canned condensed soup. The sauce might come out a little too thin. In that case, sift 1 tbsp of all-purpose flower at the end of cooking and stir the stew.
When using condensed soup, the sauce might be too thick. Add 1/2 cup water if that happens.
Meat can be seared the day before and refrigerated.
All the vegetables can be prepared and cooked with the tomato soup the day before.