We had our favorite house guest with us last week, who also happens to be a fellow Paleo-er, so I had to make a handful of hearty meals to keep my crew full and happy. A piece of advice: when life gives you a group of hungry men, break out your slow cooker.
Now, you could call this chili, but I’m not. It is a hearty stew loaded with two kinds of beef, veggies that veer to the sweet side, all offset by spicy chipotle. My favorite part though is topping it with fresh tomatoes and avocados! I really dig the contrast of the rich cooked tomato base against the fresh diced tomato. Yum!
1 1/2 cups chopped carrots
2 cups chopped sweet bell peppers (a mixture of yellow, red and orange–no green)
1 large onion, diced (yields about 2 cups)
5-6 cloves garlic, chopped or sliced
1 pound ground beef
1 pound beef, cubed (use steak, roast, stew meat, etc)
3-4 chipotles in adobo, chopped
1 – 28oz can organic crushed tomatoes
2 – 14.5 cans organic diced tomatoes
1 cup of beef stock (or use water if you have to)
1 tsp Celtic sea salt
1 tsp garlic powder
1/2 tsp onion powder
1 tsp ground coriander
1/2 tsp cumin
Paleo-friendly fat of choice
Optional: fresh diced tomatoes, avocados and cilantro to top the stew with.
It’s gonna take a good 30-40 of prep time to get this in the slow cooker, so plan accordingly. The meat needs to be par-cooked before it joins the raw veggies.
Get your largest sauté pan out and heat it up to medium-high. While that’s coming to temp, mix the spices together in a small bowl. Add your Paleo-friendly fat of choice to the sauté pan and drop in the pound of ground beef (you’re using the highest quality beef you can find, right? Ok. Just checking…) Sprinkle half of the spice blend over the ground beef and cook until nearly done. Dump it in the slow cooker. Keep the pan hot, add some more fat and then also the other pound of beef, which has been cubed. Pour the last of the spices over the cubed beef and cook until nearly done as well.
While the cubed beef cooks up, prep the veggies. Peel the carrots, chop them up along with the peppers, onions, garlic and chipotles. Add the veggies and chipotles directly to the slow cooker to join the ground beef. Do the same with the cubed beef. Next add all three cans of tomatoes and the stock. Mix together in the pot. It almost looks good enough to eat right now… But good things come to those who wait, so pop a lid on this, set the slow cooker to low and let it go for 5-6 hours. My slow cooker is an over-achiever and tends to cook faster than most recipes call for, so bear that in mind as you determine how long to set your timer.
Grab a cool programmable slow cooker to avoid overcooking recipes while you’re out of the house all day. Also! Have you seen these cute portable slow cookers that are available in smaller sizes? Perfect for keeping to-go lunches warm or when traveling and needing to prep whole foods sans kitchen.