This Slow-Cooker Beef Stew recipe makes dinner easy. Whip these five ingredients together (Hint: They’re not what you’d expect!) and you’re done. Best recipe ever. Your family will be BEGGING for more. It’s literally comfort in a bowl. A big thanks to Reames® Frozen Homestyle Egg Noodles for sponsoring today’s dinner recipe.
I remember being a kid during Wisconsin winters like it was yesterday…
Looking down at my stinging, red wrists left exposed between my mittens and the edge of my coat sleeves. Finally deciding it was time to head home to get out of the cold for a while… There’d always be chunks of snow stuck to the inside edges of my mittens from wiping out and tumbling around on the sledding hill with my brothers. We’d trek away from “Killer Hill”—the most infamous, dreaded (and loved) icy incline in the neighborhood—and head home together as the sun began to fade behind us.
My brother would open the back door, and the delicious smell coming from the kitchen would warm up our frozen bodies a solid 20 degrees in mere seconds. We’d stand in the hallway stripping off soggy scarves and soaked snow pants, murmuring variations of…
It smells soooOOOooo good in here.”
“Yum—what are ya making?”
and “Mom, when’s dinner?”
…all at the same time. My mom would simply reply to our unintelligible, overlapping muttering with:
Hang up your coats and hats!”
“Put your boots on the mat!”
“Don’t get snow all over my wood floor!”
That about sums up my childhood… Lots of homemade food (and yelling).
There are certain winter staples that simply warm your soul. I admit, I feel cliché even saying that phrase to you, but it’s hard to articulate that feeling. There are just certain recipes that “take you home” no matter where you are or what your age. For me, Slow-Cooker Beef Stew with big, fat, homemade egg noodles is one of those winter staples.
The thing is, my childhood was FULL of amazing, authentic German recipes, often accompanied by homemade egg noodles.
Have you ever had homemade noodles? [holding my heart] So amazing. They make store-bought, dried egg noodles from a box feel like a joke.
Have you ever tried *making* homemade noodles? It’s so unbelievably challenging and time-consuming. It makes me feel like a complete failure in the kitchen. I’ve never quite been able to master the art of the homemade noodle.
So, what’s a mom to do?
Enter Reames® Frozen Homestyle Egg Noodles. I totally “flipped my wig” when I tried these frozen noodles. Yep—you read that right… The noodles are FROZEN. (Not from the dry pasta aisle of the grocery store.) These seriously hearty egg noodles are perfect for winter comfort foods: soups, casseroles, and (of course) my favorite… Slow-Cooker Beef Stew.
Imagine slow-simmered beef in a thick, delicious gravy on top of hearty homestyle egg noodles.
Your home is about to smell amazing…
This Slow-Cooker Beef Stew recipe is super simple, too. All you’ll need to have on hand is: beef stew meat, a stick of butter, and au jus and ranch packets.
If you want your Slow-Cooker Beef Stew to be absolutely AMAZING, throw in a green pepper, too. This is my mother-in-law’s “secret roast ingredient.” Ironically, my husband hates green peppers, but he loves this recipe… The punchy flavor the pepper adds is terrific. However: If your family will turn their noses up if they see them in your stew, simply cut your pepper slices large and then remove them from the dish before serving.
Do some of the ingredients look familiar? This Slow-Cooker Beef Stew recipe is inspired by a traditional Mississippi roast. But, instead of a roast and pepperoncini peppers, we’re using stew meat and a green pepper. I love, love, love this variation!
OK, let’s get started.
STEP 1: Preheat your slow cooker. Simply pop it on high while you’re prepping the meat.
STEP 2: Heat 2–3 tablespoons of olive oil in a frying pan on medium-high heat. Sear the stew meat for a nice, brown color, then add it to the slow cooker. Pour in 1/4 cup of water to the crock pot, too.
Quick tip: To ensure a nice, brown searing, it’s important the pan has been thoroughly preheated before adding your stew meat. Test the temp with a small piece of meat before adding it all in. You’ll know your pan is ready if it immediately elicits a fierce sizzle.
STEP 3: Sprinkle the ranch and au jus packets over the seared stew meat. Then place a whole stick of butter and some sliced peppers on top. Turn the temp down to low, and cook for 6–8 hours. Let the slow cooker do all the work.
When it’s time for dinner, simply boil some frozen egg noodles and use the juices from the slow cooker to make gravy.
Cooking tip: If you’re like me and the idea of making a proper roux scares you, go ahead and just use the stew juices with a store-bought gravy packet. That works perfectly every time, too!
Quick note: This beef stew recipe is salty-delicious, so it’s best served with a mile-high pile of mashed potatoes or a nice, thick noodle like Reames® Frozen Egg Noodles. It helps balance the flavor!
I serve this Slow-Cooker Beef Stew two different ways, depending on circumstances:
1. If it’s just the four of us eating dinner together (and we anticipate leftovers), I serve the noodles and the gravy-covered meat separate. With this approach, we can use the leftover stew in pot pies the next day or freeze the leftover beef stew for another week’s dinner altogether. (To serve, simply thaw, heat, and make a fresh batch of frozen egg noodles. Dinner couldn’t get any easier!)
2. When we have guests or are hosting extended-family gatherings, we serve everything together. We throw the slow cooker on the warm setting, put out dishes and silverware, and create a buffet-style line for dinner. Everything stays warm and fresh when people come back for seconds! (And, trust me, they will come back…)
This simple, soul-warming stew can literally take a cold winter day from BLAH to AWESOME!
PRINTABLE: Slow-Cooker Beef Stew Recipe
Here’s a printer-friendly copy of the recipe for you!
- 2–3 tbsp olive oil
- 2 lbs stew meat
- ¼ cup water
- 1-oz packet dry ranch seasoning mix
- 1-oz packet dry au jus mix
- 8 tbsp unsalted butter
- 1 green pepper
- 1 24oz bag of Reames® Frozen Homestyle Egg Noodles
- Heat 2–3 tablespoons of olive oil in a frying pan on medium-high heat. Sear the stew meat for a nice, brown color.
- Add ¼ cup of water into the slow cooker, then place the seared stew meat on top.
- Sprinkle the dry ranch seasoning mix and the au jus mix on top, then place 1 stick of butter and the green pepper slices on top of the stew meat.
- Cook on low for 6–8 hours.
- Serve with gravy and egg noodles.
Here in the Midwest, we get some epic winter storms. In fact, we’re scheduled to get 5–8 inches of snow as I write this. No lie… My girls are outside embracing the winter weather right now (video). This is our first major snowfall of the season, and my ladies are LOVING it.
I know they’ll be walking in the door any minute with red cheeks (and wrists) announcing, “Yuh-uh-ummy” and “It smells SO GOOD in here, Mom.” And since our house has a dedicated mudroom entrance for them to strip off their wet outerwear worry-free, I’ll simply reply:
Come in the kitchen and have some hot stew with noodles to warm yourselves up, girls!”
Our snowy-white weather today and this hearty Slow-Cooker Beef Stew recipe reminded me of this lovely quote…
Here’s to comfort food and the joy and warmth of being home with your loved ones this winter.
Disclosure of Material Connection: This is a sponsored conversation written by me on behalf of Reames®. This is a “sponsored post.” The company who sponsored it compensated me via a cash payment, gift, or something else of value to write it. Regardless, I only recommend products or services I use personally and believe will be good for my readers. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”
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