You know how sometimes you make something over and over and it’s delicious but just not… fantastic? There’s something missing, but you can’t quite put your finger on it? That was how beef stew used to be for me. Something to eat, not something to really enjoy.
That has changed. This beef stew is to enjoy. This beef stew is freaking fantastic.
The secret ingredient? Sweet potatoes.
You will never look at beef stew the same way again! This recipe is adapted (long ago) from one of The Biggest Loser Cookbooks, but I’ve made it so many times it’s kind of morphed into another animal altogether. And now it’s Nightshade Free! Woohoo!
The first thing we need to do is season the beef. I usually do this as soon as I get home from the grocery store, along with my other basic food/snack prep (because we both know that if I don’t chop up those veggies right away, they will probably be forgotten in the bottom of my fridge’s produce drawer. Sad but true), before I toss the meat in the freezer.
Toss the flour (or arrowroot flour if you’re gluten free!), garlic, salt and pepper into a gallon ziplock bag and shake until they’re all mixed. Then, add your beef cubes.
Make sure you close the bag securely. This is important. Accidents have happened. Do not be a statistic. I kid, but have ended up completely covered in raw beefy garlic flour before. It’s not cool. Make sure it’s secure! Shake until the beef is completely coated. At this point, you can either put it in the fridge for 15 minutes while you get things ready for the next part, or you can put it in the freezer for another day, that way it’s pre-seasoned and ready to go when you need it!
Chop up your onions, mushrooms and garlic.
Put a large pot on the stove, and pour the olive oil onto the bottom. Add your floured and seasoned beef into the pot, cooking until browned. Give it a poke occasionally, stirring them around so that all the pieces are cooked fairly. No favourites. You’ll notice that the flour sticks to the bottom of the pot, browning along with the beef. Scrape it up, you’ll want these delicious little nuggets of flavour in your stew!
Almost there! When the beef is completely browned, add the onions, mushrooms and garlic, along with all your other seasonings. Cook until the vegetables are soft.
Add your broth. I’m still on a hunt for nightshade-free beef broth (I’ve never made my own! gasp!), but honestly, vegetable broth works wonderfully. I’ve yet to find a nightshade-free version of that yet either, but it’s so easy to make your own with kitchen scraps! I’ll be putting a recipe on the blog for that somewhere down the line, and I’ll link it here once I do. (I’m back! You can find the recipe HERE! Oh man, it’s so perfect for this recipe!)
Bring it to a boil, make sure to scrape the bottom of the pot so that all the flour and stuff is coming up and mixing with everything else. Once it’s boiling, set it to simmer for 45 minutes.
While we’re waiting for that to do its thing, this is the perfect time to mention that this recipe and the “Just One More” Sweet Rolls from a couple weeks ago are amazing together. Seriously. Best friends. It’s hard for me to make one without the other! If you do want to try this (which you absolutely should), I would definitely start the rolls first. With the two sets of dough risings and the time the stew takes to boil, the two synch up marvelously!
Chat over. Time to chop the carrots and sweet potatoes! Once the forty-five minutes are up, it’s time to add some colour to this baby! Toss ‘em in, bring the stew to a boil once more, and set it to simmer for another 45 minutes
At around an hour and a half of cooking the beef becomes so tender, it practically melts in your mouth. I’m not even kidding. The sweet potatoes add another whole layer of delicious to this. If you already have a tried and true beef stew recipe, I still recommend adding sweet potatoes to it. It will change your life!
After 45 minutes, it’s ready to serve! It’s really hot though, so I give it a few minutes to sit.
Magical delicious leftovers for DAYS.
- 1 lb . stewing beef , cubed
- 3 tbsp flour (OR arrowroot flour for gluten free option!)
- 2 tbsp garlic powder
- 1 tsp each salt and pepper
- 1 tbsp olive oil
- 2 onions , chopped
- 8 oz . mushrooms , chopped
- 2 large carrots , chopped
- 2 sweet potatoes , cubed
- 5 garlic cloves , minced or 1 additional tbsp of garlic powder
- 1 tbsp each rosemary and oregano
- 2 tsp each thyme and basil
- 6 cups beef or
- vegetable broth
- (homemade recommended for Nightshade Free: http://halifaxbloggers.ca/isaynomato/2015/05/04/easy-homemade-vegetable-broth/)
- 1 gallon ziplock bag
In a ziplock bag, mix flour, garlic powder, salt and pepper. Add cubed beef, and put in fridge for 15 minutes if making the recipe immediately, or put in the freezer for another day.
Heat olive oil in a pot and then add beef, stirring occasionally, scraping bits off the bottom until meat is completely browned.
Add onions, mushrooms and minced garlic (or additional tbsp garlic powder) on top of the beef and mix in. Heat until veggies are soft, scraping bits off the bottom and stirring occasionally.
Add broth, and bring to a boil. Cover, and let simmer for 45 minutes.
Add carrots and sweet potatoes, and bring to a boil. Cover and let simmer for an additional 45 minutes.
Serve and enjoy!
Recommended serving suggestion: Serve with “Just One More Sweet Rolls”. Such a delicious combination!
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