Dust off your slow cooker—we’re making beef stew! Fall evenings can be chilly and we don’t want to fuss around too much with dinner. That’s when we need a “stick to your bones” kind of meal where we might take a nap afterwards.
For this stew, we’re using local produce and organic beef from our neighboring farm friends, a stout so thick you can chew it, and of course, maple syrup. Best part is this beef stew cooks while we’re out working in the sugarbush.
Crockpot Beef Stew with Stout and Maple Syrup
- 3 carrots, peeled and cut into 1” – 1 ½” chunks
- 2 russet potatoes, peeled and cut into 1” – 1 ½” chunks
- 2 parsnips, peeled and cut into 1” – 1 ½” chunks
- 3 sprigs of fresh thyme
- 2 sprigs of fresh rosemary
- 4 garlic cloves, chopped
- 1 teaspoon onion powder
- 1 teaspoon garlic powder
- 3 teaspoons balsamic vinegar
- salt and pepper to taste
- 3 – 3 ½ pounds chuck roast*, excess fat trimmed off and meat cut into 2” chunks
- ⅓ cup of your favorite stout
- ⅓ cup dark maple syrup (we’re using Bourbon Barrel Aged Maple Syrup)
1. Brown the meat**:
- Season the meat generously with salt.
- Turn the slow cooker on to high heat; add 1 tablespoon of oil.
- Add meat pieces, working in batches if needed so the pan doesn’t get too crowded.
- Cook on each side until crispy and browned.
- Add 1-3 tablespoons of water or broth to the slow cooker, scraping up any bits stuck to the bottom. Those are tasty bits, keep them!
2. To the slow cooker, add the carrots, parsnips, potatoes, fresh herbs, onion and garlic powders, chopped garlic, beer, maple syrup and one tablespoon of the balsamic vinegar.
3. Add salt and pepper, stirring to combine.
4. Turn heat down to low, secure lid, and let cook for 8-12 hours.
5. Stir the stew once about halfway through cooking, if possible. If not, no worries—it will still taste and look like stew once you’re ready to eat.
6. Before serving, remove sprigs from the rosemary and thyme. Add the remaining 2 teaspoons of balsamic vinegar giving everything a good stir.
7. Taste test: Try a spoonful of the broth. Add more salt and pepper if it needs more seasoning.
8. Grab some bowls and break some bread!
*We suggest using local, organic beef when possible.
** This isn’t a necessary step, but it only takes a few minutes and gives your stew a richer, more complex flavor. We highly recommend it as it ups your stew making game.