Caramelized Carrot Pasta Sauce

This carrot sauce is no ordinary one. It is not a mere creamed carrot puree, but so much more. The carrots and the other root veggies are caramelized to bring out their hidden sweetness and then they are turned into a savory creamy carrot pasta sauce w…

This carrot sauce is no ordinary one. It is not a mere creamed carrot puree, but so much more. The carrots and the other root veggies are caramelized to bring out their hidden sweetness and then they are turned into a savory creamy carrot pasta sauce with lots of potentials. We do like our pasta,...

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The post Caramelized Carrot Pasta Sauce appeared first on My Pure Plants.

Tomato Lentil Soup

There’s nothing quite like the smell of a pot of soup simmering away on the stove top when it’s cold and blustery outside. This tomato lentil soup is full of vegetables and herbs for a simple, flavorful, and warming winter soup.

The post Tomato Lentil Soup appeared first on Budget Bytes.

There’s nothing quite as comforting as a pot of soup simmering away on the stove top when it’s cold and wintry outside. The smell alone warms me from the inside out. This week I was craving a simple vegetable forward soup, so I whipped up this really easy Tomato Lentil Soup. I’ve been enjoying the leftovers for days, sometimes with a grilled cheese on the side. :)

Tomato lentil soup in the pot with bread and vegetables on the sides
Garnished with a little fresh parsley for visual appeal.

What Does Tomato Lentil Soup Taste Like?

This soup kind of tastes like a traditional vegetable soup, but with a slightly more tomato-y broth, plus a little earthiness from the lentils. It’s super hearty and comforting, which is exactly what I love about a good bowl of soup in the winter!

What Kind of Lentils Should I Use?

Lentils can be confusing, especially since there isn’t a lot of consistency in labeling in the United States. I used a basic brown lentil, which has a drab brown-olive color and cooks with about 20 minutes of simmering. Sometimes these lentils are labeled “green lentils” sometimes just “lentils” so to be sure you have the right kind, check the cooking instructions on the package. It should say to simmer for about 20 minutes, not 45 minutes.

I do not suggest using a red, orange, or yellow lentil for this soup because they break down too easily and you’ll end up with something more along the lines of a lentil porridge than a lentil soup. :) (It would probably still taste good, though!)

How are the Leftovers?

One of the reasons I love soup is because they almost always make great leftovers, and this soup is no exception. The leftovers will stay good in the fridge for about 4-5 days, or you can freeze it for longer storage. I always suggest dividing the soup into single portions just after cooking so it cools down more quickly in the refrigerator, which will give you more longevity with the leftovers. Once cooled you can transfer some to the freezer for later!

A bowl of tomato lentil sup with bread on the side
A bowl of tomato lentil sup with bread on the side

Tomato Lentil Soup

This tomato lentil soup is full of vegetables and herbs for a simple, flavorful, and warming winter soup. Makes great leftovers!
Total Cost $4.74 recipe / $0.79 serving
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 50 minutes
Total Time 1 hour
Servings 6 1.5 cups each
Calories 279.58kcal
Author Beth – Budget Bytes

Ingredients

  • 2 Tbsp olive oil $0.32
  • 1 yellow onion $0.32
  • 3 carrots $0.42
  • 2 cloves garlic $0.16
  • 1 russet potato (about 1 lb.) $0.60
  • 2 Tbsp tomato paste $0.10
  • 2 15oz. cans stewed tomatoes $1.18
  • 1 cup brown lentils $0.67
  • ½ tsp paprika $0.10
  • ½ tsp dried basil $0.10
  • ½ tsp dried oregano $0.10
  • ¼ tsp freshly cracked black pepper $0.03
  • 4 cups vegetable broth $0.52
  • 2 Tbsp soy sauce $0.12

Instructions

  • Dice the onion, mince the garlic, and slice the carrots (I like smaller pieces for this recipe, so I do a quarter round slice). Add the onion, garlic, carrots, and olive oil to a large soup pot and sauté over medium heat until the oniosn are soft. While the vegetables are cooking, peel and dice the potato into ½-inch cubes.
  • Add the tomato paste and continue to sauté for 2-3 minutes, or until the tomato paste begins to coat the bottom of the pot.
  • Add the cubed potato, stewed tomatoes (with juices), paprika, basil, oregano, pepper, and vegetable broth to the pot. Stir to combine.
  • Place a lid on top and allow the soup to come up to a boil. Once boiling, turn the heat down to low and let the soup simmer for about 40 minutes or until the lentils are super tender and have begun to break down slightly (this helps thicken the soup).
  • Add the soy sauce to the soup, then give it a taste and adjust the salt if needed (the total amount will depend on the salt content of your vegetable broth). Serve hot with crusty bread for dipping.

Nutrition

Serving: 1.5cups | Calories: 279.58kcal | Carbohydrates: 48.58g | Protein: 12.17g | Fat: 5.65g | Sodium: 1148.67mg | Fiber: 7.48g
Close up side view of tomato lentil soup in the pot

How to Make Tomato Lentil Soup – Step by Step Photos

Onions carrots and garlic in a soup pot

Dice one onion, mince two cloves of garlic, and slice three carrots. I like to do smaller pieces of carrot for this soup, so I cut the slices into quarter rounds. Add the onion, carrot, and garlic to a large soup pot with 2 Tbsp olive oil. Sauté over medium until the onions are soft. While the carrot and onion are sautéing, peel and dice one russet potato into ½-inch cubes.

Tomato paste added to the soup pot

Add 2 Tbsp tomato paste and continue to sauté for a few more minutes, or until the tomato paste begins to coat the bottom of the pot.

Potatoes, lentils, tomatoes, seasoning, and broth added to the pot

Add the cubed potato, two 15oz. cans of stewed tomatoes (with juices), 1 cup lentils (not cooked), ½ tsp paprika, ½ tsp dried basil, ½ tsp dried oregano, ¼ tsp pepper, and 4 cups vegetable broth.

Soup in the pot before simmering

Stir everything to combine. Place a lid on top and bring the soup up to a boil. Once boiling, reduce the heat to low and simmer for about 40 minutes, or until the lentils are very soft and have begun to break down a bit.

Finished tomato lentil soup

After simmering the soup, stir in 2 Tbsp soy sauce. Taste the soup and adjust the salt if needed (this will depend on the salt content of your broth. I did not add any in addition to the soy sauce).

front view of a bowl full of tomato lentil soup

Serve hot with some crusty bread for dipping! (I garnished with a little parsley for color, but it’s not needed to flavor this soup.)

The post Tomato Lentil Soup appeared first on Budget Bytes.

Wild Rice Mushroom Soup

This wild rice mushroom soup is the definition of cozy: it’s packed with creamy, savory flavor! Enjoy it with crusty bread. Here’s a soup recipe that’s the definition of cozy…we think. Wild rice mushroom soup! What’s better than a steaming cup of wild rice soup to warm your insides on a gray day. This one absolutely delivers with flavor: the light smokiness of the rice, umami of the mushrooms and creamy Parmesan cheese make absolute magic. We could eat it for every meal! This one’s a variation on our fan favorite, our popular wild rice soup and it’s every bit as satisfying. Ingredients in wild rice and mushroom soup This wild rice mushroom soup has a lightly creamy broth, made creamy with Parmesan cheese and milk: and it’s got a bit of the soup itself blended back in to give it the perfect body. There’s no heavy cream, so you feel a lightness after you eat it. Here’s what to know when you’re hunting for the ingredients for wild rice and mushroom soup: Wild rice: Don’t use a wild rice blend! You’ll need 100% wild rice for this soup. Mushrooms: Using a mix of mushroom types is nice: we used […]

A Couple Cooks – Healthy, Whole Food, & Vegetarian Recipes

This wild rice mushroom soup is the definition of cozy: it’s packed with creamy, savory flavor! Enjoy it with crusty bread.

Wild rice mushroom soup

Here’s a soup recipe that’s the definition of cozy…we think. Wild rice mushroom soup! What’s better than a steaming cup of wild rice soup to warm your insides on a gray day. This one absolutely delivers with flavor: the light smokiness of the rice, umami of the mushrooms and creamy Parmesan cheese make absolute magic. We could eat it for every meal! This one’s a variation on our fan favorite, our popular wild rice soup and it’s every bit as satisfying.

Ingredients in wild rice and mushroom soup

This wild rice mushroom soup has a lightly creamy broth, made creamy with Parmesan cheese and milk: and it’s got a bit of the soup itself blended back in to give it the perfect body. There’s no heavy cream, so you feel a lightness after you eat it. Here’s what to know when you’re hunting for the ingredients for wild rice and mushroom soup:

  • Wild rice: Don’t use a wild rice blend! You’ll need 100% wild rice for this soup.
  • Mushrooms: Using a mix of mushroom types is nice: we used a mix of baby bella (cremini) and shiitake, but you can use all white mushroom or baby bella if you’d like.
  • Onion
  • Celery
  • Carrots
  • Olive oil and butter
  • Vegetable broth
  • Spices: Garlic powder, thyme, oregano and dill
  • Salt and pepper
  • Milk
  • Parmesan cheese
  • Cornstarch (or arrowroot powder)
  • Soy sauce (or tamari or coconut aminos)
Wild rice recipe

Did you know wild rice isn’t really…rice?

Did you know that wild rice is not actually rice? (Mind blown, right?) This whole grain is actually the seed from a native grass that grows in lakes and streams in the Northern US and Canada. Since it looks and tastes like rice, it’s treated as rice in most cuisines.

Wild rice was an important staple in the diet of the indigenous peoples in the Northern US. I’m from Minnesota originally, so wild rice is part of the heritage and history of this region. We often ate wild rice growing up, and I love grabbing bags of Minnesota wild rice when we’re home.

Wild rice and mushroom soup

Use a mix of mushrooms

This wild rice mushroom soup is great with any type of mushroom! But we like it with a mix of mushrooms to have maximum variety in flavor and texture. Here are the types of mushrooms we recommend: and the differences between them:

  • Baby bella (cremini) mushrooms are a more mature version of a white button mushroom, so it has a more robust flavor. It’s also a baby version of a portobello mushroom, which has the most meaty flavor!
  • White button mushrooms: Substitute white button mushrooms if you can’t find baby bella! They taste and look very similar.
  • Portobello mushrooms: You can use these too! Just chop them fairly small. They have a great meaty flavor!
  • Shiitake mushrooms: A Japanese variety of mushroom with great flavor. Make sure to remove the tough stems before slicing them.

How to make wild rice mushroom soup

It takes about 1 hour to make, but this healthy soup is absolutely worth it. Most of the time is hands-off, since rice takes quite a while to simmer. Other than that, all you’ve got to do is chop some veggies! Here’s the main method for this wild rice and mushroom soup (or jump down to the recipe):

  • Chop those veggies. It takes about 15 minutes to chop all the veg. If you need some pointers, head to our Knife Skills page.
  • Simmer until the rice pops. Wild rice notoriously takes quite a while to cook: upwards of 50 minutes. Cook this soup until most of the rice grains burst and are tender. It might feel like a long time, but it’s important that the rice is perfectly tender.
  • Blend 2 cups of the soup to create a creamy body. This is the key to this soup: blending a few cups of the soup makes it thicker and creamier. Add everything to the blender: veggies, broth and rice, then whiz it up!
Wild rice mushroom soup

What to serve with wild rice mushroom soup

Want to make it a meal? There are lots of great sides to serve with soup: here are a few of our top ideas:

Vegan variation: go to Creamy Wild Rice Soup

Looking for a vegan wild rice mushroom soup? Head over to our famous Creamy Wild Rice Soup: it’s ultra creamy with no dairy to speak of. The secret? Cashews add a rich creaminess to the broth. But no one will ever know it’s plant based! Got an Instant Pot? Try our Instant Pot Wild Rice Soup.

Wild rice mushroom soup

Is wild rice healthier than standard rice?

Though they’re not truly related, wild rice is often compared to brown rice. Wondering how they stack up? Here’s what to know:

  • Wild rice has less calories than brown rice, about 66% less! 1 cup of cooked wild rice has 166 calories and 1 cup brown rice has 248 calories. (Source)
  • Wild rice has slightly more protein than brown rice. 1 cup cooked wild rice has 6.5 grams protein vs 5.5 grams in brown rice. (Source)
  • Both wild and brown rice have the same amount of fiber, about 3 grams per 1 cup cooked.

This wild rice and mushroom soup recipe is…

Vegetarian and gluten-free. For plant-based, dairy-free and vegan, go to Creamy Wild Rice Soup.

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Wild rice mushroom soup

Wild Rice Mushroom Soup


1 Star2 Stars3 Stars4 Stars5 Stars (5 votes, average: 5.00 out of 5)

  • Author: Sonja Overhiser
  • Prep Time: 20 minutes
  • Cook Time: 45 minutes
  • Total Time: 1 hour 5 minutes
  • Yield: 4 to 6
  • Diet: Vegetarian

Description

This wild rice mushroom soup is the definition of cozy: it’s packed with creamy, savory flavor! Enjoy it with crusty bread.


Ingredients

  • 1 medium yellow onion
  • 3 celery ribs
  • 3 medium carrots
  • 12 ounces mushrooms: baby bella (cremini) or a mix of baby bella and shiitake
  • 3 garlic cloves
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 8 cups vegetable broth
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1 cups or 7 ounces wild rice (not a wild rice blend)
  • 1 tablespoon each dried thyme, dried oregano and dried dill
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons kosher salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1/2 cup milk
  • 1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese
  • 1 tablespoon cornstarch
  • 1/2 tablespoon soy sauce, or more salt to taste

Instructions

  1. Dice the onion. Thinly slice the celery. Dice the carrots into rounds. Clean the mushrooms and slice them (if you’re using shiitake, make sure to remove the tough stems). Mince the garlic.
  2. Add the olive oil and butter to a Dutch oven or soup pot. Add the onion, celery and carrot and cook, stirring occasionally for 5 minutes until lightly browned. Add mushrooms and saute for 2 minutes. Add the garlic and stir for 2 minutes.
  3. Add the vegetable broth, wild rice, spices, kosher salt, and black pepper. Bring to a simmer. Cover the pot and simmer for 45 minutes to 1 hour, until rice breaks open, stirring occasionally.
  4. When the wild rice is cooked, stir in the milk and Parmesan cheese. Remove 2 cups from the soup using a liquid measuring cup (including veggies, rice and broth) and place it in a blender. Add the cornstarch, then blend. Pour it back into the soup. 
  5. Stir in the soy sauce, taste and adjust seasonings as desired. Enjoy warm. Stores refrigerated for 3 days.
  • Category: Main Dish
  • Method: Stovetop
  • Cuisine: Soup

Keywords: Wild rice mushroom soup

A Couple Cooks - Healthy, Whole Food, & Vegetarian Recipes

Honey Balsamic Glazed Carrots

Honey + Balsamic Vinegar + Butter = Heaven. It’s sweet, tangy, and rich, all at the same time. You already know that I love roasted vegetables, but drenching roasted vegetables in a honey balsamic glaze takes them to the next level. And the best part? They’re incredibly simple. So you can have these heavenly Honey […]

The post Honey Balsamic Glazed Carrots appeared first on Budget Bytes.

Honey + Balsamic Vinegar + Butter = Heaven. It’s sweet, tangy, and rich, all at the same time. You already know that I love roasted vegetables, but drenching roasted vegetables in a honey balsamic glaze takes them to the next level. And the best part? They’re incredibly simple. So you can have these heavenly Honey Balsamic Glazed Carrots any day of the week, or save them for a special occasion like Thanksgiving or date night. Either way, they’re simple and delicious, and you won’t regret it.

Originally posted 2-23-2012, updated 11-9-2020.

A bowl of honey balsamic glazed carrots garnished with parsley

Garnished with parsley, just for color.

What to Serve with Honey Balsamic Glazed Carrots

I love these carrots with a really herby main dish, like Herb Roasted Pork Tenderloin, or Herb Roasted Chicken Breast. The sweet and tangy carrots will make a nice contrast to the more subtle, deep herbal flavors. And don’t forget a big ol’ pile of creamy mashed potatoes! These fancy-pants carrots also make a beautiful addition to any Thanksgiving or Christmas dinner.

close up side view of a bowl of honey balsamic glazed carrots

Honey Balsamic Glazed Carrots

Honey Balsamic Glazed Carrots are a simple but delicious side dish that is easy enough for busy weeknights, but fancy enough for company!
Total Cost $2.96 recipe / $0.74 serving
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 30 minutes
Total Time 45 minutes
Servings 4
Calories 193.5kcal
Author Beth - Budget Bytes

Ingredients

  • 2 lbs. carrots $1.69
  • 1 Tbsp olive oil $0.16
  • 1/4 tsp salt $0.02
  • 1/4 tsp pepper $0.02
  • 2 Tbsp honey $0.24
  • 1/4 cup balsamic vinegar $0.55
  • 1 Tbsp butter $0.14

Instructions

  • Preheat the oven to 400ºF. Wash and/or peel the carrots, then cut them into one-inch pieces.
  • Place the carrots on a parchment lined baking sheet and drizzle with 1 Tbsp olive oil. Add ¼ salt, ¼ tsp pepper, and toss the carrots until coated. Transfer the carrots to the oven and roast for 30 minutes, stirring once half-way through.
  • While the carrots are roasting, prepare the honey balsamic glaze. Add the honey and balsamic vinegar to a small sauce pot and stir to combine. Simmer the glaze over medium-low heat for about 10 minutes, or until it has reduced and thickened slightly. Remove the pot from the heat, then add the butter. Stir until the butter has melted into the glaze. Set the glaze aside.
  • When the carrots are finished roasting, drizzle the honey balsamic glaze over top and toss to coat. Serve warm!

Nutrition

Serving: 1Serving | Calories: 193.5kcal | Carbohydrates: 32.93g | Protein: 2.23g | Fat: 6.28g | Sodium: 238.83mg | Fiber: 2.95g

close up of a forkful of honey balsamic glazed carrots with the bowl in the background

How to Make Honey Balsamic Glazed Carrots – Step By Step Photos

Prepped carrots on a baking sheet
Preheat the oven to 400ºF. Wash or peel two pounds of carrots and slice them into 1-inch pieces. Place the carrots on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper and drizzle with 1 Tbsp olive oil. Add ¼ tsp salt, ¼ tsp pepper, and toss until the carrots are coating in oil, salt, and pepper. Roast the carrots for 30 minutes in the preheated oven, stirring once half-way through.

Balsamic vinegar and honey in a sauce pot

While the carrots are still in the oven, prepare the balsamic glaze. Combine the vinegar and honey in a small pot and simmer over medium-low for about 10 minutes or until it has thickened slightly.

Butter added to the balsamic reduction
Once the balsamic and honey mixture has reduced and thickened slightly, turn the burner off and add the butter. Stir until the butter has melted into the glaze. Set the honey balsamic glaze aside.

honey balsamic glaze being poured over roasted carrots
When the carrots are finished roasting, remove them from the oven and pour the honey balsamic glaze over top.

carrots tossed in honey balsamic glaze
Toss the carrots to coat in the honey balsamic glaze. You can do this in a bowl, if you prefer, so that you don’t lose any of the delicious glaze.

close up side view of a bowl of honey balsamic glazed carrots
Serve warm! You can garnish with freshly chopped parsley, if desired. 

The post Honey Balsamic Glazed Carrots appeared first on Budget Bytes.

Hearty Lentil Stew

This tasty lentil stew is packed with hearty flavor and loaded with plant based protein. Perfect for a simple lunch or dinner! Here’s a cozy recipe that embodies the rhythm of soup season: this Hearty Lentil Stew! There’s something about the simple actions: chopping the onion, mincing the garlic, and listening for the sizzle of the veggies as they hit the hot oil. The rhythm of a big pot of soup or stew has been passed down through the centuries: and this one is a mighty delicious spin. The broth is flavored with tangy fire-roasted tomatoes, garlic and smoked paprika, and it’s full of vegetables and hearty lentils. It was a big hit over here, as lentil recipes usually are! It makes a simple lunch or dinner that’s nourishing for the body — and the soul, too. Ingredients in this lentil stew When it comes to eating healthy and plant-based, lentils are the rock stars of the food world. They’re full of plant-based protein and nutrients to keep you full all day long. This lentil stew is a simple way to eat more of them, perfect for easy lunches and dinner throughout the week. Here’s what you’ll need for this […]

A Couple Cooks – Healthy, Whole Food, & Vegetarian Recipes

This tasty lentil stew is packed with hearty flavor and loaded with plant based protein. Perfect for a simple lunch or dinner!

Lentil stew

Here’s a cozy recipe that embodies the rhythm of soup season: this Hearty Lentil Stew! There’s something about the simple actions: chopping the onion, mincing the garlic, and listening for the sizzle of the veggies as they hit the hot oil. The rhythm of a big pot of soup or stew has been passed down through the centuries: and this one is a mighty delicious spin. The broth is flavored with tangy fire-roasted tomatoes, garlic and smoked paprika, and it’s full of vegetables and hearty lentils. It was a big hit over here, as lentil recipes usually are! It makes a simple lunch or dinner that’s nourishing for the body — and the soul, too.

Ingredients in this lentil stew

When it comes to eating healthy and plant-based, lentils are the rock stars of the food world. They’re full of plant-based protein and nutrients to keep you full all day long. This lentil stew is a simple way to eat more of them, perfect for easy lunches and dinner throughout the week. Here’s what you’ll need for this lentil stew:

  • Brown or green lentils: This is the most common variety you’ll find at the store. Avoid red lentils here because they fall apart easily when cooking (go to this Tuscan Lentil Soup instead).
  • Onion
  • Carrots
  • Celery
  • Garlic
  • Canned fire roasted tomatoes
  • Olive oil
  • Spices: smoked paprika, cumin and fennel seed
  • Vegetable broth and salt
  • Spinach or other leafy green
  • Parmesan cheese (optional): Parmesan is not required, but it adds big flavor!
Lentil stew

Use fire roasted tomatoes or best quality canned tomatoes

This lentil stew recipe calls for canned fire roasted tomatoes, which use in many of our soup recipes and our famous pizza sauce and spaghetti sauce. What’s the big deal about fire roasted tomatoes? These tomatoes are roasted over an open flame, which chars the outsides and develops their flavor. You’ll notice the flavor is much sweeter when you take a bite right out of the can. Other types of canned tomatoes taste bitter.

Fire roasted tomatoes have become widely available in the US, made by several different brands. If you can’t find them, use the highest quality canned tomatoes you can find. The type of tomatoes really makes a difference!

Mix up the leafy greens!

This last step to this lentil stew recipe is to add leafy greens! We try to do this in as many of our soup and stew recipes to load in the nutrients with good-for-you greens. This lentil stew uses baby spinach, but you can use any type of leafy green that you like. Here are a few options:

  • Baby spinach or standard: If you’re using standard spinach that’s sold in a bunch, make sure to wash it well! Then chop it into small pieces before using.
  • Baby kale: Baby kale wilts in just 1 minute, much like baby spinach.
  • Tuscan kale: Tuscan kale is our favorite variety of kale for cooking: it’s an Italian variety with a milder, sweeter flavor than curly kale, which can taste bitter and spicy.
  • Swiss chard: Another good option! When using Tuscan kale or chard, add the greens in the last 5 minutes of cooking (vs 1 minute for baby greens).
  • Collard greens: Chop them into small pieces and add in the last 5 to 10 minutes (collards take a little longer to cook).
Lentil stew

Variation: add more protein to this lentil stew

One fun way to add even more protein to this lentil stew is by adding plant-based sausage. It’s not until recently that we’ve felt comfortable adding plant-based meat substitutes to our recipes. In fact, we avoided them for 10 plus years because most of them were very processed! But these days, there are some vegan meat alternatives that are less processed and made with real foods.

You can add sliced vegan sausage here to make a vegan lentil stew that’s even more full of hearty flavor! Make sure to check the ingredients of the brand of sausage that you buy: some brands are still very processed. Also make sure that it meets your dietary needs: some brands contain gluten or eggs.

How to make lentil stew

How to make lentil stew: some tips

The steps of this lentil stew are very simple: as we noted up front, people have been cooking this way for centuries! Here are a few things to note about the process:

  • Chopping is the largest hands-on time (10 minutes). To speed it up, you can chop the veggies in advance and refrigerate until making.
  • Sauté, then simmer until the lentils are tender (30 minutes or so). The exact timing depends on your heat level and the lentils you use. It will be different every time!
  • Season to taste! The salt level varies based on the brand of canned tomatoes and veggie broth. Add a few pinches of salt until it pops!

Storing leftovers and make-ahead info

This lentil stew stores very well. It’s a great option if you want to meal prep it in advance and refrigerate until serving! Here are the particulars:

  • Store refrigerated for up to 4 days: the flavor improves over time
  • Freeze for 3 to 4 months
Lentil stew

Side dishes to serve with lentil stew

This lentil stew just needs a hunk of crusty bread and you’ve got a cozy meal! But here are a few more sides for soups and stews to make this an easy plant based dinner:

Lentil stew with brown lentils

This lentil stew recipe is…

Vegetarian, vegan, plant-based, dairy-free and gluten-free.

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Lentil stew

Hearty Lentil Stew


1 Star2 Stars3 Stars4 Stars5 Stars (6 votes, average: 5.00 out of 5)

  • Author: Sonja Overhiser
  • Prep Time: 10 minutes
  • Cook Time: 35 minutes
  • Total Time: 45 minutes
  • Yield: 4
  • Diet: Vegan

Description

This tasty lentil stew is packed with hearty flavor and loaded with plant based protein. Perfect for a simple lunch or dinner!


Ingredients

  • 1 medium yellow onion
  • 2 large carrots
  • 2 celery ribs
  • 4 large garlic cloves
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons smoked paprika
  • 1/2 teaspoon cumin
  • 1/2 teaspoon fennel seeds (optional)
  • 1 1/2 cups brown or green lentils
  • 28-ounce can crushed fire roasted tomatoes (or highest quality canned tomatoes)*
  • 1 quart vegetable broth
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 3 cups baby spinach (or chopped standard spinach, kale or chard)
  • For the garnish: Parmesan cheese (recommended)

Instructions

  1. Finely dice the onion. Peel and finely chop the carrots. Chop the celery into small pieces. Mince the garlic.
  2. In a large pot, add the olive oil and heat over medium heat. Add the onion, carrot, celery and garlic and cook 3 to 4 minutes until just translucent. Add the smoked paprika, cumin, fennel seeds, and lentils and stir 1 minute. Add the canned tomatoes and their juices, vegetable broth, and kosher salt
  3. Bring to a simmer. Simmer covered, stirring occasionally, for 20 minutes. Remove lid and cook for an additional 10 to 15 minutes until the lentils are tender. Stir in the spinach in the last minute or so and cook until it wilts (if using kale or chard, add it in the last 5 minutes).
  4. Remove from the heat. Taste and season with additional salt and fresh ground pepper as necessary. For best flavor, garnish with Parmesan cheese. Stores refrigerated for up to 4 days and frozen for 3 to 4 months.

Notes

*Note: To add even more protein to this meal, add sliced plant-based sausage with the canned tomatoes. Review the ingredients of any plant-based protein you buy to make sure it’s as non-processed as possible and make sure it meets your dietary needs (some contain gluten or eggs). 

  • Category: Main Dish
  • Method: Stovetop
  • Cuisine: American

Keywords: Lentil stew

A Couple Cooks - Healthy, Whole Food, & Vegetarian Recipes

Easy Butternut Squash Soup

This Easy Butternut Squash Soup is perfect for a simple, healthy, and delicious fall meal! It is great for lunch, dinner, or for Thanksgiving. Comfort food is a must during the chilly fall and winter months, but a lot of comfort food can be a little to…

This Easy Butternut Squash Soup is perfect for a simple, healthy, and delicious fall meal! It is great for lunch, dinner, or for Thanksgiving. Comfort food is a must during the chilly fall and winter months, but a lot of comfort food can be a little too comforting, if you know what I mean. Our…

The post Easy Butternut Squash Soup appeared first on Two Peas & Their Pod.

Carrot Fries (Ranch Seasoned!)

These carrot fries are full of big flavor, sprinkled with ranch seasoning and baked until lightly crispy! Everyone will ask for the recipe. Good news, fry lovers: there’s a new fry in town. Carrot fries! This healthy fry recipe is full of all the nutrients of this popular vegetable: but tastes like your favorite greasy comfort food. Even better: they’re coated in ranch seasoning! This play on the standard pairing of carrots and ranch gives a savory zing to each bite. Of course, you can dip them in ranch too for double the fun. They’re baked, and there’s a little trick to give them a lightly crispy exterior. Everyone will love them! We couldn’t stop sneaking bites off the baking sheet. Ingredients for the best carrot fries You’ll need just a handful of ingredients for carrot fries: and most of them are the spices you’ll need of the ranch seasoning. Here’s what you’ll need to have on hand: Carrots: medium to large carrots work best, since they’re easiest for cutting fries Olive oil Spices: garlic powder, onion powder, dried dill, dried parsley Cornstarch Salt How to cut carrots into fries The hardest part of this recipe is actually cutting the […]

A Couple Cooks – Healthy, Whole Food, & Vegetarian Recipes

These carrot fries are full of big flavor, sprinkled with ranch seasoning and baked until lightly crispy! Everyone will ask for the recipe.

Carrot fries

Good news, fry lovers: there’s a new fry in town. Carrot fries! This healthy fry recipe is full of all the nutrients of this popular vegetable: but tastes like your favorite greasy comfort food. Even better: they’re coated in ranch seasoning! This play on the standard pairing of carrots and ranch gives a savory zing to each bite. Of course, you can dip them in ranch too for double the fun. They’re baked, and there’s a little trick to give them a lightly crispy exterior. Everyone will love them! We couldn’t stop sneaking bites off the baking sheet.

Ingredients for the best carrot fries

You’ll need just a handful of ingredients for carrot fries: and most of them are the spices you’ll need of the ranch seasoning. Here’s what you’ll need to have on hand:

  • Carrots: medium to large carrots work best, since they’re easiest for cutting fries
  • Olive oil
  • Spices: garlic powder, onion powder, dried dill, dried parsley
  • Cornstarch
  • Salt

How to cut carrots into fries

The hardest part of this recipe is actually cutting the carrots into fries! How to get those perfect rectangle fry shapes? Well, it’s similar to the steps for cutting fries out of a potato. Here’s what to do:

  • Slice off the ends of the carrot.
  • Square off each of the sides of the carrot to make a rectangular box shape.
  • Cut into 3/8-inch wide slices, then cut each slice into strips.
Carrot fries

The tricks to crispy baked carrot fries

Here’s the thing. When you bake carrots, they turn out beautifully tender: like with these Roasted Carrots. But that’s not what you want with fries! We don’t have a deep fryer and typically don’t like frying at home (it’s messy and not worth the effort). So we’ve found a few tricks to making lightly crispy baked carrot fries! They don’t come out crunchy like they would in a deep fryer, but they’re lightly crisp and totally satisfying. Here’s what to know:

  1. Coat in cornstarch. Cornstarch helps to form a crispy coating for the carrots, which can turn soggy and tender in the oven.
  2. Place on parchment paper. Don’t use a Silpat or silicon baking sheet, which can make for soggy fries! Paper is the way to go.
  3. Spread apart on the baking sheet. Spread the fries as far apart on the baking sheet as possible: this allows for maximum airflow and enhances crispiness. Bake a maximum of 2 pounds of carrots in the oven at once.
Carrots

Are these healthy fries?

We think so! These healthy carrot fries are part of a whole food plant based (WFPB) diet. Here’s why these fries pale in comparison to those from your favorite fast food chain:

  • The ingredients are just carrots, minimal olive oil and a bit of salt. These are all healthy, whole food ingredients. They’re basically baked carrots!
  • They have all the nutrients of carrots. Scroll down for more on that.
  • The serving size is moderate. The serving size is much less than a restaurant would serve, so that helps to keep the calories down.

Carrots nutrition

Carrot are one of the best vegetables you can eat! They’re not just good for your eyesight. Here are some of the top nutritional benefits of this tasty orange veggie (source):

  • Low in calories, high in fiber: One cup of chopped carrots has only 52 calories and 3.6 grams of fiber. (source)
  • Packed with Vitamin A (beta carotene): This root veggie has 428% of your daily vitamin A in 1 cup! It’s present as beta-carotene, an antioxidant that could help in cancer prevention. Your body converts beta carotene into Vitamin A.
  • High in Vitamins C, K and potassium: Carrot are also are high in these vitamins.

Yes, all these good things are present in a recipe of carrot fries! So why not give them a taste?

Carrot fries

Dipping sauces for carrot fries

These carrot fries are delicious on their own, as an easy healthy side dish for dinner. But of course you can spice them up with a dipping sauce! Here are a few we’d recommend:

Serving these fries

These carrot fries are a fantastic healthy side dish to complete a meal. They’d be perfect with all sorts of dinner ideas — here are a few of our top choices:

This carrot fries recipe is…

Vegetarian, vegan, plant-based, dairy-free, and gluten-free.

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Carrot fries

Carrot Fries (Ranch Seasoned!)


1 Star2 Stars3 Stars4 Stars5 Stars (5 votes, average: 5.00 out of 5)

  • Author: Sonja Overhiser
  • Prep Time: 10 minutes
  • Cook Time: 25 minutes
  • Total Time: 35 minutes
  • Yield: 4
  • Diet: Vegan

Description

These carrot fries are full of big flavor, sprinkled with ranch seasoning and baked until lightly crispy! Everyone will ask for the recipe.


Ingredients

  • 2 pounds carrots, medium to large
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon onion powder
  • 1 teaspoon dried dill
  • 1 teaspoon dried parsley
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt, plus more for sprinkling
  • 2 tablespoons cornstarch
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • Finely chopped fresh parsley, for serving (optional)

Instructions

  1. Preheat the oven to 425 degrees Fahrenheit.
  2. Peel the carrots. Cut the carrots into thin fries: slice off the ends, then square off each of the sides to make a rectangular box shape. Cut into 3/8-inch wide slices, then cut the slices into strips. 
  3. Place the fries in a large bowl. Mix the garlic powder, onion powder, dried dill, dried parsley, salt, and cornstarch in a small bowl. Drizzle the carrots with the olive oil, then add the spices and cornstarch. Mix thoroughly to combine.
  4. Line two baking sheets with parchment paper. Spread the fries on the paper, placing them as far apart as possible. 
  5. Bake 12 minutes on one side, then flip the fries and bake 12 to 17 additional minutes until the fries are dry and slightly browned; watch them carefully as the cooking time can depend on the thickness and the heat of your oven. Thinner fries will turn out crispier than larger fries (you’ll likely have some variation).
  6. Cool a few minutes, then serve immediately. (Note: Fries are best right out of the oven; they become softer as they sit.)

  • Category: Side Dish
  • Method: Baked
  • Cuisine: American

Keywords: Carrot fries

A Couple Cooks - Healthy, Whole Food, & Vegetarian Recipes

Portobello Vegan Pot Roast

Vegan Pot Roast is a hearty, filling and comforting dinner for any day of the week. It is a one-pot meal that it is easy to make especially meatless. The variety of veggies as well as the large portobello mushroom caps will make it as a full course mea…

Vegan Pot Roast is a hearty, filling and comforting dinner for any day of the week. It is a one-pot meal that it is easy to make especially meatless. The variety of veggies as well as the large portobello mushroom caps will make it as a full course meal for the whole family.  So let’s...

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The post Portobello Vegan Pot Roast appeared first on My Pure Plants.

Easy Broccoli Cheddar Soup

If ever there was a meal-worthy soup, it would be Broccoli Cheddar! This bowl full of colorful, chunky vegetables and a super thick cheesy “broth” are sure to leave you warm, happy, and satisfied. Unlike some broccoli cheddar soups, my Broccoli Cheddar Soup doesn’t use heavy cream and is ever so slightly lighter on the […]

The post Easy Broccoli Cheddar Soup appeared first on Budget Bytes.

If ever there was a meal-worthy soup, it would be Broccoli Cheddar! This bowl full of colorful, chunky vegetables and a super thick cheesy “broth” are sure to leave you warm, happy, and satisfied. Unlike some broccoli cheddar soups, my Broccoli Cheddar Soup doesn’t use heavy cream and is ever so slightly lighter on the cheese, so you still get all that creamy, cheesy goodness without feeling totally weighed down. But, you can always add more cheese if you’d like. #norules This soup is so dang easy I’m sure it’s going to go into my regular rotation!

Three bowls of Broccoli Cheddar Soup with saltine crackers on the side

Smaller Batch for No Leftovers

Most of my soup recipes are big batch so you can freeze the leftovers and stock your freezer with all that goodness, but this Broccoli Cheddar Soup is the exception. Cheese sauces (and in this case broths) thickened with butter and flour roux don’t tend to hold up to freezing and thawing, so I made this a small batch soup so you don’t have to worry about having too many leftovers. This recipe makes four generous servings.

How Long Does Broccoli Cheddar Soup Keep?

As mentioned above, you don’t want to freeze this soup, but it will stay good in your fridge for 4-5 days. And boy are the leftovers ever DELICIOUS. They reheat beautifully in the microwave, or can be reheated on the stove top over medium-low heat, stirring often.

What to Serve with Broccoli Cheddar Soup

This super thick, cheesy “broth” is just begging for some crackers or thick crusty bread for scooping up every last drop. I love saltine crackers with mine, but oyster crackers would be awesome, as would my focaccia rolls

Can I Use Frozen Broccoli?

Yes, frozen broccoli works quite well for this recipe. I do suggest letting them thaw completely before adding them to the soup, and you probably will still want to chop them into much smaller pieces (think bite-sized, fits-on-a-spoon small).

Make it Vegetarian

I used chicken broth as the base for my soup because it tends to be a little more on the mild side and the light color doesn’t overshadow the orange color of the cheese, but you can use vegetable broth instead to make this soup vegetarian. Just be aware that it tends to have a stronger flavor and the darker color may darken your soup. 

CLose up of a ladle full of broccoli cheddar soup

 
Overhead view of a bowl of broccoli cheddar soup with saltine crackers

Broccoli Cheddar Soup

This super easy Broccoli Cheddar Soup is chock full of colorful, chunky vegetables in a rich and cheesy broth for a totally meal-worthy soup.
Total Cost $4.97 recipe / $1.24 serving
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 40 minutes
Total Time 50 minutes
Servings 4 2 cups each
Calories 426.2kcal
Author Beth - Budget Bytes

Ingredients

  • 1 yellow onion $0.52
  • 1 lb. broccoli $1.49
  • 2 carrots $0.23
  • 4 Tbsp butter $0.52
  • 4 Tbsp all-purpose flour $0.04
  • 2 cups chicken broth $0.24
  • 2 cups whole milk $0.75
  • 1/2 tsp smoked paprika $0.05
  • 1/4 tsp garlic powder $0.02
  • 1/4 tsp freshly cracked black pepper $0.02
  • 1/8 tsp cayenne pepper $0.02
  • 6 oz. sharp cheddar, shredded $1.27

Instructions

  • Dice the onion. Chop the broccoli into very small pieces. Peel and slice the carrots.
  • Add the butter and onion to a large soup pot and sauté over medium until the onions are soft and translucent. Add the flour and continue to sauté for about 2 minutes more, or until the flour is coating the bottom of the pot and is a light golden brown color.
  • Add the chicken broth and whisk to dissolve all the flour off the bottom of the pot. Turn the heat up to medium-high and, while stirring often, allow the broth to come up to a simmer. When it reaches a simmer it will thicken to a gravy consistency.
  • Turn the heat back down to medium and whisk in the milk, smoked paprika, garlic powder, black pepper, and cayenne pepper. Allow the broth to come back up to a simmer.
  • Add the chopped broccoli and carrots, allow the broth to come back up to a simmer, and continue to simmer the vegetables, stirring often, for 15 minutes, or until the carrots are tender.
  • Finally, turn the heat down to medium-low and stir the shredded cheese into the soup, one handful at a time, until it is fully melted. Taste the soup and add salt if needed (this will depend on the salt content of your broth—I did not add any).

Nutrition

Serving: 2cups | Calories: 426.2kcal | Carbohydrates: 22.43g | Protein: 16.65g | Fat: 30g | Sodium: 949.73mg | Fiber: 2.55g

Scroll down for the step by step photos!

Overhead view of a bowl of broccoli cheddar soup with saltine crackers

How to Make Broccoli Cheddar Soup – Step by Step Photos

Chopped broccoli

Dice one yellow onion, finely chop one pound of broccoli, and peel and slice two carrots. I’m showing a photo of the broccoli so you can see how fine you want the pieces. I might even go a smidge smaller on the broccoli next time. You want the pieces small enough to easily fit on a spoon!

Sautéed onion and butter, flour being added to the pot

Add the onion and 4 Tbsp butter to a large soup pot and sauté over medium heat until the onions are soft and translucent. Add 4 Tbsp all-purpose flour and continue to sauté for about 2 minutes more, or until the flour is coating the bottom of the pot and has turned a light golden brown color.

Chicken broth being whisked into the pot

Whisk 2 cups chicken broth into the pot, making sure to dissolve all the flour off the bottom of the pot. Turn the heat up to medium-high and while stirring often, allow the broth to come up to a simmer, at which point it will thicken into a gravy consistency.

Whisk in milk and spices

Turn the heat back down to medium. Whisk 2 cups milk, ½ tsp smoked paprika, ¼ tsp garlic powder, ¼ tsp black pepper, and ⅛ tsp cayenne pepper into the thickened broth. Allow the broth to come back up to a simmer.

Chopped vegetables added to the pot

Add the chopped broccoli and sliced carrots to the pot. Allow it to come back up to a simmer, then continue to simmer the vegetables, stirring often, for 15 minutes, or until the carrots are tender.

Simmered vegetables in the soup

You can test a piece of carrot or broccoli to make sure it’s to your desired tenderness. If not, simmer a bit longer. The soup doesn’t even have any cheese in it yet, but it already looks so good!

Shredded Cheese added to the soup

Finally, add 6 oz. of shredded sharp cheddar, one handful at a time, until it is fully melted into the soup. I stopped at 6oz. (¾ of an 8oz. block), but you could always add the remaining 2oz. if you prefer.

Finished broccoli cheddar soup being stirred

And that’s a wrap! Taste your soup and see if you want to add any additional salt. This will mostly depend on the salt content of your chicken broth. I did not add any, but if your soup is tasting a little bland, a little salt can go a long way toward making the flavors pop!

Side view of broccoli cheddar soup in the pot with the ladle

Soooo thick and cheesy!! 😍

Three bowls of broccoli cheddar soup with saltines on the side

The post Easy Broccoli Cheddar Soup appeared first on Budget Bytes.

Slow Cooker Hamburger Stew

Y’all. I am SO ready for sweater weather and cozy slow cooker stews! To kick the season off, I made this super simple Slow Cooker Hamburger Stew this week. It’s nothing fancy, it’s just simple, good, comforting food! I love the simplicity of this dish and the flexibility. It’s the perfect thing to have simmering […]

The post Slow Cooker Hamburger Stew appeared first on Budget Bytes.

Y’all. I am SO ready for sweater weather and cozy slow cooker stews! To kick the season off, I made this super simple Slow Cooker Hamburger Stew this week. It’s nothing fancy, it’s just simple, good, comforting food! I love the simplicity of this dish and the flexibility. It’s the perfect thing to have simmering away on the weekend as you do your chores or relax and enjoy watching the changing of the seasons. :)

Overhead view of a bowl of slow cooker hamburger stew with bread on the side

What’s in Hamburger Stew?

Hamburger stew is very similar to traditional beef stew, but it’s made with ground beef instead of stew meat. Using ground beef is a little bit less expensive than using stew meat, and I like how you get a little bit of beef in every bite! 

In addition to the beef we have a medley of fresh vegetables (carrots, onions, potatoes, peas), beef broth, herbs and spices, plus a little Worcestershire sauce and soy sauce to zhuzh it up a bit. It’s incredibly simple, but creates that beautifully subtle slow stewed flavor.

Why Brown The Hamburger First?

For this Hamburger Stew I browned the ground beef in a skillet before adding it to the slow cooker. I did this for two reasons. One, to render off some of the fat. I used 15% fat ground beef and there was quite a bit that needed to be drained away (I actually tested this recipe once without draining the fat and it just ended up far too oily). The second reason is that you get a nice browning (maillard reaction) on the beef in the dry environment of a skillet that you do not get in the wet environment of a slow cooker. So you’ll get just a little bit more flavor with this extra step!

Can I Use Different Vegetables?

Yes! Stews are very flexible. If you don’t like one of the vegetables listed, go ahead and skip it. Just keep in mind that the potatoes do help thicken the stew, so if you skip the potatoes you’ll have more of a soup texture. Other great vegetables to use in beef stew include:

  • mushrooms
  • pearl onions
  • parsnips
  • turnips
  • rutabagas
  • sweet potatoes
  • winter squash (acorn, butternut, pumpkin)

What Are Stewed Tomatoes?

This recipe calls for stewed tomatoes, which are a variety of canned tomatoes that are popular in the U.S. (example: Hunts stewed tomatoes). These tomatoes are cooked with seasonings and a little bit of sugar to give them the slightest sweetness. Stewed tomatoes add a little extra special unique flavor to the broth of this stew. While you can use diced tomatoes if stewed tomatoes are not available, this substitution will slightly change the flavor of the stew.

How Long Is Hamburger Stew Good?

After cooking the hamburger stew, I suggest dividing it into single portions (so that it cools faster) and refrigerating it right away. It will stay good in the refrigerator for 4-5 days, or it can be transferred to the freezer for longer storage (about 3 months). This stew is a great item to have stashed in your freezer for busy nights! It can be reheated quickly in the microwave, or slowly over medium-low heat in a pot on the stove.

Slow cooker hamburger stew in a ladle over the slow cooker

 
Overhead view of a bowl full of slow cooker hamburger stew with bread and a spoon on the side

Slow Cooker Hamburger Stew

This super easy Slow Cooker Hamburger Stew is simple, comforting food at its best. And the leftovers are even better the next day!
Total Cost $9.88 recipe / $1.65 serving
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 4 hours 15 minutes
Total Time 4 hours 30 minutes
Servings 6 1.5 cups each
Calories 348.27kcal
Author Beth - Budget Bytes

Ingredients

  • 2 lbs. russet potatoes $1.20
  • 1/2 lb. carrots (about 4 carrots) $0.45
  • 1 yellow onion 0.32
  • 2 cloves garlic $0.16
  • ½ tsp dried rosemary $0.05
  • ½ tsp dried thyme $0.05
  • 1/4 tsp freshly cracked black pepper $0.02
  • 1 lb. ground beef $5.69
  • 1 15oz. can stewed tomatoes $1.00
  • 2 cups beef broth $0.26
  • 2 Tbsp Worcestershire sauce $0.02
  • 1 Tbsp soy sauce $0.06
  • 1 cup frozen peas $0.60

Instructions

  • Peel and dice the potatoes into 1-inch cubes. Peel and slice the carrots. Dice the onion and mince the garlic. Add the potatoes, carrots, onion, garlic, rosemary, thyme, and pepper to a slow cooker (4 quarts or larger).
  • Brown the ground beef in a skillet, then drain off the excess fat. Add the browned and drained beef to the slow cooker along with the can of stewed tomatoes (with juices). Finally, add the beef broth, Worcestershire sauce, and soy sauce to the slow cooker.
  • Give the contents of the slow cooker a brief stir to make sure everything is evenly combined (the broth may not fully cover the other ingredients). Place the lid on the slow cooker and cook on high for four hours, or low for eight hours.
  • After cooking on high for four hours or low for eight hours, remove the lid and stir the stew. Use the back of a spoon to slightly mash some of the potatoes, which will help thicken the stew.
  • Add the frozen peas (no need to thaw) and stir to combine into the stew. Taste the stew and add extra salt if needed (I did not add any, this will depend on the salt content of your beef broth). Serve hot with bread for dipping!

Nutrition

Serving: 1.5cups | Calories: 348.27kcal | Carbohydrates: 41.42g | Protein: 20.15g | Fat: 11.83g | Sodium: 751.72mg | Fiber: 5.07g

Scroll down for the step by step photos!

Try These Other Stew Recipes:

Front view of Hamburger Stew in the slow cooker

How to Make Slow Cooker Hamburger Stew – Step by Step Photos

Vegetables herbs and spices in the slow cooker

Peel and dice 2 lbs. of potatoes into 1-inch pieces. Peel and slice ½ lb. carrots (about 4 carrots). Dice one onion and mince two cloves of garlic. Add the potatoes, carrots, onion, and garlic to a slow cooker along with ½ tsp dried rosemary, ½ tsp dried tyme, and ¼ tsp freshly cracked pepper.

Browned ground beef and stewed tomatoes added to slow cooker

Brown one pound of ground beef and drain off the excess fat. Add the browned ground beef to the slow cooker along with one 15oz. can of stewed tomatoes (with the juices).

Beef broth Worcestershire sauce and soy sauce added to slow cooker

Add 2 cups beef broth, 2 Tbsp Worcestershire sauce, and 1 Tbsp soy sauce to the slow cooker.

Slow cooker ready to be turned on

Give the contents of the slow cooker a brief stir to combine. The broth will not fully cover the meat and vegetables, but that’s okay. The vegetables will release more moisture and increase the broth as they cook. Place the lid on the slow cooker and cook on high for four hours or low for eight hours.

Cooked hamburger stew in the slow cooker

After cooking on high for four hours or low for eight hours, it will look like this. Give it a good stir and smash some of the potatoes against the side of the slow cooker. The smashed potatoes will help thicken the broth into a nice hearty stew.

Frozen peas being added to the slow cooker

Stir one cup of frozen peas into the slow cooker (they’ll thaw and heat within a minute or so). 

Finished slow cooker hamburger stew in the slow cooker

Give the hamburger stew a final taste and adjust the salt to your liking. I didn’t need to add any because the broth I use (Better than Bouillon) has a decent amount, but if your broth has less sodium you may find that a pinch of salt at the end helps the flavors pop!

Slow Cooker Hamburger stew in a bowl with a spoon lifting a bite

Serve the hamburger stew immediately or refrigerate until ready to eat (but I don’t know how you’ll resist having a bowl after smelling that cooking all day!).

The post Slow Cooker Hamburger Stew appeared first on Budget Bytes.