Wow, what a crazy few days here in Oklahoma. The freezing rain that has taken down many trees and power lines in the metro area and left so many without electricity has really wrecked some serious havoc. I can’t think of a better meal for these cold days than beef stew. It’s so filling, comforting, and when you make it fresh (not from a can) it can really pack layers of great flavor.
I was able to adapt the Beef Stew recipe from Autumn Calabrese’s 21 Day Fix Cookbook, Fixate, to create the following slow cooker recipe. With busy family schedules, I turn many recipes into slow cooker friendly recipes. There is nothing better than a balanced, 21 Day Fix approved meal ready in your slow cooker once you get home from work.
Ingredients – Beef Stew
1 tsp olive oil
1 lb. 10 oz raw lean beef stew meat
1 medium onion chopped
2 medium carrot, sliced
1 medium celery stalks, chopped
4 cloves garlic, finely chopped
8 cups low-sodium beef broth, divided
1/2 cup red wine
1/4 tsp sea salt
1 tsp ground black pepper
3 bay leaves
1 can diced tomatoes
2 large sweet potatoes or parsnips, cut into 1 in cubes
Directions – Beef Stew
Heat oil in large saucepan over medium-high heat
Add stew meat; cook, stirring frequently, for 4 to 5 minutes, or until browned
Add onion and celery; cook stirring occasionally, for 5 to 6 minutes, or until onion is translucent.
Add garlic; cook stirring frequently, for 1 minute.
Add 1 cup broth and wine; cook, stirring constantly scraping bottom of pan so beef doesn’t stick, for 5 to 8 minutes, or until liquid is reduced in half.
Place contents of saucepan into slow cooker. Top with salt, pepper, bay leaves, carrots, tomatoes, sweet potatoes, and remaining broth.
Cook in slow cooker on low for 8 hours or high for 5 hours
This whole eating clean thing has been pretty easy all week. But now the weekend arrives and you’re about to partake in one of the best fall pastimes Oklahoma has to offer. You’re heading to a tailgate for your favorite Oklahoma football team. Here are a few simple tips so you can enjoy the tailgate and not derail all of the hard work you’ve put in the previous week.
Never Arrive Hungry – Showing up to a tailgate with an empty belly only spells disaster. I know it sounds counterintuitive but if you fill up with a healthy snack before you leave the house you’ll be far less likely to over indulge in the beautiful glorious junk at the tailgate that will ultimately make you FEEL junkie. So make sure you eat a snake that contains a protein and a complex carbohydrate before leaving the house. Something like turkey and a whole grain cracker or a protein shake like Shakeology with fruit blended in.
Hydrate, Hydrate, Hydrate – You’re at a tailgate. You and I both know you’re likely to indulge in an adult beverage or two. Make sure to alternate water with your beer, wine, or cocktail. This will cut down on alcohol consumption and empty calorie intake as well as keep you hydrated. Besides no one like that sloppy fan.
Focus on Lean Protein – God bless a good tailgate that offers delicious protein packed foods such as lean beef, poultry, and beans. Try to avoid the refined carbs that go along with those proteins such as the white buns. And don’t be fooled by imposters like the processed meats such as hotdogs and cold cuts.
BYOV – Tailgates are not really known for their wide range of vegetable selections. So Bring Your Own Veggies.You can disguise your veggies as a delightful salad side dish like this Classic Cucumber & Tomato Salad from Skinny Ms. Since most people steer away from the veggies anyway, there’ll be plenty left for you to fill up on.
Pick Your Favorite – You’ve done so well with sticking to your plan and then… the desserts get rolled out. If you MUST have a sweet, there’s really no need to sample all of them. Zero in on your favorite of the options and allow yourself to indulge in one.
Good! You’ve navigated your way through the tailgate. Now go cheer on your team and burn some calories with all that jumping, screaming, and high-fiving.