Slow Cooker Zaatar Beef Stew

There’s nothing better than warming up to a hearty bowl of beef stew on a crisp Autumn night.
When it comes to comfort food, beef stew reigns supreme. 
 Stewing meat is a cooking method that has been around since man invented fire.  It simply involves simmering meat, usually a tougher, less expensive cut, and a variety of vegetables in liquid for a long period of time.  In doing so, the meat breaks down and becomes incredibly tender while imparting the vegetables with its delectable flavor. 
We love using zaatar in unusual ways, and while it’s common to see the spice blend paired with beef or lamb, it’s not often you come across a stew recipe that calls for it. You may now ask what is zaatar? It's a Mediterranean spice mix with mainstay ingredients (if it's a reputable zaatar brand) of wild thyme (native to Middle East region that is in the mint herb family and is woodsy and aromatic), sumac which is lemony without the citrus acidity, and roasted sesame seeds that are smokey and nutty. Za'atar is a great way to add a delicious Mediterranean flair to just about any dish. It is also believed that the zaatar offers health benefits.

If you’ve never tried cooking with zaatar before, this recipe is a great excuse to buy some! We can't stress enough that it's important to choose a reputable zaatar brand that is honest about its ingredients with no unknown fillings and substitutes.

This recipe really is as simple as it comes. Chop your veggies, dump everything in your slow cooker, and enjoy not having to slave over a hot stove as your house fills with the satisfying aroma of beef stew!

 Slow Cooker Zaatar Beef Stew in a bowl and garnished with fresh parsely!

Slow Cooker Zaatar Beef Stew  

Prep Time: 15 mins, Cook Time: 6-8 hours, Total Time: 6-8 hours 
Servings: 4-6
Serving Size: About 1 ½ cups
Calories: 315, Fat: 5g, Protein: 32g, Carbs: 35g ,Fiber: 4g
 
Ingredients
1 pound beef stew meat, cut into ¾” – 1” pieces 
2 large carrots
2 celery stalks
1 yellow onion
5 cloves garlic
1 pound Yukon Gold potatoes, red skinned potatoes, or a combination of both (about 4 medium potatoes)
¼ cup all-purpose flour
1 tablespoon cornstarch
1 teaspoon sea salt
2 tablespoons Zaatar, divided
2 tablespoons tomato paste
4 cups low sodium beef broth

 

 Slow Cooker Zaatar Beef Stew step one through step five

Instructions

  1. Begin by prepping the vegetables – Peel the carrots and cut into ½” thick slices. Cut the celery into ½” slices.  Peel and dice the onion and garlic cloves.  Cut the potatoes into ½” chunks. 
  2. Add the flour, cornstarch, salt, 1 tablespoon zaatar, and beef to a large zip top bag, seal, and shake until the beef is well coated.
  3. Place the coated beef into the bottom of your slow cooker. Top with the chopped vegetables and sprinkle with the remaining tablespoon of zaatar. 
  4. Pour the beef broth over everything and stir in the tomato paste.
  5. Close the slow cooker and cook on low for 6-8 hours, until the beef is tender and the broth has thickened.
  6. Garnish with fresh parsley, if desired, and enjoy!

 Slow Cooker Zaatar Beef Stew served in a bowl and garnished with fresh parsley


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