“This is really comfort food at its best!”
If the falling temperatures have you craving a bowl of warm comfort, we have the perfect remedy: our Cowboy Stew recipe. Tested and approved by our Allrecipes Test Kitchen, Texas Cowboy Stew is the hearty, filling meal we’ll be relying on all winter long—and best of all, it comes together in just one pot.
This classic stew recipe is made extra satisfying with the addition of both ground beef and kielbasa sausage and calls on several canned goods for added convenience. Plus, it’s spiced with a blend of chili powder, cumin, and black pepper for savory heat—because would it even be a ‘cowboy’ recipe without a good kick?
This three-step recipe is a simple solution for large family dinners, especially in the chilly months. “Makes enough to feed a herd…of Texas cowboys,” says user dimas. Even if you don’t have a herd to feed, you’ll score dinner for the next few days (and it tastes even better leftover!).
“Everyone loved it and my daughter put dibs on the leftovers before anyone even finished their meal. High praise, let me tell you!!,” raves Susie O.
What Is Cowboy Stew?
Cowboy stew, or campfire stew, is a hearty, one-pot meal with roots in old cowboy or pioneer cooking methods. It’s traditionally a tomato-based medley of meat, beans, and potatoes cooked in a large pot over an open fire. It’s the type of dish that was born out of necessity, but also one that provides ample comfort after a long day of work or traveling.
Luckily, we live in a day in age with more kitchen comforts, so you can forgo the campfire for a Crock-Pot—but that doesn’t mean the dish won’t have just as much rustic charm. Plus, as the recipe states, “the longer it cooks, the better it gets.”
How Is Cowboy Stew Different From Chili?
Believe it or not, this stew is even heartier than chili. Yes, it has the standard meat, bean, and tomato base, but cowboy stew also includes potatoes and mixed veggies that make it extra filling and nutritious. Not to mention, the kielbasa sausage kicks everything up a notch.
This mixture of meats and vegetables is easily customizable, and you can use whatever you have on hand; Swap in leeks for onions, frozen corn for canned, or ground turkey for ground beef. You can even top it with shredded cheese for extra richness.
Now, do we really think cowboys were sitting around chucking corn into a stock pot? Probably not. But we’ll happily romanticize the idea of a dinner that has its roots in the American Southwest.
How to Make Cowboy Stew
You’ll want to use the largest Dutch oven or stock pot you have on hand—this recipe serves a lot! You can brown the beef in a large skillet, but if you want to keep all preparation in one pot, cook the ground beef directly in your pot.
Cook the meat over medium-high heat until it's starting to crumble, then add the sliced sausage, onion, and garlic and continue cooking until the beef is browned. Then, drain any excess grease.
After reducing the heat to medium-low, add water, corn, pinto beans, diced tomatoes, diced tomatoes with chile peppers, and mixed vegetables. Then, stir in potatoes, cumin, chili powder, salt, and pepper. Cover the pot and let simmer for at least an hour, stirring occasionally as it becomes more fragrant.
“This is really comfort food at its best! You get to smell the wonderful aromas while it's getting better and better,” writes Allrecipes community member Vicki Page.
Some users like adding cayenne pepper, Worcestershire, or liquid smoke to amp up the savory notes, but others love the recipe exactly as written.
“Excellent! Delicious, quick, easy, cheap, perfect for tiny taste buds (10-month-old and twin toddlers), and hungry men! Definitely passing this one along to friends,” says user melissa.
So whether you’re preparing to do some campfire cooking, or you just want to make a warm, cozy dinner that tastes great after a long day, this classic meal will help you embrace your inner cowboy (or cowgirl).
Get the Recipe: Texas Cowboy Stew
Read the original article on All Recipes.