September 27, 2021

Southwestern Beef Stew Recipe

Fall is here! And cooler weather makes me want to get out my cozy sweaters (with flip flops…I’m not ready for cold-cold!) and soup recipes. So we kicked off the first day of Fall this year with an old favorite, Southwestern Beef Stew (if you were a fan of The Mama Log, this was one of the most-loved recipes!).

Fall = back-to-school, which equals more running around, getting to practices and games and school events, and less time for making meals (no complaints here…I love that we’re able to do the run-around again #fingerscrossed #stupidCOVID). So you know that means the crock pot (and Instant Pot) being back on duty. This recipe needs a good 8 hours of cooking time, which makes it perfect to start in the morning and come home to in the evening. It’s also super easy and quick to throw together, making it a midweek dream of a recipe.

Bowl of southwestern stew with flour tortillas on the side, placed on a wooden cutting board

A few notes about the recipe:

  • If you’re in a super hurry in the morning, you can skip the sautéing of the onions and garlic…will still taste great, but if you do have the time please do it as it just gives it that little SOMETHING.
  • On the other hand if you’ve got a bit of extra time, give the steaks a little rubdown (mix a paste of minced garlic with a little cumin and salt, maybe a little cayenne if you’re feeling frisky), and sear the steaks in a medium-hot pan on both sides before you add them to the stew (do this prior to the onions…just remove the steaks after searing and proceed with the onion/garlic sauté).
  • It’s also great with potatoes added in, or one of my faves…hominy!
  • Garnish with a dollop of sour cream, fresh cilantro and sliced avocado. Shredded sharp cheddar is also a yum garnish for this.
  • Additional use: If you get a larger flank (or more than 1), scoop out the leftover meat and use it to make enchiladas!

Hope you enjoy! Make sure and let me know below if you try it.

Bowl of southwestern stew with flour tortillas on the side, placed on a wooden cutting board

Southwestern Beef Stew

Tracey French
An easy crock pot recipe for an easy beef stew with southwestern flair.
5 from 1 vote
Prep Time 30 minutes
Cook Time 8 hours
Resting Time 10 minutes
Total Time 8 hours 40 minutes
Course Main Course
Cuisine Southwestern
Servings 8 people


  • Crock Pot


  • 2 lbs. flank steak
  • 1 1/2 C. reduced-sodium chicken broth
  • 1/4 C. red wine vinegar
  • 1 T. olive or avocado oil
  • 1 lg. vidalia onion chopped
  • 1 lg. red bell pepper seeded/chopped
  • 1 lg. tomato seeded/chopped
  • 3 4 oz. cans chopped Hatch green chile or fresh/frozen if you can get it
  • 4-5 cloves minced garlic
  • 1 tsp. celery seed
  • 1 T. ground cumin
  • 1 tsp. sea salt
  • 1/2 tsp. freshly ground pepper
  • 1/4-1/2 C. packed fresh cilantro leaves, chopped
  • extra cilantro for garnish


  • Turn your slow cooker on to the 'high' setting.
  • Preheat a skillet over medium heat, add oil.
  • Once your oil is heated, add chopped onions and saute until translucent. Just before removing from heat, add your minced garlic and saute 30 seconds more.
  • Mix the broth, vinegar, celery seed, cumin, salt and pepper in your slow cooker and stir until the salt is dissolved. Add in the tomato, bell pepper, green chile and the onion and garlic mixture.
  • Trim your flank steak of any fat, then divide it into smaller sections (thirds or fourths). Add them to the cooker, making sure to at least mostly submerge the steaks (just scoop some of the veggie mixture onto the top of them).
  • Cover, turn the cooker down to the 'low' setting and cook until the meat is fork-tender, 7-8 hours.
  • Transfer the steaks to a cutting board, loosely cover with foil and let them rest for 10 minutes (they've had a hard day). Then shred the meat and return it to the slow cooker. Taste for additional seasoning (salt/pepper).
  • Just before serving stir in the cilantro. Serve it up and top with your favorite garnish! Wonderful when served with tortillas to scoop up that yummy meat, or homemade cornbread.
Keyword beef, crock pot, instant pot, southwestern, stew
Bowl of southwestern stew with flour tortillas on the side, placed on a wooden cutting board

One Comment

  1. 5 stars
    […] this recipe. In fact I’ve used leftover shredded flank steak from an extra large batch of my Southwestern Beef Stew and it’s pretty damn amazing (always love a steak and lime […]

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