Slow Cooker Beef and Bean Stew

Crock pot beef and bean stew
Diana Rattray
Prep: 15 mins
Cook: 8 hrs
Total: 8 hrs 15 mins
Servings: 6 servings
Nutrition Facts (per serving)
589 Calories
14g Fat
66g Carbs
55g Protein
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Nutrition Facts
Servings: 6
Amount per serving
Calories 589
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 14g 18%
Saturated Fat 4g 21%
Cholesterol 112mg 37%
Sodium 850mg 37%
Total Carbohydrate 66g 24%
Dietary Fiber 20g 72%
Total Sugars 13g
Protein 55g
Vitamin C 72mg 362%
Calcium 186mg 14%
Iron 8mg 46%
Potassium 1786mg 38%
*The % Daily Value (DV) tells you how much a nutrient in a food serving contributes to a daily diet. 2,000 calories a day is used for general nutrition advice.
(Nutrition information is calculated using an ingredient database and should be considered an estimate.)

This is a flavorful slow cooker beef stew with beans. It's a delicious and hearty meal your family will enjoy.

Like many stews, this one is versatile. If there is a vegetable your family isn't fond of, simply omit it or replace it with another one. Green beans, diced rutabaga, and potatoes are good additions. Or add more tender vegetables—such as frozen peas, fresh sliced zucchini, or chopped spinach—about an hour before the stew is ready.

The stew calls for canned pinto beans, but, for extra color, a combination of pinto beans and black beans is an excellent alternative. Or use whatever canned beans you happen to have in the pantry. 

Add a skillet of freshly baked cornbread and a tossed salad, and you'll have an enjoyable and satisfying family meal. 


  • 1 1/2 pounds beef chuck

  • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil

  • 3 tablespoons all-purpose flour

  • 1 large onion

  • 3 stalks celery

  • 3 medium carrots, about 1 cup sliced or diced

  • 1 medium green bell pepper

  • 1 medium red bell pepper

  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt, or to taste

  • 1 teaspoon Cajun seasoning, or seasoning salt

  • 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

  • 2 (15-ounce) cans pinto beans

  • 1 (10.5-ounce) can condensed beef broth, or homemade beef stock

  • 2 (14.5-ounce) cans diced tomatoes

  • 1 cup corn, canned or frozen

Steps to Make It

  1. Cut the beef into 1/2-inch pieces. Transfer the beef to a bag and add the flour. Shake to coat thoroughly.

  2. Heat the olive oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add the beef pieces; cook until the beef is well browned, stirring frequently. The caramelized crust on the outside of the seared beef gives the stew color, texture, and deeper flavor.

  3. Meanwhile, peel and chop the onion into 1/4-inch dice. Slice the celery and carrots, and chop the bell peppers.

  4. Drain the beans in a colander and rinse them briefly with tap water.

  5. In a 4-quart or 6-quart slow cooker, combine the chopped onions, sliced celery, carrots, green and red bell pepper, seasonings, beans, beef broth or stock, tomatoes, and the browned beef.

  6. Cover the pot and cook on high for 4 to 5 hours, or on low for 8 to 10 hours.

  7. Add corn kernels about 1 hour before serving time, if desired.

Kitchen Notes

  • Tough yet lean beef makes the best beef stew. The connective tissue in the tougher cuts breaks down over the long period of cooking, making the beef melt-in-your-mouth tender. Plus, it's much easier on the budget.
  • Lean pot roasts, such as chuck, chuck arm, bottom round, or rump, or beef labeled "lean stewing beef" are excellent choices. Short ribs are another good beef for stewing.
  • If you use a fattier beef, plan to skim the excess fat before serving. Stay away from beef eye of round, sirloin, and tenderloin; the longer they are cooked, the tougher they get.