Slow Cooker Cowboy Stew With Beef and Beans

Cowboy Stew
Cowboy Stew. Foodcollection/Getty Images
  • 6 hrs 20 mins
  • Prep: 10 mins,
  • Cook: 6 hrs 10 mins
  • Yield: 4 Servings
Ratings (10)

The name of this beef and bean stew makes it all the more appealing to kids. Who wouldn't want to sit down to a big bowl of "cowboy" stew? It's an excellent lunch dish, or make it for a quick and easy everyday supper with cornbread muffins or crusty rolls.

The slow cooker makes this especially easy, and it's perfect for a busy day when you have a thousand other things to do. 

This stew is easy and incredibly versatile. See the tips and variations and reader comments below the recipe for some substitutions and ideas for additional ingredients.

What You'll Need

  • 1 pound lean ground beef or ground chuck
  • 1 cup chopped onion
  • 1 green or red bell pepper, chopped, optional
  • 1 can (15 ounces) chili beans
  • 1 can (15 ounces) pork & beans
  • 1 can (12 to 15 ounces) cream-style corn
  • 1 large can (15 ounces tomato sauce

How to Make It

  1. In a skillet over medium heat, brown the ground beef with the onion and bell pepper. Cook, stirring, until the beef is no longer pink. Drain well.
  2. Combine the beef mixture in the slow cooker with the beans, cream-style corn, and tomato sauce; cover and cook on LOW for 5 to 8 hours.

Tips and Variations

  • Add some mild green chile peppers instead of or in addition to the red or green bell peppers.
  • Replace the cream-style corn with whole kernel corn.
  • Replace the chili beans with about 1/4 cup of broth, 2 teaspoons of chili powder, and pinto beans, small red beans, navy beans, or great northern beans.
  • One of the reviews I received noted some changes. She used diced steak and smoked sausage instead of the ground beef, so she was able to skip the browning step and throw everything into the crock pot.

Reader Comments

"Basic good fare--easy and quick. I started adding a small can of hatch green chilis for some zing, and instant barley (plus water) for heartiness." Wiz

"This stew was so good but I made a few revisions and it got even better!! I used steak instead of ground beef and added smoked sausage. It was wonderful!!! I even passed on the recipe to my co-workers and now everyone is making it! When you use diced steak you don't even have to brown it first...just throw everything into the crockpot and come back 8 hours later and dinner is ready! One co-worker added 1/2 cup of red wine too." P.F.

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Nutritional Guidelines (per serving)
Calories 981
Total Fat 29 g
Saturated Fat 11 g
Unsaturated Fat 12 g
Cholesterol 193 mg
Sodium 412 mg
Carbohydrates 93 g
Dietary Fiber 24 g
Protein 88 g
(The nutrition information on our recipes is calculated using an ingredient database and should be considered an estimate. Individual results may vary.)