You all. I’m SO ready for cozy stews and sweater weather! To kick off the season this week, I made a super easy Slow Cooker Hamburger Stew. This is a simple, delicious, and comforting meal. The flexibility and simplicity of the dish are lovely. This ground beef stew will keep you warm on a weekend while doing your chores or just relaxing and watching the seasons change. 

What’s in hamburger stew?

The recipe resembles beef stew but uses ground beef instead of stew meat. Using ground beef is cheaper than stew meat, and you get more beef per bite.

We also add a variety of vegetables, including carrots, onions and potatoes. Then we add some herbs, spices, and beef broth. Finally, we add a little soy sauce and Worcestershire sauce to spice it up. This recipe is incredibly easy yet creates the most delicious slow-cooked flavor.

Why do you brown the hamburger first?

In order to make this Hamburger Stew, I browned the ground beef first in a skillet and then added it to the slow cooker. This was done for two reasons. First, I did this to remove some of the excess fat. The first reason was to drain some of the fat. I had used ground beef with 15% fat, and quite a lot needed to be removed. Second, you can get a nice browning on the beef ( Maillard reaction ) in a dry environment like a skillet. This is not possible in a wet environment such as a slow cooker. This extra step will give you a bit more flavor!

Can I use different vegetables?

Yes! Stews can be made in many different ways. You can skip any of the listed vegetables if you dislike them. You will have a more soup-like texture if you don’t like potatoes. You can also use the following vegetables in your beef stew:

What are STEWED tomatoes?

This recipe uses stewed tomatoes, a type of canned tomatoes popular in the U.S. The tomatoes are cooked in seasonings with some sugar and other ingredients to make them sweeter. The stew broth is enhanced by adding a unique flavor from stewed tomatoes. If the stewed tomato is unavailable, you can substitute diced tomatoes, but this will change the taste of the stew.


This recipe for hamburger stew can be stored in the refrigerator immediately after cooking. The stew will keep in the fridge for about 4-5 days, or you can freeze it for up to 3 months. It’s a good idea to keep this stew in the freezer so you can have it on hand for those busy nights. You can reheat it quickly in the microwave or over medium heat in a saucepan on the stove.


2 lbs. russet potatoes ($1.20)

1/2 lb. Carrots (about four carrots) (0.45 cents).

1 Yellow Onion (0.32)

Buy 2 cloves of garlic for $0.16

Half a tsp of dried rosemary ($0.05).

Half a teaspoon of dried thyme (0.05 cents)

1/8 tsp freshly crushed black pepper ($0.02)

1 lb. Ground beef (5.69)

1 15oz. Can stewed tomatoes ($1.00).

2 cups beef broth (0.26)

2 Tbsp Worcestershire sauce ($0.02)

1 tbsp Soy Sauce ($0.06)

One cup of frozen peas is only $0.60


Peel the potatoes and cut them into cubes of 1 inch. Peel and slice carrots. Garlic and onion are minced. Add the carrots, potatoes, onions, garlic, rosemary, and thyme to a large slow cooker.

Drain the excess fat from the beef and brown it in a pan. Add the beef that has been browned, drained, and juiced to the slow cooker. Add the Worcestershire sauce, soy sauce, beef broth, and the can of stewed tomatoes (with juices) to the slow cooker.

Stir the contents of the slow cooker to ensure that everything is mixed evenly (the broth might not cover all ingredients). Put the lid on your slow cooker, and cook it on high or low for four hours.

Remove the lid after cooking the stew on low for 8 hours or high for 4 hours. You can use the back of a wooden spoon to mash some potatoes lightly. This will thicken the stew.

Stir in the frozen peas. No need to thaw. If you need more salt, taste the stew (I didn’t add any; this depends on the salt level of your beef stock). Serve with hot bread to dip in!

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