Pinterest or your favorite recipe website will reveal that the slow cooker is back –it’s a phenomenon! And why not? Slow cooking is simple and convenient, and takes the hard work out of putting together a meal the whole family will love. After all, the secret to a great meal is less time in the kitchen and more time around the table with your loved ones. Check out some of our favorite slow cooker recipes you can enjoy this fall.
Let’s start with the epitome of comfort food - After-Work Beef Pot Roast Dinner or Sweet Onion & Pepper Beef Sandwiches with Au Jus. Throw all your ingredients in before you take off for the day and you’ll have a tasty meal patiently waiting for you when you get home. Just because you didn’t slave over it for hours doesn’t mean it wasn’t made with love!
And you can never go wrong with a little heat, especially when there’s a chill in the air. Our Chilly Day Beef Chili will warm you up on those cooler days. Or how about our Chipotle-Braised Short Ribs and Asian Sweet & Spicy Ribs for the perfect amount of sweet, spicy and savory.
Finally, go on a flavor adventure any night of the week with our Moroccan Beef & Sweet Potato Stew or Filipino-Style Beef Stew with Squash and Green Beans.
Here’s a tip from our test kitchen: make your dish stand out from the rest by browning your beef in a skillet before adding it to the slow cooker! And here’s another tip from our resident RD, Shelley Johnson: the protein in these beef dishes will help keep you feeling fuller and more satisfies since one 3-oz serving has nearly 50% of your recommended Daily Value.
umami (pronounced ü-'mä-me). This savory-like flavor is oftentimes called the fifth taste, alongside sweet, sour, bitter and salty. We just call it delicious! And in honor of National Mushroom Month—another umami-rich food—we’re serving up our favorite beef and mushroom combos!
Fire up the grill (and your taste buds!) with savory grilled Strip Steaks, mushrooms, lemons and feta in the form of our Grecian Beef Strip Steaks & Mushroom Kabobs. Or try our Grilled Flat Iron Steaks with Pistachio-Mushroom Rice, the perfect balance of juicy steak and flavorful, earthy rice.
Delicious doesn’t have to be time consuming! You can enjoy lots of umami goodness in 30 minutes or less with Beef Sirloin Pasta Portobello or Skillet Steaks with Sautéed Wild Mushrooms. And, really, what’s better than a quick and convenient dinner after a busy day?
Finally, for those that like their umami in the form of hearty comfort food, Braised Short Ribs with Red Wine Sauce and Country Style Ribs with Rustic Fire-Roasted Tomato Sauce are sure to do the trick!
Fun fact: you can also get umami from a variety of other foods, including tomatoes, soy and soybeans, Parmesan cheese and potatoes, to name a few.
Let’s start with a few kid favorites: tacos and pizza! Serve ‘em up Confetti Beef Tacos for a mini fiesta mid-week. Or how about pizza with a nutritional twist (Pizza with Purpose, if you will)? With a blend of your choice of veggies mixed right into the pizza sauce (we like broccoli, cauliflower and carrots!) and topped with protein packed Ground Beef, you've got yourself an easy and totally irresistible pizza you can feel good about serving your family.
Don’t worry – we’ve got adult favorites, too…and we’re pretty sure the kids will also love them. Quick and easy one-skillet-wonders like our Beef & Asparagus Pasta Toss and Beef & Vegetable Fried Rice will definitely win the admiration of the entire family. And our South of the Border Beef Hash only requires five ingredients, most of which you probably already have in your pantry!
research around beef’s role in a healthy diet, and ways your readers can take action toward a healthier heart.
Contrary to popular belief, research shows that including lean beef, even daily as part of a heart-healthy diet and lifestyle, can help improve cholesterol levels.1 The BOLD (Beef in an Optimal Lean Diet) study demonstrated that when adding lean beef to the most recommended heart-healthy diet, it lowered heart disease risk by reducing levels of total and LDL “bad” cholesterol.1 The study’s authors concluded that the results of the BOLD study provide convincing evidence that lean beef can be included in a heart-healthy diet that meets current dietary recommendations and reduces cardiovascular disease risk.
You may also be surprised to learn that beef contributes 10 percent or less of saturated fat and total fat to the American diet.2 And about half the fatty acids found in beef are monounsaturated fatty acids3, the same kind found in olive oil and avocados. A study published in the Journal of Human Hypertension also shows that including lean beef, even daily, as part of a dietary pattern rich in fruits, vegetables and low-fat dairy, can reduce risk factors for heart disease, including elevated cholesterol and blood pressure.1
Additionally, many researchers have now begun to reevaluate the role of saturated fats in heart disease. A recent review of more than 70 clinical studies raised questions about current guidelines related to fat intake, which generally restrict the consumption of saturated fats and encourage consumption of polyunsaturated fats to prevent heart disease.4
And now it’s easier than ever to incorporate lean beef into meal plans for the week! Especially when you consider that favorite cuts like Strip Steak, Top Sirloin and 93% lean Ground Beef are lean! Try a simple Beef Stir-Fry with Couscous or our Burger on a Salad Four Ways.
1. Roussell MA, Hill AM, Gaugler TL, Trent LG, West SG, Ulbrecht JS, Vanden Heuvel JP, Gillies PJ, and Kris-Etherton PM. Effects of a DASH-like diet containing lean beef on vascular health. Journal of Human Hypertension 2014. [Accepted, not yet published]
2. Zanovec M, O'Neil CE, Keast DR, Fulgoni VL 3rd, Nicklas TA. Lean beef contributes significant amounts of key nutrients to the diets of US adults: National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey 1999-2004. Nutr Res 2010;30:375-81.
3. U.S. Department of Agriculture, Agricultural Research Service, USDA Nutrient Data Laboratory. 2013. USDA National Nutrient Database for Standard Reference, Release 26. Available at: http://www.nal.usda.gov/fnic/foodcomp/search/.
4. Chowdhury R, Warnakula S. Association of dietary, circulating, and supplement fatty acids with coronary risk: A systematic review and meta-analysis. Ann of Intern Med 2014;160:398-406.
Beef's versatile flavors and preparation methods lend themselves to every season. Turn to us to get a jump start on the latest seasonal flavors and culinary trends, and be sure to check in for special calendar markers such as the summer grilling season. We'll inspire you with recipes that make the most of farmers' markets, home gardens and cooking methods that fit the season. Whether you’re planning a summer grilling story in December or an après-ski menu in August, we can help set your editorial table.