This easy Slow Cooker Cowboy Stew is packed with flavor from the meat, sausage, veggies, beans, and spices. It’s a dump-and-go meal perfect for busy days, chilly weather, or when you need to feed a crowd.
This hearty stew is guaranteed to keep you full and satisfied. It’s just what you need to come home to after a full day of work, errands, or play. Thanks to your slow cooker, you can start enjoying it the second you open the door to your home because it will smell amazing! Everything will be cooked to hot and savory perfection, just waiting for you to dish it up!
Why You’ll Love This Recipe
- Minimal prep work
- Easy cleanup
- Uses simple pantry ingredients
- Can customize the meat and vegetables
- Its perfect for meal prep with leftovers
- Can also be made on the stovetop in less time
Ground Beef – I use lean for less fat.
Smoked Sausage – Use your favorite brand and level of spiciness. Slice it into bite-sized pieces to add to the stew.
Onion And Garlic – Chopped, for flavor.
Baby Potatoes – Cut them in half so they’ll be sure to become tender.
Pinto Beans – Canned and undrained
Corn – Canned. You can drain the corn or not. I’ve done it both ways.
Diced Tomatoes – Canned, with green chiles.
Frozen Mixed Vegetables – I usually go for peas and carrots.
Chicken Stock – Can also use beef stock
Ground Cumin and Chili Powder – To add some flavorful heat.
How To Make Slow Cooker Cowboy Stew
STEP 1: Brown the ground beef in a skillet and drain.
STEP 2: Add the browned ground beef and all other ingredients to your slow cooker and cover.
STEP 3: Cook on low for 6 hours or high for 4, until the potatoes are tender.
Here, I’ve combined beef and sausage. You can just as easily use one or the other – just double up on the one you decide to use. You can also substitute ground turkey instead of beef.
A staple in this recipe is the beans because it’s one of the key ingredients that define it as “cowboy” stew! You can use any canned beans that you like if you don’t have or don’t like pinto beans. Try black beans or kidney beans, or even chili beans.
Swap out the chicken stock for beef stock or even use vegetable broth.
Although this recipe calls for canned corn and a package of frozen vegetables, such as peas and carrots, you can really use whatever you have on hand or that you like. Canned or frozen, just about any vegetable will work. I always include fresh potatoes, either chunk them up or use small baby or new potatoes, cut in half.
You can make this as mild or spicy hot as you like. From the sausage you choose to the spices, peppers, and hot sauce, you get to control the level of intensity. Tip: If you have small children who don’t like it too spicy, make it on the mild side and have the hot sauce on the table for the adults.
Can I Make This on The Stovetop?
Absolutely! Just use a deep pot or a Dutch Oven and follow the recipe to brown the meat before adding the remaining ingredients. Cover it all with a lid and bring it to a boil before reducing the heat to a gentle simmer. Simmer, with the lid on, for at least 30 minutes. You want the potatoes to be tender, any frozen vegetables to soften, and for the spices to have time to infuse the stew with deliciousness.
What To Serve with Cowboy Stew
If I’m having leftovers of this stew and I need to stretch it, I’ll serve it over rice or noodles.
Cooled leftovers of Cowboy Stew will keep in the refrigerator for 4-5 days in an airtight container.
To freeze, remove the potatoes. They will not freeze and reheat well. The remainder of the cooled stew can be frozen in Ziploc bags or another freezer-friendly container for 2-3 months.
More Delicious Recipes
This easy Slow Cooker Cowboy Stew is packed with flavor from the meat, sausage, veggies, beans, and spices. It's a dump-and-go meal perfect for busy days, chilly weather, or when you need to feed a crowd.
- 1 pound lean ground beef
- 1 (16-ounce) package smoked sausage, sliced into bite size pieces
- 2 cloves garlic, chopped
- 1 small onion, chopped
- 1 pound baby potatoes, halved
- 1 (15-ounce) can pinto beans, undrained
- 1 (15-ounce) can corn
- 1 (14.5 ounces) can diced tomatoes with green chiles
- 1 (10-12 ounce) package frozen mixed vegetables
- 4 cups chicken stock
- 2 teaspoons ground cumin
- 2 teaspoons chili powder
- Gather all of the ingredients.
- In a medium skillet cook and brown your ground beef and drain.
- To your slow cooker add ground beef, smoked sausage, garlic, onion, potatoes, beans, corn, tomatoes, frozen veggies, chicken stock, and seasonings.
- Cover and cook on low for 6 hours or high for 4 until potatoes are tender.
Tips and Tricks
- This is a hearty stew on its own but it is delicious over rice or noodles.
- Feel free to use 2 pounds of ground beef and leave out the sausage, whatever your preference is.
- You can substitute any kind of canned bean you like instead of pinto beans.
- While I love letting this stew cook all day in the slow cooker you can easily cook it on the stove.
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Del Monte Canned Petite Cut Diced Tomatoes, 14.5 Ounce (Pack of 12)
Amazon Brand - Happy Belly Whole Kernel Corn, 15 Ounce
Kitchen Basics All Natural Original Chicken Stock, 8.25 fl oz
McCormick Chili Powder, 2.5 oz Shaker
Amazon Brand - Happy Belly Cumin, Ground, 2.6 Ounces
Amazon Brand - Happy Belly Pinto Beans, 15 Ounce
Crock-Pot SCV700SS Stainless Steel 7-Quart Oval Manual Slow Cooker, 7 Quart
Slow Cooker Liners
Amount Per Serving Calories 298Total Fat 9gSaturated Fat 3gTrans Fat 0gUnsaturated Fat 5gCholesterol 55mgSodium 472mgCarbohydrates 29gFiber 4gSugar 4gProtein 24g