Tag Archives: crock pot

Paleo Slow Cooker Lamb Roast with Root Veggies

Paleo Slow Cooker Lamb Roast with Root Veggies

With fall weather starting to settle in, my mind naturally drifts to hearty roasts, soups, and stews. I’m a big fan of the slow cooker for this job, as the meal practically cooks itself once you’ve added the ingredients. Searing off the meat before you add it is an extra step that’s well worth the time because it helps to develop an extra layer of delicious flavor.

I got my lamb roast from 5280 Meat, a family-owned Colorado company that raises grass-fed, pastured animals. Normally, I’m not a fan of how lamb can be gamey, but this roast was mild and fall-apart tender. If you order from 5280 Meat, use the code “SEPaleo” when you check out and receive 10% off!

Paleo Slow Cooker Lamb Roast with Root Veggies
Prep time: 
Total time: 

Serves: Serves 3 to 4
 

Ingredients
  • 3 to 4 lb (1361 to 1814 g) boneless lamb leg roast
  • Couple generous pinches each sea salt and pepper
  • 1 tbsp (15 mL) ghee
  • ½ cup (118 mL) chicken broth
  • 6 cloves garlic, finely chopped
  • 2 to 3 sprigs rosemary, chopped
  • 2 to 3 sprigs thyme, stripped off stalk
  • ⅓ cup (77 mL) stone ground mustard
  • 2 carrots, peeled and chopped
  • 2 parsnips, peeled and chopped
  • 2 Yukon gold potatoes, peeled and chopped*
  • 1 small rutabaga, peeled and chopped
  • ½ tsp (2.5 g) sea salt
  • ¼ tsp (1 g) black pepper

Instructions
  1. First, you’re going to sear the lamb roast to develop a nice golden crust. That’s where the flavor really shines. To do that, dry the lamb very well with paper towel and season with a couple generous pinches of salt and pepper. Heat a cast iron skillet over high heat, then add the ghee. You want the pan smoking hot. If not, the meat will steam instead of sear. Try for 3 to 4 minutes a side until you get most of the roast seared. Remove the meat from the pan (I put it on a plate), then reduce the heat to medium, and add the chicken broth, scraping up the brown bits from the bottom of the pan.
  2. Place the roast in the slow cooker.
  3. In a small bowl, mix the garlic, rosemary, thyme and mustard. Pour it on top of the lamb and use your hands to coat the meat with the mixture.
  4. Toss the chopped root veggies (carrots, parsnips, potato and rutabaga) with salt and pepper, and arrange them around the meat. Pour the chicken broth from when you deglazed the pan on top of the veggies.
  5. Cook on low for 8 to 10 hours.
  6. Serve with a green salad or veggie of your choice for a complete meal.

Notes
*substitute with sweet potatoes if you do not eat white potatoes

Click here to pin this!

Paleo Slow Cooker Lamb Roast with Root Veggies

What’s your favorite fall slow cooker recipe?

Slow Cooker Thai Beef Stew—Plus a Chance to Win Meals Made Simple

Paleo Slow Cooker Thai Beef Stew | stupideasypaleo.com

Steph’s note: Today’s recipe is a sneak peek from Danielle Walker’s new book, “Meals Made Simple” which releases on September 2, 2014. I’ve been lucky to preview the cookbook, and it’s amazing…great for newbie cooks or anyone who just enjoys simple, delicious food. Danielle notes: “Jicama may seem like a strange ingredient to add to this dish, but it provides a slight crunch similar to that of water chestnuts or bamboo shoots and adds a mildly sweet flavor.” Serve with cauliflower rice (pictured).

Slow Cooker Thai Beef Stew
Prep time: 
Total time: 

Serves: Serves 6 to 8
 

Ingredients
  • 2 Tablespoons coconut oil, divided
  • 3 pounds beef stew meat, trimmed of fat
  • 1 medium yellow onion, thinly sliced
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 teaspoons peeled and minced fresh ginger
  • 1 (13½-ounce) can full-fat coconut milk
  • ⅓ cup tomato paste
  • ½ cup Thai red curry paste
  • 2 Tablespoons fish sauce
  • 2 teaspoons fresh lime juice
  • 2 teaspoons sea salt
  • 2 cups broccoli florets
  • 2 cups julienned carrots
  • 1 cup peeled and julienned jicama*
  • Fresh cilantro, for garnish

Instructions
  1. Heat 1 tablespoon of the coconut oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Working in batches, brown the meat on all sides.
  2. Use a slotted spoon to transfer each batch of browned meat directly to the slow cooker, then continue browning. Wipe out the skillet between batches if a lot of liquid has accumulated at the bottom to ensure even browning.
  3. Wipe out the skillet and add the remaining 1 tablespoon of coconut oil. Sauté the onion, garlic, and ginger over medium-high heat for 5 minutes.
  4. Pour in the coconut milk and stir continuously to release the browned bits on the bottom of the pan.
  5. Add the tomato paste, curry paste, fish sauce, lime juice, and salt, then pour the mixture over the beef in the slow cooker.
  6. Cook on high for 5 hours or low for 8 hours. Add the broccoli, carrots, and jicama during the last 30 minutes if cooking on high, or the last hour if cooking on low. Serve garnished with cilantro.

Notes
*Omit for SCD

Stretch It

The leftover meat tastes fabulous in scrambled eggs!

Make-Ahead Tip

Prepare Steps 1 through 5, then place the contents in an airtight container or bag. Freeze for up to 3 months, then thaw overnight in the refrigerator

The giveaway is now closed. Congratulations to the winner, Julia B. at a*****9@gmail.com!

To enter for a chance to win a free copy of “Meals Made Simple!

Use the Rafflecopter widget below to finalize your entry and unlock other bonus entries! (This is how the winner will be drawn, so don’t skip this step!)

a Rafflecopter giveaway

The contest ends August 10, 2014 at 11:59 p.m. PT, and the winner will be announced here on the blog by August 12, 2014. Be sure to check back to see if you won!

The winner will be emailed and will have 48 hours to confirm back with his or her full name, address, and phone number to claim the prize. Open to US residents only.

Click here to pin this!

Paleo Slow Cooker Thai Beef Stew | stupideasypaleo.com

6 Common Slow Cooker Problems—And How To Fix Them

6 Common Slow Cooker Problems—And How To Fix Them | stupideasypaleo.com

Slow cooker problems can turn one of Paleo’s most useful kitchen tools into a headache. These appliances are utterly indispensable for busy people who want to cook healthy food, so dialing it in can really help your time in the kitchen. From stews to bone broth to roasts and even veggies, with a little know-how, you’ll be well on your way to making satisfying meals.

Here are 6 common slow cookers problems and what to do if and when you encounter them!

Slow Cooker Problems #1: Meat comes out dry / tough.

When you’re cooking meat in the slow cooker, the leaner the cut, the drier it tends to get. That means fattier cuts of meat—think pork shoulder roasts and beef pot roasts—do better than leaner ones, like pork sirloin or chops. If the meat comes with skin or a fat cap, leave that intact to keep the meat from drying out.

It’s also possible that the meat simply cooked too long. Generally, start out with about 1 to 1.25 hours per pound for cooking on high and 1.25 to 1.5 hours per pound for cooking on low.

Slow Cooker Problems #2: The food’s too liquidy.

For slow cookers, you need about half the amount of liquid that a traditional recipe (for the oven or stovetop) calls for. If the recipe isn’t optimized for a slow cooker, cut the amount of liquid by about 50%. In fact, when I cook a whole chicken or pork roast in the slow cooker, I put the meat in without any liquid at all.

If your final dish comes out too watery, remove the lid and turn the slow cooker to high for about an hour. This will allow some of the moisture to evaporate, thickening the sauce / broth.

Slow Cooker Problems #3: There’s no automatic shut off / timer.

This one’s a valid concern with a simple solution. If you can’t be around to switch off the slow cooker and yours has no automatic shut off, purchase a lamp timer! Then, plug your machine into that, set it, and it’ll turn off even if you aren’t home.

Slow Cooker Problems #4: It makes too much food.

Many slow cooker recipes make large portions, especially for small households. Luckily, many meats / roasts, soups and stews freeze well so you can store them for days you’re too busy to cook.

Slow Cooker Problems #5: The food isn’t cooking evenly.

This is a common problem with slow cookers. If you’re making a beef stew with carrots, for example, some carrots may be mushy while some are too hard. Food that’s cut into pieces that are the same size will cook more evenly than food that’s chopped haphazardly. Very soft / fast cooking vegetables can usually be added toward the end of the total cooking time so they don’t break down into mush.

Slow Cooker Problems #6: You aren’t sure whether to use the low or high setting.

Believe it or not, the low versus high settings aren’t different final temperatures. Rather, the high setting gets the slow cooker to boiling point faster than the low setting. Then, the contents will remain at a simmer for the rest of the cooking process. I personally prefer the low setting because I think meat comes out a bit more tender with the longer cooking time.

Want my free Quick Slow Cooker Recipe Guide? Click here! Also, check out my favorite slow cooker cookbook, The Paleo Slow Cooker. Happy eating!

Click here to pin this!

6 Common Slow Cooker Problems—And How To Fix Them | stupideasypaleo.com

Questions? Leave them in the comments below.

Slow Cooker Chocolate Chicken Mole

Slow Cooker Chocolate Chicken Mole | stupideasypaleo.com

Slow-Cooker Chocolate Chicken Mole is the perfect blend of two worlds: simple cooking and huge flavor! When my friend Arsy Vartanian, author of the brand new book The Paleo Foodie Cookbook, asked me to share one of her recipes with you, I jumped at the chance. I know you all love chicken recipes, and slow cooker food definitely fits my criteria of stupid-easy. While it may seem like there are a lot of ingredients, they’re integral in creating a savory, complex mole sauce with a richness and depth of flavor.

If you love the sound of this recipe, go check out Arsy’s cookbook. She’s also got two awesome bonuses for you: We are giving away a copy of her book (sorry, contest is now closed) and you can get a free copy of her ebook, The Paleo Dinner Party, if you pre-order (details also at the bottom).

Ingredients for Slow Cooker Chocolate Chicken Mole

  • 2 pounds (900 grams) chicken pieces (breasts and legs work well), bone in, skins removed
  • Salt and pepper
  • 2 Tablespoons (30 grams) ghee
  • 1 medium onion, chopped
  • 4 cloves garlic, crushed or minced
  • 6–7 whole tomatoes, peeled, seeded and chopped
  • 5 dried New Mexico chili peppers, rehydrated and chopped
  • 1/4 cup (60 grams) almond butter
  • 2-1/2 ounces (70 grams) dark chocolate (70% or above)
  • 1 teaspoon (5 grams) sea salt
  • 1 teaspoon (3 grams) cumin
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon guajillo chili powder
  • Avocado, cilantro and jalapeño, all chopped (garnish)

Directions for Slow Cooker Chocolate Chicken Mole

  1. Generously salt and pepper the chicken.
  2. Place a pan over medium heat and add ghee. Once the ghee has warmed, add the chicken and brown on all sides. This may need to be done in batches. Move chicken to the slow cooker.
  3. Add onion to the same pan and sauté until translucent. Add garlic and sauté for 1 to 2 minutes, until fragrant. Transfer onion and garlic to slow cooker.
  4. Add the tomatoes, chili peppers, almond butter, dark chocolate, salt and spices (cumin, cinnamon, chili powder) to the slow cooker.
  5. Cook on low for 4 to 6 hours or until the chicken is tender and pulls apart easily. If you are home when making the dish, lift the lid once and give it a stir to make sure all the ingredients are well combined. Remove chicken bones. Top mole with avocado, cilantro and jalapeño and serve!

To enter for a chance to win a FREE copy of The Paleo Foodie Cookbook:

The winner is… lynn.s****@e*******l.com. Thank you to all who entered!

Use the Rafflecopter widget below to complete your entry! (This is how the winner will be drawn, so don’t skip this step!)

a Rafflecopter giveaway

The contest ends March 23, 2014 at 11:59 p.m. PST, and the winner will be announced here on the blog by March 25, 2014. Be sure to check back to see if you won!

The winner will be emailed and will have 48 hours to confirm back with his or her full name, address, and phone number to claim the prize. Open to US residents only.

Click here to pin this!

Slow Cooker Chocolate Chicken Mole | stupideasypaleo.com

March Giveaway: Spiralizer, Immersion Blender or Crock Pot

March Giveaway—Spiralizer, Immersion Blender or Crock Pot | stupideasypaleo.com

It’s time for a giveaway and this month, it’s winner’s choice!

Because I want to say thanks to all my amazing fans, I’m personally sponsoring this great giveaway! You rock! The winner will get to choose between three great prizes (click to see the exact makes and models): a Paderno spiralizer, a Cuisinart immersion blender or a Crock Pot programmable slow cooker.

A bit about these versatile kitchen tools…

If you’ve been around Paleo long enough, you’ll know that veggie noodles—while not completely like their pasta counterparts— are pretty tasty and can satisfy your cravings. The spiralizer helps you transform lots of different veggies into noodly shapes. Recipe inspiration: Paleo Noodle Bowl and Cold Zucchini Noodle Salad.

The immersion blender is great for pureeing soups on the fly and also for making super-easy homemade mayo. Recipe inspiration: Creamy Leek Soup and Chipotle Lime Mayo.

Last but not least, my #1 favorite kitchen appliance: the slow cooker. What else is there to say besides this is a lifesaver for busy athletes and families. Throw the food in, set the timer on this programmable model and walk away. Recipe inspiration: Mocha-Rubbed Pot Roast and Kickin’ BBQ Shredded Chicken (Carolina-style).

The giveaway is now over, and the winner is…Chantal B. of Pennsylvania! Congratulations Chantal and thank you to everyone for entering! 

To enter for a chance to win your choice of spiralizer, immersion blender or crock pot:

#1 Make sure you’re signed up for my mailing list. (If you’re already signed up, cool! Complete the bonus entries below.)

If you aren’t signed up for my mailing list, use the box below to do that. I never ever ever spam, I promise.

Subscribe to our mailing list

* indicates required


#2 Leave a comment below telling me which one you’d like to win (spiralizer, immersion blender or crock pot) and why!

#3 Use the Rafflecopter widget below to finalize your entry and unlock other bonus entries! (This is how the winner will be drawn, so don’t skip this step!)

a Rafflecopter giveaway

The contest ends March 31, 2014 at 11:59 p.m. PST, and the winner will be announced here on the blog by April 2, 2014. Be sure to check back to see if you won!

The winner will be emailed and will have 48 hours to confirm back with his or her full name, address, and phone number to claim the prize. Open to readers worldwide. If a non-US resident wins, an Amazon gift card in the amount of the least expensive prize will be provided.

Click here to pin this!

March Giveaway—Spiralizer, Immersion Blender or Crock Pot | stupideasypaleo.com

Comment below with what your choice would be!

Creamy Leek Soup (Dairy-Free)

Creamy Leek Soup | stupideasypaleo.com The autumn months are here. Longer nights. Colder days. It’s getting to be soup weather (though I love soup all year long).

This creamy, really simple dish is modeled after vichyssoise, a silky soup made with potatoes and cream or milk. My friend Claudette made me her Paleo version this summer, and I was shocked to find out that instead of potato it contained….

…cauliflower.

When I served this to my unsuspecting taste testers and asked them what was in it, they could not guess cauliflower. Haha…fooled ‘em! A traditional vichyssoise is served cold, and while you could do that, I liked it better warm.

And for an extra added special factor, I sprinkled mine with some Bacon Gremolata or just crispy bacon, crumbled up. You’re welcome :)

Ingredients for Creamy Leek Soup

  • 3 cups of leeks, dark green ends removed, roughly chopped (~2 large leeks)
  • 1 medium-sized cauliflower, chopped (4-5 cups)
  • 1 cup onion (~1 medium)
  • 4 cups chicken broth
  • 1 cup coconut milk
  • 1-2 Tablespoons ghee (clarified butter), optional
  • Salt and pepper to taste

Creamy Leek Soup | stupideasypaleo.com

Directions for Creamy Leek Soup

  1. Wash the leeks well. I usually cut off the root end then slice it down the middle lengthwise. Hold under running water and separate the leaves, rinsing well (especially the outermost leaves). Sandy soup is not delicious. I usually cut off the top 1/3 of the leek and save that for making stock. Chop the leeks roughly. Add to a large soup pot.
  2. Cut the core out of the cauliflower and trim off any leaves. Roughly chop it. Add that to the pot.
  3. Add the onions, chicken broth, coconut milk and ghee to the pot.
  4. Bring to a boil, then reduce to a simmer for about 20 minutes or until all the veggies are tender.
  5. Allow to cool, then puree until smooth using a blender. Be careful: You may need to do two or more batches so the blender doesn’t overflow.
  6. Season with salt and pepper to taste.

p.s. You can make this in the crock pot. Add all the ingredients and cook on low for 3-5 hours. The flavor is the same but the consistency won’t be as thick. To troubleshoot that, you can remove the crock pot lid for the last hour of cooking so some of the liquids evaporate.

Do you think you might try this recipe? What toppings would you use?

October Giveaway: Deluxe Crock Pot

It’s time for another giveaway here at Stupid Easy Paleo because y’all are such phenomenal fans!

crock pot giveaway 2

Starting in October and continuing monthly, I’ll be hosting a free giveaway for a wonderful ware that’ll help make your Paleo cooking easier. I’m kicking it off with this kickass crock pot – and it’s not just any old slow cooker. It’s a deluxe 6 liter programmable slow cooker from Crock Pot brand (a $60 value)!

I’m a firm believer that slow cookers are one of the top three kitchen tools to make healthier cooking – despite a busy lifestyle – that much simpler. For a PDF of my favorite crock pot recipes, click here.

How to Enter to Win

Contest is now closed. Congratulations to Nadine A., the winner of the deluxe Crock Pot!

It’s simple…use the Rafflecopter widget below to enter.

You MUST sign up for my mailing list to be eligible to win. After you complete your entry, be sure to check your email inbox and confirm your subscription (your email address remains private, and I don’t spam…EVER).

You can earn bonus entries for doing the following:

Check out the awesome features of the crock pot here, and tell me what you plan on making in the comments below!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

The contest will end on October 31, 2013 at 11:59 PST. The winner will be announced on November 1, 2013 on the Stupid Easy Paleo blog and must claim the prize by November 30, 2013.  This contest is open to all readers, regardless of country. If you live outside the United States, you’ll receive an Amazon gift certificate in the amount of the prize.

 

Slow Cooker Chicken Yellow Curry Soup

Slow Cooker Yellow Curry Chicken Soup | stupideasypaleo.com Last week on Facebook, I asked which you – fantastic fan – would like more recipes for: veggies, meat or crock pot, and the slow cooker was the winning vote by far. Here’s my guess on why: crock pots do everything for you…except clean up. Yup. It’s true. Put it in and walk away…it’s like the Ronco Showtime Rotisserie Oven for the busy Paleo eater (I know you remember those “Set it and forget it!” Saturday morning infomercials).

I took one of my most adored recipes from my Slow Cooker Recipe Guide and gave it a slight makeover. What resulted was a warm, filling, and savory curry that’s not at all spicy hot. Best part, it’s free from the weird ingredients found in most premixed curry pastes. and you don’t have to worry about that lonesome jar of rarely used curry powder getting stale because you’ve made it fresh. Makes about four servings.

Ingredients for Slow Cooker Chicken Yellow Curry Soup

  • 1-1/2 lb. (~700 g) boneless chicken breasts or thighs, cut into chunks
  • 6 cups of veggies, chopped (I used one cup each of onion, carrots, green beans, broccoli, tomatoes and red bell pepper. Use what you like or have on hand.)
  • 1-14 oz can (~400 ml) of full fat coconut milk
  • 1 cup crushed tomatoes (or tomato sauce)
  • 1 Tablespoon cumin
  • 2 teaspoons ground coriander
  • 2 teaspoons ground ginger
  • 2 teaspoons garlic powder
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper, optional
  • 1 cup water (for a thicker, curry-like sauce, omit the water)
  • Salt, to taste

Directions for Slow Cooker Chicken Yellow Curry Soup

  1. Cut the chicken and veggie into medium-large chunks. Put everything into the crock pot.
  2. Stir in the coconut milk, and crushed tomatoes. Then add the spices: cumin, ground coriander, ginger, garlic, cinnamon and cayenne pepper. Add the water. Stir to combine everything.
  3. Cook on low for 5-6 hours. [I cooked mine for 8 hours overnight since my current crock pot does not have an automatic shut off function, though, at it came out perfect nonetheless.]
  4. If the you want it more like a curry and less like a soup, omit the 1 cup of water above. You can also remove the lid from the crock pot for the last hour of cooking so some of the moisture evaporates.
  5. Season to taste with salt.
  6. Serve. Would be great over cauliflower rice, but it’s tasty on its own, too.

Slow Cooker Mocha-Rubbed Pot Roast

DSC_0858-2 copy

Crock Pot mocha-rubbed pot roast. Slow cooker. What’s not to love already?

You’re probably thinking, “Coffee? Pot roast? What?!” but rest assured that it’s not like downing a cup of joe. The coffee adds a subtle depth of flavor that the spices alone can’t achieve. The end result was fall-apart tender.

If you have time, I highly recommend taking the liquid from the crock pot and reducing it down by boiling until it becomes thicker. It’s nice to drizzle on top, almost like a gravy. Of course, if you’re in a rush, you can skip that step. If you don’t have access to this awesome cold-brew coffee, and java will do. This recipe is easily doubled.

Ingredients for Slow Cooker Mocha-Rubbed Pot Roast

For the Mocha Rub (you will have extra)

For the Roast

  • 2 lb. beef roast (I used grass-fed chuck)
  • 1 cup brewed coffee
  • 1 cup beef broth
  • 1/2 an onion, chopped
  • 6 dried figs, chopped
  • 3 Tablespoons balsamic vinegar

Directions for the Slow Cooker Mocha-Rubbed Pot Roast

  1. Prepare the mocha rub by mixing together the finely ground coffee, smoked paprika, black pepper, cocoa powder, Aleppo pepper (sub: sweet paprika), chili powder, ground ginger and salt in a small bowl. You won’t use the entire batch if you’re making a 2 lb. roast. It stores well in an airtight container. Slow Cooker Mocha-Rubbed Pot Roast | stupideasypaleo.com

2. Pat the beef roast dry with a paper towel. Spoon 3–4 tablespoons of the mocha rub mixture over the roast and rub it in well with your hands—my preferred method. Or, place the roast and 3–4 tablespoons of mocha rub in a plastic ziptop bag and shake until it’s evenly coated.

Slow Cooker Mocha-Rubbed Pot Roast | stupideasypaleo.com

3. Combine the brewed coffee, beef broth, onion, figs and balsamic vinegar in a blender. Puree until liquified. Slow Cooker Mocha-Rubbed Pot Roast | stupideasypaleo.com

4. Pour the liquid into the crock pot and place the roast gently on top.

5. Cook for 5–6 hours on low.

6. Remove the meat and shred with two forks. You can then boil the liquid until it reduces and thickens or simply serve as is. Adjust seasonings with salt and pepper to taste

Slow Cooker Mocha-Rubbed Pot Roast | stupideasypaleo.com Slow Cooker Mocha-Rubbed Pot Roast | stupideasypaleo.com

Slow Cooker Caribbean Oxtails

Slow Cooker Caribbean Oxtails | stupideasypaleo.com What the heck is oxtail? Most of what we – and by we I mean Americans – call oxtail is actually tail sections from a cow. It contains a center bone and can be a bit fatty, but when cooked low and slow, the meat becomes super tender. Sounds like a perfect job for the crock pot though you could certainly braise these on the stove top instead.

Have I told you how much crock pots rule? Yes, I have, but it bears repeating: if you are strapped for time and think you don’t have the chance to cook,  a slow cooker is probably the single best use of $30-40 that I can think of. It’s the ultimate in lazy smart cooking because once the food goes in, you literally have to do nothing but wait. Win!

When I researched Caribbean recipes for oxtail, most of them had Paleo-unfriendly ingredients like flour or sugar. Ick. Instead, I’ve given you all the amazing flavor without any unsavory additions. This would be super tasty served over cauliflower rice. For an even *faster* version, eliminate steps 2-4 and just throw everything into the crock pot together. I think the extra couple minutes it takes to brown the meat is well worth it though.

If you can’t find oxtail, you could substitute stew meat instead.

Prep time: 15 min     Cook time: 6 hours    Makes: 2 lb of meat plus veggies

Ingredients for Slow Cooker Caribbean Oxtails

  • 2 lb (1 kg) beef oxtails
  • 2 onions, diced
  • 2 carrots, diced
  • 4 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 inch piece of ginger, peeled and minced
  • 1 jalapeño pepper, minced (optional)
  • 2 cups beef stock, homemade or organic is best
  • 3 Tablespoons tomato paste
  • 1 Tablespoon allspice berries (or 1 teaspoon ground allspice)
  • 1 teaspoon fish sauce (I like Red Boat Fish Sauce)
  • 4 sprigs of fresh thyme (or 1 teaspoon dried thyme)
  • Coconut oil or fat of choice
  • Sea salt and pepper

Directions for Slow Cooker Caribbean Oxtails

  1. Prepare all the veggies: dice the onions and carrots. Mince the garlic and ginger. If using jalapeño pepper, you can remove some or all of the seeds and mince. If you like it spicy, you can keep the seeds or even add a hotter pepper such as habanero (Scotch bonnet).
  2. Heat a heavy-bottomed skillet over medium-high heat. Add a spoonful of coconut oil. Sprinkle the oxtails with salt and pepper. Brown them on all sides, and place them in the crock pot. 
  3. In the same skillet, add the onion, carrot, garlic, ginger and jalapeño. Cook over medium heat for 4-5 minutes.
  4. Add the beef stock, tomato paste, allspice berries, fish sauce and thyme. Use a wooden spoon or spatula to scrape up all the browned bits from the oxtail. If you want to get fancy, this is called deglazing the pan and the bits are called fond. Fun with cooking!
  5. Remove the pan from the heat and pour the contents into the crockpot to cover the oxtail.
  6. Cook on high for 6 hours.

Slow Cooker Honey Mustard Spare Ribs

Slow Cooker Honey Mustard Spare Ribs | stupideasypaleo.com I have this thing about getting my hands sloppy and messy with finger food. It kind of freaks me out, and I’m not sure why. Back in college, I was a cake decorator at a local grocery store chain, and getting frosting all over my hands would make me come undone. True story. Luckily, these ribs are so tasty that I didn’t even notice I was tearing in with my paws until they were almost gone.

My amazing Australian pen pal (yes, I have a pen pal) Georgia sent me the most thoughtful care package last week, and inside was a super tasty brown mustard. I thought there was no better way to enjoy it then to make a sweet and spicy honey mustard glaze for the ribs. The ribs came out so tender.

Do you have not as much time to cook as you’d like? You’re not alone. Okay, now go and order yourself a crock pot if you don’t already have one (I recommend one with a digital timer and keep warm function) and make this recipe. Smile and enjoy your tasty meal knowing that it basically cooked itself. This recipe is a mashup between two non-Paleo one’s from Rachel Ray and the White On Rice Couple. I adapted them and put them together. Voila! This batch of ribs was relatively small (1.5 lb of meat) because, well, I’m a single person. Double your recipe (or more) depending on how many people you’re serving.

Prep time: 15 min     Cook time: 6 hours    Makes: 1-1/2 lb of ribs

Ingredients for Slow Cooker Honey Mustard Spare Ribs

For the Ribs

  • 2 Tbsp balsamic vinegar
  • 2 Tbsp Worcestershire sauce (look for gluten free options, I used Lea & Perrins)
  • 1 Tbsp honey
  • 2 tsp brown mustard
  • 1 tsp hot sauce
  • 1 cup broth, any kind
  • 1-inch piece of ginger, peeled
  • 1 star anise
  • 1.5 lb (700g) of spare ribs, pork or beef

For the Glaze

Directions for Slow Cooker Honey Mustard Spare Ribs

  1. Prepare the braising liquid for the ribs by combining the balsamic vinegar, Worcestershire sauce, honey, mustard, hot sauce, and broth in a small bowl. 
  2. Put the ribs in the crock pot. Cut to fit, if needed. Pour the braising liquid over and drop in the ginger and star anise.
  3. Cover, set to low, and cook for 6 hours. I flipped the ribs over once during cooking.
  4. For the sauce, combine the ingredients in a small saucepan and simmer over low heat until it has reduced / thickened a bit. Stir often.
  5. I kept it simple by removing the ribs from the crock pot (gently because they will probably fall apart) and basting them with the honey mustard sauce. I served with extra sauce on the side for dipping.

3 Favorite Kitchen Gadgets

A couple weeks about, my Twitter pal @XFPH asked, “What are your 3 favorite kitchen gadgets?” to which I immediately responded “knife, cast iron skillet and Crock Pot!”

Seriously folks, it’s important to have kitchen tools and gadgets that help make your life easier and cooking more enjoyable. Would you use a hammer to put a screw into wood? I think not. I’m not saying you have to spend your life savings on every gimmicky gadget out there but with some good quality basic supplies, cooking will not be as much of a struggle.

First up…a knife. DON’T BE CHEAP! You don’t need a 15 piece knife set to start out. My blade of choice is a 7″ JA Henckels santoku knife. It does a majority of the chopping/slicing/prep work that I need in the kitchen. Find a knife handle that fits comfortably in your hand and has good weight. While you’re at it, pick up a steel or sharpening stone and learn how to use it. Here’s a video link of Gordon Ramsey demonstrating how it’s done…because he’s bloody sarcastic and I love him. Dull knives suck…and are dangerous. Click here to see the one I showed in the video. $40-$70 will give you a good range to shop from.

Next…cast iron skillet. No icky, weird non-stick coating to flake up and you can use metal utensils. The iron will heat up evenly and goes easily from stove top to oven (just beware of hot handles). Plus, you can do bicep curls with it! Kidding…sort of. $20 or so will get you a decent-sized skillet.

And last but certainly not least…Crock Pot. Can’t say enough about this bad boy: it’s the epitome of lazy cooking. Throw in your ingredients, set it and forget it (did anyone flash back to Ron Popeil of infomercial fame there?!). Spend the extra $5-$10 and get one with a digital timer and auto-shut off so you can truly walk away. Keep your eye out at Target, etc and you can find them on sale. The crock (ceramic) part of mine recently broke and couldn’t be replaced so I picked up a new one for $29.99 on sale. Check out my free Crock Pot recipe guide here.

What are your 3 favorite kitchen gadgets?

(and p.s. If I could pick a 4th, it would be my Vitamix!)

Pork Loin Roast

the finished product

I absolutely adore my CrockPot/slow cooker. It’s the ultimate in convenience cooking…gather simple ingredients, throw in the pot, set it and walk away. There is a bit of planning involved (as in it takes time to complete the meal), but I usually fill it up before I go to sleep. When I wake up, the house smells amazing and dinner for the night is already made. Invest a few extra bucks in a slow cooker that has a digital timer and a “keep warm” function.

This recipe is awesome for having a large amount of protein on hand for various uses throughout the week, and since it’s “just meat”, you can throw the pork into lots of yummy applications…street tacos, served with eggs, paired with a simple veggie side dish, poured over salad and topped with salsa….

Though I prefer to use boneless pork shoulder from US Wellness Meats, I didn’t have one on hand so I bought two lean pork loin roasts from the butcher at my local market and was sure to strip the fat off after cooking.

Ingredients:

Directions:
1. Rinse and dry pork. Season with ~1 tsp sea salt.
2. Mince garlic.
3. Grease inside of crock with coconut oil (baked-on meat is never fun to scrape off).
4. Sprinkle half the chopped garlic in the bottom of the crock. Add the meat, fat side up. Sprinkle the rest of the garlic on top.
5. Set the crock pot on low for 16-18 hours. Don’t open the lid. Patience is a virtue.
6. When done cooking, remove pork. Peel the fat away and shred the meat. Discard the cooking juice…it will be incredibly salty. It’s that simple :)

after 18 hours…mmm

ready to remove the fat and shred the meat