Spiced Beef Stew with Cabbage, Butternut Squash & Sweet Potato

The weather has been chillier and damp the past few days, so this hearty, tasty, fall-spiced one-dish meal has been a sufficient belly warmer. Full of butternut squash, white sweet potato, red cabbage, ground beef, and flavorful spices, it’s a winning combination. Perfect for fall, in my opinion.

Also, this probably comes as no surprise, but the flavors are even more abundant the next day and the texture becomes a bit creamy too. The creaminess is a result of the squash breaking down more when reheated and stirred. The sweet potato holds together more since it’s starchier, but probably adds a dose of its own creaminess as well. Regardless, it’s legit.

Meanwhile, catch me next Wednesday, October 18 on KATU Afternoon Live! I’ll be making my pumpkin spice chocolate clusters that I shared last week. Stay tuned!

Cheers and enjoy!

Ingredients:

  • 2 lb grass-fed ground beef
  • 1-2 tsp grass-fed ghee, butter, or other fat of choice
  • 1 yellow onion, chopped
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 medium red cabbage, chopped
  • 1 medium butternut squash, peeled and chopped into cubes
  • 1 medium sweet potato, peeled and chopped into cubes
  • Splash of chicken broth, homemade or high-quality store-bought
  • 1 Tbsp apple cider vinegar
  • 2.5 tsp ground turmeric
  • 1.5 tsp cumin
  • 1/2 tsp cinnamon
  • Pinch of cayenne
  • 2 tsp sea salt, plus more to taste, if needed
  • Black pepper, to taste

Directions:

  1. Melt ghee or other fat of choice in a large pot over medium heat. Add the onion and garlic, and sauté a couple minutes. Then, add the ground beef and cook until browned, about 5-7 minutes, breaking up the pieces with a spatula as needed.
  2. Next, add the cabbage and 1 tsp sea salt. Stir, cover, and cook over medium-low heat for 5-7 minutes.
  3. Add the butternut squash, sweet potato, broth, vinegar, turmeric, cumin, cinnamon, cayenne, remaining 1 tsp sea salt, and black pepper. Stir, cover, and cook for 10 minutes.
  4. Check sweet potatoes and squash with a fork and if need be, cover and cook for another 3-5 minutes. Taste and adjust sea salt, pepper, and spices as desired.

Yields: 6 servings

 

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Harvest Bowl with Creamy Maple Vinaigrette

harvest bowl 3Tomorrow is the official first day of fall and to commemorate, I threw together this lovely harvest bowl. It’s filled with cinnamon-roasted butternut squash, chicken breast, apple, pecans, and mixed greens, and is topped with a creamy, dairy-free maple vinaigrette. It is splendid and I can honestly say it’s my newfound love. I will definitely be making it over-and-over again for a while.

I wasn’t ready to go full-on pumpkin spice mode and all that jazz, but I had to honor where we’re at, so a little cinnamon, maple syrup, and some seasonal goodies did the trick. Pumpkin spice can wait until next month. I do enjoy fall, but I’d be lying if I said that I’m ready for summer to end. I really love summer…like a lot, but onward I go with the change of seasons, and I’m taking this harvest bowl with me!

In other news, I will be making this recipe on KATU Afternoon Live next Tuesday, September 26. UPDATE: watch the replay of my segment HERE.

Cheers and enjoy!close up harvest bowl

For the bowl:

  • 1 medium butternut squash, peeled and cut into cubes
  • 1 Tbsp avocado oil
  • 1.5 tsp cinnamon
  • Sea salt and black pepper, to taste
  • 3 cups leftover boneless skinless chicken breasts, shredded or cubed
  • 2-3 small Gravenstein apples or other variety of choice, diced
  • 1/3 cup raw pecan halves, roughly chopped
  • 5-6 cups mixed greens

For the maple vinaigrette:

  • 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 Tbsp + 1 tsp pure maple syrup
  • Sea salt and black pepper, to taste
  • 1 Tbsp + 1 tsp fresh lemon juice
  • 3 Tbsp full-fat coconut milk (I used this brand, which is gum-free)
  • 1 tsp Dijon mustard
  • 1 tsp fresh thyme leaves

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. Place butternut squash on large baking sheet and drizzle with the avocado oil. Season with cinnamon, sea salt and black pepper, and mix well. Bake in oven for 40 minutes, stirring halfway through. Set aside to cool once done.
  2. Add all the dressing ingredients to a mason jar and shake to mix. Alternatively, you can whisk it together in a bowl. If possible, make the dressing ahead of time to allow the flavors to marinate.
  3. Assemble the salad by dividing the mixed greens among three bowls. Then, divide the chicken, pecans, apples, and squash among the bowls. Just before serving, drizzle desired amount of dressing on top. Store any leftover dressing in the refrigerator for up to five days.

Yields: 3 servings

 

Beef and Butternut Squash Stew

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October is officially here and it’s truly starting to feel more like fall. With a more noticeable shift in weather this past weekend, it felt like an appropriate time to make a slow cooker stew and eat my first winter squash of the season. I was inspired by this recipe and tweaked it a bit to make it what I wanted. It turned out just right. Hope you enjoy!

Ingredients:

  • ~2 lb grass-fed beef stew meat
  • ~1/2 cup tapioca flour/starch
  • 1-2 Tbsp grass-fed ghee or butter
  • 1 yellow onion, chopped
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • ~1.5 lb butternut squash, peeled and cut into cubes
  • 1 medium white sweet potato, peeled and cut into cubes
  • 2 large carrots, chopped
  • 8-10 crimini mushrooms, sliced
  • 2 Tbsp coconut aminos
  • 2-3 cups chicken, beef or vegetable broth, preferably homemade
  • 1/4 cup dry red wine
  • 1/2 tsp paprika
  • 1.5 tsp raw honey or coconut sugar
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1-2 tsp sea salt or to taste
  • Black pepper to taste
  • 4-5 kale leaves, de-stemmed and torn into pieces

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Directions:

  1. Place tapioca starch in a large, shallow bowl. Add the stew meat and toss to coat.
  2. Melt ghee or butter in a large pan over medium heat. Add the onion and sauté a couple minutes, until soft. Next, add the garlic and stew meat. Continue cooking until beef has browned. Then, add the beef and onion mixture to the bottom of the slow cooker.
  3. Pour a little bit of the broth into the sauté pan to deglaze it and loosen the brown bits. Once deglazed, add to the slow cooker with the meat mixture.
  4. Add the squash, sweet potato, carrots and mushrooms to the slow cooker. Then, add the sea salt, pepper, paprika, bay leaf, coconut sugar, coconut aminos, broth and red wine. Stir well.
  5. Place the lid on the slow cooker and cook on low for about 7 hours. During the last 30-45 minutes of cooking, add the kale and stir well.
  6. Taste and add more sea salt and pepper, if desired. Remove bay leaf and serve.

Yields: ~6 servings

Simple Supper Friday: Curried Squash and Cabbage Pork Stew

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Anyone else relieved that it’s Friday? Whew, I sure am. It’s been a tiring week with a little different change of pace. It was good though, but I’m ready for some downtime tomorrow and sleeping in (I was up around 5:30 a.m. every morning this week).

Anyway, It’s been a while since I’ve shared a curry recipe, so I figured it was about time again. Not only that, but I had a craving for it. This one is a stew, so it’s thicker and less creamy than some of the other regular curry recipes I’ve made, but it’s so, so delicious. It’s think it’s best eaten as is, but if you want to, you can eat it over spaghetti squash, zucchini noodles or cauliflower rice. Whatever floats your boat.

I had the hardest time photographing this dish because the neighbor’s cat, Meg would not leave me alone. She was up on the deck going crazy, and really wanted to get her paws on the stew. She also had a fire in her eyes and kept clawing the deck posts like a mad cat. I had to sneak back into the house fast, so she wouldn’t get through the door and wait for her to go away. Once I came in, she sat directly in front of the door, crying (see picture below). Our cat, Dutch actually saw her through the patio door and threw a fit, which ended up scaring her away. In the end, I was able to quickly get back outside and snap a few photos. Cats are so silly.

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Ingredients:

  • 1/2 Tbsp coconut oil
  • 1/2 large red onion, sliced into half moons
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 lb pork stew meat
  • 1/2 medium butternut squash, peeled, seeded and cut into cubes (about 2 cups)
  • 1/2 large head green cabbage, chopped
  • 1/2 cup full-fat coconut milk, plus a little more if needed or desired
  • 1 Tbsp Thai red curry paste
  • 1 tsp curry powder
  • 1 Tbsp coconut aminos
  • 1/4 cup chicken broth, preferably homemade
  • 1/4 tsp paprika
  • Pinch of cayenne pepper
  • Sea salt and pepper to taste

Directions:

  1. Melt coconut oil in a large pan over medium heat. Add the onion and garlic, and saute a few minutes, until onion is softened. Remove from heat and place in the bottom of your slow cooker. Then, add the butternut squash cubes.
  2. In the same pan you cooked the onion, add the stew meat and season to taste with sea salt and pepper. Brown on all sides over medium heat, about 6-7 minutes total. Then, remove from heat and add to the slow cooker.
  3. In a mixing bowl, whisk together the coconut milk, curry paste, curry powder, coconut aminos and paprika. Once smooth, add to the slow cooker and stir. Then, add the broth and stir again.
  4. Place the chopped cabbage on top and stir slightly. Don’t worry about getting all the cabbage mixed through though, as it will soften with cooking.
  5. Cook on low for 6-7 hours or high for 4-5. Serve with a garnish of fresh cilantro, if desired.

Yields: ~3 servings

Butternut Squash Dip

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This recipe is a variation of a delicious veggie dip that I ate on a yoga retreat at Haramara in Sayulita, Mexico a few years ago. We never ate any sort of winter squash dip, but did eat flavors such as beet, carrot and sweet potato/yam (I ate sweet potatoes then, but don’t now). All the varieties are fabulous! Anyway, I got to thinking about these veggie dips recently — probably because I made the beet version a couple weeks ago — and realized it would be awesome to make with squash. No major surprise on my end, but I was right.

This dip is a great pre-Thanksgiving dinner appetizer  and can be served with whatever you like: celery sticks, jicama slices, cucumbers, plantain chips, cauliflower florets, homemade grain-free crackers, etc. It’s even wonderful right off the spoon! Enjoy!

Ingredients:

  • 1 small butternut squash, peeled, seeded and cubed (about 1.5 to 2 lb sized squash)
  • 2-3 cloves garlic, peeled
  • 1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil (make sure it’s pure olive oil)
  • 2 lemons or limes, juiced (I used limes)
  • 1/2 tsp sea salt or to taste
  • Black pepper to taste
  • 1/8 – 1/4 tsp cayenne pepper
  • Veggies of choice for serving (cucumber, jicama, celery, etc.)

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Directions:

  1. Cook butternut squash cubes in a steamer basket for about 10-12 minutes or until soft.
  2. Meanwhile, add the garlic, lemon or lime juice, olive oil, sea salt, pepper and cayenne pepper to a high speed blender container (I use this blender). Then, once the squash is done cooking, add it to the blender as well.
  3. Process on high for 1-2 minutes or until smooth. Scrap down sides with a spatula as needed and blend again, if necessary. Taste and adjust seasoning, if desired.
  4. Serve with cut-up, raw vegetables of choice. Dip can be eaten warm or cold.

Crustless Butternut Squash Pie

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Thanksgiving is just over one week away and I’m sure many of you are thinking about your dinner menu. Dessert is always a part of Thanksgiving dinner and most often, it’s pumpkin pie. As much as I love pumpkin pie, I think I adore butternut squash pie even more. I’ve tested plenty of both and butternut squash always tends to yield a bit more flavor. It’s just as easy to prepare and the steps are exactly the same as preparing pumpkin pie. Oh, and Jesse loves it too. He’s the one that convinced me to make it prior to Thanksgiving…just to make sure it still tasted good.

If you’re not sure how to prepare the butternut squash puree, here’s what I do (same for pumpkin):

  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Cut the squash (about a 2 lb squash) in half lengthwise and scoop out the seeds. Place flesh side down on a baking pan and add about 1/4-inch of water or so. Bake for 60 minutes in the oven or until flesh is soft.
  2. Allow to cool and then scoop the flesh out of the skin and place into a food processor. Process until completely smooth — you don’t want any lumps!
  3. Then, place in a fine mesh colander/strainer (line with cheesecloth if it’s not fine enough) and drain overnight in the refrigerator (obviously, you’ll place a bowl underneath the strainer to catch the liquid). Ta da, beautiful and perfect squash puree!

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Ingredients:

  • 2 cups fresh butternut squash puree (see steps above)
  • 2 eggs, preferably pasture-raised
  • 1/4 cup raw honey
  • 3/4 cup pure coconut cream (I use this brand) OR full-fat coconut milk
  • 2 Tbsp grass-fed butter, melted, plus extra for greasing the pie dish
  • 1 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp ground ginger
  • 1/4 tsp ground nutmeg
  • 1/4 tsp ground cloves
  • Pinch of sea salt

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease a 9-inch pie dish with a little butter and set aside.
  2. In a large mixing bowl or the bowl of a stand mixer, add all the ingredients. Process until smooth with a hand mixer or the stand mixer. Scrape down sides of the bowl with a spatula and process again.
  3. Once smooth and blended, pour the mixture into the greased pie dish.
  4. Bake for 50-60 minutes in the preheated oven. Once done, allow to cool completely before serving.
  5. Cut into desired size slices and serve with homemade coconut milk whipped cream, if desired.

Rainy Day Butternut Squash Stew

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Saturday evening, Jesse and I went to a get together out at Jason Seib’s house and had a freaking blast! The food was phenomenal (his wife is a stellar cook), the drinks were dangerously good (and strong — thanks, Jason) and the company was fantastic. It was a chilly and rainy night, and being inside a cozy house out in the country with good food, friends and games was just what was needed. I hated to see the night come to an end, but there will be more fun times ahead. Jesse and I even stayed until after Midnight!

For dinner, Jason’s wife made one of the most delicious soups/stews I’ve ever tasted…for real. I couldn’t distinguish what spices were in it (I think I just need to ask her), but the ingredients inspired this creation that I’m sharing with you today. I used stew meat instead of the ground beef that she used because that’s what I had on hand and it needed to be eaten. It came out pretty darn good, but still has a little different flavor than hers. Seriously, I don’t know what she put in it, but I need to figure it out!

Jesse and I ate this for dinner over candlelight last night because the power went out. Thankfully, the stew was done simmering on the stove and not in the middle of cooking. It was kind of fun, but also made us realize that we’re not very prepared for power outages when it’s dark outside. It was our second one of the weekend, but the first was during daylight hours. They weren’t super quick outages either — the first on Saturday was about 90 minutes to two hours and the second one on Sunday was close to an hour. This is all thanks to the rainy and super windy weather we had all weekend. With that said, I thought it seemed fitting to name the recipe a rainy day stew. You can even see all the water on my deck in the pictures. I had to sneak these pictures when I could, as it’s been extremely challenging with the rain, wind and gray skies!

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Ingredients:

  • 2 Tbsp grass-fed butter
  • 1 yellow onion, chopped
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 small red bell pepper, chopped
  • 1 jalapeno, seeded and chopped (keep some seeds in if want it spicier)
  • 2 lb grass-fed beef stew meat
  • 1 28 oz can crushed tomatoes
  • 2 cups bone broth
  • 3 Tbsp tomato paste
  • 2 tsp ground coriander
  • 1 Tbsp + 1 tsp paprika
  • 1 Tbsp + 1 tsp chili powder
  • Pinch of cayenne
  • Sea salt and pepper to taste
  • 2.5 cups fresh butternut squash cubes

Directions:

  1. Melt butter in a large pot over medium heat. Add the onion, garlic, jalapeno and red pepper. Stir and cook a couple minutes. Then, add the stew meat and season to taste with sea salt and pepper.
  2. After 5-7 minutes, once meat has browned, add the tomato paste and mix well. Then, add the crushed tomatoes, bone broth, coriander, paprika, chili powder and cayenne. Add more sea salt and pepper, if desired.
  3. Bring the stew to a simmer and then reduce heat to medium-low, and cover with a lid. Allow to cook for 2 hours, stirring occasionally.
  4. After the two hours, add in the butternut squash and stir. Cover with a lid and continue to simmer for another 1-2 hours or until meat and squash are tender.
  5. Adjust seasonings as needed and serve.

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