This hearty and flavorful bison stew is perfect for a comforting meal on a chilly day. It's a convenient slow cooker recipe that allows you to enjoy the rich flavors of bison without much fuss.
Savory Slow Cooker Bison Stew
Stew, the ultimate comfort food, is a culinary classic that has warmed hearts and filled bellies for generations. It's a hearty and wholesome dish crafted by simmering ingredients in a broth until they meld into a harmonious medley of flavors. This recipe uses a pack of onion soup mix to quickly and easily add savory richness to the broth. Pro Tip: you can brown the meat and assemble the stew the night before you plan to eat it. Simply store it in the fridge overnight, then pop it in the cooker on your way out the door so you can enjoy a quick dinner when you get back. Nothing beats coming home to the smell of a delicious meal!
2 pounds of bison stew meat, cubed
- 1 packet (1 ounce) dry onion soup mix
- 4 cups beef broth
- 1/2 cup red wine (optional)
- 1 tbsp Worcestershire sauce
- 4 carrots, peeled and sliced
- 4 potatoes, peeled and diced
- 2 celery stalks, sliced
- 1 onion, chopped
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- 2 bay leaves
- 1 sprig each fresh rosemary and thyme leaves (or 1 tsp each dried)
- Salt and pepper to taste
- 1 heaping tablespoon corn starch (optional, for thickening)
- Butter, oil or bacon fat for browning the meat
Brown the meat
Heat the fat of your choice in a Dutch oven over medium-high heat. If you are using fresh herbs, add them to the oil now to release their flavour. Once they are fragrant, remove them and add them to your slow cooker. (optional step)
Pat dry the bison cubes and season generously with salt and pepper. Brown in small batches, adding the browned meat to the slow cooker as you finish. This step is not a necessary one if you are in a rush, but if you have time, it adds so much flavor to your stew.
If you are using the wine, now is the time to use it to deglaze your pan ant the pour all that goodness over the meat in the slow cooker.
- Sprinkle the dry onion soup mix evenly over the meat at the bottom of the slow cooker.
Layer the sliced carrots, diced potatoes, celery, chopped onion, and minced garlic on top of the meat and soup mix.
Add Worcestershire sauce, bay leaves, dried herbs if you are using them and pepper to taste. Remember that the onion soup mix is already salty, so go easy on the additional salt.
Pour in Broth
Pour the beef broth over the ingredients, ensuring that they are fully covered. If you prefer a thicker stew, you can use less broth
Cover the slow cooker and cook on low for 7-8 hours or until the bison meat is tender. You can also cook it on high for 3-4 hours, but low and slow usually yields better results.
If you want a thicker stew, in a small bowl, mix 1 heaping tablespoon of cornstarch with some water. About 30 minutes before serving, stir the cornstarch mixture into the stew. This will help thicken the broth. Taste and adjust seasoning if necessary.
Once the bison stew is ready and the meat is tender, remove the bay leaves and herb stems if needed
- Serve hot and enjoy your delicious slow cooker bison stew on its own, or with fresh bread to soak up all that yummy broth