Tuesday, February 17, 2015

Slow Cooker Italian Beef

My new year's resolution this year was to get back on track with my meal planning and to start trying more new recipes.  A while back another mom emailed me this recipe for Crock Pot Italian Beef Sandwiches.   She said it was one of her family's favorite meals and it only has a few ingredients so I decided to try it out.  After checking at four different stores, I decided to give up on the Chicago style Giardiniera it calls for and just go Italian style.  Oh my goodness, I am so glad I couldn't find the Chicago style!  I don't know how it would have tasted with it, but with the Italian style it was A-MA-ZING!!!!

Alright, now that I have you excited, I'll tell you how to make it.  You will need a chuck roast, an envelope of Italian salad dressing mix (I used Good Seasons Zesty Italian), a jar of Italian style Giardiniera, a can of beef broth, and a jar of pepperoncini or banana peppers.  We aren't big on spice in this house so we used mild, you stick with how your family likes it.

Trim the fat off of your chuck roast and cut it into big chunks (about 3-4 inches).  Spray your slow cooker with cooking spray and put the beef inside.  Sprinkle the packet of salad dressing mix all over the top.

Add in half of the jar of pepperoncini peppers along with a couple of tablespoons of the juice from the jar.  Drain the liquid out of the jar of Giardiniera and dump it in.  The first time I made this I only used half of the jar and the bites with the veggies were so unbelievably flavorful that I decided to use the full jar the second time.  It was an excellent decision!  Pour in the can of broth and then give it all a little stir to get the liquid under the meat and the veggies and peppers evenly distributed.

Put on the lid and turn your slow cooker on LOW.  Cook until the meat shreds easily, about 8 1/2 - 9 hours.

Put the shredded meat back in and give it a good stir.  Recover your slow cooker and let cook for another hour or so to give the meat a chance to soak up some of that flavorful juice.

Now, who likes to cook once and eat twice?  I do!  In fact, I love it.  I'm not talking about eating the exact same meal two times either, although we do that a lot.  Leftovers are a busy mama's friend.  The first night we had this Slow Cooker Italian Beef as recommended, on sandwich rolls with sliced provolone melting into all of the little nooks and crannies.  Then a couple of days later we had the leftover meat warmed up with some oven roasted potatoes and salad on the side.  It was delicious this way too.

The photo really does not do this meal justice.  Slow Cooker Italian Beef has quickly become a family favorite for us and I'm sure it will for your family too!

Slow Cooker Italian Beef
Adapted from Iowa Girl Eats 
  • 3 lb. chuck roast, trimmed of fat and cut into 3-4 inch chunks
  • 1 envelope Italian salad dressing mix
  • 8 oz. pepperoncini or banana pepper slices plus 1-2 tbls. juice from jar
  • 16 oz. jar of Italian Mix Giardiniera, drained
  • 14.5 oz. can of beef broth
  1. Spray slow cooker with cooking spray and put chuck roast chunks into slow cooker.  Sprinkle meat with salad dressing mix.
  2. Add in peppers, pepper juice, Giardiniera, and beef broth.
  3. Stir to let broth under meat and evenly distribute vegetables and peppers.
  4. Cook on low 8 1/2 to 9 hours.  Remove meat from slow cooker and shred it.
  5. Return meat to slow cooker, stir, and continue to cook for another hour.
  6. Serve on sandwich rolls with sliced provolone or with roasted potatoes and salad.