Filled with beef, vegetables and made in your slow cooker, Italian Beef Stew is rich, savory and delicious! Don't stand over the stove, let the crockpot do all the work for you! This slow cooker meal is perfect for busy weeknights and chilly evenings for a hearty, wholesome meal!
Love this meal? Be sure and try slow cooker beef stew and dumplings next!
Rustic Italian Beef Stew
Did you know January is National Soup Month? Yup! It is - so this month I'm focusing on easy soups, stews and chowders to share.
YUM!!! What can I say, soup is my favorite meal!!
Whether it's a bowl of Potato Soup, Slow Cooker Enchilada or Corned Beef Stew, it's always good food. We eat soup all year round, how about you?
In fact soup is such a large part of my life I've written a complete guide post sharing tips and tricks to make the BEST soup right in your own home - Click here to learn all about it!
Italian Ground Beef Soup
Today we're talking Italian Beef Soup. It's hearty because it's made with ground beef and filled with vegetables. But shh.... we're taking an easy shortcut with this meal because we're using frozen vegetables!
It comes together in a snap and it's souper delicious! Get it? soup-er? 😋
Ingredients needed for Italian Beef Stew Recipe
- ground beef - I choose 80/20 mix for more flavor.
- beef broth - choose low sodium when possible. Always review the breakdown of ingredients. Some broths are incredibly high in sodium!
- crushed tomatoes - if it's summertime and you're making this recipe, consider using fresh tomatoes - substitute four cups chopped tomatoes for one can of crushed tomatoes.
- cannellini beans - can substitute with white beans if you'd prefer
- onion, celery, garlic - for seasoning.
- frozen mixed vegetables - great freezer shortcut!
- dried Italian seasoning, bay leaf, salt, and pepper for seasoning.
What kind of beef is used for soup?
Though you can certainly use stew meat, ground beef is my first choice for this meal. I choose 80/20 or 85/15 fat content for flavor.
There's no reason to pay the higher price for a leaner mixture of ground beef, plus the higher fat content will lend more flavor to the soup!
How do you thicken vegetable beef soup?
There are several ways to thicken this soup. You can use 3 tablespoons of flour or cornstarch, mixed with cold water until smooth and add it to the soup about an hour before it's done which will thicken the soup.
You can mix equal parts of flour/butter until smooth and creamy and add it to the crockpot an hour before it's done.
Or in this soup I do not rinse the beans - I add them, juice and all to the slow cooker to simmer along with the other ingredients. The starch slightly thickens the soup. No muss-no fuss!
Does this soup freeze well?
Absolutely! It freezes great and if well sealed, will keep in the freezer up to three months.
Can I substitute canned vegetables for the frozen veggies?
You can, but I wouldn't recommend it and here's why; canned vegetables are filled with sodium. You'll need to adjust the seasoning or the soup may be too salty.
Additionally, because the canned vegetables have already been cooked/processed the texture may be mushy.
Steps to make this delicious homemade stew
- Brown the ground beef, drain well and add it to the crockpot.
- Dice the onion and celery and add to the slow cooker.
- Top with the frozen vegetables and sprinkle with the spices. Top with cannellini beans, crushed tomatoes and beef stock.
- Cover - Cook 8 hours on low or 6 hours on high. Remove the bay leaf prior to serving.
What to serve with this meal.
Love a great bowl of soup or stew?
Me too and making them in the crockpot is even better! Check this out for a list of 40+ Easy Slow Cooker Recipes for a ton more easy meals!
This is a basic recipe!
And you can customize it with your favorites! Don't be afraid to toss in a can of mushrooms or extra can of beans.
Love pasta? Cook it on the stovetop and ladle the soup over it when serving. Don't add it to the crockpot with the soup. It will absorb all the broth in the soup.
Stovetop or Pressure Cooker?
Yes and yes! To make this soup on the stovetop, simply brown the beef, then add the remaining ingredients. Cover and simmer for 45 minutes to 1 hour to allow the flavors to combine.
To cook this using your pressure cooker, brown the beef, add the remaining ingredients. Cover and seal, using the manual setting, set the timer to 8 minutes. Quick-release at the end.
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- You'll need a great knife for all of this slicing and dicing! Click here for the knives I use and recommend.
- Here's an affordable set of cutting boards for the kitchen.
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Italian Beef Stew Recipe
Crockpot Italian Beef Soup Recipe
- 1 lb. ground beef
- 1 quart beef broth
- 28 oz. crushed tomatoes
- 15 oz. cannelli beans canned, do not drain
- 1 onion chopped
- 2 stalks celery diced
- 16 oz mixed vegetables use frozen mixed vegetables
- 2 tsp italian seasoning
- 1 bay leaf
- 2 tsp salt
- 1 tsp pepper
- Brown hamburger, drain if desired - put in the slow cooker.
- Dice the onion and celery and place it in the slow cooker on top of the beef.
- Next add the frozen vegetables and spices. Top with cannellini beans, crushed tomatoes and beef stock.
- Cover - Cook on low for 8 hours or 6 hours on high. Remove the bay leaf prior to serving.
- Optional - finishing the soup by stirring a couple of tablespoons of minced parsley into the big pot of soup will brighten the flavors. Topping individual bowls with a sprinkle of parmesan cheese? Heavenly!