Drunken Pirate Stew

Alrighty, yesterday I told you about this awesome stew I made and promised a recipe to accompany it (as well as going off on a bit of a rant). So here you are:

Drunken Pirate Stew – Paleo and gluten-free but not low-carb, sorry I can’t make carrots and potatoes magically low carb

The ingredients

Ingredients (yes that is Bacardi Oakheart rum you see):

*makes 4 large servings

– 1-2 lbs stewing beef (depending on how much beef to veggie ratio you want, I used 1 lb)

– 1 large onion

– 2 c. chopped carrots

– 1 c. chopped mushrooms

– 1 28 oz. can tomatoes, no salt (diced or whole work well)

– 1 med sweet potato chopped

– 2 cloves garlic

– 1-2 tbsp butter (for browning and sauteeing)

– 1 oz. spiced rum (I used a 1/4 c. but it was a bit too much for my taste, use your discretion)

– Spices to taste such as – cinnamon (to enhance the rum), thyme, marjoram, cumin, chili powder, salt and pepper

Other things I would have added if I had them in the house – Celery, pearl onions, potatoes (particularly red new potatoes), beef broth, red wine.

*** I’m hoping you are getting the idea that this is a fly by the seat of your pants kind of recipe and really its just the method that matters. There are certain things you can do that make a stew awesome.


1. Grab a big pot with a lid or a dutch oven if you own one and heat to medium-high heat adding enough butter to coat the bottom of the pan once it is heated.

2. Brown the meat (in batches if there is not enough room in the pot) by placing the cubed beef in one layer without crowding them in the pan, leave it until the meat starts to come off the pan a little at the sides and dow this on all sides. This is the only annoying part about stew, but it makes the meat much more tender and adds more flavour IMHO.

All the veggies

3. Remove your browned meat from the pan and put aside, add some more butter and some garlic (I crush mine in a garlic pres so you don’t get random pieces) and cook until fragrant (30 – 60 seconds) and sautee you onions (and celery if you are using that) until slightly translucent.

4. Add the rest of the veggies to the pot, which in my case were, sweet potatoes, mushrooms, and carrots and add back the meat with any drippings that have accumulated in the bowl and stir to mix everything together, maybe add some more butter if you thing it needs it 😉

5. Add the rum to the pot and with a wooden spoon, scrap the bottom to get up all the delicious meat drippings and buttery goodies that have stuck to the bottom of the pot… this is called deglazing and also works well with wine or vinegar.

6. Add the can of tomatoes and stir, then add enough water (or beef broth if you have it) to the pot to cover the contents in liquid, then add any spices you want (add them now so they can permeate all the veggies and meat with their awesome flavour).

7. Stir and cover the mixture until it comes to a boil, then turn the heat to low (enough to maintain a low simmer) and let it “stew” for about an hour stirring occasionally

Yum – second helpings were had

8. After an hour you might want to take the lid off and let the mixture reduce a little to thicken it up, or let it keep cooking covered until the desired thickness. More cooking time will only really affect how mushy the veggies are, but it will make the beef even more tender.

FYI this (and all stews) tastes even better the next day because the flavours have had even longer to blend. I know this because I just consumed a huge bowl of leftovers. Yum. You can also make a bigger batch and freeze half because stew keeps really well. Just heat it back up in a sauce pan (or microwave, but things taste better from the stove) and you have a super quick, ready-to-go meal.

Nutritional info per 1/4 of recipe (for the veggies I included, 1 lb of grass-fed stewing beef and a 1/4 c. of rum): Cals – 422    Carbs – 25 g   Fat – 22 g   Protein – 26 g

This is obviously a higher calorie, fat and carb meal than I usually make, but it’s extremely healthy and great at the end of a fall day when you are feeling cold and you have just been on the stairmaster for an hour and think you deserve some carbs *ahem*.


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