Tuesday, February 26, 2013

Slow Cooker Lentil & Sweet Potato Stew

My husband thought this lentil and sweet potato stew tasted similar to lentil soup and I have to agree! That's definitely a good thing in my book because I love lentil soup. (Also good because I got a little carried away and I bought a ridiculous amount of lentils the last time I was at the bulk food store.)  This lentil and sweet potato stew made for such a healthy but hearty meal.  I'd have to agree with The Sweets Life when she said this tasted like healthy comfort food!

Not only were the flavors great but the more slow cooker recipes I have under my belt, the better.  I just love that dinner was ready as soon as my husband walked in the door.  I originally was going to serve this with homemade bread, but since the bread wasn't quite ready at dinner time, we had the stew first and bread later.  Fine by me but they would have been great together for dinner!

I had read some comments on the original recipe site that some people thought the carrots and sweet potatoes were too mushy by the time the lentils cooked through.  To remedy this, I added the sweet potatoes and carrots 2 hours after I started the slow cooker.  In the end, both veggies were very soft but still held their shape, which was perfect.  I changed the recipe below to reflect that but feel free to combine everything at once if you can't or don't want to add the sweet potatoes and carrots later.

Slow Cooker Lentil & Sweet Potato Stew
Taken from: The Sweets Life
Serves 4-6
  • 5 cups vegetable broth (I actually used 2 cups tomato juice which I save from draining canned tomatoes, 1 cup water and 2 cups chicken broth)
  • 1 1/2 cups dried lentils, rinsed
  • 1 medium onion, chopped
  • 4 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1/2 tsp ground cumin
  • 1/4 tsp ground ginger
  • salt and pepper
  • 3 medium-sized sweet potatoes, peeled and cubed
  • 3 medium carrots, cut into chunks
  • 1/8 tsp red pepper flakes, plus more for topping
  • 4-5 cups fresh spinach, chopped
  • 1/2 cup fresh cilantro, minced (I forgot to add and though it still was great)
1. Combine the broth through the ginger in the bowl of a slow cooker. Mix to combine.  If you would like, you can add the sweet potatoes and carrots 2 hours after you started the slow cooker.  If not, add them with the rest of the ingredients.  Cover and cook on low for 6-8 hours until lentils are tender (I had to cook mine for at least 7 hours to get the lentils tender).
2. Thirty minutes before serving, stir in spinach. Season with salt and pepper as needed. Top with cilantro and extra red pepper flakes to taste.


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