Well, it’s one I’ve always subscribed to … and it just so happens to be this month’s Recipe ReDux theme so woop woop!
It also gives me a chance to share one of my FAVORITE recipes with you … slow cooker spicy Italian beef.
But, oh … I’m not giving you one idea for what to do with this super simple, utterly delicious recipe. And I’m not just giving you two ideas either.
No, my friends … hold on to your hats … because I’m giving you FIVE AWESOME WAYS to use this ridiculously good, mouth-watering, meaty main.
FIVE! COUNT ‘EM … FIVE!
Okay, perhaps that’s enough excitement for one post … on to this delicious dish!
Made with just a few main ingredients — beef roast, beer(!), and pepperoncini peppers — my version of spicy Italian beef takes just a few minutes to throw together, and then your trusty slow cooker does all the heavy lifting while you’re out enjoying a beautiful Spring day.
(Or while you’re at work, but c’mon … who wants to talk about work?)
And what emerges from said slow cooker? Zippy, tangy, and oh so very spicy, my Italian beef is perfect for sandwiches, tacos, and a whole slew of other tasty things … which we’ll talk about after the recipe! Gotcha!
Oh, just one more thing. Many of the recipes for slow cooker Italian beef on the net call for a packet of dry Italian dressing mix.
In order to save you from the salt bomb that comes inside those tiny packets, my version combines a variety of spices, a touch of brown sugar, and salt substitute so your heart will thank me, but your tastebuds will never know the difference!
- 1 (12 ounce) can beer
- 8 ounces low-sodium beef broth
- 1 (12 ounce) jar sliced pepperoncini peppers (with the liquid)
- 2 teaspoons garlic powder
- 1 tablespoon dried parsley
- 1 tablespoon brown sugar
- 2 tablespoons dried minced onion
- 2 tablespoons salt substitute
- 1 teaspoon black pepper
- 1 (3 to 4 pound) beef chuck roast, trimmed
- Pour the beer, the beef broth, and the liquid from the pepperoncini peppers into the slow cooker. Stir in the garlic powder, parsley, brown sugar, minced onion, salt substitute, and pepper into the liquid until well mixed.
- Place about half of the sliced peppers in the slow cooker, then place the beef roast on top. Place the remaining sliced peppers on top of the roast.
- Cover and cook on low for 8 to 10 hours.
- Remove the cooked beef roast from the slow cooker, and allow to cool slightly. While still warm, thinly slice the beef roast then chop the slices into small pieces.
- Serve in your favorite recipe.
2. If you want a less spicy version -- and fair warning, my version is pretty spicy! -- leave out the liquid from the pepperoncini peppers or just add a tablespoon or so.
3. If you really want to kick the flavor up, sear the beef roast in a skillet on all sides before adding it to the slow cooker.
Here are five ways to take this very versatile base to notches unknown!
SANDWICHES: Toast some hoagie rolls in the oven, top with a generous portion of spicy Italian beef, provolone cheese, and sautéd onions, and serve with a side of the spicy au jus this recipe creates for a spot-on version of the popular Chicago hot sandwich.
TACOS: Nestle some spicy Italian beef into warm corn or flour tortillas, then pile on your favorite taco toppers, such as pico de gallo, crumbled queso fresco, pickled radishes, and lime wedges, for a south-of-the-border treat.
BAKED POTATOES: Split some baked russet (or even sweet!) potatoes open, then top with a good amount of spicy Italian beef, a sprinkling of your favorite cheese, a dollop of crème fraîche, and some diced red onion for a healthy lunch option.
FLATBREAD: Spread your favorite flatbread dough with your favorite barbecue sauce, then top with some spicy Italian beef, shredded pepper Jack cheese, and thinly sliced red onions. Bake according to directions, then sprinkle with fresh chopped cilantro before serving for a spicy, crunchy dish perfect for a party.
EMPANADAS: Prepare some empanada dough, then fill with a small amount of spicy Italian beef, sliced pimento-filled green olives, and golden raisins, and bake according to recipe directions for a taste of Latin America.
Looking for more great recipes to cook once and eat twice (or more)? Check out the rest of the amazing recipes from my fellow Recipe ReDux members below!