Winter has fully arrived in Scotland! It has snowed several times and there is a blanket of ice overnight now. So I am indulging in warm comforting foods that are easy to make, take very little time to throw together and are healthy. This is where this Slow Cooker Vegetarian Spicy Three Bean Stew comes into play. It’s perfect for when I return home after a long day at work and there it is all warm and steamy to welcome me in from the cold. My evening meal in a bowl and ready to eat within 5 minutes of walking through the door.
Lets talk beans!
Now to make this dish super easy to make I used canned beans. They are already soaked and they come in perfect measurements (well in the UK anyway!) So all weights and measurements are for beans that are ready to use, no soaking required. That’s not to say you can’t use dried beans and soak them overnight, I’m just saying I like being a little bit lazy in the kitchen!!! You will need to keep an eye on weights and measurements as I am not sure what they would be if you do use dried beans.
Tinned beans are great all you need to do is open the tin drain and give them a little rinse under some cold water and they are good to go. You still need to heat and soften them but I am sure you get the idea.
Three things I need to point out about this recipe.
Number 1 is I have a small slow cooker this recipe could easily be doubled to feed a larger family or those with a larger appetite. I state that this recipe will give you 4 servings which it will if you use soup bowls like those in the pictures. I find this plenty especially if I am also serving a lovely crusty bread with this dish. But some people like larger portions and thats cool so please feel free to double this recipe.
Number 2 is I am a bit of a spice wimp! If something is too spicy I just can’t eat it. I start to go red and my mouth feels like it is on FIRE! So the spices are perfect for a spice wimp like me. But feel free to double or even triple (you mad people) the spices. This is just the right amount of smokey spiciness for me and like minded people and kids. Unless your kids are way tougher than me! Very possible.
Number 3 is the sour cream topping you spot in the pictures. Because of my afore mentioned spice issues I find a lovely dollop of sour cream cools it down even further for me. Sad I know! But a plain natural yogurt could be used here or even a plant based yogurt could be used to keep this dish Vegan if you wish to bother with a topping at all. It is completely optional as is the sprinkling of fresh coriander, I believe my American friends call it cilantro.
So if you need a warm comforting dish then this Slow Cooker Vegetarian Spicy Three Bean Stew is gonna be your answer. Trust me it really does give you a lovely warming glow to beat that horrible evil snowy & icy Winter weather. It may look pretty but its soooooo cold! I am guessing you have worked out that I am also a wimp agains the cold.
Slow Cooker Vegetarian Spicy Three Bean Stew
- 1 tablespoon oil
- 1 small white onion finely chopped
- 2 cloves garlic minced
- 1 tablespoon tomato puree / paste
- 380 grams chopped tinned tomatoes (1 and 1/2 cups)
- 1 small orange bell pepper chopped up small
- 2 tablespoons red wine vinegar
- 1/2 teaspoon crushed dried chillies
- 1 teaspoon smoked paprika
- 1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
- 400 grams kidney beans (1 and 1/4 cups)
- 300 grams pinto beans (1 cup)
- 300 grams black eye beans (1 cup)
- salt and pepper to taste
- Sour cream to top (optional)
- Fresh coriander to garnish (optional)
- I find this dish easier to put together by first peeping all my ingredients and having them on hand and ready to go.
- In a medium sized pan over a medium heat, heat the oil and lightly fry the onions for a few minutes until they start to soften.
- Add in the garlic and tomato puree and stir it all together.
- Add in the chopped tinned tomatoes, red wine vinegar and spices and gently heat for a few minutes.
- Pour this mix into your slow cooker and add in the rinsed and drained beans and salt and pepper to taste. I only added in 1/2 a teaspoon of each.
- Mix everything together so all the beans and tomato sauce is well combined.
- Turn your slow cooker to high and cook for 5 and 1/2 hours.
- Give it all a good stir before serving.
- Kept covered once cooled pop any leftovers into the fridge and this dish will last for 3 days.
- Though I haven't tried it I should imagine this dish will freeze.