When my grandmother first wrote this recipe on a 4x6 index card, she called it "My One Skillet Meal". Hubby didn't like that name, so he started calling it Cowboy Stew. Apparently, it reminds him of the wild west. I thought it was cute, so I started calling it that, too.
So, I didn't take step-by-step pictures, because, well, that would have been a lot of pictures, but I did take a few to show you the progression of the coloring. It will start out that red tomato-y color you see above.
After a little while, it will slowly cook down to a brownish red. There will also be less juice. Eventually, it will turn a brownish color like the first picture. Again, the juice will cook down. If you want more juice, though, you can always add more water.
We love to pair the stew with cornbread (no sugar, y'all, as sugar makes cake!) Rolls go well with it also.
Personally, I like a piece of cornbread on the side, and a piece crumbled up in the stew. I don't know why, but it helps to sop up the juice. Yeah, I said sop, I'm from Alabama, so don't blame me:)
We don't eat Cowboy Stew as much as we did that first year, but it still hold a special place in our hearts. Plus, it means I only have to cook like 3 times a week. That's what I call awesome!
I'd love to hear what you think!
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: approx 30 minutes
Keywords: saute entree soup/stew beef American fall winter
Ingredients (serves 6-8)
- 1.5 pounds of lean ground beef
- 1 small onion diced
- salt & pepper to taste
- 2 15oz. cans of Luck's Pinto Beans with Pork (brand optional)
- 1 Pinto Bean can of water
- 1 14oz. can of tomato sauce
- 1/2 cup of macaroni elbows
- 2-4 tblsp of hot sauce (optional)
In a large skillet, brown ground beef and onions just until done.
(Optional) Drain grease of pan.
Salt and Pepper ground beef to taste.
Add 2 cans of pinto beans and water to the ground beef. Stir.
Add the tomato sauce to the pinto bean/ ground beef mixture, and stir until well mixed.
Bring the mixture to a boil for 5 minutes.
Add the macaroni elbows to the mixture, and simmer until it is tender, stirring occasionally as needed.
Add hot sauce and extra water if desired.
Serve with cornbread, rolls, crackers, or bread.
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