Dig in to these delicious varieties on the hearty comfort food.
By Michael Tyrrell
Makes: 8 servings
Prep: 10 minutes
Slow Cook: 6 hours on HIGH or 9 hours on LOW
To make this classic, replace smoked paprika with regular paprika and stewed tomatoes with fire-roasted diced tomatoes. Eliminate sugar and add 3 tablespoons chili powder and 1 chopped green pepper. Serve with sour cream and shredded cheese, if desired.
For an Asian twist, eliminate paprika, salt, pepper and sugar. Add 1 teaspoon Chinese Five-Spice, 1 tablespoon each light soy sauce and hoisin. Replace cider vinegar with rice vinegar. Add 1 can diced water chestnuts and 2 chopped scallions during last 30 minutes of cook time. Serve over rice with extra chopped scallions.
Try this Italian spin: Replace paprika with 1 teaspoon Italian seasoning, stewed tomatoes with 2 cans (14 1/2 ounces) Italian-seasoned diced tomatoes and cider vinegar with balsamic. Eliminate broth and sugar and add 2 sliced Italian frying peppers. Shred meat into sauce and serve with cooked pappardelle pasta; top with grated Parmesan.
Replace smoked paprika with regular paprika. Eliminate vinegar and sugar. Add 1/2 teaspoon each dried oregano, thyme and sage. Stir in 1 package (10 ounces) thawed peas and carrots at end of cook time. Cool slightly; slice meat, stir back into slow cooker. Serve as a stew over mashed potatoes.
Originally published in the September 2011 issue of Family Circle magazine.