How to slow cook beef in a slow cooker

Whether you are cooking gravy beef, Osso Bucco or a juicy roast, nothing warms the soul more than a hearty bowl of slow-cooked beef.

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How to slow cook beef in a slow cooker?

The great thing about slow cooking meats is that you can use cheaper cuts such as shoulders and shanks to get a beautifully tender and juicy meal. Here are three different techniques for slow cooking beef, so you can enjoy a slow cooked meal no matter what equipment you have on hand.
 
How to cook beef in a slow cooker
  1. Place your cut of beef into the base of the slow cooker and add aromatics, such as onion, celery and carrots.
  2. Add stock, water or other liquids, making sure there is enough to come up 1-2cm from the base of the slow cooker bowl.
  3. Cover with the lid and cook on High for 4-5 hours or Low for 5-8 hours, or until the meat is tender and pulls apart easily with a fork.
 
How to slow cook beef in the oven
  1. Sear your cut of beef in an oven-proof Dutch oven or casserole dish.
  2. Add any aromatics, such as onion, celery and carrots to the bowl.
  3. Add stock, water or other liquids, making sure there is enough to come up 1-2cm from the base of the dish.
  4. Cover with a lid and cook in a low oven (160°C) for 2-3 hours or until meat is tender and flakes easily with a fork.
 
How to slow cook beef on the stovetop
  1. Sear beef pieces in a flameproof Dutch oven or casserole dish.
  2. Add aromatics, such as onion, celery and carrots to the bowl.
  3. Add stock, water or other liquids, making sure there is enough liquid to come up 1-2cm from the base.
  4. Cover and cook in a low oven (160°C) for 2-3 hours or until meat is tender and pulls apart easily with a fork.
 
FAQs
Do you add water when cooking meat in a slow cooker?
If your slow cooker is 3/4 full, no extra liquid is required. However, if you're cooking a smaller amount of food, add 1-2cm of liquid in the bottom of the slow cooker bowl to ensure there's enough liquid for cooking.
 
Don't add too much liquid, because as the food cooks, it produces its own liquid. Due to a slow cookers closed environment, the juices will not evaporate and will remain inside the bowl with the food.
 
How long does raw beef take in a slow cooker?
You can add beef to the slow cooker without browning. Searing it in a hot pan to create a caramelised crust is not necessary but can make a richer flavour.
 
Simply add the meat to your slow cooker with aromatics, stock and sauces and cook either on High for 4-5 hours or on Low for 5-8 hours.
 
How do you make meat tender in a slow cooker?
Choosing a cut of beef best suited for low and slow cooking is the ideal way to get extra tender meat. Gravy beef and chuck steak are great slow cooker options, as they are tough and rich in tissues that make for deliciously tender meat.
 
Can you put meat straight into a slow cooker?
Meat can be added directly unseared and not browned. However, browning meat and caramelising the beef is a great way to add depth of flavour and improve the visual appearance of the final dish.
 
Can you slow cook meat for 12 hours?
This totally depends on the cut of meat and the slow cooker brand. Always follow the manufacturer’s instructions for optimum cook times. Generally, meat cooked on the Low setting can have up to 8-10 hours of cook time.
 
Should liquid cover the meat in a slow cooker?
There is no need to cover the meat in liquid when cooking with a slow cooker, you only need enough liquid to cover the base of the slow cooker as the meat and vegetables will release liquid as they cook.
 
More slow cooker beef recipes
Slow cooking beef is a simple and soothing winter option that never goes out of style. Try some of our favourite recipes now that you are equipped with the best tips on slow cooking tender, moist meat.
 
Play Video: Slow Cooker Beef Stew with Chutney
 
 
 
 
Play Video: Slow Cooked Rogan Josh Short Ribs
 
 
 
 
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