Harvest Stew

By • February 9, 2011 4 Comments

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Author Notes: This recipe was inspired by a variation on Shepherd’s Pie in Eating Well Magazine. They substituted mashed squash for the potatoes, and spinach for the peas. I liked the new ingredients, but didn’t like the pie’s texture, nor the fact that it used too many pans. (I wash dishes by hand & always take this into account.) I wondered if I could make a one-pot recipe with a similar flavor profile that hopefully tasted even better. I substituted ground bison for the beef (one of my favorite meats), chunks of butternut squash for the squash puree (more flavor & lovely texture), real garlic instead of powdered (obviously) & chose a tomato-broth base. The result is a simple stew that takes less than an hour to make from start to finish, and although the ingredient list is short, is full of flavor. A couple of tips: if you don’t make your own vegetable broth, get a jar of Organic Better than Bouillon – it makes a quick & flavorful broth. Also, if the thought of peeling a butternut squash makes you wince, buy yourself a Kuhn Rikon Swiss Peeler. It glides over the curves of the squash with ease & it will change your life! (Or at least be the best $5 you ever spent.)Phoenix Helix


Serves 6-8

  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 large onion (peeled & chopped)
  • 1/2 head of garlic (peeled & minced)
  • 1-1/2 pounds ground bison
  • 2 pounds butternut squash (peeled & cubed)
  • 30 ounces canned tomato sauce (I like Muir Glen)
  • 2 cups vegetable broth
  • 1/2 teaspoon sea salt
  • 10 ounces fresh baby spinach
  1. Chop onion & garlic & place in large soup pot with olive oil. Cook over medium heat for a few minutes, to soften.
  2. Add bison & brown both sides, cutting meat into chunks in the process.
  3. Add tomato sauce, broth & salt. Bring to boil & then reduce to simmer.
  4. Peel & de-seed squash. Chop into cubes & add to pot. Simmer for 30 minutes
  5. Add baby spinach last, cooking for just 1-2 minutes, until wilted.
  6. Serve!

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