Ceramic bowl filled with beef and sorghum stew.

Slow Cooker Beef and Sorghum Stew

When I was a child my mother used to make this wonderful beef and barley stew. I can’t eat barley now, because it contains gluten, but I thought I would try this stew with whole grain sorghum instead. Fall is coming soon and this recipe makes a good, hearty meal that will stick with you through those chilly evening football games.

This stew will cook more quickly on the stove, if you don’t want to use a slow cooker. Feel free to change up the seasoning to suit your taste. I used some basil that I grew in my garden last year and dried. I also put in some fresh thyme I have growing in my garden this year and it was really good. I love using fresh herbs in soups whenever I can.

Whole grain sorghum has a slightly courser texture than barley. It also will tend to fall apart when you cook it a long time. I liked that, because it thickened the stew a little bit. If you’re cooking this on the stove at a higher temperature, the sorghum takes about 1 to 1.5 hours to cook to a soft texture.


  • 1 1/2 pounds boneless lean beef, cubed
  • 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 1 tablespoon minced garlic
  • 1 32-ounce package beef broth
  • 2 14.5-ounce cans stewed tomatoes
  • 1 teaspoon dried basil
  • 4 small to medium-sized potatoes, cubed
  • 4 stalks celery, chopped
  • 6 carrots, chopped
  • 1 medium yellow onion, chopped
  • 3/4 cup whole grain sorghum, rinsed
  • 1 teaspoon fresh thyme, chopped


I let the whole grain sorghum soak in a cup full of water while I prepared the rest of the ingredients.


Whole grain sorghum in a strainer after rinsing.

I soaked the sorghum in water while preparing other vegetables and then rinsed it before adding it to the stew.

Cut beef into bite-sized chunks and sauté in the olive oil with the minced garlic and pepper for 5 minutes, or until browned. Place seasoned meat in your slow cooker.

Beef and minced garlic browning in skillet with a little olive oil.

Beef and minced garlic browning in skillet with a little olive oil.

Add chopped vegetables, beef broth, tomatoes, and basil.

Close up of Food Club Stewed Tomates can.

Here are the canned tomatoes I used in the stew.

Close up of a 32 ounce box of Pacific Organic Beef Broth.

This is the brand of beef broth I like to use because it doesn’t taste as salty as some others.

Browned beef and cut up vegetables in the slow cooker.

Browned beef and cut up vegetables added to the slow cooker

Drain sorghum in a strainer and rinse. Add sorghum to stew.

Beef, vegetables, broth and whole grain sorghum in the slow cooker.

Beef, vegetables, broth and whole grain sorghum added to the slow cooker.

Cover and cook on low setting for 6 hours, then on high for 1 hour, or until the vegetables and sorghum are tender.

Add the thyme just before serving.

Sprigs of fresh thyme on a wooden cutting board partially chopped.

I used chopped, fresh thyme from my garden.

Serve warm with gluten-free breadsticks or cheese biscuits.


Milo graphic

Milo says….

Beef stew is the BEST SMELL in the whole world! I watched Maizy cooking it ALL DAY and FINALLY she put a little taste in my bowl. I LOVE having dinner with Maizy!

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