Spicy Slow Cooker Short Ribs

Well, hello there.

Nothing yesterday – Only Brother and his beautiful family were here for an extended weekend (they drove all the way from Texas), and I had neither the time nor the inclination to post.  I’m also suffering from bronchitis for the first time in over 2 years; I used to get it twice a year ever since I quit smoking but hadn’t had it once since we changed our diet, until now.  I think it has more to do with stress and overwork than anything – we’ve just been so busy lately, and have barely had any time at all to rest.

At any rate, I have a really nice recipe for you today.  We had a run of very cool weather early last week; the kind of cool weather that makes you crave warm soups and stews.  I was also craving Mexican, and had some beef short ribs in the freezer, as well as some roasted peppers and chilies we’d canned last summer.  It wasn’t long before I was dragging out the crock pot and tossing ingredients in it.

It was absolutely wonderful – even The Young One ate it enthusiastically, and Beloved went back for thirds; there were literally no leftovers.  It also couldn’t be easier; simply toss everything in the crock pot and let it cook on high for 6 hours.  The result is wonderfully flavorful beef that just falls off the bones, hence the shredding and mixing with the blended cooking liquid.  If you don’t have an immersion blender and don’t wish to transfer the cooking liquid to a conventional blender or food processor, don’t worry – it will be every bit as good with an unblended sauce.

If you leave out the coconut sugar, this is Whole30 compliant.

Spicy Slow Cooker Short Ribs
Spicy Slow Cooker Short Ribs
Spicy Slow Cooker Short Ribs
Serves: 4
  • 2 pounds beef short ribs
  • 1 large onion, coarsely chopped
  • 3 cloves garlic, chopped
  • 2 tablespoons coconut sugar
  • 1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar
  • 1 cup beef stock, preferably homemade
  • 1 cup tomato sauce
  • 1 can (6 oz) green chili peppers, chopped
  • 1 teaspoon kosher or sea salt
  • 1 teaspoon freshly-ground black pepper
  • 1 tablespoon ancho chili powder
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper, or to taste
  1. In a large bowl, whisk together all of the ingredients except the short ribs and onions; pour into a large slow cooker.
  2. Cut the ribs into about 4 sections each and add to the liquid in the slow cooker with the onion. Cover and cook on high for 6 hours.
  3. Remove the ribs from the slow cooker and separate from the bones; shred with two forks. Set aside and keep warm.
  4. Using an immersion blender, puree the liquid in the slow cooker until smooth. Pour 1 cupful over the shredded beef. Serve over steamed, grated cauliflower, steamed rice or mashed potatoes.
  5. Nutrition (per serving): 479 calories, 23.9g total fat, 133.8mg cholesterol, 947.7mg sodium, 1322.4mg potassium, 17.5g carbohydrates, 3.3g fiber, 8.8g sugar, 46.5g protein


22 thoughts on “Spicy Slow Cooker Short Ribs”

  1. I think you are right about why you got sick. Lack of sleep, high stress and not enough down time wears down our immune system. We’ve had some hot days but some cool days as well, which I don’t think helps with not getting sick as I have a couple of little’s with sniffles.

    How nice to have a visit from your brother and his family. In a couple of weeks, I will have children and grandchildren coming home for a visit. Can’t wait! This recipe sounds good. How spicey is it? I may have to tone the spicyness down for my little’s or make them something else since my husband loves spicy. I hope you feel better soon and get a chance to slow down and get some sleep. 🙂

    1. It was a wonderful visit – I so enjoyed my sweet nieces and nephew! Yeah, I’m afraid I’m just worn down, but I took some Mucinex, Beloved made me breakfast and after a couple of cups of coffee I almost feel human again. LOL

      The spiciness of the dish really depends on how much of the cayenne you use; you could just use a pinch, and it shouldn’t be too spicy for The Littles at all – your husband can always spice his up with some more cayenne, or maybe a few red pepper flakes.

  2. Oh hooray! Next time I’ve got someone returning from a long trip, I’m making this. Except I might substitute garlic, ginger and maybe mustard for the chili and cumin? What do you think?

    1. I think it sounds delicious – perhaps a little soy sauce and rice vinegar rather than cider vinegar, as well, and you’ll have it with a nice Asian flair instead of Mexican.

    1. Thank you so much, Kathleen. The bronchitis in the past has been brutal – that’s what comes with quitting after a solid 30 years of smoking – but I can already tell this instance is going to be much milder. I think with enough rest and letting go of some of the stress, I can hopefully avoid it again for another 2 or 3 years.

  3. Yumm! This looks delicious. I miss cold weather comfort food… and the slow cooker! I look forward to that time of year when you come home from work and house smells amazing, with practically no work. Thanks for sharing this recipe!

    1. When I lived in Texas, my slow cooker often saved me in the summer – it was a great way to cook something long and slow without making the kitchen unbearably hot. Now that I live considerably further north, it’s still a wonderful option in warm(er) weather. In fact, I now own four slow cookers!

  4. The more I get to know you Jan, the more I see how much we have in common. My only brother lives in Texas too….whoa, what if we’re sisters?? 🙂 Ex-smoker here too…did you ever sit there puffing on one while you were sick with a cold, flu, etc.? I did and sure wish I could go back and shake some since into my stupid younger self. 🙂 I hope feel all better soon and glad you enjoyed you long weekend!

    1. Oh, what I wouldn’t be give to be able to go back and smack some sense into my younger self! Thanks so much, Patty – I already feel a bit better today. I think I mostly just need some rest – and some beef liver, which we’re having tonight for dinner. 😉

    1. They’re really easy, so you won’t have to do much (and I imagine you won’t feel like doing much! LOL).

    1. Thanks, Alex! Someone on FB suggested chicken soup for the illness; since I have some homemade chicken stock that we canned a few weeks ago handy, I’m making some tonight. It surely couldn’t hurt.

      The ribs were marvelous – you should try them!

  5. This is totally right up my ally. Now if only that cool weather would deem to make its presence known here vs. the heat and humidity that’s driving me insane.

    I’m betting you got sick because of the lack of rest and being so busy – slow down, woman! 😉 Hope you feel better soon!

  6. It was Jan’s recipe night @ the White house tonight! So, of course was very successful. Did about 6 lbs of this today, family of 4 adults ate 75 % of it, now have leftovers for lunch for my wife and daughter tomorrow. Looking forward to the
    Chocoate Pots de Creme that is chilling in the fridge for when my daughter gets home from her small group meeting!

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