Crock Pot Mexican Shredded Beef

by Susan on August 29, 2015

I chose this recipe for two reasons. First, I want to share more crock pot dishes as so many of my readers are returning to the back-to-school routine. Second, boneless beef roast was on sale at Whole Foods, and roasts just aren’t really my thing.

This simple technique creates shredded beef with a little Mexican seasoning that can be used in any number of dishes. I used it to top off nachos as a treat for the kids, but it would taste just as delicious in quesadillas, tacos, or in a salad.

While the recipe does call for browning the beef and cooking the onions before popping in the crock pot, I promise it’s very simple and worth it! It doesn’t take long to prep the meat in the morning then dump it into the crock pot with the spices. I did find this was still a little tough after 9 hours, but after upping the heat to high for an additional hour it was easy to spread and tender.

Crock Pot Mexican Shredded Beef

2 lbs. boneless beef roast
salt & pepper
1 tbs. olive oil
1 thinly sliced onion
5 minced garlic cloves
1 tbs. tomato paste
1 cup organic chicken or beef broth
2 tsp. ground cumin
1 tbs. chili powder
1/2 tsp. cayenne
1/2 tsp. paprika
1/2 tsp. dried oregano

Heat olive oil in a large skillet over medium high heat. Sprinkle the beef liberally with salt and pepper and add to pan. Brown on all sides, about 2 minutes a side. Put in crock pot.

Return pan to the heat and add onion, cooking for a couple of minutes. Stir in garlic and tomato paste, and cook for another minute. Stir in the broth and spices. Cook for an additional minute. Scrape up any browned bits, and then pour everything into the crock pot to cover the meat.

Cover and cook on low for 9 hours. Raise the heat to high and cook for another hour. Shred the beef with two forks, then mix to thoroughly coat with sauce and cook for a few minutes more.

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Vegan Mint Chip Ice Cream

by Susan on August 28, 2015

I love my kids for loving this ice cream so much. They went back to school this week, and we made this together the night before to send them off on a sweet note. What’s so special about this frozen treat? Besides the fact that we all find it tasty, my kids know and appreciate that it’s green because of REAL food, not dye.

I do include fresh mint, which adds a little green to the hue (not to mention authentic mint flavor). I also sneak a nice big handful of baby spinach into the blender, so this ice cream proves that the name of my company is true! Anything that can include spinach but tasty like minty, chocolatey goodness is just meant to be loved. If you disagree, this can easily be made without the spinach and you can even skip the fresh mint if you don’t have it on hand.

My base recipe is vegan, and I keep things dairy-free with Enjoy Life chocolate chips. We even went all out and poured some homemade  magic shell on top, which I also made with dairy-free chocolate and coconut oil.

This ice cream is best if you make it early enough to freeze until firm and scoopable. If you don’t eat it all the first time, it will get quite hard, so you’ll just need to let it thaw a little before serving the next time.

Vegan Mint Chip Ice Cream

1 can unsweetened coconut milk
1.5 cups unsweetened vanilla almond or coconut milk beverage
1/2 cup raw honey or organic agave
1/2 cup mint leaves
1 large handful baby spinach
1/2 tsp. guar or xantham gum
1/2 tsp. peppermint extract
1 tbs. vanilla extract
1 cup dairy-free chocolate chips

Combine coconut milk through vanilla in a high-powered blender and run until smooth (if your blender isn’t the strongest, try chopping your spinach a bit before blending to ensure you get homogenous results, AKA not tell-tale specks of green…)

Put mixture in fridge until chilled, then process according to your ice cream maker’s directions. Stir chips in during last couple of minutes.

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