1

votes

Hacking my thin stews?

Answered on August 19, 2014
Created May 24, 2012 at 9:24 PM

I will admit that one of my favorite comfort foods is stew. Now that I am strictly paleo, I will not use corn starch or flour to thicken the broth. Any ideas how to thicken up broth with out using a grain?

518bce04b12cd77741237e1f61075194

(11577)

on October 13, 2012
at 02:40 PM

(carrot also makes for a more appealing colour)

518bce04b12cd77741237e1f61075194

(11577)

on October 13, 2012
at 02:40 PM

Yeah, I do carrots, onions, whole garlic cloves, and a few potatoes- strain all of those out, purree, and then stir back in. Flavourful and a good thickener!

183f5c49a7a9548b6f5238d1f33cb35e

(1716)

on October 13, 2012
at 10:59 AM

Or try simmering it some more until it reduces. Oxtail makes a nice stew coz of the gelatin too...

32f5749fa6cf7adbeb0b0b031ba82b46

(41747)

on May 25, 2012
at 01:32 AM

It's just isolated starch and not a whole food, but there certainly are worse things to eat!

3f5bbb444498a24f1a9720d75fa7c903

(2369)

on May 24, 2012
at 11:40 PM

Yup, just a tiny bit of arrowroot does the job easily.

B9cc28905ec54389c47cde031d709703

on May 24, 2012
at 10:34 PM

Gelatin works in every stew I've needed thickened.

D3f3b91d1dd9ce60865654faeb2ec809

on May 24, 2012
at 09:58 PM

Meat/veggie jelly for the win

6120c989fd5b69f42a0834b69b87955b

(24553)

on May 24, 2012
at 09:56 PM

I throw 1-2 chopped potatoes into stews, and they leach enough starch to thicken the whole pot.

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13 Answers

7
929151eb94a8095cdd62bd1da8269dd9

on May 24, 2012
at 09:55 PM

Make sure you use broth from bones, and you can always let it boil for a little while so it thickens on its own. That's what I usually do.

D3f3b91d1dd9ce60865654faeb2ec809

on May 24, 2012
at 09:58 PM

Meat/veggie jelly for the win

6
0faecc3397025eab246241f4dcd81f5e

(2361)

on May 24, 2012
at 10:54 PM

Non grain thickeners: Tapioca starch or arrowroot - both pure root vegetable starches.

Or potato starch (or potatoes or other root veggie like parsnip - cooked and mashed)

3f5bbb444498a24f1a9720d75fa7c903

(2369)

on May 24, 2012
at 11:40 PM

Yup, just a tiny bit of arrowroot does the job easily.

6
32f5749fa6cf7adbeb0b0b031ba82b46

(41747)

on May 24, 2012
at 09:40 PM

How about pureed potato or potato starch?

6120c989fd5b69f42a0834b69b87955b

(24553)

on May 24, 2012
at 09:56 PM

I throw 1-2 chopped potatoes into stews, and they leach enough starch to thicken the whole pot.

518bce04b12cd77741237e1f61075194

(11577)

on October 13, 2012
at 02:40 PM

Yeah, I do carrots, onions, whole garlic cloves, and a few potatoes- strain all of those out, purree, and then stir back in. Flavourful and a good thickener!

518bce04b12cd77741237e1f61075194

(11577)

on October 13, 2012
at 02:40 PM

(carrot also makes for a more appealing colour)

3
A7768b6c6be7f5d6acc76e5efa66464c

on May 24, 2012
at 11:12 PM

Tapioca starch works great. It takes a small amount--you'll have to google the substitution rate. Use it the same way as corn starch: mix with cold water until totally dissolved, then stir into the stew and bring to boil. It actually works better than corn starch, which breaks down after prolonged heating or refrigeration. Be careful not to use to much, because tapioca starch can get rubbery/stringy. Start with a little--you can always add more. Once it's in there, you're stuck.

Or you can borrow a technique from pureed soups, and remove a couple cups of the finished stew vegetables/liquid to a blender, puree, then add back to the pot. Any root vegetables like potatoes, carrots, etc.--even the aromatics like celery and onion--work really well this way.

I'm not a fan of gelatin as a thickener for hot things, because gelatin is really only thick as it cools. It's pretty watery when hot.

I'm also not a fan of using reduction on a soup or stew--I find it makes their flavor much too concentrated for my taste. Reduction works best for sauces, where you want powerful, well-developed flavor in a small amount of liquid.

3
345c1755efe005edd162b770dc6fb821

(8767)

on May 24, 2012
at 09:53 PM

Easy to make a 'gravy' for your stew.

While cooking your stew, toss in a few onions (2-3) whole

then take out some of the liquid/broth when its about ready, 4 cup'ish (most of the liquid), remove the onions

liquify it and put back in the pot to cook it down. Usually with the good stuff from bones you can get the gravy to almost gel like a gravy. I do it with chicken all the time.

For a creamy gravy, just add some paleo sour cream (I make from my yogurt).

1
Bcbb8f6e9ebc6a4d6115722cf3c934c3

on October 13, 2012
at 03:46 AM

Stew extra carrots, onions, and celery. Once it's cooked, take some of it out and use an immersion blender to puree the veggies. Pour it back into the stew and simmer for a while.

1
8508fec4bae4a580d1e1b807058fee8e

on May 25, 2012
at 02:40 AM

Some ideas to thicken up stews depending on the flavor you want:

1) gelatin

2) tomato paste

3) 100% canned pumpkin - even a starchier squash like acorn and butternut will do

4) sweet potato starch

5) potato starch

1
2a00b9a42e4cb6e489a0e69d20714576

on May 25, 2012
at 01:39 AM

I puree mushrooms, onions and celery from the pot or use coconut flour (make sure you blend it in with a bit of the broth to make it smoother).Tomato paste also works.I have heard chia seeds too.

0
5c163d2dfadd7b29a1b694e79a59f4c2

on October 13, 2012
at 11:14 AM

If white rice is one of your acceptable foods, then here's a trick I learnt from Splendid Table podcast's interview with chef Andrea Reusing: "I use long-grain, aromatic rice called Carolina Gold Rice. I put it in a spice mill or coffee grinder for a second, and after a couple pulses, the pieces will be about one-third of their original size. We'll get a creaminess from the dust we made by grinding. About a quart of water is where I start. Depending on how much rice I've added and how fast it thickens, we'll just kind of adjust as we go. With soup, I find it's really hard to get the consistency you want far in advance, so even at the restaurant, we're always adjusting the texture of the soup at the last minute. I always start with less water than I think I need, so I can adjust by adding more." It works very well with stew also ... she used 1/2 milled rice for 6 cups of stock to make thick creamy soup. You can experiment yourself to get the right "stew" consistancy.

0
1b47e0a6d7984e33e59581d8364cc3dd

(716)

on October 13, 2012
at 08:18 AM

My solution is to add rice, two hours or so before cooking finishes. If you hit the right ratio (1 rice to 3 water), most water will be absorbed by the rice.

0
003f68a6ddc8174ed38c5001bce9eddd

on September 13, 2012
at 07:52 AM

Pea Protein is a good way to go.. I use pea protein as an alternative to whey protein and when you add a little bit of water to it, it thickens.. So not only would you be able to thicken your soup/stew a little, you would also be adding some extra protein to your dish.. It doesnt really have a flavour, so it isnt something that will change the way the dish tastes..

0
C4be8ea1ed3a51de8875877054a48112

on May 25, 2012
at 01:07 AM

I've had this question about tapioca starch - I used to use it when I was just gluten free (allergy) but since going Paleo I've wondered if it's 'legal'....

32f5749fa6cf7adbeb0b0b031ba82b46

(41747)

on May 25, 2012
at 01:32 AM

It's just isolated starch and not a whole food, but there certainly are worse things to eat!

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