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Slow Cooker Ropa Viejo

April 8, 2008

I came across this recipe last week while sorting through so many unread emails in my inbox. It was sent from the Weight Watchers website and since I almost never open the emails that come through from WW, I almost didn’t open this one either. But the subject line piqued my curiosity and I found myself immersed in a plethora of new recipes…healthy recipes…healthy recipes that sounded, shall I say, good! Go figure. So I printed off this one and another one (to come later in the week) and decided to give the lighter side of food a shot this week. And seriously, how could I turn down a slow cooker recipe that sounded so good? Minimum prep with maximum results? No questions about it.

Prep time was simple (I halved the recipe): sliced red onion, chopped red pepper, chopped apple, some spices, apple cider vinegar, some chicken broth and of course the flank steak (and boy do I love me some flank steak!). I’ve seen flank steak turn up fairly frequently in WW recipes because it is a such a lean cut of meat and it really is so versatile that the possibilities for its use are practically endless. Anyway, I threw everything in the crock pot, set it, and went to work…and when I returned home, with my first step in the door, my mouth was watering. And thankfully the taste didn’t let me down either. It was just delish. Full of flavor, tender meat, and the brightness of the cilantro (optional for Kyle next time I make it) added at the end really pulled the whole dish together. Overall an 8.5 out of 10…something that will definitely be repeated.

Slow Cooker Ropa Viejo


5 WW Points; Serves 12

  • 1 1/2 cups fat-free reduced-sodium chicken broth
  • 1/4 cup cider vinegar
  • 1 Tbsp ground cumin
  • 1 tsp mild paprika, preferably smoked paprika
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp freshly ground pepper
  • 1/4 to 1/2 tsp cayenne pepper
  • Two 1 1/2-pound flank steaks, trimmed of all excess fat
  • 2 medium red onions, thinly sliced into rings
  • 2 large red bell peppers, seeded, cored and chopped
  • 2 medium apples, peeled, cored and shredded through the holes of a box grater (I chopped the apples)
  • 3 celery stalks, thinly sliced (omitted)
  • 3 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1/2 cup packed cilantro leaves, chopped
  1. Whisk the broth, vinegar, cumin, paprika, salt, pepper and cayenne in a 5- or 6-quart slow cooker. Submerge the meat, then add the onions, bell peppers, apples, celery and garlic, making sure the vegetables are under, between, and over the steaks.
  2. Cover and cook on low until the meat is fork-tender, about 8 hours.
  3. Transfer the meat to a cutting board; set aside for 10 minutes. Shred the meat with two forks, pulling it into strands along the grain. Return to the slow cooker; stir in cilantro. Set the slow cooker on warm and serve within 4 hours.
6 Comments leave one →
  1. Lindsey permalink
    April 8, 2008 8:51 am

    This looks delicious Tara! I agree completely: minimum prep+maximum flavor= my kind of dinner. I will be making this for sure. Thanks for sharing.:)

  2. April 8, 2008 11:00 am

    I seriously wish I could convince my husband to eat flank steak. The only possible way is to somehow remove the packaging before I get into the house and place it in some form of packaging that didn’t say flank steak.

  3. gizmar permalink
    April 8, 2008 9:00 pm

    I love slow cooker recipes – little fuss and often great results. This one is super interesting at only 5 points as opposed to the Pad Thai I really would love to have that’s 13 points.

  4. May 4, 2008 8:33 am

    These looks great! Depending on how the scallops look at the market this morning- this may be on our table tonight. Thanks for sharing 🙂

  5. May 4, 2008 8:46 pm

    Ina Garten rocks – scallops are fabulous – easy recipes make me happy – as Ina would say “how bad can that be”


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