Blanket Stew



I love a good bowl of stew.

Not only is it one of my favourite cold weather foods (note: frost), but it is also one of the most comforting foods to eat.

Simmer some stew on the stovetop or in a slow cooker for a few hours and your house will be filled with the comforting aroma of herbs, spices, vegetables, and broth.

The experience of stew begins long before you even sit down to eat it.


Blanket Stew in a Gravy Broth

This stew is the equivalent of wrapping yourself in a warm, fuzzy blanket in front of the fireplace (note: hot flash below). It can be customized to whatever you have lurking in your fridge or cupboards. I basically threw in whatever veggies I had to use up and it turned out wonderful!


Gravy Broth

  • 9 cups vegetable broth
  • ¼ cup nutritional yeast
  • 1 tsp yellow mustard
  • 1 tbsp tamari
  • 3 large garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 tbsp cornstarch or arrowroot powder
  • 2 tbsp tahini
  • 1.5 tbsp balsamic vinegar
  • 1.5 tbsp blackstrap molasses
  • ½ tsp agave nectar (optional)
  • 2 tbsp olive oil


Directions: In a food processor combine all broth ingredients except vegetable broth and puree until smooth. In a pot on medium to high heat, mix the vegetable broth with the processed mixture and stir well. Bring broth to a boil and then reduce to low heat. Add in chopped vegetables and grains (below). 

Vegetables + Grains

You can customize this any way you like it!


  • 2 small potatoes, peeled and chopped
  • 1/2 acorn squash, peeled and chopped (butternut would work well here too)
  • 1 large can of corn, drained and rinsed
  • 1 large tomato, chopped
  • 1 large red onion, chopped
  • 3 stalks of celery, chopped
  • 3 carrots, peeled and chopped (I didn’t have any)
  • 1/2 cup uncooked brown rice, rinsed
  • 1/2 cup uncooked lentils, rinsed
  • Optional spices to stir in: 1/2 tsp cumin, 1/2 tsp chili powder
  • Black pepper and sea salt, as necessary


Directions (continued): After broth has come to a boil and is now simmering on low heat, add in chopped vegetables and rinsed grains. Stir well. Bring to a boil again and then reduce to low heat. Add in optional spices if preferred. Simmer on low for 1.5-2 hours, making sure to add more vegetable broth if it gets too thick. Serve with a big hunk of bread!


Make the gravy broth (loved it!) and chop the veggies…


This stew is great for those times when you have veggies on their last legs that need to be used up!

20101013-IMG_6060 20101013-IMG_6063

Side note: I despise peeling and chopping acorn squash. I felt like chucking it out the window, but I resisted.


Rinse your lentils and brown rice…



And dump everything into the big pot of goodness!


I love one pot meals I tell ya. Especially after a loooong day of baking.


Stir it up!


After about 1.5 hours of cooking on low it was thick, rich, and flavourful. Mmmm.


The house smelled good enough to eat!

I enjoyed a bowl with a sprinkle of ground black pepper and paprika. It would also be wonderful with a dollop of sour cream or hummus.



I was SO warm after this bowl, I almost had a hot flash. I had to remove a layer. ;)

It also kept me full for hours and hours. Actually, come to think of it, I am still quite full as I type this!


Good to the last bite.


You might want to also check out my most popular soup recipe- Holiday Soup for the Soul.

What are your favourite cold-weather comfort foods?

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{ 71 comments… read them below or add one }

Sarah October 13, 2010

That soup looks amazingly cozy and delicious. I make this butternut squash with chickpea stew during the cooler months which warms my belly.

I also enjoy a good mug of hot cocoa French style by pouring very hot almond milk over a piece of dark chocolate.


Angela (Oh She Glows) October 13, 2010

Whooooaaaaa I love that hot cocoa idea. Must try asap!


Jeanette October 17, 2010

I so enjoy a hot cup of cocoa and have been hoping to find a healthier alternative. I will definitely try this. Thanks!


steph@stephsbitebybite October 13, 2010

Ah stew is definitely a perfect “warm up to the bones” meal! And this one looks AMAZING!

I think my fav cold-weather comfort food is chicken pot pie or hot cocoa with marshmallow fluff on top :) mmm…


Lisa C. October 13, 2010

I made an eggplant ‘stew’ tonight!! Gosh, what a comfort food.


Jessica @ How Sweet It Is October 13, 2010

I love stews in cold weather too! Also… mac and cheese and mashed potatoes!


Lisa (bakebikeblog) October 13, 2010

THat looks like one big pot of YUM!!!! Its strange to see ‘your’ side of the world start cooking comfort food when we are moving into light summery food over here!


Hope October 13, 2010

This looks so good! I love stews and really chunky soups when its cold and grey outside!
We’re supposed to be heading into Spring in NZ but we’ve hit another cold snap so stew might just be in order! I love using my slow cooker, chucking everything in and then leaving it all day…coming home to a house that smells amazing! Or making old fashioned vegetable soup, although I ususally add far too much barley and it ends up like a stew lol


Camille October 13, 2010

What a beautiful, thick stew!
I love me some good soup in the winter :) I tried to eat salad yesterday and I about froze to death!


Charlie October 13, 2010

Soup & stew are so comforting after walking outside in cold weather!


Erika @ Health and Happiness in LA October 13, 2010

Gravy broth? SIgn me up.
My favorite cold weather foods are stew, coffee, and seitan pot roast!


Krystina (Organically Me) October 13, 2010

That gravy probably made the stew so thick and hearty. Great idea. :D

I’m a total soup fanatic.


Riddly November 10, 2014

Try parsnip with dissolved coconut cream instead of stock… Add a couple of teaspoons turmeric with the onions n’ celery to start, and blitz it in the pot for a spoon standing up purée ….


JenATX October 13, 2010

my fav cold weather food is chili. hands down. so so good with corn bread mmmmm :) i’m really excited to try a veggie chili as it is my first winter as a vegetarian!


Shanna, like Banana October 13, 2010

I’ll happily trade your frost for my 90 deg Cali weather!

Love stews and chili and soups…it just screams comfort food to me. And the more veggies the better =)


Mary (What's Cookin' with Mary) October 13, 2010

OMG! This sounds SO warm and comforting. I love making a stew in the crockpot when it gets chilly at night. I have one in the works right now… just have to wait for it to get cool again ;P I really like that you did a broth gravy.


chelsey @ clean eating chelsey October 13, 2010

that looks purely sinful – i <3 it!!!

I love a big bowl of chili on a cold day1


Holly @ couchpotatoathlete October 13, 2010

Stews are wonderful comfort foods :)

I love making chili or making soup + grilled sandwiches. I already have that planned for dinner tomorrow!


Wei-Wei October 13, 2010

Oh, that just looks amaaaaazing. I think I have a request for dinner when I get home tonight… My mom doesn’t make stew often. But this might convince her. :D


Chelsea at Striking Balance October 13, 2010

Your stew looks fantastic! My favourite cold-weather comfort food would definitely be chili (which can easily be made vegan :) )! I find a big, steaming bowl of chili full of beans so comforting, especially with fresh, warm bread on the side to dip in.


Averie (LoveVeggiesAndYoga) October 13, 2010

This looks awesome….
One pot
Uses up whatever you have on hand
And it uses lentils. I JUST made soup last nite and told my husband it was for him, i.e. no beans or lentils or anything I was trying to “sneak in there” on him. LOL But yeah, should have used the lentils after seeing your soup :)


Megan @ The Daily Sweat October 13, 2010

Hi! I’ve been reading your blog for awhile now, and I thought I should finally comment. Every time I read your posts, I drool. Your food plus photography skills make for growling stomach. :) I’m so impressed on how creative you are, especially with your vegan ingredients. Thanks for the wonderful posts and recipes!


Taryn October 13, 2010



Emily October 13, 2010

We must have been on the same wave-length today because I totally was craving homemade soup, too! Your’s look delcious; so thick and hearty :)


Jessica @ The Process of Healing October 13, 2010

That sounds sooo comforting and amazing!


Candice @ ChiaSeedMe October 13, 2010

This looks delicious! And I am a huge fan of one pot meals – just dump it all in and you’re done!

My favorite cold weather food is….hmm…coffee? Does that count? It’s what I crave the most during cold season.

Glad you were able to finally get warm today!


Mary @ Bites and Bliss October 13, 2010

Mmmm the stew looks so yummy. I can’t wait till it actually cools down enough here for that!


Bridget October 14, 2010

I love the way your camera picks up the colours of the veggies. They look so bright and clear!

My go to comfort foods are roasted veggies with balsamic reduction, baked apples with maple syrup, and chili. I could go on and on really! I love fall :)


Marina October 14, 2010

Soups and stews are perfect for cold weather, specially paired with some good bread or grilled cheese…
But also, hot milk and some cereal is also awesome :)


JL goes Vegan October 14, 2010

Love such a hearty stew! I get on a serious chili kick in the winter. Stew will be a nice change.


alexa @ Sohdalex October 14, 2010

Looks delicious! I love a good stew and stew + winter = bestfoodever. ;)


stacey-healthylife October 14, 2010

I love all those bright veggies going in.


jodie October 14, 2010

mmmmmmmm…………….stand your spoon up in it pea soup with buttered Irish soda bread on the side.

Stew might be on the menu tonight! Thanks :)


Cynthia October 14, 2010

That stew looks so good! I usually eat a lot of chili in the winter. I haven’t had stew in ages, but yours looks so tasty and hearty that I may have to try it.


Kristin (Cook, Bake, Nibble) October 14, 2010

Mmm, love the looks of that stew!

Stews are definitely up there with my favorite winter comfort foods. Chili is similar, but also up there- I love a nice mug of hot cocoa, a big piece of corn bread smothered in earth balance, or a hot casserole-type meal. or lasagana. mmm, lasagna. :)



Therese October 14, 2010

You know, I’ve been looking for a good vegetarian gravy so I’m definitely going to have to give this one a shot!

I LOVE veggie chilli in the cold months! YUMMY!


Dani @ Body By Nature October 14, 2010

Yum! What a great way to get in a huge serving of veggies.

The pics of the chopped vegetables are beautiful!


Dani @ Body By Nature October 14, 2010

Yum! What a great way to get in a huge serving of veggies.

The pics of the chopped vegetables are beautiful!


Samantha Angela @ Bikini Birthday October 14, 2010

Soups and stews are easily my favourite things to eat. This looks delicious! Yum!


AGS October 14, 2010

Cold weather usually drives me to steaming bowls of soup, or huge servings of squash (spaghetti, kobchoba — sp?, acorn, butternut. . .). I can easily eat a whole squash all by myself — which suits my husband just fine, as he only like “crunchy” vegetables. I also like a very simple meal of spinach stirred into piping hot just made quinoa, topped with whatever I have on hand. It is my go-to meal, when I stumble home late from work. . .


Jenny October 14, 2010

I love roasted sweet potatoes with a cup of hot tea. MMMMM


Laura @ Tidbits October 14, 2010

Yum! that looks so warm and comforting right now as I sit in my cubicle all chilled.

My favourtie comfort food woud have to be chili. After seeing frost 2 mornings this week so far, i think I’m going to have to make a big batch of it this weekend!


Leanne @ Simplicitlee October 14, 2010

I love a big bowl of chili… mmmm kidney beans!


Becky October 14, 2010

This looks so good ! I have a question about your Homemade Pumpkin Butter. I really want to make it, but I have apple cider and no apple juice. I think it would work just fine but how would I adjust the spices & sugar ?? Thanks!


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