When you have many food intolerances, it can be harder to eat a variety of vegetables. It’s particularly hard if you are on the Low FODMAP Diet, which restricts a lot of produce. I know that I can get stuck in vegetable ruts, and have weeks where I only eat my few favourite veggies. In summer I use salads to get in enough veggies, but when the weather starts to cool, my desire for salads takes a nosedive. Luckily, stews and soups are perfect for winter! This hearty and nourishing low FODMAP French Oven Beef Stew is a great way to eat a variety of vegetables in one meal.
Normally, soups and stews are full of onion, which is a BIG no on the elimination phase of the low FODMAP diet. I adapted my mom’s recipe for French Oven Beef Stew to be low in FODMAPs AND gluten-free! Note: it is not necessary to be also gluten-free on the Low FODMAP Diet. I made sure this recipe was gluten-free so it would be also safe for those with celiac disease.
Beef, chicken, poulty, and fish are all low in FODMAPs, as long as they are not seasoned with garlic or onion. By the time this stew is done cooking, the beef is incredibly tender and flavour-packed. For any vegetarians/vegans out there, don’t worry! I will be posting a vegan soup recipe soon.
Luckily, carrots, potatoes and parsnips don’t contain any FODMAPs. Instead of peeling these veggies, I wash and scrub them well in the sink to get off any dirt. Leaving the skin on the potatoes really ups the fibre content of the stew! I used only 1.5 stalks of celery to add flavour and avoid making the stew high in polyols. To replace the onion, I used chopped 1 cup fennel bulb, which has a very close texture to onions.
You might be wondering, “What do I do with the rest of the celery and fennel?!?” Check out my post on how to properly freeze these veggies. Freezing makes sure the leftover celery and fennel won’t go to waste, and can be easily used in your next stew or soup!
When purchasing tomato juice make sure it doesn’t contain any added garlic or onion. Look for 100% tomato juice in the canned section! If you don’t have any tomato juice but have pure tomato paste, mix ¼ cup paste with ¾ cup water to make your own tomato juice.
Finally, don’t forget about the quick cooking tapioca! It is key for thickening up the stew.
One of my favourite things about this stew is that it is a balanced meal! You can eat it by itself for lunch or dinner and get in a good variety of nutrients. If you love this stew as much as I do, you might even want to double the recipe and freeze half for a later date.
Are you looking for support with managing digestive symptoms and/or the low FODMAP diet? My nutrition counselling and coaching services are available across Canada (via video messaging or phone). I am a registered dietitian with a Master’s of Public Health in Nutrition who specializes in digestion and practical healthy eating tips. Learn more about my services by clicking here.
I’m particularly proud of this recipe because my mom told me that it tastes just as good as the original, and this is one of her favourite recipes! Enjoy!