“Clean out your fridge” Beef Stew    

I often find myself staring into my fridge at the end of the week wondering if there is anything left in there to cook with? Maybe I didn’t make it to the store on the day that I should have, (Happens quite often!) or my kids ate the food I had planned for a meal.

Regardless, I find myself staring into the fridge more than I’d like these past few weeks! SO, I’ve come up with a weekly ritual that is working very well around here! I like to call it our “Clean out the fridge” meal!

This last one was super delish, so I thought I’d share!

I had at least 3 small bags of opened baby carrots that my kids had all half eaten. Soup is a really easy way to combine lots of veggies, so don’t be afraid to add whatever you have laying around to the pot! Here is what I added.

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I had a ton of celery that I had major “ants on a log” plans for… My kids weren’t in the mood that week, so into our soup they went!

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I also had some Zucchini that I diced up pretty thin and small. My kids are great eaters, but zucchini has never been a favorite. I found that if I chop them up small enough, they tend to just melt in soups and the kids gobble it all up!

I also chopped up half an onion and about 4 cloves of garlic. (All of this is not pictured. My little one decided to pull out every pot and pan we owned while I was chopping and then my oldest walked in, tripped and fell, and let’s just say I got sidetracked from there!)

Moving on…  I had some frozen organic ground beef that I put into a dutch oven. This is where it all clicked… a different take on beef barley soup! Yeah! I knew that some veggies added into a hearty beef barley would be the bomb! So I just ran with it!

So you brown the meat, generously add salt and pepper, then add the onions and garlic. Cook about 4 minutes then add ALL the veggies. Cover and let cook for another 5 minutes. When the veggies have softened a bit add a little bit of this goodness to the pot!

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Now, if you don’t have some white and red wine just laying around in your fridge, GET SOME! They take soups and stews to a different level my friend, trust me.        

Side note: We aren’t wine drinkers, but I do always have some for cooking. I had been reading a lot of really negative reviews on the Trader Joe’s brand of wines. Up to this point that is all I’ve ever bought. It was super cheap and I didn’t really know the difference. I bought this 365 brand from Whole Foods last month and it’s delish! It’s only $6.99 which is pretty awesome! Never going back!

Add about ¾ of a cup of red wine and deglaze all the goodness from the bottom of the pot. Cover and let simmer for about 10 minutes.

I then added some organic beef broth. About 8 cups. I’d also recommend this brand from Costco. It’s pretty cheap, Super delish and very easy to keep on hand!

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I added a bit more salt and pepper and a can of kidney beans. I also added about a cup of barley right at the end. Cover and let simmer for about an 45 minutes to an hour.


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Hope you are inspired to clean out your fridge at the end of the week! Make something totally new, or just try this recipe, it was delicious!

XOXO Cristina


  • I lb. ground beef
  • 2 cups chopped carrots
  • 1 ½ cups chopped celery
  • 1 cup chopped zucchini
  • About 4 cloves of garlic, minced
  • ½ of an onion, chopped
  • 1 can of rinsed and drained kidney beans
  • ¾ cup of dry red wine
  • 8 cups of beef broth
  • 1 cup of Barley
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • 2 Tbs of Italian seasoning


Brown the beef and generously salt and pepper.  Add onions and garlic. Cook for about 4 minutes on medium heat. Add all the chopped veggies and cover. Cook for another 5 minutes. When veggies are softened a bit, add the red wine and simmer for about 10 minutes. Add the beef broth, salt and pepper, and italian seasoning. Add the barley and kidney beans and let the soup simmer on medium/low for about 45 minutes to an hour.



Hi there, I’m Cristina! I’m a momma of four, two boys and two girls. Married to my honey for eleven years and counting! I love finding new, quick and easy ways to put a healthy meal on the table! With four kids I have to be pretty organized with my meal plans. I am constantly changing  and evolving to keep up with my kids needs and their ever changing schedules!

I LOVE my sister, my family, fashion, home decor, photography and pretty much everything else! Follow my sister and I over at Frankie & Rue!

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One Response to “Clean out your fridge” Beef Stew    

  1. Yes, Cristina! That happens all the time to me too. Sometimes making dinner just sneaks up on you. Those are the days that cereal for dinner sounds tempting.
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