Slow Cooker Jamaican Oxtail Stew

I got my first ever slow cooker last year and I’ve become a slow cooker fanatic. I’ve made this slow cooker Jamaican oxtail stew several times now and I just love it. I got this huge batch of oxtail from the butcher, split it into portions and stored them in the freezer for when I have a craving for oxtail stew, which is very often. This stew is so easy to make in the slow cooker, that I can put it together in the morning before work, let it cook in the slow cooker while I’m working, and it’s ready just in time for dinner.

How to Make this Jamaican Oxtail Stew

Required Ingredients

I used 2.5 lbs of oxtail for this stew, but you can use less if you’ve got a small slow cooker (mine holds up to 7 quarts). Get the butcher to cut the oxtail into about 2 inch cubed pieces for you. You will need the following to make the marinade for the oxtail: 4 sprigs of green onions (chopped), 2 teaspoons of brown sugar, ½ teaspoon of salt, 1 teaspoon of black pepper, 1 teaspoon of allspice, 1 teaspoon of soy sauce, 3 teaspoons of Worcestershire sauce, 2 teaspoons of browning, 1 teaspoon of ginger (minced), 2 cloves of garlic (minced), 1 teaspoon of curry powder, and 1 teaspoon of paprika.

For the oxtail stew itself, you’ll need the following: 2 medium carrots (chopped into small disks), 1 can of lima beans (also known as butter beans), 1 medium onion (chopped), 1 scotch bonnet pepper (seeded and minced, or leave whole if you want an even milder stew), 2½ cups of beef broth, 1 tablespoon of ketchup, 4 sprigs of thyme, 2 cloves of garlic (minced), 2 teaspoons of cornstarch,  4 bay leaves, and 3 tablespoons of vegetable or canola oil (plus more if needed).

Marinade the Meat Overnight

In a large bowl, mix together the brown sugar, salt, black pepper, allspice, soy sauce, Worcestershire sauce, browning, ginger, garlic, curry powder, and paprika with a spoon. Trim off any excess fat from the oxtails. Add the oxtails and green onions to the bowl, use the spoon to mix and coat the oxtails with the marinade. Cover the bowl and put it in the fridge to let the meat marinade overnight.

Before Using the Slow Cooker

Remove the bowl from the fridge on the day that you’re making the oxtail stew. Take the oxtails out of the bowl and transfer onto a clean plate. Remove any green onions that are stuck to the oxtails (we don’t want them to burn when we’re browning the meat), and set them aside in the bowl along with any of the marinade that remains in the bowl. Heat 1 tablespoon of oil in a large pan on the stove over medium heat. Saute the chopped onions and minced garlic in the pan until the onions are translucent (about 1 minute).

Scoop the onion mixture out of the pan. Add the remaining 2 tablespoons of oil to the pan. Once the oil is heated (this should take a few seconds), add the oxtails to the pan and brown them on each side; you might have to do this in batches, depending on how big your pan is. Add more oil to the pan if you’re browning the oxtails in batches.

Remove the meat from the pan and set aside on a clean plate, once all sides of the meat have been browned. Pour 2 cups of the beef broth into the pan. Bring the broth to a boil and deglaze the pan by using a wooden spoon to scrape the brown bits from the bottom of the pan.

Slow Cooker Instructions for the Jamaican Oxtail Stew

To cook the stew in the slow cooker, place the oxtails in the slow cooker. Add the carrots, sauteed onions, and scotch bonnet pepper to the oxtails.  Pour the broth from the pan onto the oxtails as well as the reserved marinade in the bowl. Use a spoon to mix the cornstarch with the remaining ½ cup of beef broth in a bowl. Mix in the ketchup to the cornstarch “sludge”. Add this mixture as well as the thyme and bay leaves to the ingredients in the slow cooker. Use a wooden spoon to gently mix everything together.

Place the lid on the slow cooker. Set the temperature indicator on the slow cooker to low and the timer to 8 hours. Drain and rinse the lima (butter) beans from the can an hour before the stew is done cooking. Add the beans to the oxtail stew and let the stew cook for the remaining hour. Remove the thyme stems and bay leaves from the oxtail stew once the stew is done cooking. Serve the stew with cooked white rice or Jamaican rice and peas. Enjoy!

Notes

  • If you get oxtail that has a lot of fat on it, trim off most of the fat so that the stew isn’t greasy. You can also skim off any fat that you get on top of the stew after it’s done cooking.
  • If you have trouble finding lima beans, you can substitute them with canned rapini or white kidney beans.
  • Rapini beans tend to be firmer than lima beans so if you’re using them as a substitute, add them to the oxtail stew about 2 hours before the stew is done cooking to get them to be as tender as the meat.
  • You can substitute Scotch bonnet pepper with habanero pepper (the closest substitute) or other chili peppers such as serrano or Thai red chiles.
  • Add another teaspoon of cornstarch if you want a thicker stew.

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Jamaican oxtail stew
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Slow Cooker Jamaican Oxtail Stew

Jamaican oxtail stew is a classic dish that’s popular throughout the Caribbean. This slow cooker version of the dish is easy to make, rich and delicious.
Prep Time15 mins
Cook Time8 hrs 10 mins
Total Time8 hrs 25 mins
Course: Main
Cuisine: Caribbean
Keyword: oxtail stew
Servings: 6 people
Calories: 624kcal
Author: Mavis K.

Ingredients

For the marinade

  • 4 sprigs green onions (chopped)
  • 1 tsp ginger (minced)
  • 2 cloves garlic (minced)
  • 2 tsp brown sugar
  • 3 tsp Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 tsp soy sauce
  • 2 tsp browning
  • 1 tsp allspice
  • 1 tsp curry powder
  • 1 tsp paprika
  • ½ tsp salt
  • 1 tsp black pepper

For the oxtail stew

  • 2.5 lbs oxtail (chopped into about 2 inch cubes)
  • 2 medium carrots (chopped into small disks)
  • 1 can lima beans (also called butter beans)
  • 1 medium onion (chopped)
  • 1 scotch bonnet pepper (seeded and minced, or leave whole if you want an even milder stew)
  • cups beef broth
  • 1 tbsp ketchup
  • 4 sprigs fresh thyme
  • 2 cloves garlic (minced)
  • 2 tsp cornstarch
  • 4 bay leaves
  • 3 tbsp vegetable or canola oil (plus more if needed)

Instructions

  • Mix together all the ingredients for the marinade except the green onions, in a large bowl.
  • Add the oxtails and green onions to the bowl and use a spoon to mix and coat the oxtails with the marinade.
  • Cover the bowl. Put the bowl in the fridge and let the meat marinade overnight.
  • When making the stew, take the oxtails out of the bowl and transfer onto a clean plate. Remove any green onions that are stuck to the oxtails and put them back in the bowl with any of the remaining marinade.
  • Heat 1 tablespoon of the oil in a large pan on the stove over medium heat. Saute the chopped onions and minced garlic in the pan until the onions are translucent (about 1 minute).
  • Remove the onion mixture from the pan. Pour the remaining 2 tablespoons of oil into the pan. Once the oil is heated (this should take a few seconds), add the oxtails to the pan and brown them on each side; you might have to do this in batches. Add more oil to the pan if you're browning the oxtails in batches.
  • Once all sides of the meat have browned, remove the meat from the pan and set aside on a clean plate.
  • Pour 2 cups of the beef broth into the pan. Bring the broth to a boil and deglaze the pan by using a wooden spoon to scrape the brown bits from the bottom of the pan.
  • Place the oxtails in a slow cooker. Add the carrots, sauteed onions, and scotch bonnet pepper to the oxtails. Pour the broth from the pan onto the oxtails as well as the reserved marinade left in the bowl.
  • Mix the cornstarch with the remaining ½ cup of beef broth in a bowl until the mixture is smooth. Mix in the ketchup to the cornstarch "sludge". Add this mixture as well as the thyme and bay leaves to the ingredients in the slow cooker.
  • Use a wooden spoon to gently mix all the ingredients in the slow cooker together.
  • Place the lid on the slow cooker. Set the temperature indicator on the slow cooker to low and the timer to 8 hours.
  • Drain and rinse the lima (butter) beans from the can an hour before the stew is done cooking. Add the beans to the oxtail stew and let the stew cook for the remaining hour.
  • Remove the thyme stems and bay leaves from the oxtail stew once the stew is done cooking. Serve the stew with Jamaican rice and peas, or white rice.

Notes

  • Trim off any excess fat from the oxtail so that the stew isn't greasy. You can also skim off any fat that gathers on top of the stew after it's done cooking.
  • Lima beans can substituted with canned rapini or white kidney beans.
  • Rapini beans tend to be firmer than lima beans so if you're using them as a substitute, add them to the oxtail stew about 2 hours before the stew is done cooking to get them to be as tender as the meat.
  • Scotch bonnet pepper can be substituted with habanero pepper (the closest substitute) or other chili peppers such as serrano and Thai red chili peppers.
  • Add another teaspoon of cornstarch if you want a thicker stew.

Nutrition

Calories: 624kcal | Carbohydrates: 18g | Protein: 64g | Fat: 33g | Saturated Fat: 11g | Trans Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 208mg | Sodium: 868mg | Potassium: 447mg | Fiber: 5g | Sugar: 6g | Vitamin A: 3711IU | Vitamin C: 8mg | Calcium: 82mg | Iron: 9mg

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