Cholent (Jewish beef stew)

    14 hours

    Cholent is a traditional Jewish beef stew made for Sabbath (Saturday) lunch, a big family meal very alike in spirit to the British Sunday roast. The main ingredients are meat, potatoes, beans and barley but there are almost as many versions of cholent as there are Jewish families! It must always be cooked slowly over low heat, making it an ideal beef stew to make in the slow cooker.

    25 people made this

    Serves: 8 

    • 2 teaspoons vegetable oil
    • 1 large onion, chopped
    • 2 cloves garlic, chopped
    • 455g beef stewing steak, cubed
    • 5 large potatoes, cubed
    • 1 sweet potato, cubed
    • 450g baked beans
    • 1 tablespoon ketchup
    • 1 tablespoon barbecue sauce
    • 1 tablespoon prepared mustard
    • 2 teaspoons dried onion soup mix
    • 2 teaspoons seasoned salt
    • 1 teaspoon steak seasoning
    • 90g pearl barley

    Prep:20min  ›  Cook:13hr40min  ›  Ready in:14hr 

    1. Heat the oil in a large soup pot over medium heat; cook and stir the onion and garlic until the onion is translucent, about 5 minutes. Add the beef stew meat, and quickly brown the pieces on all sides. Stir in the potatoes, sweet potato, baked beans, ketchup, barbecue sauce, mustard, onion soup mix, seasoned salt and steak seasoning and pour in enough water to cover. Bring the mixture to the boil, reduce to a simmer, and cook on low heat until the beef is tender, 1 1/2 to 2 hours, stirring occasionally.
    2. Stir in the pearl barley and transfer the stew to a slow cooker set on Low until the barley is tender, about 12 hours.

    Recently viewed

    Reviews & ratings
    Average global rating:

    Reviews in English (11)


    Well, I made this for dinner today. First, if Fall had a taste, this is what it would taste like! I browned the beef, added the onions,garlic & salt. Put in CP added the rest, Including the pearl barley. I ran it on high for a couple hours and turned it down to low when I left for work. I checked it a couple of times. Please do not cook beef till tender before you add it to the cp. I did it the way I said and the meat was more then fork tender. I had it cooking from 6am till 4:30pm. My hubby liked it a lot! This stew has soo many flavors going on. You get a chunk of beef in one bite and then you get a yam. As I was making this dish, I was thinking, these items don't go together, but some how they work very well with each other. I served it with mixed veggies and buttered sourdough bread. I will make this againThank You Very much Basg! One perfect meal for the up coming season!!  -  28 Sep 2009  (Review from Allrecipes US | Canada)


    Gave it three stars only because the recommendation to use 1/2 cup of barley was off. It should be a 1/4 or less or not at all. I like barley, but doing this in the crock pot with so many starchy potatoes made this turn mushy. And, on top of that the barley absorbed a lot of the sauce/gravy. I would also step up the seasoning and probably double most of the recommendations.  -  05 Nov 2009  (Review from Allrecipes US | Canada)


    This was pretty good, although I don't think my kids liked it. They SAID they liked it, but then they only ate about half of their portions and put the rest back. That's okay...more leftovers for me to enjoy!! I used beef broth instead of water for more flavor and had to leave out the sweet potato because I forgot to buy one. I also did not do the stovetop step. I browned the beef and put it in the crock pot, then sauteed the onions and garlic and added them to the crock pot with the rest of the ingredients. I cooked it on high for about 5-1/2 hours and everything was perfectly tender. Contrary to the feelings of another reviewer, I found the amount of barley to be just right. I'll probably make this again with the sweet potato, because I'm sure it adds some great flavor to the dish.  -  01 Feb 2010  (Review from Allrecipes US | Canada)