The Perfect Make-Ahead Slow Cooker Mexican Pork Stew

In the busy days of the holiday season, who wants to think about what's for dinner? This Mexican Pork Stew is designed to be made ahead of time and stored in the freezer Tweet this until you are ready for it. Simply defrost, drop into your slow cooker and let it do the cooking for you while you're out and about. When you get home from work, school or other activities, dinner will be ready to go. It's hot, homemade and healthy.

As you dice the vegetables in this recipe, keep them in separate bowls. This will make it easier when it comes to storing in the freezer.

Mexican Pork Stew

Recipe by Allison Stevens, MS, RD, LD


  • 1 pound pork stew meat
  • 1 tablespoon chopped garlic (1 to 2 cloves)
  • Juice of 3 limes
  • 2 tablespoons chili powder
  • 1 tablespoon cumin powder
  • 4 stalks celery, diced
  • ⅓ pound carrots, peeled and diced
  • 2 medium sweet potatoes, peeled and diced
  • 1 yellow bell pepper, diced
  • 1 red bell pepper, diced
  • 1 small red onion, diced
  • 1 jalapeno, diced with white veins and seeds removed (optional)
  • 4 cups chicken broth
  • 2 teaspoons cayenne, optional


  1. Whisk together the juice of garlic, lime juice, chili powder, cumin and cayenne (if using). Toss with pork and set aside to marinate, while you chop vegetables.
  2. In a large, freezer-safe container, layer the following ingredients in this order:
    • chopped onion
    • chopped carrots
    • chopped celery
    • diced jalapeno (if using)
    • chopped red and yellow bell peppers
    • chopped sweet potatoes
    • marinated pork stew meat
  3. Store labeled container in freezer for use within 2 to 3 months.
  4. When you're ready to cook, remove container from freezer and place in a refrigerator to thaw. Once ingredients have thawed, remove from freezer-safe container and place in slow cooker on high for 4 to 6 hours, or low for 8 to 10 hours. If you can (it's not required), stir occasionally.
  5. Add extra broth or water to thin to desired consistency. Season to taste as needed with salt and pepper or cayenne.

Cooking Note

  • Substitute chicken for pork, if desired.
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Allison Schaaf
Allison Schaaf, MS, RD, LD, is the founder of the meal-planning website and the Austin, Texas-based business Prep Dish: Personal Chefs. Read her blog and follow her on Facebook, Twitter and Pinterest.