any season stew on a budget

*Note: the recipe part of this post was updated December 2018 to what we use today. I like to edit recipes as they’re perfected and used most frequently for our family* 

Original writing commence (circa 2015): The reality (and one of the intentions) of our big move out of the Bay Area and to the Pacific Northwest is that we really need to be conscious of the money we spend. For this reason, among others, we are working to be homemakers in every aspect of life that we can. When I say “homemakers” most people will think immediately of a housewife in an apron cooking dinner for her husband while he is away working a 9 to 5 job. And while there is nothing wrong with this, that’s just not the life for us.

Homemaker to me actually takes on a whole different meaning than that. I use the word in its truest sense. We are, in essence, making our home. We are working to grow our own food, build, trade for, or refurnish much of our own furniture, create our own decorations, put in patios, and do any and all work around the home that most would typically pay someone else to do. The result? Saved money, a feeling of fulfillment, more time together, and improved quality of life. There are, of course, things we still  have to hire folks to do, but we are learning as we go, and slowly but surely taking on more and more projects on our own. We’ve also grown to love the small town community vibe where people make trades for things they need instead of buying them, where people support each other and help out when needed, and where people work to live rather than live to work.

IMG_1326.JPGWhich brings me to the main point of this post… to share with you a recipe that will save you money, time, and stress. A meal that will take just a short time to make, but will feed a family for a couple days, and one that is loaded with nutrient dense ingredients that are also affordable and will allow you to get the most from what you buy, grow, or trade (nose to tail chicken, for example). It’s a simple meal that fills us up and leaves us with money and time to do more of the things we love.

So here you go, a delicious stew that is great for any season. It will satisfy, fuel your adventure, and leave you feeling content and fulfilled too, knowing you saved time and money and are nourishing yourself and the ones you love.

Enjoy! And as always, live rad, my friends!

Any Season Stew (GF, NF, DF)

  • Servings: 8
  • Difficulty: easy
  • Print


  • 3 cups of homemade bone broth (I make broth from the chicken carcass I’ll use in this stew – we have roasted chicken one night, keep all the leftovers, and throw the carcass in the pressure cooker or crockpot so we have fresh broth the next day along with the leftover chicken)
  • 1 whole sweet potato, cubed (lately we’ve been leaving this out and it’s still fabulous)
  • 1 leek, diced
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 large carrots, cut into 1/2 inch circles
  • a whole head of cauli, roughly chopped
  • 1 bay leaf
  • a few sprigs of thyme
  • 1.5-2 lbs of leftover roasted chicken or turkey meat, shredded or chopped up
  • 4 stalks of kale, stems removed and roughly chopped
  • sea salt to taste
  • 1/4 lb pastured bacon, diced (optional, but delicious addition)

Note: this originally had rice in it. If you’d like to keep the rice, add in with the broth and let simmer till fully cooked before adding other veggies


  • sauté your leek in a big pot until translucent and fragrant, then add garlic and stir until your house or van smells glorious
  • add broth and bring to boil
  • set to simmer and add potatoes, carrots, cauliflower, bay leaf, and thyme
  • let simmer for 30+ minutes (this varies, as I’ll let it simmer for as long as I need to get shit done)
  • add kale and chicken with sea salt to taste
  • keep simmering on low, continuing to stir the stew, which should be somewhat creamy now as the sweet potatoes break down
  • if you want the bacon, heat another pan, and cook your diced bacon
  • once bacon is done, add to pot, stir, and add more sea salt to taste if needed
  • Enjoy! This is great fresh and hot topped with creamy cheese and avocado, and it is actually also delicious cold on the go (keeps for 4 days in the fridge or longer in the freezer)

*You can also make this in the Instant Pot for a quick meal any night of the week. Just do it in two batches – sweet potato, broth, and chicken for 20 min on poultry setting, then finish it off with the other ingredients for 3 minutes, and boom!

Let me know what you think! And please do share with the ones you love who might need a quick, cheap, and delicious meal (who can’t benefit from that?). This will be especially delicious and warming as fall approaches (my favorite time of year)! Cheers!

♡ Laura


  1. Dee June 16, 2016 at 10:06 am - Reply

    I was wondering if you have the macronutrient information for your recipes? Thankyou.

    • Laura Bruner June 16, 2016 at 3:39 pm - Reply

      Hello there. Good question. I do not have that listed on my website anywhere, but I do know some recipes are in My Fitness Pal (my carrot ginger soup for instance). You can, however, figure out the macros for a recipe by adding up macros for each ingredient as you make the recipe. It’s relatively simple because I try to keep my recipes easy and with few ingredients. Hope this helps!

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