Crock-Pot, Skinny Tomato Beef Macaroni Stew

beef-and-macaroni-stew photo
This is a super meal in itself!  So satisfying smells amazing while cooking and tastes fantastic! It freezes great, too. Each main course serving has 251 calories, 4 grams of fat, and 6 Blue WW Freestyle SmartPoints, and 7 Green. Although this is a crock-pot recipe, I’ve included directions for making it on the stove-top.

Prep Time: 15 minutes

Cook Time: 6 hours on low heat or 3 hours on high heat


1 pound extra-lean ground beef or ground turkey, see shopping tips

1½ cups onions

2 cloves garlic, minced

1 (14.5 oz) can reduced-sodium beef broth

1 (26.46 oz) can chopped tomatoes

1 (26 oz) jar pasta sauce, such as Classico Tomato Basil, Prego or Ragu’s Original pasta sauce or your favorite

2 cups zucchini

1 cup red bell pepper, chopped

1½ tablespoons Worcestershire sauce

1½ teaspoons steak seasoning or Lawry’s seasoning salt

3 cups cooked whole grain elbow macaroni (1½ cups uncooked) or penne pasta

2 cups fresh spinach, packed

Black pepper, to taste


1. In a large nonstick pan or soup pot, brown ground beef, onions, and garlic until ground beef is no longer pink.

2. To make in the crock-pot: add the cooked beef, broth, tomatoes, pasta sauce, zucchini, red bell pepper, Worcestershire sauce, and steak seasoning. Cover and cook in crockpot 6 hours on low heat or 3 hours on high heat.

3. Stir in cooked macaroni and spinach. Cover and continue to cook for 15 minutes until heated.

4, To make on the stovetop: add the cooked beef, broth, tomatoes, pasta sauce, zucchini, red bell pepper, Worcestershire sauce, and steak seasoning. Bring to a boil. Turn down to a simmer, cover, and simmer for 35 minutes. Stir in cooked pasta and spinach. Cover and heat for 5 minutes.

Makes 12 cups total (each serving 1½ cups)

Shopping Tips

I used Trader Joe’s 96% fat-free ground beef. Most supermarkets sell lean ground beef.

WW Freestyle SmartPoints
WW SmartPoints

SKINNY FACTS: for 1 serving (1½ cups each)
251 calories, 4g fat, 1g sat. fat, 25g chol, 18g protein, 37g carbs, 6g fiber, 1,172mg sodium, 12g sugar
FACTS: for Freestyle SmartPoints
212 calories, 1g sat. fat, 9g sugar, 17g protein


  1. Looks good but too much sodium. It could probably be made more sodium friendly with a few tweaks which I will try for sure!

  2. Sue, you could use low sodium canned tomatoes and cut down or leave out the seasoning salt.
    My best,

  3. My husband is diabetic I’m using wheat noodles but sauce has a lot of sugar. Any idea where I can get canned goods without so much sugar. I work and have two teenage boys super busy. Having learn to cook for a diabetic is super time consuming. I really love these throw together meals but so much sugar and carbs. are in canned goods.

  4. Gina,
    If you look at your local health food market, you might be able to find these canned products with less sugar. There are brands such as Muir Glen Organic you might check out.
    I know it must be a lot of work for you to meet the diabetic guidelines.
    Best of luck to you!

  5. I made this tonight, I thought it had too much tomato, it was all we tasted – I did use an arrabbiata sauce as we like spicy, I would change out red for green bell pepper, cut the tomatoes in halve and double the steak seasoning. It was pretty easy to prepare.

  6. I’m sorry the base was too tomatoey for your taste Pam. If you try it again, I suggest you use more beef broth and cut down on the pasta sauce.
    My best,

If you make this recipe, let me know how you liked it. Leave me a comment below or give it a rating. Thanks so much. Happy Skinny Cooking!