Cook this beef shank slow cooker recipe and serve tender meat with soft buttery marrow over cauliflower mash or with a side salad. It’s a delicious budget-friendly dinner that takes only five minutes of prep time before letting the crockpot do the rest of the work. Plus, this dish is great for many diet types like low-carb, keto, dairy-free, gluten-free, paleo, and more.
What is a Beef Shank Cut?
Shanks are horizontal cross-cuts coming from the leg or, more precisely, the shin of an animal. Beef shanks are from a steer or heifer and could be either a foreshank from the front leg or hind shank from the back leg. (1, 2) There is no noticeable difference between the two when it comes to cooking them.
Usually, shanks are cut 1-2 inches thick and always present meat encircling a ring of bone with marrow inside. The marrowbone is the signature feature!
Shank may look like a steak, but it won’t cook like one. These tough muscle fibers need a long cooking time over low heat before breaking down and transforming into soft, tender meat.
Easy braised beef shank is another simple yet delicious way of slow cooking beef shank which uses a Dutch oven instead of a crockpot.
Where to buy Beef Shank?
Despite beef shank not being as popular as other cuts, it is still widely available.
It’s an inexpensive cut of beef, and I highly recommend cooking it often! However, while you can buy bone-in or bone-out, purchasing a bone-out beef shank seems like such a wasted opportunity because you won’t get the marrow.
I recommend speaking with your local butcher or connecting with local food producers in your area. If you need help finding farms and ranchers near you, browse the resources linked in How to Find Quality Foods.
You can also order frozen grass-fed beef shank online from US Wellness meats, and they’ll ship it to your door.
How to Cook Beef Shank in a Slow Cooker
Gather less than ten ingredients, and you’ll be on your way to making a naturally low-carb dinner meal with just five minutes of prep time!
In my opinion, this is the best beef shank recipe! I love the flavorful, fall-off-your-fork tender meat and the beef shank bone marrow is amazing.
Beef shank – You can’t go without this ingredient! Buy locally or purchase grass-fed beef shanks online.
Herbs and seasoning – Fresh or dried rosemary and oregano enhance the flavor of the meat and add a touch of color to the final dish. A generous seasoning of salt and pepper makes each bite pop with flavor! Finally, the onion and garlic give a subtle sweetness once they cook down over the meat.
Bone broth – I usually use homemade beef bone broth made on the stovetop, but you can choose slow cooker beef bone broth instead or buy quality broth. It’s so helpful to have broth on hand in your freezer or pantry.
First, season the beef shanks with herbs, salt, and pepper. Then, arrange them in the bottom of the crockpot.
Next, add onion and garlic around the sides of the meat. Then, pour broth over all the ingredients.
Finally, cover the slow cooker with a lid and cook on HIGH for 4-5 hours or LOW for 8-10 hours.
Serve the meat and sauce over cauliflower puree, side salad, or any of the other ideas linked below.
Store leftovers in an airtight container in the refrigerator for three to five days or in the freezer for up to three months.
You can also add shanks to a slow cooker stew like this Carnivore Beef Stew.
Crockpot Beef Shank with Bone FAQ
I understand you might have some questions, particularly if slow cooker meals are new to you or you’ve never cooked beef shank with bone before. Let me answer some common queries and clarify the process for you.
The basic process is very simple. You need to add the shank and other ingredients to the pot, pour in some liquid so it doesn’t burn, turn the appliance on and let it cook for a few hours. Cooking in a crockpot is the same as cooking in a slow cooker. The two terms mean the same thing and function interchangeably.
Slow cooking beef shank is the way to go. I don’t recommend trying anything quickly because you’ll probably end up with very tough and chewy meat. In addition to being a hard-working muscle, shanks have a lot of collagen that needs a long and slow cooking time before breaking down and softening. Your best option is this beef shank recipe that doesn’t have a short cooking time but is very quick to prep and start.
Other than the power of a crockpot, there is no a special way of tenderizing meat in this recipe for beef shanks. Instead, the slow cooker does all the work for us.
Prices of beef shank vary by location and quality. But, overall, even grass-fed shanks are an affordable cut ranging from $3.99/pound at the farmer’s market to $7.90/pound from online retailers.
What to Serve with Beef Shanks Recipe
- Cauliflower Mashed Potatoes
- Braised Cabbage
- Cauliflower Rice
- Coconut Creamed Greens
- Side salad with Keto Dressings
Best Slow Cooker Beef Shank Recipe
- Slow Cooker
- Season the beef shanks with herbs, salt, and pepper. Arrange in the crockpot.
- Add onion and garlic around the sides of the meat.
- Pour broth over all ingredients.
- Cover and cook on HIGH for 4-5 hours or LOW for 8-10 hours.
Nutrition & Macros
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