Squash and Lentil Lamb Stew

Total Time

Prep: 30 min. Cook: 6 hours


8 servings (2-1/2 quarts)

Updated: Nov. 10, 2023
My family lived in New Zealand many years ago. Every Sunday my mother made a lamb stew—it was Dad's favorite! I changed the recipe to suit my family's more modern palates, but it still seems just as exotic and delicious. —Nancy Heishman, Las Vegas, Nevada
Squash and Lentil Lamb Stew Recipe photo by Taste of Home


  • 1 can (13.66 ounces) coconut milk
  • 1/2 cup creamy peanut butter
  • 2 tablespoons red curry paste
  • 1 tablespoon hoisin sauce
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon pepper
  • 1 can (14-1/2 ounces) chicken broth
  • 3 teaspoons olive oil, divided
  • 1 pound lamb or beef stew meat (1-1/2-inch pieces)
  • 2 small onions, chopped
  • 1 tablespoon minced fresh gingerroot
  • 3 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 cup dried brown lentils, rinsed
  • 4 cups cubed peeled butternut squash (about 1 pound)
  • 2 cups chopped fresh spinach
  • 1/4 cup minced fresh cilantro
  • 1/4 cup lime juice


  1. In a 5- or 6-qt. slow cooker, whisk together first 7 ingredients. In a large skillet, heat 2 teaspoons oil over medium heat; brown lamb in batches. Add to slow cooker.
  2. In same skillet, saute onions in remaining oil over medium heat until tender, 4-5 minutes. Add ginger and garlic; cook and stir 1 minute. Add to slow cooker. Stir in lentils and squash.
  3. Cook, covered, on low 6-8 hours, until meat and lentils are tender. Stir in spinach until wilted. Stir in cilantro and lime juice.

Can you freeze Squash and Lentil Lamb Stew?

Freeze cooled stew in freezer containers. To use, partially thaw in refrigerator overnight. Heat through in a saucepan, stirring occasionally; add broth if necessary.

Test Kitchen Tips
  • For the best browning, blot meat dry beforehand.
  • No peeking! Opening the slow cooker allows steam to escape, causing the temperature to drop. You may need to add 20-30 minutes to the cook time for each time the lid is lifted.
  • Braised meat is done when it is fork-tender. Overcooking may cause meat to become stringy and dry.
  • Feel free to sub light coconut milk—you'll get great coconut flavor but with less fat.
  • Nutrition Facts

    1-1/4 cups: 411 calories, 21g fat (11g saturated fat), 38mg cholesterol, 777mg sodium, 34g carbohydrate (7g sugars, 6g fiber), 23g protein.