On really busy days I love making use of my slow cooker. This hearty, no-fuss, zesty beef stew is the perfect busy day recipe.

1 pound beef stew meat, cut into 1-inch pieces
1 (16 ounce) package frozen mixed vegetables
1 (15 ounce) can pinto beans, rinsed and drained
1-1/2 cups water
1 (8 ounce) can pizza sauce
2 tablespoons medium pearl barley
1 tablespoon dried minced onion
2 teaspoons beef bouillon granules
1/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes

1. Combine all the ingredients in a 3-quart slow cooker. Cover and cook on Low for 3-1/2 to 4-1/2 hours or until the meat is tender. Makes 6 servings.

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