Crockpots can make a lot more than soup and chili. Get the most out of your equipment by making this Paleo crockpot pork shanks and gravy recipe.
Why I Love the Crockpot for Paleo
Everyone loves the idea of fast food. It’s convenient, it’s fast, and it gets the job done. But drive throughs are definitely not Paleo.
So you look for hacks to make cooking easier, and the slow cooker or crockpot is one of my go-to tools. While it does take longer for your food to cook (hence the name slow cooker) in many cases you can just prep the food and leave it alone as you go about your business.
Micromanaging food is just as lame as micromanaging people. Crockpots reliably do their job without burning your food, and they are great for a wide variety of dishes.
They’re great for summer, when you don’t want to heat up your kitchen. They’re equally as good in fall and winter, when you’re itching for a hearty stew or beef chili.
I didn’t think there would be much to talk about here. It’s pork shanks. Pork. Meat. How non-Paleo do people really get with a meat-based recipe like this?
You’d be surprised. While I wouldn’t have made this recipe much differently pre-Paleo, others find ways to sneak in the less-than-clean foods.
Flour is the biggest offender, both for pork shanks and for gravy. The gravy I can understand, as flour is pretty standard for gravy, but it seems highly unnecessary for the shanks themselves.
But even the gravy can be made Paleo. I utilized the cooking juices from the crockpot and added mustard and ghee.
It really makes a tasty gravy!
Brown sugar isn’t common, but I did find it in my cursory search of pork shank recipes. This is obviously not a Paleo ingredient, and I didn’t feel the need to try to make this pork recipe sweeter so I left it out.
Free Paleo Diet Food List
When you think about Paleo, some foods are obvious, but other ingredients are less clear.
Even items that many people believe to be healthy, such as whole grains, peanuts, and corn are not Paleo.
You may even wonder if you’ll ever crack the code.
Wonder no more, because you can refer to this free Paleo diet food list. This comprehensive list can quickly tell you if a food is something you should eat or avoid.
I hope that helps to clear up any confusion you might be having about Paleo!
Heat one tablespoon of olive oil in a large pan and brown the shanks until the skin has browned. Remove and set aside.
Add the second tablespoon of olive oil to the same pan and add the onions and garlic, cooking over moderately high heat until the onions have softened. Deglaze the pan with the lemon juice.
Transfer the shanks to a large crockpot and add the cooked onion mixture. Pour in the hot chicken broth and add in the bay leaves. Cover with a lid and cook for 4.5 hours.
Remove the shanks and place onto a baking tray. Preheat the oven to maximum.
Once the oven is heated, place the tray onto the bottom rack to cook until the skin puffs up. Remove and set aside.
In the meantime, make a gravy. Tip all the cooking juices and onions from the crockpot into a large pan on the stovetop. Remove the bay leaves, then add the mustard. Use a hand blender to blitz well. Reduce over moderate heat until thickened, then whisk in the ghee.
Serve the shanks with the gravy and your favorite greens.
All nutritional data are estimated and based on per serving amounts.