What is Brunswick Stew?
Ask five people this question and you are likely to get five different answers. I'm certainly not here to stir up a debate about what makes a truly original and authentic Brunswick Stew - I just think it's a tasty combination of flavors! Originally, the stew was made using "small game" like rabbits or squirrels, though now it is made with cooked chicken, pulled pork, or even shredded beef. Lima beans and corn are a classic addition, though sometimes you'll see recipes using potatoes as well. The base is usually a slightly sweet mixture of tomatoes and broth with cooked onion and garlic and simple spices like salt, pepper, and Worcestershire. Barbecue sauce and/or ketchup are usually added as well.
Whatever your preference, this easy Brunswick Stew recipe is a good 'un and the flavor nuances can be altered as you cook to suit your tastes.
How To Make Brunswick Stew?
I absolutely love this stew because it's so bold in its flavors yet it's also a simple throw-everything-in-a-pot type of stew, especially if you already have your cooked chicken or pork ready to go. I use frozen corn and lima beans when I make mine because it's so darn easy, and frozen veggies still taste amazing when cooked properly! I like to start with a quick saute of onions and garlic in butter (can you smell it already?) to really infuse some flavor into the stew base. After that it's just dump, stir, and cook! The magic happens when you give Brunswick Stew a good long time to simmer, letting all of those subtle flavors meld and develop together and letting the broth thicken up.
Anyone else out there suffer from Seasonal Affective Disorder? Me, me, me! I hate winter and all the cold, dark, cloudy days that comes with it. I tend to seek comfort wherever I can get it while trying to survive until Spring, and turning to warm, soothing meals like Brunswick Stew can help me out with that.
I hope you all enjoy this wonderful recipe for easy Brunswick Stew!Print
Easy Delicious Brunswick Stew
- Total Time: 2 hours 10 mins
- ½ stick (4 TBS) unsalted butter
- 1 large sweet onion, processed with food processor or finely minced
- 3 cloves of garlic, crushed or minced
- 1 15oz can fire-roasted crushed tomatoes
- 4 cups chicken broth
- 1 cup barbecue sauce (see notes)
- 2 TBS Worcestershire sauce
- 1 ½ pounds cooked chicken (breast and thighs), skin removed, chopped small
- 1 generous cup frozen baby lima beans
- 1 generous cup frozen or fresh yellow corn
- Salt and pepper, to taste
- Soup/oyster crackers for serving
- In a large soup pot over medium heat, melt the butter and then add the onions. Cook, stirring occasionally, until soft and fragrant, and then add the garlic and cook for 2 minutes more.
- Add the tomatoes, broth, barbecue sauce (add notes), Worcestershire, chicken, beans, corn, salt, and pepper. Stir everything together.
- Bring stew to a boil and then reduce to a low simmer. Cook for about 2 hours until thickened as desired. Taste and adjust seasonings as needed. Serve with soda crackers.
Some people prefer their Brunswick stew to be less sweet. If you are using a sweeter BBQ sauce, start with only ½ cup and taste the mixture before adding more.
If you need to offset some sweetness, you can add apple cider vinegar a tablespoon at a time, tasting after each addition, to bring down the sweetness.
Recipe can be customized by adding ketchup or brown sugar for extra sweetness or using cooked pulled pork instead of chicken.
Soda crackers are a popular option for serving, though you can use any kind of bread (cornbread would be yummy) as well.
- Prep Time: 10 mins
- Cook Time: 2 hours
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Made this tonight and loved it. I added some potatoes and started with only 1/2 cup of BBQ sauce and a dash of cayenne. We’ll definitely keep this recipe!!
Yummy! So glad you loved it!