Southern Brunswick Stew
The thing with Brunswick stew is that you’re basically using leftovers or what is in your cabinets to make a hearty, thick stew the family will enjoy—which is probably why there isn’t any one recipe that is thought to be the original or the genuine article.
It seems there is practically no right or wrong way to make it. Make it personal. Serve the stew with whatever else your family might enjoy.
The constant about good Brunswick stew is that it’s flavorful and robust with a tomato base. For me, stew is different from soup in that I put a lot of meat in mine and make it thick.
Rosa's Version of Brunswick Stew
In the recipe that I share with you below, I use a lot of vegetables. I don't always make the same version twice. Sometimes I throw in leftovers and canned cream corn. I like it with beans, corn, onions, and potatoes, along with chicken and pork.
I make up a big pot of stew, share with a crowd, and then freeze the rest in small portions.
I cook the chicken and sausage first, shred them, and then add the unique ingredients that make the stew hearty and full of flavor. I just let it all simmer. I do hope you’ll like it.
Just remember, it’s got to be tomato-based, and it has to be thick—not like soup. Ready to give it a try? Alright then, let’s get cooking!
- 2 pounds chicken breast
- 16 ounces frozen baby lima beans
- 16 ounces frozen corn
- 3 potatoes, diced into small pieces
- 1 onion, peeled and diced
- 1 pound sausage
- 16 ounce can tomato sauce
- 16 ounce can stewed tomatoes
- 8 ounces ketchup
- 1/4 cup vinegar
- 1 tabespoon brown sugar
- 1/2 tablespoon black pepper
- 1/2 tablespoon salt
- 1/2 stick butter
- 1/2 cup Worcestershire sauce
- 1/4 cup hot sauce
The Taste Test
You should always taste the stew to see if you think it needs a little more of something. Let your taste buds decide for you. You may want a second opinion. Two people don't always taste the same things.
- I start out on high heat, and let the water come up to boil. Then, I reduce the heat down to medium-low, and add two pounds of chicken breast. I let it cook at a low boil for about one hour; you want to make sure you have enough water in the pot to cover the chicken and keep it submerged while it cooks.
- Remove the chicken from the pan when it's done, and place it in a colander to let it cool. Shred the chicken once it cools enough to handle.
- In the chicken broth, add one can or bag of 16 oz frozen baby lima beans and a 16 oz bag of frozen corn. Peel three potatoes and one onion; dice them into small pieces. Toss them into the pot with the beans and corn. Add enough water to the vegetables to cover them by about two inches. Note; I like to rinse my potatoes before peeling and dicing them.
- Place the pot over medium heat on your stove, and let it come up to a low boil. Reduce the heat down to medium, and let the vegetables cook until the beans are tender.
- Shred the chicken into small bite-size pieces. Add to the vegetables. Scramble a pound of sausage in a skillet over medium heat. Drain off the grease. Add to vegetables.
- Add 16 oz canned tomato sauce and a 16 oz can of stewed tomatoes. Also, I add ketchup at the end. It complements the stew.
- Add 1/4 cup of vinegar, a tablespoon of brown sugar, a tablespoon of black pepper, 1/2 tablespoon of salt, 1/2 stick of butter, 1/2 cup of Worcestershire sauce, and 1/4 cup of hot sauce to the stew. NOTE: Best to be safe and start out with a few drops of hot sauce if you are uncertain about the amount to use. You can always add extra as needed. The sauce is added for flavor, not to make it spicy. You may want it to be kid-friendly, and you’ll be happy with your dish. I usually end up adding 1/4 of a cup. I don’t like spicy, hot foods, and this was just right for my palette.
- Simmer. Grab a big spoon, and give it all a good stirring. Finally, top it off with some ketchup; then give it another stir. Let the stew simmer over medium heat, stirring often, until the stew is a little bubbly. If it's a bit dry-looking, add some extra chicken broth. Enjoy!
Serve This Dish as a Side Dish or Main Course
Brunswick stew is often served as a side dish at many eateries throughout the South. How it tastes is likely different at each one of them, but as suggested, it’s always thick and hearty. You can even order it by itself if you like. This delicious concoction can be served with chicken, hush puppies, saltine crackers, or just plain white bread. It is served throughout the year.
Establishment in Brunswick, Georgia
How to Save Leftovers for Your Stew
Brunswick stew is generally made of whatever you have lying around. So, it's a good idea to save leftover veggies and meat that you can turn into this dish later. You can use air-tight containers or freezer bags. I always mark the date on the outside and use the oldest ones first. Having leftover already-cooked meats and veggies mean that you can make a lot of quick and easy meals simply be reheating them.
How did you like my stew?
© 2017 Rosa Ann Crowder