Brunswick Stew

Another "tried and true" family favorite. This is an easy recipe and a combination of several different states' versions of an old traditional southern favorite.


I think every southern state claims to be the originator of Brunswick Stew, but in truth, it's probably one of those family foods which evolved from what the folks had on hand at the time it was made. Years ago, many wild meats such as squirrel, rabbit, and venison were often found in the pot, much like that of an old-fashioned Hunter's Stew. The addition of okra seems to be the most controversial ingredient used. We like okra, but not everyone appreciates it, so it's often left out.


  • 4 halves boneless, skinless chicken breasts
  • 4 boneless pork chops
  • 2 cups cooked smoked ham, cubed
  • 2 quarts water
  • 2 medium onions, chopped
  • 2 ribs celery, chopped
  • 2 large baking potatoes, peeled and diced
  • 1 (29 oz.) can tomatoes, cut up
  • 3 cups fresh cut okra (optional)
  • Ad
  • 1 (10 oz.) box frozen green lima beans (partially thawed)
  • 1 (10 oz.) box frozen whole kernel white corn, partially thawed
  • 1 Tbsp. instant chicken bouillon
  • 2 tsp. salt
  • 1 tsp. garlic powder
  • 1/2 tsp. seasoned salt
  • 1 tsp. sugar
  • 1/4 tsp. black pepper


Into a large soup pot, combine chicken and pork (both cut into bite-sized pieces), with water, onion, cubed cooked ham, and potatoes. Bring to a boil, cover, reduce heat to simmer and allow to simmer gently for 3-4 hours, and chicken and pork are well done.

Add tomatoes, okra, lima beans, corn, salt, pepper, seasoned salt, bouillon, sugar, and garlic powder. Bring back to a boil, and boil for 10 minutes, then cover and, once again, reduce heat to simmer and simmer for an additional hour.

Taste and adjust seasonings. Serve hot in large bowls with wedges of freshly baked cornbread.

Note: Serve over a bed of brown or white rice if you need to feed more than 8 hungry people. Although it's a non-traditional variation of my own, it's a simple and nutritious addition if you are feeding an unexpected crowd of young people.


Servings: 8 or more
Time:1 Hours Preparation Time
4 + Hours Cooking Time

Source: My Mother who was the best cook I've yet to find. When I cook today, she is as close to me as though she were still by my side.

By Julia from Boca Raton, FL

February 27, 20110 found this helpful

"Ask and ye shall receive". Thank you Julia. I just knew you'd have the recipe. We've eaten this stew in North Carolina and Georgia, and they were slightly different, but called the same thing. Your explanation tells the story.

We like okra too, so that will be included in my stew this week. I can't wait to get it cooked now. I'm hungry for it already. Oh, I like your idea of serving it over brown or white rice too. There's a bunch of us, and they're all going to be hungry. What sort of dessert do you think would go well with the stew, rice and cornbread?

Thanks again.


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February 28, 20110 found this helpful

We've eaten Brunswick Stew several different places, and I don't think any of them had okra in it. We love okra, so I'm so glad to see that you do add it to yours. The rice sounds like a good idea too as well as good old southern cornbread.

Thanks for your recipe, Julia.


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Anonymous Flag
February 28, 20110 found this helpful

Julia, believe it or not I've never had Brunswick Stew and it sounds Delish! Going to halve the recipe and freeze the extra left over!

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February 28, 20110 found this helpful

Songwritter Lee, I would stick to something fairly light like maybe jello with fruit and cottage cheese maybe, but I'm in Florida and we're back to warm weather already.

Being in a colder climate, you might like something a little heavier and served warm like one of the Apple Crisps we've seen here on TF. I'd keep it simple though as this stew with or without the rice is very filling. If you're making cornbread, have the apple crisp ready to go into the oven at the same time.

Hope you enjoy it too.

Julia / Pookarina

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February 28, 20110 found this helpful

You sent this at a very good time Julia We are going to have another very cold spell with more snow. This will warm up

everyone. I am really missing all the good old southern cooking that we had in Atlanta.

Thank you for sharing your recipe.


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March 1, 20110 found this helpful

Rainy days always make me want some kind of soup or stew, and we are expecting rain again. I have everything except The okra, and I only have chicken thighs right now. I'm sure they'll work just as well, so into the pot they go. I can remove the bones later.

I'm also putting on the pot of brown rice (but it's the long cooking time one, so it'll take a little longer). Nothing is ever written in stone around here since hubby retired, and it's so much easier. We're going to be keeping two of the

grandchildren tomorrow, so I want to be prepared. If the cooking is all done, I can play dolls with them. :-)

Thank you for a great recipe Pookarina.

Thumb Up.


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March 1, 20110 found this helpful

Just ever so often, I want something that's all mixed up with a mingle of flavors and textures. Stews and soups are about the best at fitting those descriptions that I can think of, and your recipe for Brunswick Stew is a great example. I love it when it's cold outside and inside is all warm and cozy, and there's a pot of something that smells so good cooking on the stove.

I've eaten Brunswick Stew, and I've heard about it quite a lot just here lately. I gotta try your recipe.

Thumbs Up.


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March 1, 20110 found this helpful

Mmm, sounds so good! For my preference, I'd just double the okra and leave out the lima beans. Call me picky!

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March 3, 20110 found this helpful

Yum yum but I'm with Jo no lima beans here either.

Thanks for another winner.


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