Thursday, May 21, 2015

Easy Brunswick Stew

I know what you're thinking, "Kathy, it's getting hot outside; why on earth would I want to make stew at this time of year?" but hear me out. Where I come from, Brunswick Stew is just as much a part of a barbecue as are ribs and burgers, and this recipe could not be easier to put together.

Every summer, a little roadside BBQ stand and food truck opens up along one of the main routes where we live. We noticed that every weekend, there were lines of people waiting to buy BBQ and we figured that it must be something worth checking out. Turns out we were right. In fact, food from this little roadside BBQ was the one of the first meals we ate in our new home 3 years ago, and it still serves some of the best ribs we've had since we moved up here to Virginia.

They are only open from May to November, so just before they close down, we order a couple of pounds of their ribs, chicken, and pulled pork specifically for this soup, which we devour when the temperatures have us huddled inside. We strip the meat of the bones and freeze in big Ziplock bags to sustain us till we can see that roadside stand open up again the following May.


Finding smoked or barbecued meat for this stew shouldn't be hard, just go to your favorite local BBQ joint and buy some. This original recipe comes from one of my Paula Deen cookbooks, but I found her version to be a little too sweet and it didn't include lima beans, which is sacrilege as far as I'm concerned.


This recipe is literally as easy as throwing everything into a pot and turning on the heat. The most effort you will have is cutting up the onion. I always double the recipe to include lots of leftovers, which reheat wonderfully.

Kathy's Easy Brunswick Stew
Recipe modified from Paula Deen


1-1/2 lbs. of cooked, chopped BBQ meat (pulled pork, chicken, ribs, etc.)
1 (28 oz.) can crushed tomatoes
1 (16 oz.) creamed corn (if doubling recipe, use 1 can regular corn undrained, and 1 can cream corn)
8 oz. frozen baby lima beans
6 oz. can tomato paste
1 cup water
¼ cup sugar
1 onion, diced
½ cup ketchup
¼ cup BBQ sauce (I use Sweet Baby Rays)
1 tablespoon liquid smoke
1 tablespoon cider vinegar
1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
1 teaspoon celery salt
Salt and pepper to taste

Put all the ingredients in a soup pot and bring to a simmer. Simmer for 15-20 minutes; add salt and pepper to taste. 

*Note: The original recipe was too sweet, so I reduced the amount of ketchup and BBQ sauce and came up with this version. If you feel your version needs to be more sweet, feel free to add more. 

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