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Bowl of Brunswick stew with pulled pork, chicken, tomatoes, lima beans and corn with crackers

Want an easy cleanup supper that’ll stick to your ribs and give you leftovers for days? Try this recipe for slow cooker Brunswick stew!

Stew is nothing new. In fact, most cultures have a version of a humble one-pot meal. Spain has paella, the South of France has bouillabaisse, Southern Louisiana has jambalaya and gumbo, and the Piedmont region that stretches across Virginia, North Carolina, South Carolina, and Georgia has Brunswick stew.

The Origins of Brunswick Stew: A Tale of Two Cities

Brunswick stew is a tomato-based stew and hunting camp staple traditionally made with vegetables, beans, and small game such as squirrel, rabbit, or even opossum. A combination of pork, chicken, or beef is more common today.

It’s not entirely clear where Brunswick stew originated, although two places in Georgia and Virginia lay claim. A 25-gallon iron stewpot in Brunswick, Georgia, bears a plaque that declares it to be the pot in which the first-ever Brunswick stew was made on July 2, 1898, on nearby St. Simons Island. However, historians can trace it back even further to 1828, when a Virginia state legislator’s enslaved chef Jimmy Matthews is said to have come up with the recipe on a hunting trip in Brunswick County, Virginia.

Brunswick stew has always been communal by nature. It’s hospitality in a bowl! Today, it’s commonly served at barbecues and made in huge quantities for fundraisers, family reunions, political events, and other gatherings.

Although its history is up for debate, one thing is for sure: this stuff is good. And it’s no wonder since it’s a recipe stew masters have had nearly 200 years to perfect. Serve a bowl with some freshly baked skillet cornbread and a salad, and you’ve got a hearty, filling meal.

Learn how to make slow-cooker Brunswick stew by watching the video below, or download our free recipe card!

South Carolina Brunswick Stew Recipe

Click for Video Recipe

Brunswick Stew Recipe

How to Make Brunswick Stew


  • 1 shredded rotisserie chicken
  • 1 pound pulled pork
  • 2 cups low-sodium chicken broth
  • 1 onion, diced
  • 1 tablespoon light brown sugar
  • 1 (16-ounce) can diced tomatoes
  • 1 (16-ounce) bag frozen corn kernels
  • 1 bag frozen butter beans or lima beans
  • 1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • Hot sauce, for serving (optional)
  • Soda crackers, for serving (optional)


  1. Place pork and chicken at the bottom of the slow cooker. Add remaining ingredients, stir to combine, and cover.
  2. Cook on low for 3-4 hours.
  3. Serve with soda crackers and garnish with hot sauce.

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Download our free South Carolina Brunswick Stew recipe card!


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