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Easy Slow Cooker Brunswick Stew

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Slow Cooker Brunswick Stew made with leftover pulled pork (or chicken) is a deliciously EASY one-bowl meal. Super simple and easy to put together, Slow Cooker Brunswick Stew is the perfect weeknight dinner, football fare, or potluck dish!

Pulled pork and diced potatoes simmer in a mixture of chicken broth and crushed tomatoes along with a variety of frozen vegetables, barbecue sauce, and a few tablespoons of brown sugar for a smoky, sweet stew.

Traditional Brunswick Stew recipes typically start by cooking and shredding a pork roast or pork shoulder. This simpler version, however, gets a jump start by using pulled pork from your favorite barbecue restaurant.

Easy Brunswick Stew in a bowl on a plate with a piece of cornbread

Slow Cooker Brunswick Stew

One-pot meals are the best, and one-pot slow cooker meals are even better! There’s nothing more satisfying than dumping ingredients into the slow cooker before leaving for work and returning home to the aroma of a delicious, no-fuss dinner.

One of my favorite slow-cooker meals is today’s Easy Slow Cooker Brunswick Stew. I first shared the recipe as a contributor for The Weary Chef back in 2016.

Since then, I’ve tweaked the recipe to include instructions for cooking in a slow cooker (so you can set it and forget it!) as well as instructions for quicker stove top cooking.

If you need to feed a larger group, today’s Brunswick Stew recipe makes 8 healthy servings, or there’s plenty to reheat for another meal later in the week!

What is Brunswick Stew?

Also known as “hunter’s stew,” Brunswick stew is a tomato-based stew with lima or butter beans, vegetables, and meat, often chicken or pork. In this version, using a variety of frozen veggies means minimal prep work for a hearty one-bowl meal.

ingredients for Brunswick Stew on a wooden table

Ingredients

  • Pulled pork — or a mixture of pulled pork and pulled chicken. You can even use a shredded rotisserie chicken instead.
  • Baby red or Yukon gold potatoes — use young potatoes with tender skins so you won’t need to peel them!
  • A large sweet onion — for savory flavor
  • Canned crushed or stewed tomatoes
  • Bottled barbecue sauce — preferably hickory flavor
  • Chicken broth — or chicken stock
  • Frozen baby lima beans — or butter beans
  • Yellow whole kernel corn — frozen or a couple ears of fresh corn
  • Sliced okra — fresh or frozen
  • Brown sugar — for a touch of sweetness
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper — to taste

How to make Brunswick Stew in the crockpot

Besides giving the pulled pork a coarse chop, the only real prep work is chopping an onion and a few baby potatoes since the rest of the ingredients come straight from your pantry or freezer.

  1. Lightly coat a 6-quart slow cooker with non-stick cooking spray.
  2. Coarsely chop the meat and place in the slow cooker with the remaining ingredients, stirring to combine.
  3. Cover and cook on LOW for 8 to 10 hours (or on HIGH 4 to 5 hours). Test the potatoes to make sure they are fork-tender.
  4. Ladle the stew into bowls and serve with crusty bread or corn muffins.
close up of Easy Brunswick Stew in a bowl

How to make Brunswick stew on the stovetop

  1. In a large Dutch oven, combine the coarsely chopped pulled pork, crushed tomatoes, chicken broth, and diced potatoes over medium-high heat. Bring to a boil.
  2. Reduce the heat to medium and cover with a lid. Cook for 15 minutes, until the potatoes are fork-tender.
  3. To the pot, add the barbecue sauce, onion, lima beans, corn, okra, and brown sugar. Stir well. Increase the heat to high to quickly bring the mixture back to a boil, then reduce to medium-low heat.
  4. Simmer for 5 minutes, until the vegetables are warmed through.

What goes with Brunswick Stew?

Be sure to serve Brunswick stew with a crusty bread loaf, a skillet of cornbread, or Mexican cornbread muffins to soak up every delicious drop of the zesty, barbecue-flavored broth. Some people also like serving coleslaw on the side.

Easy Brunswick Stew in a bowl on a plate with a piece of cornbread

Can you freeze stew?

You can freeze Brunswick Stew leftovers (and other cooked stews with meat and potatoes) for up to a month. To reheat frozen stew, set the container in warm water for 5 minutes or so, then empty into a saucepan and heat over medium low heat until completely defrosted, hot and bubbly.

Can you reheat Brunswick stew in a slow cooker?

Stick with reheating the stew in the microwave or on top of the stove, never in a slow cooker. The reason is that the cold stew will not heat up quickly enough, possibly allowing bacteria to breed.

Bacteria is the reason you should always thaw any frozen vegetables before adding them to a slow cooker recipe.

Let’s cook!

Trust me, this Brunswick stew is so easy, you can’t mess it up! If you have any leftover, be sure to let it cool completely before storing in the refrigerator (for up to 3 to 4 days).

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Yield: 8 servings

Easy Brunswick Stew

Easy Brunswick Stew in a bowl on a plate

Brunswick stew is a tomato-based stew with lima beans, vegetables, and meat, often chicken or pork. In this version, a variety of frozen veggies means minimal prep work for a hearty one-bowl meal.

Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 8 hours
Total Time 8 hours 5 minutes

Ingredients

  • 1-1/2 pounds pulled pork
  • 6 - 8 baby red or Yukon Gold potatoes, diced
  • 1 large onion, diced
  • 1 (28-oz.) can crushed tomatoes
  • 1 (18-oz.) bottle barbecue sauce
  • 1 (14-oz.) can chicken broth
  • 1 (9-oz.) pkg. frozen baby lima beans (thawed)
  • 1 (9-oz.) pkg. frozen corn (thawed)
  • 1 cup frozen sliced okra (thawed)
  • 3 tablespoons brown sugar
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt

Instructions

Slow Cooker:

  1. Lightly coat the bottom of a 6-quart slow cooker with non-stick cooking spray.
  2. Coarsely chop the meat and place in the bottom of the slow cooker.
  3. Stir in the potatoes, onion, tomatoes, barbecue sauce, chicken broth, lima beans, corn, okra, brown sugar and salt.
  4. Cover and cook on LOW for 8 to 10 hours (or on HIGH 4 to 5 hours), until the potatoes are fork-tender.
  5. Ladle the stew into bowls and serve.

Stove Top:

  1. In a large Dutch oven, combine the coarsely chopped pulled pork, crushed tomatoes, chicken broth, and diced potatoes over medium-high heat. Bring to a boil.
  2. Reduce the heat to medium and cover with a lid. Cook for 15 minutes, until the potatoes are fork-tender.
  3. To the pot, add the barbecue sauce, onion, lima beans, corn, okra, and brown sugar. Stir well. Increase the heat to high to quickly bring the mixture back to a boil, then reduce to medium-low heat. Season with the salt and pepper.
  4. Simmer for 5 minutes, until the vegetables are warmed through. Serve immediately.

Notes

  • You may substitute pulled chicken or rotisserie chicken for the pulled pork, or use a mixture of pork and chicken.
  • Substitute 2 ears fresh corn (cut off the cob) for the frozen corn.
  • Substitute 1 cup fresh sliced okra for the frozen okra.
  • If the stew is not as thick as you like, add a tablespoon of cornstarch during the last few minutes of cooking.
  • Brunswick stew will keep in the refrigerator for 3 to 4 days.
  • You can freeze Brunswick Stew leftovers (and other cooked stews with meat and potatoes) for up to a month.
  • To reheat frozen stew, set the container in warm water for 5 minutes or so, then empty into a saucepan and heat over medium low heat until completely defrosted, hot and bubbly.

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Nutrition Information:

Yield:

8

Serving Size:

8

Amount Per Serving: Calories: 534Total Fat: 8gSaturated Fat: 2gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 4gCholesterol: 52mgSodium: 2106mgCarbohydrates: 94gFiber: 8gSugar: 55gProtein: 26g

Did you make this recipe?

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ABOUT SHEILA
Sheila Thigpen, author of Easy Chicken Cookbook and The 5-Ingredient Fresh and Easy Cookbook, is a recipe developer, food photographer, and food writer. She spent 20+ years as a business manager in the publishing industry before she retired in 2018 to focus on her passions — cooking, photography, and writing. Living near the beautiful Smoky Mountains, Sheila and her husband have two adult daughters and two fine sons-in-law, are active in their church, love to travel, and have a precious little granddaughter who has stolen their hearts. Follow Sheila on YouTubePinterestInstagramFacebook, and Twitter!

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