Brunswick Stew


When you have guests over for dinner are you adventurous and try a new recipe? Or do you stick to a tried-and-true success? After being too adventurous in my younger days when it came to entertaining, I absolutely stick to my recipes that I know are good and won’t disappoint. However… what happens when you plan on trying out a new recipe only to find out you’ll have guests that day? Well, in my case, I went ahead with my plans for a new recipe.

The guests were my two cousins, one in college, the other a recent grad. The older of the two is on Atkins so is limited in his carb intake and the other one, well, I’m not so sure about her tastes. But I mentioned to both of them I was making a stew I had never made before and they were totally fine with it. So I crossed my fingers and started preparing Brunswick Stew from the October 2007 issue of Cooking Light.

Brunswick Stew is described as a 19th-century recipe from Virginia that originally included squirrel. I decided to make it after looking for an alternative to your traditional beef stew. It had very positive reviews on Cooking Light so I decided to try it out. The only alteration to the recipe was using butter beans instead of lima (we just don’t like lima beans here). I served it over brown rice but skipped the bread as recommended in the recipe. Everyone actually liked the stew very much. Both cousins enjoyed it and the one on Atkins skipped the rice. It was very warm and comforting on a chilly night and the flavors were perfect together. It’s definitely a keeper for our Winter recipes.

Overall rating – 4 stars

Brunswick Stew

From 19th-century Virginia, this stew originally included squirrel meat (we opt here for chicken). Although the stew is sometimes thickened with stale bread cubes, this version uses flour to give it body and features garlic bread on the side. Garnish with fresh thyme sprigs.

Cooking spray
1 cup chopped red bell pepper
3/4 cup chopped yellow onion
1/2 cup chopped celery
1 tablespoon peanut oil
1 tablespoon all-purpose flour
1 pound skinless, boneless chicken thighs, cut into 1/2-inch pieces
2 cups fat-free, less-sodium chicken broth
2 tablespoons no-salt-added tomato paste
1 teaspoon dried thyme
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon hot pepper sauce (such as Tabasco)
1 (10-ounce) package frozen whole-kernel corn, thawed
1 (10-ounce) package frozen baby lima beans, thawed
6 (1-ounce) slices Italian bread, toasted
2 garlic cloves, halved

Heat a large Dutch oven over medium-high heat. Coat pan with cooking spray. Add bell pepper, onion, and celery to pan; cook 5 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add oil to pan. Combine flour and chicken in a medium bowl, tossing to coat. Add chicken to pan; cook 2 minutes or until lightly browned. Gradually stir in broth; bring to a boil. Cook 1 minute or until slightly thick, stirring constantly. Add tomato paste and next 5 ingredients (through lima beans) to pan. Cover, reduce heat, and simmer 30 minutes.Rub bread slices with cut sides of garlic; discard garlic. Serve bread with stew.

Yield: 6 servings (serving size: 1 cup stew and 1 slice bread)

CALORIES 319 (26% from fat); FAT 9.2g (sat 2.2g,mono 3.5g,poly 2.6g); PROTEIN 22.4g; CHOLESTEROL 50mg; CALCIUM 58mg; SODIUM 596mg; FIBER 5.8g; IRON 3.2mg; CARBOHYDRATE 38g

Cooking Light, OCTOBER 2007



  1. bedeo said

    I came across a similar recipe in a cook book I found in the library that I wanted to try. However, yours seems more easily prepared (and makes use of my new dutch oven) and lighter. Thanks!

  2. foodiedani said

    Hi Bedeo!

    Yes, this was definitely easy to prepare and light, but filling! I’m hoping to get a dutch oven for Christmas!!


  3. Sabrina said

    Cooking Light also had a version in its October 2004 issue which was much easier. Fewer ingredients and fewer steps. Very yummy. In fact, it’s on my stove, right now! I’ve made it several times and it never fails to please. Search for “Cooking Light Brunswick Stew With Smoked Paprika”.

    By the way, I believe that butter beans ARE lima beans……………………

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