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Brunswick Stew from Caswell County, NC

Courtesy of the Bethel Church of Christ




Several churches do an excellent job with brunswick stew.  If you are a brunswick stew lover like I am, then you probably wonít be disappointed with this church recipe. It has a very nice red color that comes from the tomato products. Bethel Church has used it every year for more than 25 years. A quart sells for about $4 in 1997 dollars.  A quart is two adult servings.  Bethel Churchís brunswick stew is the best Iíve had, and Iíve tried a lot of them. It is very similar to the brunswick stew served at Bullockís Bar-B-Cue. 


The following brunswick stew recipe came from Bethel Church: 



5 Gallons

240 Qt Kettle


3 lb

40 lb

Cooked Chuck Roast or Canned Cubed Beef (Manco 6 lb cans, 7 total cans)

ĺ lb

10 lb

Pork such as Boston Butt

1 chicken

14 chickens

Chickens boiled, deboned, reuse broth

1.5 lb

3 to 5 gallons

Chopped Onions

105 oz

11 gallons

Tomato Juice

96 oz

10 gallons

Canned Tomato

1.5 qt

5 gallons

Butterbean or Butter peas (not Lima beans)

1.5 qt

5 gallons

Corn (frozen or canned)

9 lb

11 to 15 gallons

Skinned Potatoes (11 gallons is about 125 lb)

.9 lb

12 lb

Margarine or butter

19 oz

2 gallons

Tomato Puree

9.6 oz

1 gallon

Tomato Ketchup (prefer Heinz)

3 oz

1 quart

Worcestershire Sauce

2.4 oz

1 quart

Cider Vinegar

2 oz

2-1/2 cups

Or more of Texas Pete Sauce

3.5 oz

3 lbs

White Sugar

2 tsp


Salt to taste

2.5 tsp


Pepper to taste






Use tight-fitting cookware to hold in the flavor as the ingredients are boiled separately.  Cook everything in separate pots and put them together at the end.


Start out by slowly boiling the meats until they are tender.  Remove the bones and skins from the chickens. Re-use the broths to boil potatoes and butter beans.  Then cook the onions and corn in reserved broth.  Do not add any of the tomato products during the initial cooking process.


When all of the ingredients are cooked, add them together in one big pot.  Add all of the remaining ingredients and mix them well.  Bring the pot to a boil and continue stirring with a wooden spoon or a boat oar to keep it from sticking to the pot and burning. 


An appetizing presentation is made to the general public with someone stirring a large cauldron mounted to a tripod over an open fire.  Stir the stew for approximately one hour over the fire as it continues to get thicker with the water boiling off of it.  This step is very important, the stew must be boiled down until it is quite thick.


Serve stew with a mayonnaise based slaw and saltine crackers.  It is best during the colder months of the year.  Brunswick stew freezes well.