Three Secrets to Having a Brunswick Stew Kind of Day

It takes nearly a lifetime to learn certain things. For instance, everything I say isn’t pure gold.

Last Saturday, my husband and I were having our morning PORCH PARTY. The Georgia humidity had miraculously lifted during the night. As I wrapped my red fleece blanket around me, he said, “I think it’s a Brunswick stew kind of day.”

Brunswick Stew Days are new to our nearly 35-year-old marriage.

(I blogged about making stew last year here, TRUE LOVE AND BRUNSWICK STEW, but there’s a new recipe and a life lesson below.)

Later that morning at the grocery store, Rick grabbed a package of kielbasa sausage. Standing in the meat department, I thought…

You don’t put sausage in Brunswick stew. Should I remind him?

Or keep my mouth shut.

I nearly chewed my lips off, but I didn’t say anything.

Way too many times, I’ve offered helpful hints.

Because I wanted to be right. To prove a point.

Being quiet is new for me.

Back home in the kitchen, I stopped chopping onions to watch him cut up the sausage.

I smiled. He was so happy.


 We grilled the pork chops and chicken.

Browned the ground beef, onions, and celery…

Our son Thomas and I waited…anticipated…:)

Even Clyde knew it was a special day.

The stew was amaaaaaaazing.

He was right about the kielbasa sausage. 🙂

Sometimes the simplest things take forever to learn.

Three secrets to having a Brunswick Stew Kind of Day:

1. Be flexible. Forget the recipe.

2. Slow down and smile.

3. Some things (most things?) aren’t worth arguing over.

Live in harmony with one another.” Romans 12:6

Do you have secrets for having a Brunswick Stew Kind of Day? Please share them!

Recipe for gluten-free Brunswick Stew–you can play with this–hard to mess it up

The recipe called for one 3-pound fryer chicken. We used 4 boneless chicken breasts.

1 package kielbasa sausage, which wasn’t in the recipe (We used JOHNSONVILLE, it’s GF.)

4 cooked pork chops (We grilled them with the chicken breasts.)

1 pound ground beef

Chopped onion (about 2 cups)

Chopped celery (about 2 cups)

2 cans 15-0z chopped tomatoes (We used frozen tomatoes from our garden–see how flexible this recipe is!)

1 cup of your favorite BBQ sauce (We used SWEET BABY RAYS, it’s GF)

1 (give or take) teaspoon pepper

salt to taste

1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce (If making it GF, use LEA AND PERRINS)

4 cups GF chicken broth

About 1/2 cup ketchup

1 teaspoon (or more) of hot sauce (We used TEXAS PETE)

4 ears fresh corn, cut off cob (You can use canned)

* * *

Brown ground beef with onions and celery. Drain.

Bring chicken broth to a boil.

Add everything together, including the already grilled pork chops and grilled chicken. The sausage, we didn’t grill–just added the chopped pieces to the pot.

Let it simmer all day.

If you used canned corn, wait until the last hour of cooking to add it.

Add more liquids if you want it soupier. Measurements don’t have to be exact.







True Love and Homemade Brunswick Stew

My husband Rick and I married 33 years ago. Young love was amazing, but mature love is  even better!

Every single day the man makes me laugh. I admire his perseverance. I love his free-spirited ways.

Like what happened one drizzly Sunday in February…

We went grocery shopping after church. Since I was diagnosed with Celiac, he’s been so sweet to help me eat gluten-free. Standing by the meat aisle at Publix he said, “Let’s make homemade Brunswick stew today.”

We’d never made homemade Brunswick stew. We didn’t have a recipe. No grocery list.

“Do you know how?”

“It can’t be all that hard.”

I smiled. That’s why I love him.

He tossed some pork chops in the buggy and picked out the rest of his spur-of-the-moment ingredients. All gluten-free, for me. 🙂

As soon as we got home, he chopped an onion and cut the meat into tiny pieces. Then he put everything in the crock pot and cooked it all day.

I’m telling you, my husband’s Brunswick stew was incredible–the stuff true love is made of.

Here’s the recipe. Of course, he didn’t measure, so I’m guessing. I don’t think you can go wrong with these yummy ingredients:

Four boneless pork chops cut into tiny pieces

Three boneless chicken breasts cut into tiny pieces

A pound of good steak cut into tiny pieces

2-28 ounce cans pureed tomatoes

About two cups or so of chicken stock (gluten-free if necessary)

One chopped onion

A package frozen silver queen corn

About a cup of barbecue sauce (we used Kraft, gluten-free)

About 3 tablespoons dark brown sugar

Salt and pepper

Texas Pete Sauce–as much or as little as you like.

While the stew simmered, I made popcorn as rain pelted on our tin roof.

Rick built a cozy fire and Thelma, our calico cat, curled up on my lap. Clyde, our yellow Lab, slept at our feet.

One of my all-time favorite Sunday afternoons!

A good marriage is like homemade Brunswick stew. Sweet, spicy, and full of love.

Anybody else make good homemade Brunswick stew? Share your recipe!