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This smoky, comforting, vegan Brunswick stew is made with a mix of hearty tempeh and jackfruit in a barbecue infused tomato sauce. Bursting with flavor and guaranteed to satisfy your barbecue cravings!

I’d never heard of such a thing as Brunswick stew until recently, but once I learned about it, I knew I had to veganize it. Do you guys know about this stuff? Maybe you grew up eating it?

What is Brunswick Stew?

Brunswick stew is a southern stew that’s traditionally made with lots of meat, barbecue sauce, and a couple of veggies — usually corn and lima beans. If you love the flavor of barbecue, then this hearty stew is for you.

When I plopped a bowl of this vegan version in front of my husband and informed him that it was called “Brunswick stew,” he thought he was about to eat a British-inspired recipe. (Somehow he didn’t notice the okra or the fact that the entire house smelled like barbecue?!) As you can imagine, he was pretty blown away by the flavor!

How to Make Vegan Brunswick Stew

Most traditional Brunswick stew recipes call for pulled pork, and some have one or two other varieties of meat. So I decided to go with a mix for my vegan version: jackfruit for the pulled pork element, and crumbled tempeh for a little something else.

Start by heating up some oil in a pot. Add an onion and cook it until it begins to soften, about 5 minutes. You can prep your tempeh and jackfruit while the onion cooks: crumble the tempeh, drain and rinse your jackfruit. (For more details on how to work with jackfruit, check out my vegan pulled pork sandwich recipe.)

Add the tempeh and jackfruit to the pot and cook them with the onion for about 5 minutes, to begin tenderizing the jackfruit and browning the tempeh. Now add the garlic and cook everything for about a minute more.

Stir in some broth, followed by a can of diced tomatoes, some barbecue sauce, Worcestershire sauce, liquid smoke, cayenne pepper, and okra.

Bring the stew up to a simmer and let it cook for about a half hour, until the base is thick and the okra is tender.

Stir in some thawed frozen corn and lima beans during the last couple of minutes.

Take your stew off of the burner and season it with salt and pepper to taste. I like to add some hot sauce as well!

Vegan Brunswick Stew Tips & FAQ

  • If you can’t get ahold of tempeh and/or jackfruit, or you just don’t like either ingredient, feel free to make substitutions. Try beans or lentils, crumbled tofu, or even cauliflower.
  • Same goes for the veggies! Not into lima beans? Can’t find okra? Double up on the corn, or use something else, like peas or cauliflower. Get creative!
  • Be sure to use unripe jackfruit. It may be labeled as “young” or “green” jackfruit. This is important, as ripe jackfruit will be too sweet!
  • Is this stew gluten-free? It is if you use a gluten-free barbecue sauce!
  • Leftover storage: leftovers will keep in a sealed container in the fridge for 3 days, or in the freezer for 3 months.
  • How is Brunswick stew served? I simply served mine with some corn muffins. Cornbread or beer bread would work well too. I hear it’s sometimes served with a side of coleslaw.

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5 from 5 votes Print

Vegan Brunswick Stew

This smoky, comforting, vegan Brunswick stew is made with a mix of hearty tempeh and jackfruit in a barbecue infused tomato sauce. Bursting with flavor and guaranteed to satisfy your barbecue cravings!

CourseEntree CuisineAmerican Prep Time 20 minutes Cook Time 40 minutes Total Time 1 hour Servings 6 Calories 281 kcal Author Alissa Saenz


  • 2tablespoonsolive oil
  • 1large onion,diced
  • 1(20 ounce or 565 gram) canyoung green jackfruit in brine,drained and rinsed
  • 1(8 ounce or 227 gram) packagetempeh,crumbled
  • 3garlic cloves,minced
  • 2cupsvegetable broth
  • 1(14 ounce or 400 gram) candiced tomatoes
  • ¾cupvegan barbecue sauce(store bought or homemade)
  • 2tablespoonsvegan Worcestershire sauce
  • ½teaspoonliquid smoke,or more to taste
  • ½teaspooncayenne pepper
  • 2cupsfresh okra,cut into 1-inch pieces, tails and caps removed
  • 1cupfrozen corn,thawed
  • 1cupfrozen lima beans,thawed
  • Salt and pepper,to taste
  • Hot sauce,ot taste (I used Crystal)

US Customary – Metric


  1. Coat the bottom of a large pot with oil and place it over medium heat.

  2. Give the oil a minute to heat up, then add the onion. Sweat the onion for about 5 minutes, stirring frequently, until it begins to soften up.

  3. Add the jackfruit and tempeh to the pot. Use a spoon to break up pieces of jackfruit and tempeh as it cooks. You can also use a fork to pull apart chunks of jackfruit. Cook the jackfruit and tempeh for about 5 minutes, until the tempeh begins to brown.

  4. Add the garlic and cook it for about a minute, until very fragrant.

  5. Stir in the broth, tomatoes, barbecue sauce, Worcestershire sauce, liquid smoke, cayenne pepper, and okra.

  6. Bring the liquid to a boil, lower the heat, and allow the stew to simmer, stirring occasionally, until it thickens and the okra becomes tender, about 30 minutes.

  7. Stir in the corn and lima beans. Continue simmering the stew for a minute, just to heat the veggies.

  8. Remove the pot from heat and season the stew with salt, pepper, and hot sauce to taste.

  9. Ladle into bowls and serve.

Nutrition FactsVegan Brunswick StewAmount Per Serving (1.5 cups)Calories 281Calories from Fat 91% Daily Value*Fat 10.1g16%Saturated Fat 1.8g9%Sodium 700mg29%Potassium 750mg21%Carbohydrates 37g12%Fiber 7.4g30%Sugar 13.6g15%Protein 13.2g26%Calcium 99mg10%Iron 5mg28%* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.« Creamy Roasted Red Pepper PastaCrispy Tofu Steaks with Caramelized Onion Gravy »

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Great flavor . I used soy curls in mine . I also added pepperoni spice . I did not have okra but added extra corn and edamame . My husband loved it’s nice barbeque flavor .


  • Delicious! Versatile, too. I added sauteed “Beyond Meat” sausages at the end and it was wonderful. With the BBQ sauce, this makes a wonderful summer stew.


  • Lovely! I am happy to find a Brunswick Stew recipe I can actually enjoy!


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