The soup to make for the times when you wish you were at home

Because when the cold hits in the midst of a week of exams, all you want is your dog and some soup


No matter how stressed or homesick you are, this Brunswick stew can bring you a taste of home.

Isabel Salken | Cavalier Daily

It’s after 8:00 p.m. on a Tuesday, and you just got out of your organic chemistry exam — or maybe it was microeconomics. Whatever the class, we’ve all been there. The temperature is a nice, chilly 42 degrees, and it’s raining — because we are in Charlottesville, Va. after all. There are two things I can think of that would make me feel better in this situation —  a big bowl of hot soup and my dog. One of the two of these is possible, thanks to this recipe.

Soup can be a pretty broad category. I would even consider it to include stews, curries and chilis.  Growing up, my family was a pretty big fan of soup. A pretty random dish to favor — yes — but never lacking in flavor. Pea soup, chicken noodle soup, vegetable soup, matzo ball soup, all the soup — we love it. My Nana used to make the most delicious Brunswick stew, a traditional soup within my family. This soup is made with a tomato base, beans, potatoes, vegetables and a meat, like chicken. It’s full of flavor, so much so I used to find myself returning for thirds — or even fourths. 

So here we have a healthier, college version of this soup, made from easy-to-shop-for ingredients — and an incredibly fool-proof, time-saving method. 

Brunswick Stew

Prep time: 10 minutes 

Cook time: 50 minutes



1 can of no-salt-added diced tomatoes

1/4 cup of tomato paste

1 cup low sodium chicken or vegetable broth

1 can or 1/2 package of fresh or frozen lima beans

1 package of fresh or frozen green beans

1 orange bell pepper, chopped

1/2 an onion, chopped

1 sweet potato or regular potato, chopped

1 1/2 tbsp apple cider vinegar

1 tsp worcestershire sauce

1 rotisserie chicken if you’re not vegetarian or vegan

* If you like things on the sweeter side, I suggest adding 1 tbsp of light brown sugar.


  1. Place chopped onions and potatoes in large pot with a little olive oil to coat the bottom, and sauté until the onions are barely translucent.
  2. Add in all other ingredients except chicken and stir, raising heat to a boil. 
  3. Once boiling, turn heat down to low, and let cook for around 30 minutes. 
  4. Add in shredded rotisserie chicken, and let cook for around 20 more minutes. 
  5. Enjoy! 

This soup will stay in the fridge for 3-4 days or can be frozen for up to six months. 

To make this recipe vegetarian and still get a good source of protein, you can add a can of chickpeas to the mix, and it will taste delicious. You can also add in other vegetables to this dish very easily. Some other favorites of mine include zucchini, mushrooms, peas, corn, carrots and parsnips. The great thing about this recipe is that you can practically throw your whole kitchen sink in it, and it will still taste good. The more the merrier!  

For non-vegetarians, rotisserie chicken is key for this soup. While you can cook your own chicken, ground turkey, pulled pork or even beef, rotisserie chicken is by far the easiest option. They are are juicy, incredibly flavorful and come cooked to perfection. They are incredibly easy to buy from grocery stores around Charlottesville, including Kroger, Harris Teeter, Whole Foods and Wegmans. Wegmans has the best price at $4.99 for the rotisserie chicken — and they are always very flavorful. Just head to the prepared foods section, and there is usually one sitting under a heat lamp, ready to go.

No matter how stressed or homesick you may feel, I hope you find this recipe to be just as comforting and nourishing as I do. A taste of home always seems to do the trick. 

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