Chicken Stew

Savor the hearty goodness of this homemade chicken stew – a perfect blend of tender chicken and flavorful vegetables. This wholesome and comforting stew is a must-try recipe that brings the warm feeling of home cooking right to your dining table. Ideal for chilly nights or family gatherings, this stew will surely impress.

Homemade chicken stew in two bowls.

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What Makes This Southern Chicken Stew Recipe So Good? 

A bowl of homemade stew is a surefire way to warm you up and brighten your spirit on a cold, rainy, or snowy day. You can’t go wrong with this Southern Chicken Stew recipe when you need an easy chicken stew recipe that delivers a warm hug and delectable flavors.

This dish leans more towards being a thick bisque than a hearty stew, so it’s perfect for a first course or as an afternoon snack.

Why You Should Try This Recipe 

Chicken Stew is the kind of dish that you’ll look forward to eating all day. The homemade chicken broth adds a deep richness to this mild stew, making it terrific on its own, but it can serve as a fantastic base for experimenting.

Check out the last section for some ideas. As a bonus, this recipe is economical and a real time saver since you’ll end up with plenty of leftover chicken you can use for the rest of the week. 

Southern Chicken Stew Recipe Ingredients

To make the chicken broth, you’ll need:

  • Celery
  • Carrots
  • Onion
  • Whole chicken
  • Salt

To finish the stew, you’ll need:

  • Green pepper
  • Butter
  • All-purpose flour
  • Pimientos
  • Freshly ground pepper

Instead of a whole chicken or if you want to use chicken without skin, you can use a combination of chicken breasts and boneless skinless chicken thighs. Bone-in chicken breast is best for making soup and stew.

Chicken stew ingredients on a marble surface.

How to Make Chicken & Vegetable Stew

To make this chicken broth:

  1. Roughly chop the celery, carrots, and onions. Since you will discard the vegetables, you can give the skin a good scrub instead of peeling. The skin will add more flavor and nutrients to the chicken broth. 
  2. Place the whole chicken in a large Dutch oven or stock pot along with the roughly chopped vegetables. 
  3. Pour enough water to cover the chicken and place the pot on the stove over high heat. Bring the water to a boil and then reduce it to a low simmer with only one or two bubbles breaking the surface every minute. 
  4. Simmer uncovered until the chicken is cooked through and tender. It should take about an hour. Use a skimmer or a spoon to remove any scum that floats to the surface of the liquid during cooking. 
  5. Take the cooked chicken from the pot and place it on a wire rack over a rimmed cooking tray to cool. 
  6. Drain the broth through a fine strainer into a clean container. Discard the vegetables and reserve the broth. Return the strained broth to the stock pot and keep it warm over low heat. 
  7. Use two forks to shred a mixture of white and dark meat from the chicken. Reserve the shredded meat for later. Wrap and chill the rest of the chicken to use in another recipe, like chicken salad or pot pie.

To finish the simple Chicken Stew recipe:

  1. Boil a pot of water. Add the green pepper and boil until tender, about 12 minutes. Peel off the skin, remove the seeds, and chop into small dice. Keep the blanched green peppers for later. 
  2. Melt the butter in a large saucepan over low heat.
  3. Whisk in the flour, and let it cook out for a minute or two until you can smell the scent of pie crust.
  4. Bring the chicken broth to a simmer. 
  5. Ladle the hot broth into the large saucepan and whisk until the roux dissolves. 
  6. Simmer for 10 to 15 minutes, then add the shredded chicken, pimientos, blanched green pepper, and freshly ground pepper. 
  7. Serve immediately.

Instead of making the butter/flour roux, you can thicken the stew with a cornstarch slurry (equal parts of cornstarch and cold water).

Collage of making chicken stew in a Dutch oven.

What Should You Serve With Chicken Stew 

This stew is light enough to pair with half a sandwich or salad. A classic grilled cheese sandwich or grilled veggie on focaccia bread would be excellent choices. It would also be delicious with a slice of quiche.

For a quick lunch, serve with a slice of crusty bread or garlic toast

Chicken stew in two bowls.

Recipe Variations

This basic chicken stew recipe is a great starting point to get creative and make the dish your own. Here are a couple of suggestions to change things up:

  • Swap the blanched green pepper for poblano peppers. Poblano peppers will impart a distinctive Tex-Mex taste with a hint of smokiness.
  • Add some herbs such as a bay leaf, thyme, or parsley. 
  • Add more shredded chicken or veggies such as diced cooked carrots, parsnips, tomatoes, and potatoes to turn this light stew into something heartier. Red potatoes and Yukon Gold potatoes are great for stews.
  • Make it a creamy chicken stew by adding some heavy cream just prior to serving it.

How to Store Chicken & Vegetable Stew

Let the chicken stew cool to room temperature before transferring the leftovers to an airtight container. You can keep the stew in the refrigerator for up to three days. For longer storage, you can keep it in the freezer for up to a month. If you plan on freezing the stew, it’s smart to freeze it in individual portions so you won’t need to defrost it all at once. 

Allow the frozen stew to defrost overnight in the fridge and reheat it in a small saucepan over medium-low heat. If the stew is too thick, add some chicken broth or water. You can also reheat it in the microwave on the medium power setting in 1-minute increments, stirring between each increment.

Overhead view of chicken stew in two bowls.

Favorite Soup and Stew Recipes

Use the extra chicken to make these delicious casseroles:

Check out more of my soup and stew recipes and the best chicken recipes on CopyKat!

Homemade chicken stew in two bowls.

Chicken Stew

Make the best chicken stew for dinner.
5 from 5 votes
Print Pin Rate Add to Collection
Course: Soup
Cuisine: American
Keyword: Stew Recipes
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 30 minutes
Total Time: 20 minutes
Servings: 8
Calories: 433kcal


  • 3 pounds chicken
  • 4 stalks chopped celery
  • 4 chopped carrots
  • 1 cup chopped onion
  • 3 tablespoons salt
  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 1/4 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 cup chopped pimientos
  • 1/2 cup chopped blanched green pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground pepper


  • Place chicken in a large pot and add water to cover (about 3 quarts). Add vegetables and salt and bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer until chicken is tender and separates easily from the bone.
  • Remove chicken from stock and set aside. Reserve stock. Shred or chop chicken. To make the roux, melt butter in a 3-quart saucepan over low heat. Stir in flour and cook for 1 or 2 minutes. Bring 8 cups of reserved chicken stock to a slow boil and gradually stir into the roux. 
  • Simmer until soup takes on a glaze, about 15 minutes. Add pimientos, green pepper, shredded chicken to the stock. Simmer for a few minutes, stirring constantly. Season to taste before serving. Serve in heated bowls.


You can use the remaining chicken in casseroles, salads, or sandwiches.


Calories: 433kcal | Carbohydrates: 9g | Protein: 32g | Fat: 28g | Saturated Fat: 9g | Cholesterol: 135mg | Sodium: 2800mg | Potassium: 535mg | Fiber: 2g | Sugar: 3g | Vitamin A: 5865IU | Vitamin C: 24.3mg | Calcium: 43mg | Iron: 2.1mg

About Stephanie Manley

I recreate your favorite restaurant recipes, so you can prepare these dishes at home. I help you cook dinner, and serve up dishes you know your family will love. You can find most of the ingredients for all of the recipes in your local grocery store.

Stephanie is the author of's Dining Out in the Home, and's Dining Out in the Home 2.

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