Open Sourcing Mammaw's Burgoo

Introduction: Open Sourcing Mammaw's Burgoo

Most Burgoo recipes are closely guarded secrets, in the spirit of open source I am sharing Mammaw's Burgoo recipe.


  1. Tire (optional)
  2. Electric roaster
  3. Smoker or pit


  1. Hickory wood


  1. 1/4 cup vegetable oil
  2. 2 tablespoons cayenne
  3. 2 tablespoons onion powder
  4. 2 tablespoons garlic powder
  5. 2 tablespoons chili powder
  6. 1/4 cup coarse salt
  7. 1/4 cup black pepper
  8. 3/4 cup paprika
  9. 1/4 cup cider or white vinegar
  10. 12-ounce cans beer
  11. Worcestershire sauce to taste
  12. tabasco to taste
  13. cayenne to taste
  14. salt to taste
  15. 1 cup diced celery
  16. 2 cups lima beans
  17. 2 cups diced okra
  18. 2 pods red pepper
  19. 2 cups whole corn, fresh or canned
  20. 1 quart tomato puree
  21. 2 cups chopped cabbage
  22. 2 green peppers
  23. 1 bunch carrots
  24. 1.5 pounds onions
  25. 1.5 pounds potatoes
  26. 8 quarts water
  27. 4 pound hen
  28. 2 Pounds breast of lamb
  29. 2 Pounds beef shank
  30. 2 Pounds veal shank
  31. 2 Pounds pork shank

Step 1: Mix Dry Rub

Mix the first 7 dry ingredients to make a dry rub.

Step 2: Prep the Hen

Combine 12 onces beer with the vegetable oil, 1/4 cup vinegar and 2 teaspoons of the dry rub. Using a kitchen syringe inject about half the liquid deep into the hen in several places. Massage the liquid into the hen, cover with dry rub.

Step 3: Prep and Install the Throne

With a can opener remove the top of a half empty beer can. Fill with 1/4 of an onion, 1 glove garlic and a tablespoon of dry rub. Insert the can into the cavity of the hen.

Step 4: Prep the Remaining Meat

Apply the dry rub to the remaining meat. Cuts of meat can be substituted if unavailable, it is important to use a cut with bone-in to help thicken the Burgoo.

Step 5: Smoke the Meat

Smoke the meat for 4 hours. I use a charcoal smoker with a water bowl but load it with hot coals from a wood fire instead of charcoal. It is easier for me to maintain the temperature adding preheated coals over waiting for new charcoal to ignite. I fill the water bowl with beer, vegetable oil , vinegar and water. I use hickory chunks added to the coals to generate smoke.

Step 6: Simmer the Meat Overnight

As the meat is finishing up on the smoker, warm up 8 quarts of water in a large electric roaster to 250 degrees. When the meat is finished smoking, load it into the warm water, bring to a boil and simmer overnight.

Step 7: Prep the Cooked Meat

The next morning, lift the meat from the stock. Cool and chop the meat, removing the bones. At this point the meat should be tender enough to do this by hand.

Step 8: Prep and Add the Veggies

Pare and dice potatoes and onions. Return meat to stock and ad potatoes and onions. Dice and add remaining ingredients except the seasonings.

Step 9: Cook for 10 Hours

Simmer the Burgoo, add seasonings to taste, a bit at a time, continuing until the Burgoo is almost done. Stir frequently with a long-handled spoon or paddle during the first part of the cooking and almost constantly after it gets thick. Cook approximately 10 hours.

Step 10: Enjoy

Enjoy the results, pairs well with bourbon.

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