Kentucky Slow-Cooker Burgoo


From fall to winter, this slow-cooker stew will keep you warm.

Kentucky Slow-Cooker Burgoo
Photo: Antonis Achilleos; Food Styling: Emily Nabors Hall; Prop Styling: Audrey Davis
Active Time:
20 mins
Slow Cook Time:
8 hrs
Total Time:
8 hrs 30 mins

Kentuckians have counted on a pot of burgoo showing up at family reunions and church socials ever since chef Gustave Jaubert, employed by Frankfort's Buffalo Trace Distillery, made it popular in the late 1800s. Along with a variety of fresh vegetables, burgoos usually include a mixture of mutton, beef, pork, or poultry. No two recipes are alike, but one thing remains the same—it feeds a crowd. Our Kentucky Slow-Cooker Burgoo is no exception.

In our version of Burgoo, we stick to pork. Both sausage links and pork shoulder bring immaculate richness to this stew. Don't rush the step of browning the pork in the skillet—this renders the fat and produces a lot of flavor that the slow cooker can't replicate. An extra-long cook time (we're talking 8 hours) really allows the flavors of this stew to develop (and thanks to the slow cooker, most of that time is hands-off). This is one of those hearty soups that makes you feel warm and full during the winter; it packs a meaty flavor, but is also chock full of vegetables. If your family doesn't finish this burgoo in one sitting, it makes for excellent leftovers.


  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter

  • 2 (4-oz.) spicy pork sausage links, casings removed

  • 1 (2½-lb.) boneless pork shoulder, trimmed and cut into 4 pieces

  • 1 cup chopped yellow onion (from 1 onion)

  • ¾ cup chopped carrot (from 1 large carrot)

  • ¾ cup chopped green bell pepper (from 1 small bell pepper)

  • 3 garlic cloves, minced (about 1 Tbsp.)

  • 3 cups chicken stock

  • 12 ounces russet potatoes, cut into ¾-inch pieces

  • 2 cups chopped green cabbage (from 1 small head)

  • 2 cups frozen corn kernels

  • 1 (15.5-oz.) can cannellini beans, drained and rinsed

  • 3 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce

  • 1 tablespoon kosher salt

  • 2 teaspoons black pepper


  1. Melt butter in a large Dutch oven over medium-high. Add sausage links. Cook, stirring occasionally, until browned, about 6 minutes. Transfer to an 8-quart slow cooker.

  2. Add pork to Dutch oven. Cook until very well browned, about 12 minutes, turning once. Transfer to slow cooker.

  3. Add onion, carrot, bell pepper, and garlic to Dutch oven. Cook, stirring often, until tender, about 6 minutes. Stir in stock. Bring to a boil, scraping to loosen browned bits from bottom of pot. Transfer to slow cooker. Add potatoes, cabbage, corn, beans, Worcestershire, salt, and pepper. Cover; cook on LOW until pork is tender, 8 hours. Transfer pork to a plate. Shred pork; return to slow cooker before serving.

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