10 Must-Make Spicy Stews to Thaw Your Winter Appetite

Spicy is the flavor of the moment, and these warming stews will help you enjoy it all winter long.

Published January 16, 2024

A hearty bowl of soup is warming, but a spicy stew cures even the deepest winter chill. A little spice goes a long way in knocking off the chill of the winter weather and calling your family to gather around the table. For your weeknight dinner lineup or your winter entertaining, take a dip into these stews with spice. 

Spicy Queso Chili Remixes Taco Tuesday


Is there anything that queso can't improve? We're willing to add it to anything at this point, including our favorite chili. 


  • 1 pound lean ground beef (leanest is best so you don't have to drain)
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • ½ medium yellow onion, diced
  • 1 tablespoon minced garlic
  • 2 (15-ounce) cans kidney beans, drained
  • 1 (15-ounce) can tomato sauce
  • 1 (15-ounce) can diced tomatoes
  • 3 tablespoons tomato paste
  • 1 tablespoon maple syrup
  • 1 cup beef broth
  • 3 tablespoons chili powder
  • 2 teaspoons garlic powder
  • 2 teaspoons ground cumin
  • ½ teaspoon paprika
  • ½ teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • ½ jar queso
  • 2-3 sliced jalapeños


  1. In a large pot on medium-high heat, brown your meat and sauté the onions and garlic until tender. 
  2. Add in the remaining ingredients (except for the queso and jalapenos).
  3. Simmer for 45 minutes.
  4. Top with queso and jalapeños and serve with tortilla chips.

Related: What Goes With Chili Besides Cornbread: 18 Satisfying Sides

Try Nigerian Beef Stew


If you're looking for a traditional beef stew with a spicy twist, look no further than the habanero-packed Nigerian beef stew. It's a warm tomato-based stew with plenty of habanero peppers to bring some serious spice. Give this traditional dish a try and make Low Carb Africa's Nigerian beef stew

Make Mouthwatering Chile Colorado


Chile Colorado is a Mexican dish with all the spice you're craving on a chilly winter night. With an easy red chile sauce and the most tender beef you could crave, this might be your new favorite addition to the weeknight lineup. Make this easy chile Colorado (from So Much Food Blog) and crank up the heat on your dinner. 

Spice Up a Stuffed Pepper Stew


Stuffed peppers are filling and nutrient-dense, but they don't offer quite the same comforting feeling as a hearty bowl of stew. So give those peppers the unstuffed treatment and turn them into a cozy stew fit for winter.


  • 1 pound of ground protein (beef, turkey, chicken, etc.)
  • 1 tablespoon salted butter (substitute oil if you like)
  • 1 large onion, diced 
  • 2 green peppers, roughly chopped
  • 2 red peppers, roughly chopped
  • 2 jalapeños, diced 
  • 2 cups of vegetable stock
  • 1 (14-ounce) can of crushed tomatoes
  • 2 (14-ounce) cans of fire-roasted tomatoes
  • 2 tablespoons maple syrup
  • 2 teaspoons cumin
  • 1 tablespoon chilli powder 


  1. In a large pot on medium-high, brown the beef or turkey then remove.
  2. Add butter and vegetables to the same pot and sauté until slightly tender.
  3. Add the meat back to your pot. 
  4. Mix in the stock, syrup, and spices.
  5. Bring to a low boil then lower the heat and simmer for 30 minutes before serving. 
Need to Know

If you plan to mix rice into your stuffed pepper stew, double the stock measurements to help your rice cook thoroughly. 

Spicy Korean Chicken Stew Packs Serious Flavor


If you've never had Korean chicken stew, also called dakdoritang, you're missing out on some serious flavor. It's spicy, comforting, and full of vegetables. It's the all-in-one dish you need for an easy dinner that tastes like it took all day. Try Cookerru's spicy Korean chicken stew and soak in all the warming flavors. 

Make Weeknights Easy With Spicy Potato Soup


Potato soup is great for winter. Loaded baked potato soup is even better. Now, add spice!

That's exactly what you get with this spicy baked potato soup from Half-Baked Harvest. Salsa verde gives this creamy soup the subtle spice you're craving for a blustery day. 

Put a Spicy Thai Spin on Chicken and Rice Stew


Chicken and rice stew is a staple for winter dining at home. It's easy to make, affordable, and stretches a long way. Give this traditional dish a Thai spin and spice up an ordinary dinner worthy of seconds. The best part? This whole dish comes together in your slow cooker.


  • 3 large chicken breasts
  • 1 stick butter
  • 4 cups chicken broth
  • 1 can cream of chicken soup
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon pepper
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1 teaspoon ground ginger
  • ½ teaspoon onion powder
  • ½ teaspoon paprika
  • 2 cups basmati rice, uncooked
  • ½ cup salted peanuts
  • 3 tablespoons sriracha 
  • Fresh cilantro


  1. Add butter, chicken, seasonings, broth, and soup to your crock pot.
  2. Cook on high for three hours.
  3. Remove chicken and shred. Add back to the crock pot.
  4. Add rice and cook for an additional hour on high.
  5. Before serving, garnish with peanuts, hot sauce, and cilantro. 

Give White Chicken Chili the Buffalo Treatment


When you need a creamy alternative to a beef-packed chili, white chicken chili is the go-to. But what if you need a warm dinner with spicy heat to thaw your tastebuds? Cue this easy buffalo chicken chili.

Take our easy white chicken chili recipe and add ¼ cup of your favorite buffalo to get a creamy, tangy, filling, and slightly spicy dinner. Add fresh avocado slices on top to maximize the creaminess of this hot dish. 

Spice Up Meatless Monday With Spicy Vegetarian Stew


When meatless Monday comes with chilly temps, the last thing you want is a cold salad. Try a vegetarian stew instead. This spicy vegetable stew from Vegetarian Mamma is packed with nourishing vegetables and just enough jalapeños to cure your spicy cravings. 

Stir Spice Into Italian Sausage Stew


Spicy, comforting chili gets the Italian upgrade with this simple recipe. Serve with garlic bread or breadsticks to stretch this sausage stew even further.


  • 1 pound spicy Italian ground sausage (can also use links, sliced)
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 small onion, finely chopped
  • 1 red bell pepper, finely chopped
  • 2-3 red pepperoncino peppers, finely chopped 
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 1 (28-ounce) can tomato puree 
  • 1 (15-ounce) can cannelloni beans 
  • 3 teaspoons Italian seasoning
  • 1 teaspoon red pepper flakes
  • Salt and pepper to taste


  1. Brown the sausage in a large pot or Dutch oven and set aside. 
  2. In the same pot, cook chopped vegetables and garlic in olive oil until fragrant.
  3. Add sausage back in with the remaining ingredients
  4. Simmer for 30-45 minutes.
  5. Serve with a dollop of ricotta cheese. 

What to Serve With Your Spicy Stew


Now that you have the stew recipe in hand, it's time to finish the meal prep for this cozy dinner. Serve your warming and spicy stews with these additions for a filling dish the whole family will love.

No More Stewing Over What's for Dinner


It's cold outside, but you have plenty of spice to keep things warm. A spicy stew is just what you need to breathe new life into your usual dinner lineup during the cold months. There are no boring or bland dinners in sight for your winter. 

Need more warming ideas? Try our winter soups for effortless and filling dinners. 

Trending on LoveToKnow
10 Must-Make Spicy Stews to Thaw Your Winter Appetite