Also found in: Dictionary, Thesaurus, Legal, Acronyms, Encyclopedia, Wikipedia.
Related to stew: Irish stew, beef stew, chicken stew

horse and rabbit stew

A situation comprised of both crude or unpleasant things as well as those which are pleasing or beneficial, usually with the former in greater proportion to the latter. Used especially in reference to economics or business. The prime minister's plan for the economic recovery is little more than horse and rabbit stew, with a few token stimulus incentives greatly outweighed by draconian austerity measures.
See also: and, horse, rabbit, stew

be in a stew

To be worried and flummoxed about something. Mom is in a stew because she just found out that we're hosting all of our relatives for Christmas—which is three days away.
See also: stew

get in(to) a stew

To be or become angry, upset, agitated, anxious, or alarmed over something or someone. John is always getting into a stew over his girlfriend's late nights out. Don't get in a stew with me, I was trying to be helpful! I always get into a stew when I have a big meeting with my managers.
See also: get, stew

leave (one) to stew

To allow someone to feel fearful, anxious, guilty, etc., without offering them comfort or closure on the matter. After the kids broke the window, I left them to stew in their bedroom for a while before laying into them about it. I can tell that the boss is upset with how my report turned out, but I think he's just leaving me to stew about it before he brings it up.
See also: leave, stew

let (one) stew

To allow someone to feel fearful, anxious, guilty, etc., without offering them comfort or closure on the matter. After the kids broke the window, I let them stew in their bedroom for a while before laying into them about it. I can tell that the boss is upset with how my report turned out, but I think he's just letting me stew about it before he brings it up.
See also: let, stew

too many cooks spoil the stew

If too many people try to control, influence, or work on something, the final product will be worse as a result. A: "We've got my boss, his boss, the assistant manager, a freelance consultant, and the head of IT all involved in this project, and it's turning into a complete disaster!" B: "Well, too many cooks spoil the stew, after all!"
See also: cook, many, spoil, stew

stew in (one's) own juice(s)

To leave one alone with one's emotions, usually unpleasant ones like anger or disappointment. Kevin was in such a foul mood at dinner that I left early and just let him stew in his own juices.
See also: own, stew

get (oneself) into a stew (over someone or something)

Fig. to be worried or upset about someone or something. Please don't get yourself into a stew over Walter. Liz is the kind of person who gets into a stew over little problems.
See also: get, stew

*in a stew (about someone or something)

Fig. upset or bothered about someone or something. (*Typically: be ~; get [into] ~.) I'm in such a stew about my dog. She ran away last night. Now, now. Don't get in a stew. She'll be back when she gets hungry.
See also: stew

stew in one's own juice

Fig. to be left alone to suffer one's anger or disappointment. John has such a terrible temper. When he got mad at us, we just let him go away and stew in his own juice. After John stewed in his own juice for a while, he decided to come back and apologize to us.
See also: juice, own, stew

Too many cooks spoil the stew.

 and Too many Cooks spoil the broth.
Prov. Cliché Too many people trying to manage something simply spoil it. Let's decide who is in charge around here. Too many cooks spoil the stew. Everyone is giving orders, but no one is following them! Too many cooks spoil the broth.
See also: cook, many, spoil, stew

in a stew

Agitated, alarmed, or anxious. For example, Mary was in a stew about how her cake was going to turn out. It is also put as get in or into a stew , as in Every Saturday the minister got in a stew about Sunday's sermon. This expression transfers the mixture of meat and vegetables constituting a stew to overheated mixed emotions. [c. 1800]
See also: stew

stew in one's own juice

Suffer the consequences of one's actions, as in He's run into debt again, but this time we're leaving him to stew in his own juice. This metaphoric term alludes to cooking something in its own liquid. Versions of it, such as fry in one's own grease, date from Chaucer's time, but the present term dates from the second half of the 1800s.
See also: juice, own, stew

in a stew

If someone is in a stew, they are very worried about something. He's in a bit of a stew over his exams.
See also: stew

let someone stew in their own juice


let someone stew

If you let someone stew in their own juice or let them stew, you deliberately leave them to worry about something they have done and do nothing to comfort or help them. The coach refused to put an arm round the 23-year-old afterwards — choosing, instead, to let Taylor stew in his own juice. Leave her alone — let her stew. Give her time to reflect on how stupid she's been. Note: You can also say that you leave someone to stew. I thought I'd leave him to stew for a while.
See also: juice, let, own, stew

in a stew

in a state of great anxiety or agitation. informal
See also: stew

stew in your own juice

suffer the unpleasant consequences of your own actions or temperament without the consoling intervention of others. informal
See also: juice, own, stew

be in a ˈstew (about/over something)


get (yourself) into a ˈstew (about/over something)

(informal) be/become very worried or nervous (about something): She’s in a stew over what she’s going to wear to the party tonight.
See also: stew

let somebody ˈstew (in their own ˈjuice)

(informal) leave somebody to worry and suffer the unpleasant effects of their own actions: We told her not to trust him but she wouldn’t listen — so let her stew in her own juice!
See also: let, somebody, stew


1. n. a drinking bout. These frequent stews must stop. You will ruin your health.
2. n. a drunkard. There are three stews sleeping in the alley.
3. Go to stewed (up).
4. n. a stewardess or steward on an airplane. (Although officially replaced by flight attendat, this term and steward(ess) are still in use.) My sister is a stew for a major airline.
5. in. to fret. I spent most of last night stewing about my job.
6. n. a fretful state. Don’t work yourself into a stew.

stew bum

n. a drunkard; an alcoholic. You’re going to end up a stew bum if you don’t lay off the moonshine.
See also: bum, stew

stewed (up)

and stew
mod. alcohol intoxicated. (see also stew (sense 1).) The kid was stewed up and scared to death of what his parents were going to do to him.
See also: stewed, up



stew zoo

An apartment house in which many female flight attendants lived. Back in prepolitically correct days, female flight attendants were called “stewardesses” and had the reputation for being attractive and, even better to the male mind, “fun” (Frank Sinatra's hit ballad “Come Fly with Me” became something of an anthem). Stewardesses (or a many self-styled hip males called them “stewardii”) shared apartments, a rentsaving arrangement that appealed to their lifestyle because one or more was usually traveling. Apartment buildings in large cities, especially ones with easy access to airports, that attracted the young women were known as “stew zoos.”
See also: stew, zoo
References in periodicals archive ?
Partners access Bit Stew's MIx Developer Network Additionally, Bit Stew partners can enjoy access to the MIx Developer Network (MDN) where they can collaborate with other developers, learn best practices and leverage online development environments for building new applications or testing solution integrations within a live environment.
Through data-driven automation, Bit Stew Systems removes the complexity of industrial operations and connected machines to give clarity and control back to the operator.
You can't do that with a seafood or fish stew as the fish will just break down if you cook it for too long, that's why you can keep it nice and light.
Bit Stew is continuing our momentum in helping industrial organizations unite and visualize all the varied data sources throughout their operations to gain actionable insights to improve operations," said Jett Winter, EVP, Business Development, at Bit Stew Systems.
To make the stew a little bit different I'm serving it with a spoonful of fresh, zingy avocado salsa on top, which just brings the whole thing to life.
The Savvy Stews said they are asking fellow flight attendants, pilots, aviation professionals, business travelers, frequent fliers, and even those who only travel once a year to take a stand with them and sign an official petition on the group's website.
The dumplings should always be cooked in the stew so they absorb the sauce from the stew for flavour.
Stew the produce in the crock pot with vegetable broth, canned chopped tomatoes, black pepper, garlic, and a bay leaf.
WHEN it is freezing cold outside, there are few dishes more warming to come home to than a good old-fashioned stew.
Though the stew is excellent, the highlight of the book is Lewis's renowned Turtle Soup With Dumplings.
Sometimes I can make a pot of stew only adding some seasonings or maybe a can of tomatoes.
The project, which will house Home Depot, two divisions of the Melville Corporation - Bob's Stores and Linens "N" Things - and Connecticut National Bank, is rising at the intersection of Nabby and Federal Roads directly across from the popular Stew Leonard's Dairy Store.
The restaurants offer freshly made, savory, authentic Cuban specialties such as Ropa Vieja (Shredded Beef Stew), CamarE[thorn]n al Ajillo (Shrimps In Garlic Sauce), Maduros (Fried Sweet Plantains), Papa Rellena (Mashed Potatoes Stuffed With Ground Beef Stew), Ox Tail Stew, plenty of Arroz con frijoles (Rice and beans), and of course, traditional Cuban Sandwiches.
8, 2015 /PRNewswire/ -- Alex Clark, Chief Software Architect and Co-Founder of Bit Stew Systems, was recently selected as a Business in Vancouver's Forty Under 40 winner, highlighting the achievements of 40 of Vancouver's top executives and professionals.
The main difference with my dish is I add the vegetables to the pot along with the stew rather than the usual approach of serving them on the side.