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Irish Beef Stew with Guinness

Stew is the ultimate comfort food! Made with tender pieces of beef and flavorful cuts of carrots and potatoes, this beef stew is a classic with an Irish twist of Guinness. The recipe below includes methods for the stovetop and slow cooker. No flour or thickening agent used!

overhead shot of beef stew

So many rich flavors pour into this pot of deliciousness! This is the perfect recipe to prepare in the morning to simmer in your slow cooker all day long or cook in a dutch oven.

upclose photo of beef stew in bowl

If you haven’t guessed by now, the Irish twist to this beef stew recipe is the added flavors of Guinness! With this addition, the Guinness works to thicken up the mixture of herbs and stock into a savory broth. But don’t worry, the alcohol completely cooks out no matter what method you use.

About Irish Beef Stew

Traditionally, Irish stew is made with the neckpieces of lamb or mutton. I know that’s difficult for some readers to find, so we are keeping it simple by using beef instead of lamb.

If you are an Irish stew purist, you can certainly use the same amount of lamb in place of beef for this recipe.

angled shot of beef stew in bowl

Ingredients for Irish Stew

  • Oil for browning beef
  • Beef – cubed stew meat or chuck roast are my top selections. (see the FAQ section below)
  • Garlic
  • Beef broth or stock
  • Tomato Paste
  • Dried Thyme
  • Worcestershire sauce
  • Bay leaves
  • Butter
  • Russet Potatoes
  • Onion
  • Carrots
  • Parsley

What to Serve with Guinness Beef Stew

Many people serve their stews over a pillow of mashed potatoes. You could also serve this alone, with bread, salad, or add rice or pasta to stretch the leftovers.

Mashed potato with spoon, in a copper pot

How to Make Irish Beef Stew on the Stovetop

Most recipes will have you coat the beef in flour, then brown. This thickens the soup and (arguably) adds more flavor to the pot. However, I choose to skip this step and simply brown the meat with a little salt and pepper.

  • If you are using cubed meat, pat the cubes dry on all sides and season with salt and pepper. 
stew meat cubes on cutting board
  • If you are using roast meat or another “whole” piece of meat, you can either leave it whole to shred when the cooking is done (my favorite!), or you can cube the meat into bite-sized pieces. Then, pat dry and season.
image of uncooked chuck roast

Drying and seasoning the meat helps it form a tasty crust as it is browned.

To make this on the stove, I suggest using a dutch oven or a heavy-bottomed pot. Enameled cast iron works really well for recipes like this because it retains heat for longer and distributes heat more evenly than a regular pot.

browning beef cubes for stew

After you’ve browned the beef, remove it from the pot. Then sauté the carrots, onion, and celery in butter until tender. 

Quickly stir in the garlic being careful not to burn. Add in the tomato paste, stock, beer, and seasonings.

Then, return the beef to the pot and simmer for about 2 hours or until the meat is tender. The potatoes should be added about an hour before the cooking time is up.

Before serving, make sure to remove the bay leaves.

Slow Cooker Guinness Beef Stew

The steps are very similar when making this in the slow cooker. 

Brown the beef per the instructions, then add it to the slow cooker with the rest of the ingredients.

The cook time is much longer than the stovetop version. Make sure you give the stew plenty of time to cook and tenderize the meat. The cook time generally takes about 8-10 hours total.

upclose photo of beef stew in taupe bowl with carrots and potatoes

FAQ for Irish Stew with Guinness

Recipe

upclose photo of beef stew in taupe bowl with carrots and potatoes

Irish Beef Stew with Guinness

Stew is the ultimate comfort food! Made with tender pieces of beef and flavorful cuts of carrots and potatoes, this beef stew is a classic with an Irish twist of Guinness. The recipe below includes methods for the stovetop and slow cooker. No flour or thickening agent used!
Print Pin Rate
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 3 hours
Total Time: 3 hours 10 minutes
Servings: 6 people

Ingredients

  • 1 ¼ pounds stew meat cut into 1-inch pieces*
  • Salt & pepper
  • 2 tablespoons oil
  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 1 large onion chopped
  • 3 large carrots peeled and cut into 1/2-inch pieces (about 2 cups)
  • 4 stalks celery chopped
  • 6 garlic cloves minced
  • 2 tablespoons tomato paste
  • 6 cups beef stock*
  • 1 14.9 ounce can of Guinness*
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 1 tablespoon dried thyme
  • 1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 pound russet potatoes cut into 1/2-inch pieces (about 4 cups)

Instructions

Stovetop Instructions:

  • Pat beef cubes dry with paper towels. Season with salt and pepper.
  • Heat oil in a large dutch oven over medium-high heat. Working in batches, add the beef cubes, a few at a time, searing on all sides. Remove from the pot and set aside.
  • To the same pot, melt the butter and saute the onion, carrots, and celery until tender. (about 5 minutes)
  • Add garlic; cook 1 minute longer.
  • Stir in tomato paste until blended.
  • Add the stock, beer, bay leaves, thyme, and Worcestershire to the pot. Stir to combine.
  • Return beef to pot and bring to a boil. Reduce heat; cover and simmer until beef is tender, about 2 hours.
  • Add the potatoes to the pot, and return to a boil. Reduce heat; cover and simmer until potatoes are tender, about 1 hour longer.
  • When you are ready to serve, discard the bay leaves.

Slow Cooker Instructions:

  • Pat beef cubes dry with paper towels. Season with salt and pepper.
  • Heat oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Working in batches, add the beef cubes, a few at a time, searing on all sides.
  • Place in the slow cooker.
  • Add all remaining ingredients to the slow cooker. (except the butter)
  • Cook on low for 6-8 hours, or until the beef is tender and the potatoes are easily pierced with a fork.

Notes

Please read the entire post for details, tips, and more!
  • You can also use chuck shoulder or any roast meat.
  • Broth can be used in place of stock, but stock adds more flavor to the stew.
  • Guinness can be replaced with any porter, stout, or dark beer. The alcohol completely cooks out of the recipe no matter which method you use. The Guinness flavor does not come through, but it does add a subtle richness to the stew.

Nutrition

Serving: 1g | Calories: 423kcal | Carbohydrates: 29g | Protein: 39g | Fat: 15g | Saturated Fat: 6g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 9g | Trans Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 104mg | Sodium: 700mg | Fiber: 4g | Sugar: 6g
Recipe Rating




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