Traditional Beef and Guinness Stew

Beef in Stout

This dish is great for Sunday lunch, you have to try it. I use a full litre of stout and gently simmer on the hob for around two and a half hours. The sauce reduces and meat becomes really tender. No stock cubes needed here! Eat with plenty of floury spuds, a cut of bread, or a pint of the black stuff.


  • 125g streaky bacon, cubed
  • 1kg stewing beef (such as round steak), cubed
  • 2 tbsp flour, seasoned with salt and pepper
  • 1 litre stout
  • 2 onions, sliced
  • 3 celery sticks, sliced
  • 3 large carrots, washed but unpeeled, cut into large chunks
  • 1 tbsp Worcestershire sauce (optional)
  • 1 tbsp tomato pureé (optional)
  • 2 tsp light brown sugar (optional)
  • 2 bay leaves
  • ½ tsp dried thyme
  • 1 tsp sea salt
  • freshly ground black pepper


  1. Add a little oil to a frying pan and fry the streaky bacon until golden. Transfer to a large cast-iron casserole or heavy stewpot.
  2. Brown the beef. Toss the beef in the seasoned flour. Add a little more oil to the frying pan and fry the beef in batches until caramelised. Make sure you do this  in batches so as not to overload your pan. Transfer the browned beef to the casserole.
  3. Add a little more oil and fry the onions until caramelised. Add to the casserole.
  4. Pour some stout into the hot frying pan to de-glaze it. As the stout bubbles, scrape at the bottom of the pan to remove any caramelised juices from the bacon and the beef. Add the rest of the stout and de-glazed juices to the casserole.
  5. Now, assemble the rest of the dish. To the casserole, add the celery, carrot, tomato pureé, Worcestershire sauce, stock, herbs, salt and the rest of the stout. Season with  plenty of freshly ground pepper. Stir well and place a lid on the casserole but leave a large crack to allow the sauce to reduce. Bring up to a gentle simmer and leave for about 2½ hours (check after 2 hours). Give the casserole a stir every so often to ensure that it doesn’t stick to the bottom of the casserole. Taste for seasoning and add a little extra salt if you need.


  • You could use shin beef for this. Just trim a little of the fat from the meat and add at least an hour to the cooking time to allow this tough meat to tenderise. The extra fat in the meat will melt out, giving a rich and unctuous sauce.

Serves 4.


2 Responses to “Traditional Beef and Guinness Stew”

  1. 1 Jimi February 26, 2011 at 1:22 am

    Could you make this into an American weights and measure recipe?
    It looks wonderful ! !

  1. 1 Traditional Irish Stew | Toasted Special Trackback on December 4, 2010 at 10:56 am
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