Beef and Guinness stew

There’s no better comfort food than a good, hearty stew and this beef and Guinness stew might just be the best of them all. The Guinness gives the sauce a fantastic rich, deep flavour, and the beef is melt in your mouth tender. Even though it takes a while to slow cook, it’s very easy to make. So, what are you waiting for? Get stuck in with this delicious meal.  

Cooking Method

  1. Cut the beef into 5cm chunks, pat dry and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Use a heavy based pot over a high heat to warm up the olive oil. Add the beef in batches and brown well all over. Take out of the pot and put onto a plate, repeat with the rest of the beef. 
  2. Reduce the heat to medium, if the pot is looking dry, add more oil. Cook the garlic and onion for 3 mins until soft, then add the bacon. 
  3. Cook until the bacon is browned, then stir through the carrot and celery. 
  4. Add flour and stir for 1 min to cook off the flour. Pour in the Guinness and chicken broth/stock and add the tomato paste. Mix well and add the bay leaves and thyme. 
  5. Put the beef back into the pot (including any juices), the liquid level should just cover the meat. 
  6. Cover the pot and lower the heat so it is bubbling gently. Cook for 2 hours, take off the lid and leave to simmer for another 30-45 mins or until the beef falls apart to the touch and the sauce has reduced and slightly thickened. 
  7. Skim the fat on the surface if desired, adjust salt and pepper to taste and take out the bay leaves and thyme. Prepare to serve with your chosen sides.  

The Ingredients

  • 2 tbsp of olive oil 
  • 1.25kg of braising beef 
  • ¾ tsp each of salt and black pepper 
  • 3 garlic cloves, minced 
  • 2 onions, chopped 
  • 180g of bacon, diced 
  • 3 tbsp of flour 
  • 440ml of Guinness beer 
  • 4 tbsp of tomato paste 
  • 3 cups (750ml) of chicken stock/broth 
  • 3 carrots, peeled and cut 
  • 2 large celery stalks, cut into 2cm pieces 
  • 2 bay leaves 
  • 3 sprigs of thyme 

What to serve with beef and Guinness stew

There are a few different options when it comes to the perfect sides to serve with a beef and Guinness stew. A couple of our favourites are: 

  • Creamy mashed potato 
  • Cauliflower mash (for a low carb option) 
  • Warm crusty Irish soda bread 
  • Fresh French baguette 

Frequently Asked Questions

In Irish tradition, where this stew originates from, it is actually made with lamb so if you don’t want to use beef, lamb is also a good option for this stew. However, nowadays it is more commonly made and preferred with beef.  

Guinness beer is so dark it is nearly black, giving the gravy of the stew its iconic deep brown colour. Also, it is a lot richer than other beers as you can see by the thick foam it is famed for. It’s this richness that enables it to pair so well with the meat and other ingredients in the stew, bringing all the flavours together.  

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