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This Beef and Guinness Stew is the most delicious comfort food for cold winter nights, slow cooked for meltingly soft and tender beef and ale flavours. 

This traditional Irish stew recipe can be cooked in the slow cooker or oven. It freezes really well and can also be used as the base for a Beef and Guinness Pie too!

Overhead view of beef Guinness stew in almond le creuset shallow casserole cast iron dish on cream tea towel on white background.

This traditional Beef and Guinness Stew is all kinds of hearty goodness. A classic comfort food dish, this rich and deep flavoured one pot recipe is an absolute must for a family feast during those colder months, or something extra special at a weekend. 

Let it bubble away as it fills your home with a delicious aroma, which you can then tuck into like it is or turn it into a pie with a pastry topping.

Easy prep, a long, slow cook and big results. Perfect.

Why you’ll love this Irish Stew recipe

⭐️ A one-pot showstopper

⭐️ Healthy, hearty and lip-smackingly good

⭐️ Ideal for batch cooking

Overhead close up of beef Guinness stew recipe with carrots and sprinkled with parsley.

What is traditional Beef and Guinness Stew?

Irish-style stew is made really special for two reasons. Firstly, Guinness, obvs. The dark stout bubbles away, giving the sauce a deep, unique richness. 

Secondly, using a rich cut of beef like shin really adds to the flavour in my opinion. You don’t need to use beef shin, but it slow cooks down so well – it’s delicious.

In my version of this classic beef and ale casserole, I add pancetta for a smoky flavour and onions, carrots and swede for plenty of veggie goodness.

Brown everything off, add your liquids and plenty of fresh thyme and pop it into the oven for a few hours. Simple and really delicious.

Irish Guinness Beef Stew Ingredients

Overhead shot of Guinness and vegetables ready for stew.
  • Oil – Olive or sunflower is fine 
  • Beef shin
  • Pancetta – I use big chunks from the butcher
  • Onions
  • Garlic
  • Celery
  • Carrots
  • Swede
  • Plain flour
  • Guinness
  • Tomato purée
  • Fresh thyme – Leaves only
  • Beef stock – Stock cube is fine
  • Salt and pepper

How to make Beef and Guinness Stew

Guinness bottle held by hand pouring into casserole with beef and vegetables.
  1. Fry the beef chunks in batches in hot oil until browned all over, followed by the pancetta.
  2. Add in the onions, garlic and celery and fry for about 5 minutes until soft, followed by the carrots and swede for a further 5 minutes.
  3. Add the flour and coat the veggies, cooking for another 5 minutes, then add the Guinness, tomato puree, thyme, beef stock, and salt and pepper. Add the beef back in.
  4. Pop the lid on and cook in a preheated oven for 2.5-3 hours or until the meat is tender.


  • Beef – I use beef shin for this recipe but braising steak will work too. Any cut that can be slow cooked.
  • Vegetables – Root veg works well in a slow cooked stew as it tends to stay intact. If you’d like to add other kinds of veggies, it’s probably best to add them in at a later stage in the cooking so they don’t turn to mush.

Leftovers: How to store Guinness Beef Stew

In the fridge You can keep this recipe in the fridge for 3 days. Reheat fully in the microwave, in the oven or on the hob before serving.

In the freezer This dish freezes brilliantly. When it’s cold, I portion it up into takeaway containers (I buy them in bulk from Amazon).

I then defrost and warm through when needed. The sauce will thicken even more on reheating, just add a splash of water if you would like more gravy.

Top tips for making the best Guinness Stew

Which beef to use

Any type of stewing beef cut will work in this stew. If you’re looking for something lean, try chuck steak cubes. If you can get beef shin from your butcher, it adds so much flavour to this dish. It’s worth hunting it out and giving it a try. Just ask them to trim it well.

What to serve with Irish Stew

I’d definitely recommend Colcannon, or a simple creamy mashed potato. It also works really well adding dumplings on top towards the end of cooking (how about horseradish dumplings?)

If you want an extra veggie side you could try Cauliflower Cheese. And perhaps a cheeky Slow Cooker Apple Crumble for a treat after?! 

Turn it into Beef and Ale Pie

This Beef Guinness Stew makes a brilliant filling for a Beef and Ale Pie. Just line a pie dish with ready-made pastry, pop the cold filling on top, add a pastry lid, brush with a beaten egg and bake in a hot oven until golden.

Beef and Ale Stew FAQs

Do you have any other slow cooked beef recipes?

Yes, I have a collection! If it’s a succulent, tender beef dish you’re after, there are different variations of flavours and styles of meals. Try out my: 

Beef Stifado (Greek-Style)
Beef Bourgignon (with Red Wine)
Beef Joint (Slow Cooker-Style Roast)
Braised Steak (with Rich Gravy)
Slow Cooker Beef Brisket (with BBQ Sauce)

Can you recommend a good pan for this recipe?

I have done my homework on one-pan pans because I use them so often and having one that ticks all the boxes is a must for me.

This tried-and-tested pan review reveals my findings, which I hope you’ll find useful!

Can I use beer to cook this beef stew?

You could use an ale or other type of beer instead of the Guinness in this recipe, but it really does add a deep, rich and unique flavour.

Don’t worry about using alcoholic drinks for the family, all of the alcohol will burn off during cooking.

Let me know how you got on and what you thought of these recipes. Please rate the recipe using the ⭐️ below.

Also I’d LOVE to see your cooking creations. If you’d like to share yours with me, you can tag me on Instagram (@tamingtwins).

4.47 from 47 votes

Beef and Guinness Stew

This traditional Irish Beef and Guinness Stew is the most delicious and hearty comfort food for the whole family. Slow cooked for meltingly soft and tender beef and ale flavours.
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 3 hours
Total Time: 3 hours 15 minutes
Servings: 8 People


  • 2 tbsp Olive oil
  • 1.5 kg Beef shin
  • 350 g Pancetta, I use big chunks from the butcher.
  • 350 g Onions, Peeled and chopped (about x2 onions).
  • 4 Cloves of garlic, Peeled and crushed.
  • 150 g Celery, Trimmed and chopped into small chunks.
  • 500 g Carrots, Peeled and chopped into large chunks.
  • 500 g Swede, Peeled and chopped into medium chunks.
  • 5 tbsp Plain flour
  • 500 ml Guinness
  • 140 g Tomato puree
  • 30 g Fresh thyme, Leaves only (pick them off of the stalks).
  • 750 ml Beef stock, Made with a stock cube is fine.
  • Salt and pepper


  • Preheat the oven to 160C.
  • Heat half of the olive oil over a high heat and fry the beef pieces in batches until brown all over. Add the rest of the oil when needed.
  • Put the beef to one side and add the pancetta chunks to the pan. Fry until golden brown (about 5-10 minutes).
  • Add the onions, garlic and celery to the pan. Fry for 5 minutes until starting to soften.
  • Add the carrots and swede and cook for a further 5 minutes.
  • Add the plain flour and mix to coat all of the vegetables. Cook for 5 minutes, stirring.
  • Add the Guinness, tomato puree, thyme, beef stock and plenty of salt and pepper. Add the beef back in and give everything a good stir.
  • Pop a lid on and put it into the oven for 2.5-3 hours or until the meat is meltingly soft.


Calories: 665kcalCarbohydrates: 26gProtein: 61gFat: 32gSaturated Fat: 10gCholesterol: 175mgSodium: 646mgPotassium: 1290mgFiber: 5gSugar: 9gVitamin A: 10815IUVitamin C: 31.4mgCalcium: 107mgIron: 6.7mg

Nutrition information is automatically calculated, so should only be used as an approximation.

Additional Info

Course: Main Course
Cuisine: Family Food
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  1. 5 stars
    WOW. This is the BEST Irish stew I have ever tasted; and my mother is Irish! My butcher didn’t have beef shin left so I used beef cheek. I browned everything off as per the recipe instructions but then threw it in my slow cooker instead of the oven. The meat was melting. Totally divine. Thank you Sarah! This recipe is a game changer!

  2. I have lived in Cork all my life. Yesterday my husband brought shin beef From supermarket. I was browsing Pinterest when I come across your recipe. It is almost identical to what I always do so will be doing it for tomorrow. Icon Cork we are very parochial so we use Beamish or Murphy’s Stout.

  3. 5 stars
    Thank you so much for this recipe. The Guinness made a deliciously rich sauce and the additional veggies added flavour and texture.
    I agree with others that the casserole is even better the day after.
    This will become a new family favourite.

  4. 5 stars
    Rich tasty stew, and easy to make with not too many ingredients.
    My Dad was from Spiddal, Co. Galway, but I can honestly say I have never tried a stew with Guinness added. Now I make it all the time…. Yummy.

  5. 5 stars
    I’ve made this stew twice now as it’s perfect to cook the night before a busy evening when all the family are at work, netball,football etc. It definitely gains flavour overnight. Just come home, grab a bowl and help yourself. Reheats lovely and serve with green veg and bread.

  6. Hi Sarah, I went with my family to a local Irish pub (the mid-Atlantic coast of the U.S.) last spring and loved their authentic Guinness stew. Now that the evenings are beginning to cool down, I’ve started on a quest to find a real, honest-to-goodness recipe. I had to look up what swedes are, lol but we have them here too – rutabagas! I can’t wait to try this, thank you for posting it.