Thursday, October 22, 2009

Guinness Beef Stew a la Pat

Cold weather brings out cravings for heartier food. The warm weather quinoa, bulghur, and veggie salads that kept us cool in July simply won't do anymore. Last autumn I found myself at the Abbey Tavern in the chilly North Dublin Village of Howth, one of my favorite places to visit, which you know if you follow my blogs. (Pictured is Howth's East Pier with Ireland's Eye and Lambay Island in the distance.)

Sitting before a roaring peat fire with a glass of wine and a bowl of Guinness Beef Stew came close to topping nearly every heavenly experience I've ever known. But the cook wouldn't share the recipe! Undaunted, I strove to recreate the succulent dish after I returned to New Hampshire. Through trial and much error, I came up with a delectable stew on a par with the one I enjoyed in Howth, and I'm happy to share the recipe with you here. Sorry I can't offer a roaring peat fire!


4-5 lbs. beef stew meat, well trimmed
4 Tbs. vegetable oil
A dollop of bacon fat
4 Tbs. flour
One big vidalia onion, chopped
2 lbs. sliced mushrooms, white, wild, or mixed to your taste
A few cloves of garlic, minced
1 can of beef broth
3 cans of Guinness Stout
2 tsps. Worcestershire sauce
2 tsps. dried thyme
A few bay leaves
Salt and pepper to taste

Heat the oil in a stew pot. Add bacon fat and brown the meat, sprinkling with flour as it cooks. Remove meat and set aside. Add chopped onions and cook for a few minutes until soft, then add the mushrooms and sauté until they release their moisture and start to brown, adding minced garlic and sprinkling on any remaining flour. Return meat to the mixture, add the beef broth, Guinness, and remaining ingredients. Stir well and simmer for about two hours, or until meat is tender. Serve with mashed potatoes. Serves six to eight hungry people and leftovers are great.


  1. Pat, I will definitely try this recipe on a cold, wet, winter day. Thanks for sharing it with us.

  2. Dawn, I've already taken stock of our Guinness supply and made a grocery list. When you're inclined to make this dish, let me know what you think!

  3. Pat~this sounds so delicious! Guinness is my favorite beer, but I have to say I'd probably end up drinking a few before I put the other 3 in the pot. lol I'm going to the store this week and gather the ingredients, just in time for the next snow storm over here in South Dakota~~can't wait to dig in! Thanks for sharing your lovely memories of Ireland and your recipes.

  4. Hi Lisa! Glad you're game to try this recipe. If Guinness is your favorite beer, you'll likely love it. I don't care for the black stuff, and I adore this stew. Let me know how it turns out, and thanks for stopping by!

  5. As soon as I get this flu behind me you can bet your sweet bippy I'm gonna try that recipe! :)

  6. It's been below zero her in the Dakotas~~perfect weather to indulge in my new favorite, Guinness Beef Stew. This will be the third time I've made it, and it's always hard going not to just drink the stuff and to heck with the rest. Then I remember the last time I made it, and it carries me through. Truly a dish worth making again and again.

  7. Lisa, I'm so glad you're enjoying it. It's a fabulous cold weather dish, one I'm going to make again soon myself.

  8. I cannot tell you how much my hubby loved this stew and it is even better the second day with all the ingredients melding together. Yummmmy is the word of the day concerning this gut warming stew. We live in the Sierra Mountains and it will be a popular one all winter long. Thank you, Pat!!!

  9. I'm tickled that you like it, Paisley. Bon Appetit!