This Irish stew recipe is a mouth-watering combination of tender beef, carrots, potatoes, and parsnips, all slow simmered in a hearty broth comprised of beef stock, Guinness beer, and wine. The depth of flavor is incredible! Pure comfort food and a perfect Saint Patrick’s dinner or filling meal any time.
Not many things can top a beef stew in the comfort food department. A hearty meal all-in-one, with tender meat and vegetables, permeating with stew juices from simmering for hours. Every bite soothes the soul and tummy! This Irish Beef Stew fits the bill on all counts.
What is the Difference Between Beef Stew and Irish Beef Stew?
Typically Irish stew is made with lamb, but here in the states, beef is more familiar, easier to buy, and cheaper, so that’s what I always use.
The difference between our classic Beef Stew recipe and this Irish Beef Stew is mainly the addition of Guinness beer (a la Guinness Beef Stew) and red wine. The alcohol cooks off as the stew simmers, rendering a broth with incredible richness. We also eliminated the peas, but included some parsnips, which adds a touch of sweetness. The flavor profile is just as amazing, but quite different.
What Goes in Irish Beef Stew?
Here’s what you’ll need!
- Meat – boneless beef chuck roast (or lamb for a traditional Irish Stew.)
- Veggies – potatoes, carrots, celery, parsnips, onion, and garlic.
- Seasonings – thyme, bay leaves, parsley, salt, and pepper.
- Broth – low sodium beef broth, water, Worcestershire sauce, tomato paste, and beef bouillon cubes.
- Beer and Wine – Guinness beer and red wine.
- Other – extra-virgin olive oil to sauté the meat and flour to thicken the broth.
How to Make Irish Stew
Here’s a brief summary of how to make it.
*Don’t miss the detailed printable recipe below, along with the video.
- Season and brown the beef (in batches if necessary), then transfer to a plate.
- Sauté the veggies in the same pot, adding more oil if it seems dry.
- Cook off the flour.
- Add liquids and seasonings and return beef to the pot.
- Simmer covered for 2 hours until the beef is pretty tender, add in the potatoes and parsnips and simmer for another 20-25 minutes (without the lid) until the vegetables and beef are very tender, the sauce has reduced and thickened slightly.
- Skim off the fat and discard the bay leaves and thyme.
- Ladle into bowls, sprinkle with some parsley, and enjoy every single spoonful!
How to Make Beef Stew in a Crock Pot
This recipe can easily be adapted for a slow cooker. Once you’re done browning all the beef and sautéing the vegetables, transfer everything into the crock pot (except the parsley.) Cook on low for 7-8 hours. Ladle into bowls and sprinkle with the parsley.
Important Recipe Notes
- Beef stew meat: make sure to purchase a beef that favors slow cooking like chuck or boneless short ribs. Look for a cut that’s nicely marbled with fat, which will give you the best results. Then cut the beef into nice 2-inch cubes. If you cut them too small, they’ll fall apart before being able to soak up all the flavor from slow cooking all day.
- Brown the beef: browning the beef before adding in all the other ingredients is key! Getting a nice sear on all the pieces of beef forms a crust and locks in flavor, and then the brown bits on the bottom of the pot dissolve into the broth adding extra flavor to the sauce. I know browning the beef in batches takes more time, but that extra step is so worth it.
- Should I peel the potatoes? We recommend yellow potatoes for the creamy texture and we peel ours, but you certainly don’t have to. It’s truly personal preference.
- Can I eliminate the alcohol? The main thing that sets this Irish beef stew apart from traditional beef stew is the added Guinness beer and red wine. If you can’t have alcohol, I would recommend making our classic Beef Stew recipe. You’ll love it!
Allow stew to cool completely, then transfer to airtight container and store in the fridge. It will keep up to 4 days.
Can you freeze beef stew? Yes, beef stew freezes well (although the vegetables tend to get softer and break down into smaller pieces after thawing.) Make sure to leave at least a 1/4-inch gap in the container to allow for expansion. Stored properly, it will keep in the freezer up to 3 months.
Guinness Beef Stew Video
Other Soup Recipes We Love!
- French Onion Soup – THE BEST. This recipe will knock your socks off! Made with the richest broth, perfect caramelized onions, and topped with three different types of melted cheese.
- Ham and Potato Soup – This can be made with ham hocks or a leftover ham bone. It’s so simple, but big on flavor! Rich, hearty, and so comforting on a chilly night.
- Sausage Tortellini Soup – Loaded with cheese-filled pasta, sweet sausage, spinach, and Italian seasonings. Crazy flavorful, comforting, and ready in 30 minutes!
- Pasta Fagioli – Easy, no-fuss one pot stew that’s so hearty and delicious. Made with sweet Italian sausage, vegetables, beans, and a rich tomato base, this homemade Olive Garden copycat recipe is even better than the restaurant-version.
Irish Beef Stew
- 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
- 2 1/2 pounds boneless beef chuck , trimmed of hard fat, cut into 2-inch chunks
- 3/4 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
- 2 medium sweet onions , chopped
- 3 carrots , peeled and cut into 1/2-inch thick pieces
- 2 stalks celery , cut into 1/2-inch pieces
- 3 cloves garlic , minced
- 3 tablespoons all-purpose flour
- 3 cups low-sodium beef broth
- 2 cups water
- 1 cup Guinness stout beer
- 1 cup red wine
- 1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
- 2 beef bouillon cubes , crumbled
- 3 tablespoons tomato paste
- 2 bay leaves
- 3 springs thyme (or 1 teaspoon dried)
- 2 small yellow potatoes , peeled and cut into 2 1/2-inch cubes
- 1 parsnip , peeled and cut into 2 1/2-inch cubes
- 2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley
- Warm oil in a heavy bottomed pot over high heat until very hot.
- Pat beef dry and sprinkle with the salt and pepper.
- Add beef to the pot in batches and brown well all over. Transfer to a plate. Repeat with remaining beef.
- Lower heat to medium. If the pot looks dry, add a touch more oil.
- Stir in the onion, carrots, and celery; saute for 5 minutes until vegetables have softened. Add garlic and cook for 30-60 seconds until fragrant.
- Add flour, and stir for 1 minute to cook off.
- Slowly pour in the beef broth and whisk to combine until the flour dissolves.
- Add in the water, Guinness beer, red wine, Worcestershire, beef bouillon cubes, and tomato paste; mix well.
- Toss in the bay leaves and thyme.
- Return beef to the pot (including any juices). Liquid level should just cover.
- Cover with lid, adjust heat to medium-low so it’s a gentle simmer. Cook for 2 hours until the beef is tender.
- Add in the potatoes and parsnips; simmer for another 20-25 minutes (without the lid) until the potatoes, parsnips, and beef are very tender, the sauce has reduced and thickened slightly.
- Skim off fat on surface, if desired. Discard bay leaves and thyme.
- Adjust salt and pepper, to taste, if necessary.
- Ladle into bowls, sprinkle with some fresh chopped parsley and enjoy with crusty bread, if desired.