Savory Irish Beef Stew

Succulent beef and bacon; tender vegetables; and a rich, hearty gravy,  savory Irish beef stew is comfort food at its best and perfect for dinner on a chilly evening.

Bowl of savory Irish beef stew - tender beef, onions, potatoes, carrots, and peas in a Guinness and red wine gravy.

Have you ever had Irish beef stew?  Beef, beer, wine, vegetables…do I really have to go on?  This is a recipe that should be on your cold-weather dinner rotation and not just on St. Patrick’s Day.

Don’t be intimidated by the time listed to make the stew.  Most of the time is simmering the stew on the stove.  An occasional stir is all that’s needed.


This recipe is all about building layers of flavor.  With that in mind, here is what is needed.

  • Beef cubes – stew meat, beef chuck, shoulder roast – any beef that requires long, slow cooking to become tender works well in this stew
  • Olive oil
  • Salt, pepper, flour
  • Aromatic vegetables – onion, celery, garlic – all build flavor
  • Guinness beer and red wine – not wanting to cook with alcohol?  You could swap in additional broth or water, but the gravy will not be as rich
  • Tomato paste – you could use a 14 ounce can of diced tomatoes instead
  • Beef broth and Worchestershire sauce
  • Potatoes, carrots, celery, fresh thyme, bay leaves 
  • Frozen peas


  • Take the time to brown each side of all the beef cubes.  Do this in batches and don’t crowd the pan.  If you add too many beef cubes at once, the juices accumulate and you braise the beef instead of browning the cubes.  You want a deep, dark, rich brown caramelization on the beef for maximum flavor.
  • The same applies to the bacon.  Cook the bacon until crisp, but not too fast.  You want to get as much of the fat out of the bacon as possible.  The vegetables will be sauteed in bacon fat.  This also adds another layer of flavor.
  • The vegetables should also get slightly golden.  Just keep stirring so that they don’t burn.
  • Try to dice the potatoes and carrots in uniform size so that they cook evenly.
  • Use a dry red wine.  I like using a dry Cabernet or even a Pinot Noir.

Bowl of savory Irish beef stew - tender beef, onions, potatoes, carrots, and peas in a Guinness and red wine gravy.




This savory Irish beef stew is comfort food at it’s finest. With tender beef, vegetables, and a Guinness spiked gravy, this stew is wonderful on a chilly St. Patrick’s Day evening.

  • Author: Millie Brinkley
  • Prep Time: 20 minutes
  • Cook Time: 3 hours, 15 minutes
  • Total Time: 3 hours, 35 minutes
  • Yield: Serves 6
  • Category: Main Dish - Beef
  • Method: Stew
  • Cuisine: Irish



2 tablespoons olive oil

2 ½ pounds cubed stew meat or beef chuck

1 teaspoon salt

1 teaspoon black pepper

6 ounces bacon, chopped

3 large garlic cloves, minced

2 large yellow onions, diced

1 large celery stalk, diced

3 tablespoons flour

1 (14.9-ounce) bottle Guinness Beer

1 cup dry red wine

4 tablespoons tomato paste

4 cups beef broth

1 tablespoon Worchestershire sauce

4 large Yukon gold potatoes, peeled and diced

3 large carrots, peeled and sliced

2 bay leaves

3 sprigs fresh thyme

1 cup frozen peas

4 tablespoons minced fresh parsley, divided


Heat the oil in a Dutch oven over medium heat.

Meanwhile, pat the beef cubes dry with paper towels and sprinkle with salt and pepper.  Toss to coat the meat fully.

Add the beef, in batches if necessary, and brown very well on all sides.

Remove the beef to a plate and repeat with the remaining beef cubes.

Remove the beef cubes to the plate.

Add the sliced bacon to the pot.

Cook, stirring often, until crispy.  Use a slotted spoon to remove the bacon to the plate with the beef.

In the bacon drippings, saute the onion, garlic, and celery until the onions are translucent – about 5 minutes.

Sprinkle in the flour, stir and cook until the flour begins to turn golden – about 3 minutes.

Whisk in the Guinness, red wine, beef broth, Worchestershire sauce, and tomato paste.  Stir well to combine.

Add the potatoes, carrots, bay leaves, thyme, and reserved beef and bacon slices (with any juices from the plate).

Stir well to combine.  Cover the pot, lower the heat to low, and simmer for 2 hours, stirring often.

Remove the lid and simmer for another 45 minutes.

The stew is almost done when the beef falls apart, the liquid is gravy consistency, and the vegetables are tender.

Fish out the bay leaves and discard.

Stir in the frozen peas and 2 tablespoons of parsley.  Simmer for another minute.

Serve hot with mashed potatoes, buttered noodles, or rice. Sprinkle with the remaining fresh parsley.

Keywords: savory Irish beef stew, stew recipes, Irish food, St. Patrick's Day, beef, Guinness, dinner ideas, comfort food