Beef and Guinness Stew

To me, there is nothing more romantic than spending a few hours in the kitchen cooking up something delicious for someone: I’m a feeder. If you are too, then why not try this beef and Guinness stew.

Yes, I suppose ‘stew’ isn’t in and of itself a romantic thing. But the time and love that goes into making this is – and the incredible flavour at the end is absolutely worth it.

I made this for Valentine’s Day and served it with truffle mash and heart shaped pastry toppers, and it was blinking delicious.

Beef and Guinness Stew – The Ingredients

Stew is one of those dishes that you can pack full of vegetables – especially root vegetables- but I’ve kept it simple here: this is a dish designed for flavour, not for emptying the fridge. It’s for treating the one you love.

So, with flavour in mind, I stuck with smoked streaky bacon which brings an incredible depth, some beautiful stewing steak, shallots for sweetness, mushrooms for that earthy flavour, carrots for that gentle, aromatic taste and then the Guinness. Guinness is absolutely key to this dish. The original bottled Guinness is the one to get.

You could substitute with a different stout if you can’t get hold of it, but just make sure that you don’t pick a sweet one. You want a dry stout to balance this dish nicely.

I used bay leaves, rosemary and thyme as my herb selection – fresh is best.

Making the Stew

Although stews take a long time to cook, they are fairly hands off.

After prepping the vegetables, there’s about 10 minutes of cooking on the hob before it goes in the oven to bubble away for the majority of its cooking time. When it’s in the oven, it’s best left well alone, so really it’s very easy indeed.

You’ll want to make this in a casserole dish that can go in the oven as well as on the hob. This is similar to mine:

casserole dish

What to Serve Alongside Stew

I served my stew with truffle mash and puff pastry toppers (almost like a pie). I really would recommend trying the truffle mash if you can – it is delectable and goes so beautifully with this stew.

You could have dumplings with it instead – try this Beef Stew with Parsley Dumplings recipe.

It’d also go well with the Welsh Style Potato Dauphinoise (Potato au Gratin).

Beef and Guinness Stew

Save This Recipe
Harriet Young
A seriously tasty beef and Guinness stew
Total Time 4 hours
Course Main Course
Servings 4 people


  • 3 rashers streaky bacon
  • 500 g stewing steak
  • 25 g butter
  • 4 shallots
  • 200 g chestnut mushrooms
  • 200 g chantenay carrots
  • 2 tbsps plain flour
  • 500 ml original Guinness
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 1 sprig rosemary
  • 1 sprig thyme
  • 100 g ready rolled puff pastry
  • 1 egg, beaten


  • Preheat the oven to 160C.
  • Start by prepping your ingredients. Peel the shallots and cut them into chunks. Cut the mushrooms in half. Cut the tops and tails off the carrots. Cut the bacon into 1cm slices. Cut the steak into bite size chunks.
  • Put a large casserole dish on a medium heat. Add the bacon. Let it sizzle away, stirring often, for about five minutes, until golden. Remove them from the dish and put them aside in a bowl.
  • Add the butter and the steak to the casserole dish. Cook until starting to brown (you don’t need to cook it through at this point) then put in the same bowl as the bacon.
  • Add the shallots, mushrooms and carrots to the dish. Turn the heat down to low and cook gently for five minutes, until starting to soften.
  • Add the bacon and beef to the dish. Pour in the flour and give it a good stir.
  • Pour the Guinness in, a little at a time, stirring all the time. Add the bay leaves, rosemary and thyme and season with salt and pepper.
  • Put a lid on and put the casserole dish in the oven. Let it cook slowly for 3 hours, stirring every now and then.
  • Towards the end of the cooking time, use a heart shaped pastry cutter (or do it freehand with a blunt knife!) to cut 10 hearts in the pastry. Put them on a sheet pan, brush with the beaten egg and put in the oven for 20 minutes until golden brown.
  • To serve, ladle the stew into bowls and top with the pastry hearts. Enjoy!
Keyword beef, stew

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Hi there!

I’m Harriet, writer and cook, and I’m so pleased to have you here! I love nothing more than cooking delicious food and sharing it with the world. You can find out more about me here.

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