How to Make a Traditional Irish Guinness Stew

This traditional Irish Guinness stew recipe is the perfect dish to serve for an authentic St. Patrick's Day meal.

Whipping up a traditional Irish Guinness stew recipe is a must in our house for St. Patrick’s Day. But honestly, this recipe is so simple and flavorful, we make it all year round. It’s a great one-dish dinner that’s ideal for feeding a large group and also yields lovely leftovers which taste even better the next day.

The exact ingredients in an Irish stew can vary, but a classic recipe will usually include lamb or mutton, potatoes, onions and carrots. Some recipes add leeks, barley or will swap out the lamb for beef. Regardless of the exact combination, this hearty stew is a real crowd-pleaser.

How to Make Irish Guinness Stew


  • 2 pounds lamb, cut into cubes
  • 1 tablespoon butter
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 pound carrots, sliced
  • 2 medium onions, diced
  • 3 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1-1/2 cups chicken broth
  • 1 can (12 ounces) Guinness stout
  • 6 medium potatoes, cut into cubes
  • 4 bay leaves
  • 2 fresh thyme sprigs
  • 2 fresh rosemary sprigs
  • 2 teaspoons salt
  • 1-1/2 teaspoons pepper

Step 1: Brown Your Meat

The first thing you’ll want to do is preheat your oven to 325°. Heat your oil and butter in an ovenproof Dutch oven over medium-high heat. Once it’s nice and hot, add your lamb and cook (in batches) until it develops a lovely, rich brown color. Put it off to the side, cover and keep warm.

Step 2: Sauté Your Veg and Assemble

Put your carrots and onions in the Dutch oven and sauté them in all those lovely lamb drippings until the vegetables soften and become nice and tender. Add the garlic and cook for another minute or so, then slowly pour in your chicken broth and Guinness. Now it’s time to get your lamb back in the mix, along with the potatoes, herbs, salt and pepper. Give it a good stir.

Pro Tip: Add a small pinch of sugar to the mix to help balance out the bold flavors of Guinness.

Step 3: Into the Oven

Once assembled, cover with a lid and pop your Dutch oven into your oven. Let it bake away for about 1 ½ to 2 hours. Be sure to check on your stew every half hour or so and give it a gentle stir. The waiting can be tough! Once the gorgeous smells start filling your home, you may be tempted to rush things, but just let it simmer until the liquid thickens.

Pro Tip: If your stew is taking a long time to thicken, you can add some gravy granules to speed things along.

While it’s a fantastic alternative to corned beef and cabbage for St. Paddy’s Day, this mouth-watering stew is wonderful comfort food regardless of the season.

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Camille Berry
Part of the third generation in a family of restaurateurs, Camille was born with a passion for cooking and food. She embarked on a career in hospitality where she excelled as a sommelier and wine director. This hospitality experience has given her a wealth of first-hand knowledge about how to pair all manner of drinks with food—plus some serious kitchen skills. These days, she's hung up her wine key in favor of a pen and covers all aspects of food and drink.