Guinness Beef Stew

Cook’s Country is currently airing an episode featuring Guinness Beef Stew. Unlike most stews, this recipe skips the searing of the meat on the stove-top, because it takes too long and causes a lot of splattered grease everywhere. Instead, this stew is cooked uncovered in the oven; the open pot allows the meat on top to brown, and the evaporating liquid helps concentrate the flavors. Chris Kimball says that the stew will be ready after just 2-1/2 hours in the oven. I ate mine after 3 hours (due to scheduling conflict), but 3-1/2 hours would have been much better. As eaten, it was only 3-1/2 stars. The flavors were nicely balanced, but were a little too subdued. More browning in the oven would have added more flavor. If I had a little more time (or started a little earlier), I’m sure it would have been 4-to-4-1/2 stars.

French Stews still Reign Supreme

French Stews still Reign Supreme


  1. The recipe calls for Guinness Draught, but I could only find the ubiquitous Guinness Extra Stout. While Chris Kimball says that Extra Stout is too bitter, he said it could be used in a pinch. So in lieu of “We prefer the flavor of Guinness Draught in this stew (with Guinness Extra Stout a close second), but you can substitute another brand of stout or a dark ale, such as Rogue Chocolate Stout or Newcastle Brown Ale.”
  2. Cooking times were understated. I adjusted the cooking times upward from 2-1/2 hours to 3 hours below, but consider cooking for 3-1/2 hours.

Rating: 3-1/2 stars.
Cost: $15
How much work? Medium.
How big of a mess?  Medium.
Start time 2:00 PM. Finish time 6:00 PM.

Chris Kimball’s original recipe is here. The descriptions of how I prepared the recipe today are given below:

4-lb boneless beef chuck roast
Salt and pepper
3 tablespoons vegetable oil
2 onions
1 tablespoon tomato paste
2 garlic cloves
1/4 cup all-purpose flour
3 cups chicken broth
1-1/4 cups Guinness Draught
1-1/2 tablespoons packed dark brown sugar
1 teaspoon minced fresh thyme
1-1/2 pounds Yukon Gold potatoes
1 pound carrots
2 tablespoons minced fresh parsley

  1. Set a rack to lower-middle of your oven and pre-heat to 325-degrees. Pull roast apart at seams, trim away any excess or hard fat, and cut into 1-1/2″ pieces. Sprinkle beef cubes with salt and pepper.
  2. finely chop onions. Add 3 tablespoons vegetable oil in Dutch oven placed over medium-high burner. Saute onions for 10 minutes until well-browned.
  3. Add tomato paste and use a garlic press to press the garlic directly into pan. Cook for 2 minutes until the mixture turns rust-colored. Add 1/4 cup flour and continue to cook for 1 minute.
  4. Use a whisk to incorporate chicken broth, 3/4-cup (1/2 bottle or 6 ounces) Guinness, brown sugar, and minced thyme, then use the liquid to de-glaze the fond. Bring the mixture up to a simmer, then simmer for 3 minutes. Add beef cubes and bring back up to a simmer.
  5. Leaving simmering Dutch oven uncovered, put into the pre-heated oven and cook for 2 hours at 325-degrees, stirring after 45 minutes.
  6. Meanwhile wash and peel carrots, and cut into 1″ segments. Wash the potatoes, but leave the potatoes unpeeled; cut them into 1″ pieces.
  7. After the 2 hours has elapsed, mix in potatoes and carrots. Continue to cook for 1 more hour, until the beef and vegetables become tender; stirring after 30 minutes.
  8. Add remaining 1/2-cup Guinness and minced parsley. Adjust salt and pepper according to your taste, and serve.
I was only able to find "extra stout"

I was only able to find “extra stout”

14 Responses to Guinness Beef Stew

  1. travel6188 says:

    As I am reading this, I am eating Guinness with Beef stew (but not this recipe).Yes, I am eating it for breakfast – it is that good.

    I have found that you really do need to brown the meat ahead of time. I coat the beef with seasoned flour prior to browning. This also helps with thickening the stew. Adding bacon to the pot adds a nice flavor. I also add some cognac at the end. Yummy!

    • Lol…for breakfast!

      All your suggestions sound excellent. There is already 1/4 cup flour in the recipe, but I would use additional flour rather than using part of the 1/4 cup to coat the beef.


    • Beej Smith says:

      How much bacon did you use? Was it cooked or uncooked when you put it in. Did you start the cooking with it?
      Thanks for your help,

      • Hi,

        The recipe as I made it doesn’t call for bacon, but you are right that most stews do. I think this stew in particular would benefit from some bacon.

        I would probably brown the bacon before sauteing the onions, then use the bacon fat instead of vegetable oil to saute the oonion. If you use thick cut bacon then I’d suggest leaving the chucks a little bigger and including during the cooking time. But regular bacon might also be used to garnish the stew.

        Thanks, Mark

  2. Bali Tour says:

    sounds delicious
    Thanks for the recipe 🙂

  3. Beej Smith says:

    I think a little mention of the size of the dutch oven being used would be in order. I am using a Lodge 5.5 QT. and unless this cooks down A LOT I’ll never fit the veggies in. No worries, I have a larger pot to use when I put the veg in it. But I would have preferred to use the cast iron dutch oven. How big is the dutch oven they use in the show?

    • Anonymous says:

      Hi, they use a 6.5 qt tramontina dutch oven, but they use the old discontinued model. The new model is slightly narrower and taller, and will take a little longer cooking time.


  4. Jan says:

    I recently made this for my father, he LOVED it, but as I followed the recipe to the letter, I found the stew to be rather bland. I added a a tablespoon of ketchup and Worcestershire Sauce, which added a little tang and sweetness.

  5. Lindsay says:

    I love this recipe but I add a controversial ingredient. A packet of Knorr Demi-Glacé. Otherwise this would be way too bland for me. If you are lucky enough to have homemade demi glacé, all the better.

  6. Jamie McLaughlin says:

    Nice recipe. Personally when I cook with Guinness, I like to use an ounce of bittersweet chocolate instead of the brown sugar. Offsets the bitterness of the beer quite well imo.

    A friend of mine likes to use minced prunes for that same purpose instead.

  7. I think your observation about the cooking time is spot-on. The first time I tried this recipe, I followed it to the letter: the meat and potatoes were undercooked. Now I crank the oven to 350, and cook the meat for 1.5 hours before adding the veggies for another 1.5 hours (at least). Another handy tip: I love Guinness, but this recipe works even better with a sweeter stout (like Murphy’s) or a deep porter. With these adjustments, you get a real winner the family will love.

  8. Teresa A Calderone says:

    I have made this recipe many, many times and it never disappoints! You absolutely do NOT have to brown the beef! Thanks for sharing.

    • Teresa A Calderone says:

      Sorry I forgot to mention that I only cook carrots and green beans in my stew….. I like to serve inside a rim of mashed potatoes.

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