Irish Beef Stew – Beef is slow cooked with veggies and beer to make it super tender and comforting.
I am keeping with the Irish recipes and bringing you another savory one today. Last week, I shared this Irish soda bread, which is perfect for dipping into today’s recipe – Irish Beef Stew.
I am such a fan of yummy beef stew. It’s comforting and full of flavor and perfect for those cold, rainy nights, which we continue to have. The distinguishing factor that makes this stew “Irish” is the addition of stout beer. It adds another layer of flavor that is so rich, but without the alcohol, since it’s cooked out.
Another factor about this stew that is traditionally Irish is using lamb. However, I am not a huge lamb fan so beef it is!
Without further ado, here is my Irish Beef Stew!
How to make this beef stew
This stew is very similar to other stews and soups you may have made. It’s super simple to throw together but yields incredible results that will have you thinking you slaved away in the kitchen all day long. But we both know you didn’t.
First, you’ll start with the beef. You’ll brown this to give it a beautiful crust on the outside but it won’t be fully cooked on the inside. Remove the beef from the pot and set aside. We’ll add the beef back later and it will finish cooking in the stew.
We start with the beef so that the pot has the beef flavor and fat and it will transfer to all the other elements of the stew. Therefore, when you remove the beef from the pot, scoop it with a slotted spoon to leave all the juices in the pot.
Next, the veggies are added to speed up the cooking process and soften them a little before we put the rest of the stew together.
Finally, the liquids, herbs, and beef are added and the stew is set to simmer for about 90 minutes. Beef needs this time to break down and get super tender.
Making the roux
The stew gets its thick texture for the addition of a roux. A roux is a cooked mixture of flour and fat (butter in this case) which thickens up liquids, such as bechamel, gravy, and cheese sauces.
For this stew, we make the roux on the side and then add it to the stew at the end of the cooking process.
Finishing off the stew
The final step of the stew is adding in the frozen peas. They don’t need much time to cook like the other veggies so they’re added at the end.
When serving the stew, I love to serve over mashed potatoes to balance out the richness. But it also tastes just as yummy on its own.
Tips & Tricks
- If you are gluten free, you can just skip the roux. It makes it thicker, sure, but the stew is just as great without it. If you feel comfortable, you can try with gluten-free flour but I can’t guarantee the same results.
- It’s important to cook the veggies until soft so that you’re not biting into raw carrots or onions when enjoying the stew. Therefore, make sure to give this step extra attention.
- Most butchers carry “beef for stew” which has been cut up for you already. If not, ask your butcher for beef chuck and have them cut it for you.
Irish Beef Stew
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1 pound beef for stew
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 1/8 teaspoon ground pepper
- 1 medium white onion diced
- 2 carrots diced
- 2 stalks celery diced
- 2 cloves garlic minced
- 1 tablespoon tomato paste
- 1 cup beef broth
- 1 cup stout beer
- 2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley
- 1 teaspoon fresh thyme leaves
- 1 bay leaf
- 2 tablespoons butter unsalted
- 2 tablespoons flour
- 1/2 cup frozen peas
- Heat oil in a Dutch oven over medium-high heat. Once hot, add beef in one even layer, cooking until the meet is only slightly pink on top. Remove from pan and set aside.
- Add diced onion, carrot, celery, and garlic to hot pan and reduce heat to medium. Cook until the vegetables soften, about 5 minutes. Add tomato paste and stir until it combines with the vegetables. Cook for 30 seconds. Add broth, beef, parsley, thyme, bay leaf, and beef and stir together. Bring mixture to a boil and then reduce to a simmer. Cover and cook for 90 minutes.
- When the 90 minutes are almost done, it's time to create the roux, which will thicken the soup. To do this, melt the butter in a small skillet over medium heat. Once melted, add te flour and whisk together. Continue whisking until the mixture starts to turn golden brown. Remove from heat and slowly pour into stew and stir together. Cook for another 3 minutes.
- Finish off the stew by adding the frozen peas. Let them cook through and then serve the stew. It's best over mashed potatoes.