By Vida Gustafson 

Contributing Writer

This hearty, boldly flavored stew is just what the doctor ordered for this year’s never-ending winter. Even the pickiest of eaters will ask for seconds!

You can serve this on its own, with some crusty bread for sopping up the gravy, or with mashed potatoes or parsnips (for a classically Irish meal).


2 lbs beef stew meat/chuck roast cut into 1’’ cubes

3 tbsp flour (AP or Gluten Free)

Sea Salt

Black Pepper

2-3 Bay Leaves

2 sprigs Thyme or 1/2 tsp dried Thyme 

1 med Onion

3 Parsnips

3 Carrots

2 Medium Potatoes

1 cup Beef Stock/ 1 tsp Bouillon Paste

16-22 oz of Dark Stout/ Guinness

2-3 tbsp of olive or vegetable oil


Toss the beef cubes in the flour, salt and pepper, and proceed to brown the meat in the stockpot you are planning on making the stew in.

If you have an enameled Dutch oven, this would be the perfect recipe to use it for. If you’re planning on simmering this stew in a slow cooker or insta pot, don’t skip this step! Just brown your meat in a separate saucepan and deglaze with the beer after removing the meat to get all the flavorful bits off the bottom of the pan.

To prepare the meat, preheat the pot and 1 tbsp olive or vegetable oil, and add the beef in 2-3 separate batches. You have to do two to three batches because to achieve the Maillard reaction of browning, the meat needs space to give off its moisture. The pan can’t be too crowded, or you’ll end up with steamed beef instead. 

Browning on even one or two sides is better than not browning at all, so be patient. It will pay off in flavor! 

Chop the onion, parsnips, carrots and potatoes while you wait, and don’t chop the vegetables too daintily. This is a hearty stew and we don’t want them to completely disappear after 3-4 hours of simmering on the stove.

After your beef has been removed and set aside, add another tbsp of oil to the pan and add all your vegetables, your thyme and bay leaves, let them heat through and start to sweat for about 5-10 minutes. Season thoroughly with salt and pepper. 

Return the meat to the pot and pour in the beer. I like a slight bitter tang, so I use 22 ounces of Guinness Stout, but you can use 16 ounces, or even substitute a milder beer like a porter or a brown ale.

 Also pour in your beef stock or bouillon and enough water to barely cover all the ingredients. Set the stove to the lowest setting and simmer for 3-4 hours, covered, or if you are cooking in a Dutch oven, set your pot in the oven at 250 degrees for 3-4 hours.