Slow Cooker Guinness Beef Stew

Slow CookerIrishBeefGuinness

Slow Cooker Guinness Beef Stew! Make this hearty, satisfying stew with chunks of beef, carrots, parsnips, potatoes, and of course, Guinness stout. Perfect for everything from snow days to St. Patrick's Day.

Photography Credit: Elise Bauer

If molasses were a beer, it would be a Guinness stout—rich, thick, dark, caramel-y, deeply flavorful. It is Ireland’s most popular brew with, get this, more than 10 million pints sold every day around the world. (That’s a lot of beer!)

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Guinness Everywhere

Around here Guinness a favorite for St. Patrick’s Day, and you can find stacks of Guinness displays at practically every store that sells beer.

Naturally, Guinness has made its way into flavoring many dishes, including breads like our Guinness Bread with Molasses, and desserts like our Chocolate Guinness Cake and Guinness Brownies, as well as stews like this one.

What’s In this Beef Stew?

Guinness beef stew is Ireland’s answer to Belgian carbonnade, with chunks of beef and with stout instead of ale, and with root vegetables such as parsnips, carrots, and celery root.

Check out these other “beef and beer” stew recipes:

Single serving of Slow Cooker Guinness Stew with chunky potatoes, carrots and beef

How To Cook for Tender Beef & Soft Vegetables

This stew we are making in a slow cooker (though you could make it in the oven as well). The controlled low and slow cooking is perfect for tenderizing the flavorful but tough pieces of beef chuck roast, while keeping the root vegetables intact.

The trick is to brown the meat first, before adding to the slow cooker. That way you get all of the wonderful flavor from the browned meat in your stew.

How to Store Leftovers

Like many stews, this one is actually better the second day (and even better the third day). Leftovers can be stored for up to five days or so, and can be gently reheated on the stovetop over medium heat or in the microwave.

You can freeze the leftover soup, but the potatoes and other root vegetables tend to break down when thawed and reheated. It will still taste good reheated, but know that these vegetables will be softer.

Slow Cooker Guinness Beef Stew Recipe

  • Prep time: 20 minutes
  • Cook time: 4 hours, 30 minutes
  • Yield: Serves 6-8

If you would prefer to make the stew in the oven, cook everything in a large Dutch oven. After you add the liquid, bring it to a simmer on the stovetop then put it, tightly covered, in a 225°F oven for 6 hours (or a 300°F oven for 4 hours).

Note that different people have different sensitivities to bitter flavors. If Guinness Stout tastes bitter to you, then the stew will taste bitter as well. If it doesn't taste bitter to you, the stew should not taste bitter.

You can either use celery root, young turnips, or potatoes in addition to parsnips and carrots. If you use turnips, make sure you only use young turnips, which are smaller and sweeter than regular turnips. Regular turnips can be quite bitter.


  • 2 Tbsp butter
  • 2 pounds (900 g) well marbled chuck beef roast, cut into 2-inch pieces
  • Salt
  • 2 cups chopped onion (about 1 large onion)
  • 2 celery stalks, chopped
  • 2 Tbsp tomato paste
  • 1 pint (16 ounces, 475 ml) Guinness extra stout (make sure you use extra stout and not draught)
  • 3 cups (700 ml) beef broth
  • 2 large carrots, peeled and cut into chunks
  • 3 to 4 parsnips, peeled and cut into chunks
  • 1/2 pound (280 g) celery root, potatoes, or very young turnips, peeled and cut into chunks
  • 2 teaspoons dried thyme
  • 4 Tbsp chopped fresh parsley (optional)

Special equipment:


1 Brown the beef, transfer to slow cooker: Heat the butter in a large sauté pan over medium-high heat. Brown the beef in the butter, starting with the fattiest pieces of meat, fat side down in the pan. This will allow some beef fat to render out. Work in batches as to not crowd the pan.

Sprinkle salt over the beef as it browns. Once browned on all sides, transfer the beef pieces into a 6-quart or larger slow cooker.

2 Sauté onions and celery, transfer to slow cooker: Add the onions and celery to the pan in which you just browned the beef. Sauté the onions and celery until they begin to brown at the edges, about 5 minutes.

Add the tomato paste and mix well. Cook for a minute or two, then add a little of the Guinness, enough to make it easier for you to scrape up any browned bits at the bottom of the pan.

Transfer the celery and onions into the slow cooker.

3 Add Guinness, broth, root vegetables, thyme, salt: Add the rest of the Guinness, the beef broth, carrots, parsnips, celery root, and thyme to the slow cooker. Add two teaspoons of salt.

4 Cook in slow cooker: Cover and cook on "high" for 4 hours, or "low" for 8 hours. When done, add more salt to taste. If you want, sprinkle with fresh parsley to serve.

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Elise Bauer

Elise Bauer is the founder of Simply Recipes. Elise launched Simply Recipes in 2003 as a way to keep track of her family's recipes, and along the way grew it into one of the most popular cooking websites in the world. Elise is dedicated to helping home cooks be successful in the kitchen. Elise is a graduate of Stanford University, and lives in Sacramento, California.

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107 Comments / Reviews

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Did you make it? Rate it!

  1. Frank Deal

    Used a regal slow cooker for 4 hours followed this to a t

    The beef was thought but the veg wasn’t cooked through.

    Totally baffled and gutted as had people over for dinner.

    Any suggestions or ideas?


    Show Replies (1)
  2. Vicki

    Oh my goodness, this turned out so well! I surprised myself. I had one long lost Guinness Draught left in the fridge and used that instead of the Stout. (Not much of a beer drinker.) I did not have tomato paste but threw in about 4 tablespoons of jar tomato sauce and used ground thyme. No turnips or parsnips. It was not bitter, but had the best flavor of any beef broth stew I have ever made. Definitely making this again!


  3. Jen B.

    I’ve made beef stews a couple of times and always found them to have had too much of a tomatoe base to them. In general I tended to stay away from them but then I thought maybe if I tried an Irish beef stew I’d have better luck. I was very excited when I found this recipe. I made this overnight in my slow cooker and was very disappointed in the am to see that it’s very liquidy. I would classify this as a soup not a stew. I’m giving it one star for falsely stating this is stew when it clearly is not.


    Show Replies (1)
  4. DAVID

    OMG, I made this a first time, and I did add a 1/3rd more Smoked Lamb in with the beef, and used 22 oz of Guinness… then at the end did a corn starch slury to thicken it at the end…. wow. Was better then what I got in an Irish pub I had the day before…. i will be making this again…


    Show Replies (1)
  5. Mabulsa Richie

    This tasted great. I did twiddle with the recipe a little. I used brisket, which worked really well, I reduced the amount of liquid by around half that’s suggested and floured the beef to give a thicker gravy. Oh, also I have a far smaller slow cooker (just over 3 quarts) so halved the recipe only to find that the full amount would have likely fit just fine.


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