Square image of a bowl of beef and Guinness Stew with mashed potatoes and green cabbage

Beef and Guinness Stew with Crispy Onions

Rich, melt-in-the-mouth beef stew made with Guinness and topped with crispy fried onions
Course Dinner
Cuisine British
Keyword Autumn food, cockpot, Guinness, winter food
Prep Time 30 minutes
Cook Time 5 hours
Total Time 5 hours 30 minutes
Servings 8 servings
Author Nicky Corbishley


Beef and Guinness Stew

  • 2 tbsp. vegetable oil
  • 4 pounds (1.8kg) braising/stewing beef chopped into bite-size chunks
  • 2 tbsp plain (all purpose) flour mixed with a good pinch of salt and pepper
  • 2 large onions
  • 5 cloves garlic peeled and crushed
  • 4 carrots ,peeled and chopped into chunks
  • 7 oz (200g) mushrooms , sliced
  • 28 floz (800ml) Guinness
  • 1 2/3 cups (400ml) beef stock water plus 2 stock cubes is fine
  • 2 tbsp tomato puree/paste
  • 4 bay leaves
  • 2 tsp dark brown sugar
  • 3/4 tsp salt
  • 3/4 tsp crushed black pepper

Crispy Onions:

  • 1 large onion peeled and sliced thinly
  • 2 tbsp plain (all purpose) flour
  • 1 pinch salt
  • 1/4 tsp garlic salt
  • 1/4 tsp black pepper
  • 1/4 tsp paprika
  • Vegetable oil for deep frying you'll need enough to fill a large pan 1/3 full - I use approx. 3 cups

To serve:

  • Sliced spring greens, sauteed in butter
  • Mashed Potatoes


  • Turn on the sear functions on the Crockpot and add the oil.
  • Dust the chunks of beef in the seasoned flour and fry for 7-8 minutes until golden brown all over. 
  • Add the onions and cook for a further 5 minutes. 
  • Stir in the garlic. Add in the Guinness, stock, tomato puree, bay leaves, sugar, salt and pepper. Bring to the boil then change the setting to slow cook. Choose either high for 4 1/2 -5 hours or low for 6-7 hours.
  • When your stew is almost ready, start preparing the crispy onions.
  • Heat the oil in a large pan (make sure there pan is filled no more than 1/3 full to prevent it from bubbling over).
  • Mix the onions slices with the flour, salt, pepper, garlic salt and paprika. Test the oil is hot enough by placing one of the onion slices in the pan. It should bubble instantly.
  • Cook the onions in 3 or 4 batches for about 2-4 minutes until golden and crispy. Be careful when putting the onions in the oil as the oil will bubble fiercly. When cooked, place on some kitchen roll to drain.
  • Dish out the stew (removing the bay leaves first), and place a heap of onions on top of each dish. Serve with mashed potato and green veg.


Can I make it gluten free?

Yes, replace the Guinness with gluten free pale ale (Brewdog do one) or gluten free golden ale.
Replace the plain (all-purpose) flour with gluten free flour blend.
Ensure the stock and tomato puree/paste is a gluten free version too.

Can I make it alcohol free?

Yes, replace the Guinness with the same amount of beef stock. I also like to give it an extra kick by adding half a tablespoon of vinegar (the picking juice out of jarred beetroot is particularity good).

Can I make it ahead?

Yes - this stew takes a while too cook, so start it in the morning, and it will be ready for dinner. If you want to make it the day before, simply cook, cool, cover and refrigerate. Then reheat until piping hot the next day.

Will it freeze?

Yes. Leftovers can be cooled, covered and frozen. Defrost thoroughly in the fridge overnight, then reheat until piping hot.
.Nutritional Information is per serving, allowing for 3 tbsps of oil being absorbed during the cooking of crispy onions & without serving suggestions of mashed potato and green veg. 

Nutritional Information

Calories: 559kcal | Carbohydrates: 12g | Protein: 64g | Fat: 26g | Saturated Fat: 13g | Cholesterol: 176mg | Sodium: 642mg | Potassium: 765mg | Fiber: 2g | Sugar: 4g | Vitamin A: 5150IU | Vitamin C: 6.4mg | Calcium: 37mg | Iron: 6mg
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