Hearty and Warm Authentic Irish Lamb Stew Recipe

Greetings, my dear readers! Allow me to introduce you to an exquisite recipe that will fill your hearts and bellies with warmth and satisfaction. I have prepared for you a traditional Irish Lamb Stew, infused with one of the most iconic symbols of Ireland – Guinness.

One hot bowl of this hearty stew will take you back in time to the rolling green hills of Ireland and transport your taste buds on a journey filled with savory meat, root vegetables, barley, and the smooth, velvety flavor of stout.

This Irish Lamb Stew is not like any other stew you’ve tasted before; it’s cooked slowly to perfection, allowing the flavors to combine into a delectable dish that will leave you craving for more.

So let us embark on this culinary journey together and follow my lead as I guide you through every step of making this authentic traditional Irish Lamb Stew recipe. It’s an ideal meal for any occasion – from a family dinner on a chilly night to a St. Patrick’s Day celebration, or even when entertaining guests.

I promise you that by the end of this recipe, your stomachs will be full, and your hearts will be warmed by the taste of Ireland. So grab a bowl and let’s begin!

Why You’ll Love This Recipe

Authentic Irish Lamb Stew (With Guinness)
Authentic Irish Lamb Stew (With Guinness)

My dear readers, let me convince you that this authentic Irish Lamb Stew (With Guinness) recipe is one you truly must try. This stew boasts a rich and savory depth of flavor that will transport your taste buds straight to the emerald hills of Ireland.

Firstly, the tender chunks of lamb shoulder are slow-simmered with pearl barley, root vegetables like celery, parsnips and carrots, and a medley of fresh herbs such as thyme, rosemary, and parsley. The inclusion of star anise and bay leaf adds an aromatic element to the dish, making it simply irresistible.

But what sets this stew apart from others is the use of a special ingredient: Guinness stout. The dark and malty brew adds richness and complexity to the dish, enhancing the natural flavors of the other ingredients. It’s no wonder that Guinness is a beloved beverage in Ireland, as well as an integral component of their cuisine.

If you’re a fan of hearty stews and robust flavors, then this recipe is perfect for you. Not only is it deeply satisfying and comforting, but it’s also easy to make – simply toss everything together in a pot and let it simmer for a few hours (or utilize a pressure or slow cooker).

In summary, this authentic Irish Lamb Stew (With Guinness) recipe is a true staple of traditional Irish cooking that should not be missed. Its enticing flavor profile combined with its simplicity to prepare makes this hearty meal a winner. So grab your apron and get ready to savor every last bite – you won’t regret it!

Ingredient List

 A hearty bowl of Irish Lamb Stew with Guinness to warm your soul on a chilly day.
A hearty bowl of Irish Lamb Stew with Guinness to warm your soul on a chilly day.

Get Your Shopping List Ready!

Here is a list of ingredients you will need to make this hearty and flavorful Irish Lamb Stew with Guinness:

  • 3 pounds of lamb (shoulder or stew meat)
  • 2 1/2 teaspoons of salt, divided
  • 1 teaspoon of black pepper
  • 3 tablespoons of vegetable oil, divided
  • 2 onions, chopped
  • 3 garlic cloves, minced
  • 3 tablespoons of flour
  • 2 cups of beef broth
  • 1 1/2 cups of Guinness beer
  • 4 carrots, peeled and cut in 1-inch pieces
  • 4 celery stalks, cut in 1-inch pieces
  • 3 parsnips, peeled and cut in 1-inch pieces
  • 2 pounds of Russet potatoes, peeled and cut in 2-inch pieces
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 2 star anise
  • 1/4 cup of pearl barley
  • 3 tablespoons of tomato paste
  • Fresh parsley to garnish (optional)

Make sure to double-check your pantry before heading out to the store.

The Recipe How-To

 Tender chunks of lamb soaked in a rich and flavorful sauce.
Tender chunks of lamb soaked in a rich and flavorful sauce.

Now that we have all our ingredients prepped and ready, it’s time to get started with the recipe. Follow these steps to make a hearty and delicious Authentic Irish Lamb Stew (With Guinness) Recipe at home.

Step 1: Brown the lamb

First things first, let’s bring out the rich flavors of our stew by browning the lamb shoulder. Start by heating 2 tablespoons of olive oil in a large pot or Dutch oven over medium-high heat. Once the oil is hot, add the lamb and brown it in batches until golden brown on all sides, for about 5 minutes per batch. Remove the lamb from the pot and set it aside.

Step 2: Sauté the vegetables

Next, let’s give our vegetables a little love. In the same pot, add another tablespoon of olive oil if needed, and sauté the chopped onion, celery, parsnips, and carrots until softened, for about 5 minutes.

Step 3: Add seasonings

Once the vegetables are softened, return the lamb to the pot with them. Add in 3 cloves of minced garlic, 1 tablespoon of tomato paste, 2 teaspoons of turbinado sugar, 2 bay leaves, 1 star anise, and a few sprigs each of fresh thyme, rosemary, and parsley. Stir everything together to combine well.

Step 4: Add Guinness and other liquids

Pour in one can (14 oz) of Guinness Stout over everything else in the pot. Let it come to a simmer and scrape up any browned bits from the bottom of the pot- they contain so much flavor! Now let’s bring on more liquid – we recommend adding 4 cups of homemade beef broth to help turn this into a stew.

Step 5: Add barley and potatoes

Stir in 1 cup of pearl barley, cover, and simmer for 30 minutes. After that, add in 2-3 large russet potatoes cut into 2-inch pieces. Simmer everything together for another hour to let the flavors blend together.

Step 6: Thicken and adjust seasoning

It’s time to thicken this stew. Sift in 3 tablespoons of all-purpose flour and whisk it with 1/2 cup of cold water until smooth. Pour the mixture into the pot and stir until it has thickened up, about 10-15 minutes. Now is your chance to taste-test – adjust the salt and pepper as much or as little as you want.

And there you have it! Your very own Authentic Irish Lamb Stew (With Guinness) Recipe ready to serve up in bowls with some crusty bread or mashed potatoes on the side

Substitutions and Variations

 The perfect balance of savory and sweet in every spoonful.
The perfect balance of savory and sweet in every spoonful.

Dear readers, in case you’re concerned about the traditional ingredients of the Irish lamb stew with Guinness but still want to give it a try, don’t worry. There are some substitutions and variations available that will not compromise the authenticity of the recipe.

Instead of lamb shoulder, you can use beef stew meat or even lamb chops. The cooking time may differ slightly but the results will still be delicious. You can also consider adding root vegetables such as turnips or rutabagas for extra texture and flavor to your liking.

If pearl barley is not available in your local market, you can use other grains such as quinoa, farro, or even couscous as a substitute. These grains provide similar texture and nutritional values that go very well with this hearty stew.

Furthermore, if you’re looking to add a bit more depth in terms of flavors, you may consider adding red wine to your lamb stew recipe. It’s an excellent variation for people who enjoy a hearty and aromatic dish with a full-bodied flavor.

Finally, Mashed potatoes are one of the classic serving options for Irish lamb stew. But if you prefer something more textured than creamy mashed potatoes, try serving it over soda bread. The light honey-sweetened soda bread is easy to make and goes perfectly with the rich flavors of the savory Irish lamb stew.

By experimenting with these substitutions and variations, you can create your own unique version of this classic Irish dish while maintaining its flavorful essence.

Serving and Pairing

 A traditional Irish dish that's both comforting and delicious.
A traditional Irish dish that’s both comforting and delicious.

Now that your authentic Irish lamb stew with Guinness is ready, it’s time to think about how to serve and pair this hearty dish. This traditional Irish stew is perfect for a cozy dinner party or a St. Patrick’s Day celebration with friends and family.

For an authentic and hearty meal, serve the lamb stew with pearl barley, a side of freshly baked soda bread, or mashed potatoes. The starch will help balance out the richness of the lamb and Guinness broth.

If you’re looking to add some veggies to your meal, roasted root vegetables like carrots, parsnips, and celery would be a great addition.

As for wine pairings, a full-bodied red wine like Cabernet Sauvignon or Syrah would complement the flavors in the lamb stew. For beer lovers, try serving a pint of Guinness stout alongside your meal.

This dish is also perfect for leftovers – just reheat in a pot on medium heat and add some additional stock or water if needed.

Overall, this authentic Irish lamb stew with Guinness is sure to be a crowd-pleaser.

Make-Ahead, Storing and Reheating

 Your taste buds won't know what hit them with this explosion of flavor.
Your taste buds won’t know what hit them with this explosion of flavor.

Now that you have prepared this authentic Irish Lamb Stew with Guinness, you might be wondering if it is possible to make it ahead of time, store it or reheat it especially if you are planning to use it for your next meal. Here are some recommendations to help you out:


This Irish lamb stew tastes great when made ahead of time because the flavors get better over time. If you want to get the best results, I recommend making it a day or two in advance and letting it chill in the fridge overnight. Just make sure to cool the stew down completely before storing it.


When storing leftover lamb stew, place the cooled stew in an airtight container and store it in the fridge for up to three days. If you want to keep it longer than three days, transfer it to an airtight container and freeze for up to three months.


To reheat your refrigerated Irish lamb stew, I recommend placing your desired portion in a pot with a lid and warming it over low heat until heated through. Alternatively, you can microwave individual portions on high for 1-2 minutes.

If reheating frozen stew, simply transfer the container from the freezer to the fridge overnight and then reheat as directed above. Avoid reheating in a microwave straight from frozen as this could lead to uneven heating.

Overall, this hearty Irish Lamb Stew is perfect for making ahead of time so that you can take advantage of its improved flavors over time. With these tips for storing and reheating, you can enjoy this delicious stew anytime without compromising on taste or quality.

Tips for Perfect Results

 Don't be fooled by its humble appearance, this dish packs a punch!
Don’t be fooled by its humble appearance, this dish packs a punch!

Preparing the perfect Irish lamb stew with Guinness requires some tips and tricks that I have acquired through many years of practice. Follow these recommendations to ensure that your stew is hearty, flavorful, and tender.

First and foremost, when selecting the lamb for your stew, opt for bone-in pieces of lamb shoulder or lamb chops. The bones add flavor to the broth as well as make the meat more tender when cooking. Additionally, choose fresh herbs such as rosemary, thyme, and parsley instead of dried ones to enhance the dish’s flavors.

For the onions in your stew, it is best to use yellow onions rather than white onions because they have a more robust flavor that can hold up to the long cooking time. Cut them uniformly into small pieces to distribute their flavor evenly throughout the stew.

When it comes to salt, add it gradually in small amounts while cooking until you achieve the right balance of flavors. You don’t want your stew to be too salty or not seasoned enough.

If you prefer a thicker broth in your Irish lamb stew with Guinness, coat your lamb pieces with flour before browning them at high heat. This will also add depth of flavor and color to the finished dish.

Another suggestion is to add root vegetables like parsnips and carrots early in the cooking process, as they take longer to cook than other vegetables such as potatoes. Adding them early ensures that they become soft and delicious without disintegrating.

Lastly, resist the urge to lift your lid too often while simmering your stew. Lifting it too frequently may cause fluctuations in temperature and extended cooking time. Ideally, you want to keep a steady temperature throughout the cooking process by leaving the lid on until finished.

By following these tips for producing excellent results when making this traditional Irish dish, you are sure to have a delicious meal that everyone will love!


Now that you know how to make a delicious Irish Lamb Stew with Guinness, it’s time for some Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) regarding this recipe. Here are some of the most commonly asked questions and answers that people have regarding this dish. These FAQs will help you troubleshoot any issues that you might face while cooking this lamb stew and ensure that you can enjoy a perfect bowl of hearty Irish Lamb Stew every time!

What is traditional Irish stew made of?

While some may insist that a true Irish stew is limited to mutton, onions, and potatoes, it is widely accepted that a variety of vegetables such as carrots, celery, turnips, parsnips, and cabbage can also be included in this classic dish. In fact, it is quite common to find a range of vegetables used in an authentic Irish stew recipe.

What is the difference between Irish stew and regular stew?

When it comes to comparing a beef stew and an Irish stew, it’s all about the broth and the kind of meat you use. Typically, beef stew includes small, cubed parts of beef such as chuck roast or a stew meat. But for an Irish stew, the traditional choice is mutton or lamb, and the broth should be thick and beer-based.

What are the ingredients in Guinness stew?

When it comes to cooking traditional British dishes, there are a few key ingredients that shouldn’t be overlooked. Garlic and onion are absolute essentials in any savory recipe, as they are known to add depth and richness to the dish. Adding bacon is also a great way to add an extra layer of flavor that will make your meal stand out. If you’re looking to add some extra veggies to your recipe, carrots and celery are always a good option. And if you’re making a hearty stew, don’t forget to add some potatoes too!

To create a thick and flavorful sauce, you’ll need to add some flour and tomato paste. The flour will serve as a thickener and give the sauce a creamy texture, while the tomato paste will infuse the dish with a rich, savory flavor. And if you’re looking to give your meal a unique twist, try adding some Guinness beer to the mix. The malty, slightly bitter flavor of the beer will complement the other ingredients and give your dish a depth of flavor that can’t be beat. To create the braising liquid, you’ll need to add some broth or liquid stock. Use this to add moisture and create a rich, flavorful cooking environment for your ingredients.

What is the Gaelic name for Irish stew?

The iconic Irish dish, also known as “ballymaloe” or “stobhach gaelach”, features juicy chunks of either lamb or mutton along with potatoes, onions, and parsley – all cooked together to create a warm and hearty meal.

Bottom Line

In conclusion, this Authentic Irish Lamb Stew (With Guinness) recipe is sure to be a hit among your family and friends. The combination of tender lamb, flavorful vegetables, and the rich taste of Guinness makes this dish perfect for any occasion.

Not only is it easy to prepare, but it also allows for substitutions and variations that can cater to your personal taste preferences. Whether you choose to use lamb shoulder or chops, or add more root vegetables such as parsnips, this recipe can be adapted to suit your needs.

So why not give this traditional Irish stew a try? Your taste buds will thank you. And who knows, you might even want to make it a yearly St. Patrick’s Day tradition alongside some homemade soda bread and mashed potatoes.

Remember to follow our tips for perfect results, and don’t hesitate to refer back to our FAQ section if you have any questions along the way.

But most importantly, enjoy the process of creating this hearty and delicious dish with loved ones around you. Because at the end of the day, food is about connecting with others and making memories that will last a lifetime.

Authentic Irish Lamb Stew (With Guinness)

Authentic Irish Lamb Stew (With Guinness) Recipe

If you are using the barley (which you should do if you want a more authentic Irish country stew), cook it for 20 minutes in 3 cups of lamb or beef stock. You'll add to the stew later. Serve with mashed potatoes (if desired) and Irish soda bread
Course Main Course
Cuisine Irish
Keyword < 4 Hours, European, Lamb/Sheep, Meat
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 1 hour 30 minutes
Calories 994.3kcal


  • 2 lbs lamb shoulder, cubed
  • 1/2 cup flour
  • 3 large russet potatoes, peeled and cubed
  • 2 large carrots, peeled and sliced into coins
  • 2 -3 small parsnips
  • 2 stalks celery, cut into 1/2-inch slices
  • 25 white pearl onions
  • 2 teaspoons turbinado sugar
  • 3 -4 garlic cloves, minced
  • 2 bunches fresh rosemary
  • 2 bunches fresh thyme
  • 2 bunches fresh parsley
  • 1 star anise
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1 quart lamb or 1 quart beef stock
  • 12 ounces Guinness stout
  • salt & freshly ground black pepper, to taste
  • 1/2 cup pearl barley (optional)


  • Cut off some of the parsley leaves and chop enough to make 2 tablespoons; reserve.
  • Cut off some parsley stems, and tie them into a bundle with rosemary,thyme surrounding the star anise and the bay leaf; reserve.
  • Toss the meat with salt and flour, and brown the meat in a little oil. Remove and reserve, shaking off excess.
  • Add the pearl onion, and brown. Once brown, add brown sugar and caramelize, scraping up meaty bits.
  • Add the garlic, carrots, parsnips and celery to the pan and sauté, tossing to coat with the fat.
  • Add the Guinness and deglaze, scraping up any caramelized meat juices.
  • Addthe barley if you're using it.
  • Add enough stock to barely cover, cook over medium heat until just boiling, then reduce heat to very low and simmer 2 - 3 hours, until the meat is tender, stirring occasionally. If you like, you can put into oven at 325 for 1.5 hours.
  • Check seasonings, add salt and pepper to taste, then remove from heat, stir in parsley.
  • Serve with plenty of Irish brown or white soda bread, and more Guinness if you like.


Serving: 1353g | Calories: 994.3kcal | Carbohydrates: 91.6g | Protein: 37.1g | Fat: 33.4g | Saturated Fat: 14.3g | Cholesterol: 109.2mg | Sodium: 186.6mg | Fiber: 10.3g | Sugar: 13g

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