Delicious Irish Lamb Stew Recipe You’ll Love

Are you tired of the same old boring meals? Want to try something new and exciting for your taste buds? Look no further than my Irish Stout Lamb Stew Recipe. This deliciously hearty and flavorful stew is a perfect meal for St. Patrick’s Day or any cozy night in.

My recipe incorporates traditional Irish ingredients, such as lamb shoulder, Guinness stout beer, and pearl barley, giving you a truly authentic taste of Ireland. Slow cooking the lamb in this rich and flavorful broth brings out the best flavors of the dish, making it an easy yet impressive culinary feat.

Not only is this dish delicious, but it’s also a healthy option compared to other heavier stews. With fresh vegetables like celery, onion, parsnips and carrots, and lean lamb meat providing protein and iron, you can indulge in a hearty meal without feeling guilty.

Don’t hesitate any longer- try my Irish Stout Lamb Stew Recipe today. It’s an easy Irish classic with a modern twist that is sure to impress even the toughest critics.

Why You’ll Love This Recipe

Irish Stout Lamb Stew
Irish Stout Lamb Stew

Let me tell you why I believe this Irish Stout Lamb Stew recipe is worth your time and effort. First of all, this is not your ordinary lamb stew recipe. Instead of using a traditional broth or water as the base, we use Guinness stout beer to give it a unique and flavorful twist. The flavors are deep, bold and satisfying, perfect for any meat lover seeking a hearty meal.

Additionally, the combination of tender lamb meat with vegetables like carrots, onions, celery and parsnips creates a harmonious blend of textures and flavors that will have you savouring every bite. I also add pearl barley to the mix, which gives the stew an added layer of texture and taste.

One great thing about this stew is that it’s versatile. You can make it ahead of time, store it in the fridge or freezer for later, or reheat it for busy weeknight dinners or other occasions. Just like good wine, this Irish lamb stew gets better with time and reheating.

Finally, with St Patrick’s Day around the corner or any day really, this hearty meal is perfect to serve to family and friends over warm memories or around a dinner table garnished with soda bread. It will definitely be a crowd-pleaser – perhaps more so than traditional Irish stews.

In short, if you’re looking for a new take on a classic dish that’s packed with flavour and satisfying aromas enhancing your overall dining pleasure while being easy to prepare and easy on your wallet – I have you covered!

Ingredient List

 Tender lamb is slow cooked till it falls off the bone.
Tender lamb is slow cooked till it falls off the bone.

The Ingredients You’ll Need

  • 2 pounds lamb stew meat cut into 1-2 inch pieces
  • 3 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • 2 cups beef broth
  • 1 can stout beer (such as Guiness)
  • 4 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 large onion, diced
  • 2 medium celery stalks, diced
  • 2 medium carrots, sliced into chunks
  • 2 medium parsnips, sliced into chunks
  • 1 cup pearl barley
  • 4 sprigs fresh thyme
  • 2 sprigs fresh rosemary
  • 1/4 cup fresh parsley, chopped
  • Salt and fresh ground black pepper to taste
  • 1 can frozen baby peas, thawed

The Recipe How-To

 The aroma of Guinness Stout will fill your home as this stew simmers.
The aroma of Guinness Stout will fill your home as this stew simmers.

Now that we’ve covered the ingredient list, let’s dive into the nitty-gritty of the Irish Stout Lamb Stew Recipe. Follow me, and we will explore how to create a hearty and comforting stew that will leave your taste buds begging for more.

Preparing the Lamb

  • Step 1: Cut 2 pounds of lamb shoulder into 1-2 inch pieces.
  • Step 2: Dredge the lamb in flour that has been seasoned with salt, freshly ground black pepper, thyme, and rosemary.
  • Step 3: In a Dutch oven or heavy-bottomed pot, heat 2 tablespoons of olive oil over medium heat until hot.
  • Step 4: Add the lamb in batches to ensure an even sear. Cook for about 3-4 minutes per batch until well browned. Remove from pot and set aside.

The Guinness Irish Stew

  • Step 5: Add 2 diced onions to the pot along with 4 sliced garlic cloves and sauté for approximately five minutes until softened.
  • Step 6: Add two sliced carrots, two sliced celery stalks, one parsnip peeled and diced into small cubes.
  • Step 7: Add more fresh thyme and rosemary to the pot, stir ingredients thoroughly.
  • Step 8: Return the lamb to the pot adding half of a cup of beef broth as well as a bottle of Guinness stout beer
  • Step 9 : Use a wooden spoon to scrape up any browned bits sticking to the bottom of the pot. Stir everything together before turning up the heat to bring it to a boil.
  • Step 10 : Reduce heat and simmer with lid on for approximately two hours or until meat is tender.
  • Step11 : After two hours have passed, add one cup of pearl barley to the pot along with a cup of frozen baby peas and continue to simmer for another 30-40 minutes.
  • Step 12: Before serving, check the seasonings, add more salt or freshly ground black pepper if necessary. Garnish with fresh parsley.

This easy Irish lamb stew recipe is perfect for St. Patrick’s Day celebration or any day you crave a traditional Irish meal.

Substitutions and Variations

 Whether you're Irish or not, this hearty lamb stew is perfect for any occasion.
Whether you’re Irish or not, this hearty lamb stew is perfect for any occasion.

If you’re looking to make variations to this Irish Stout Lamb Stew Recipe, there are quite a few options to help meet your preferences or accommodate what you have on hand.

For instance, if you want to adjust the flavors of the stew, you could try adding more spices like cumin, coriander, or cinnamon. You can also use different herbs, such as thyme, mint, or oregano, in place of rosemary and parsley. Or, if you have fresh herbs on hand that need using up, don’t hesitate to throw them in!

Another option is to swap out some of the vegetables used in the recipe. While parsnips and carrots add sweetness to the dish when cooked along with the lamb shoulder and onions, feel free to try other root vegetables like potatoes or turnips instead. You can also add green beans or frozen baby peas at the end of the cooking process for an additional pop of color and texture.

Moreover, if lamb shoulder cut isn’t available or if you prefer beef or chicken instead of lamb meat in your stew recipe, go ahead and use these alternatives. However, keep in mind that using beef broth may result in a sweeter stew than Guinness stout; therefore, adjust the seasoning accordingly.

Lastly, serving suggestions offer a variety of choices. Instead of accompanying your Irish Stout Lamb Stew with plain bread or toasted baguette slices as a side dish, take things up a notch with warm soda bread or crusty ciabatta bread topped with ricotta cheese and honey. Alternatively, you can serve the stew over creamy mashed potatoes for a unique variation on Shepherd’s Pie.

Remember that cooking is an art – don’t be afraid to make changes and get creative with your recipe!

Serving and Pairing

 A satisfying bowl of comfort food, ready in under 2 hours.
A satisfying bowl of comfort food, ready in under 2 hours.

This hearty Irish Stout Lamb Stew is perfect for chilly weather and can be served as a main course. For a classic Irish meal, pair the stew with some freshly baked soda bread or crusty French bread to soak up all of the savory flavors.

To complement the richness of the lamb stew, consider serving it alongside a crisp and refreshing green salad. You can also add some roasted vegetables on the side, such as asparagus or Brussels sprouts, for some extra texture and nutrition.

For wine lovers, try serving this stew with a full-bodied red wine like Cabernet Sauvignon or Merlot. The bold flavors of the wine will stand up well against the richness of the dish.

If you prefer beer instead, then go for a black and creamy stout, such as Guinness or Murphy’s. These beers have a robust flavor that matches perfectly with the deep and earthy flavors of the stew.

No matter how you choose to serve it, this Irish Stout Lamb Stew is sure to warm you up on a cold day and leave you feeling satisfied and content.

Make-Ahead, Storing and Reheating

 This stew is rich, savory and full of deep flavors.
This stew is rich, savory and full of deep flavors.

One of the great things about Irish Stout Lamb Stew is that it can be easily made ahead of time, stored and reheated without losing any of its delicious flavors. This also makes it a perfect go-to recipe for busy weeknights, or for entertaining friends and family.

To make the process even easier, I recommend making the stew up to two days before you plan on serving it. Once cooked, let the stew cool completely before transferring it to an airtight container and refrigerating it. Keep in mind that the longer the stew sits in the refrigerator, the more flavorful it becomes.

When ready to reheat, simply place the desired amount of stew in a pot over medium heat. If the stew has thickened while sitting in the fridge, add some water or broth to thin it out. Be sure to stir occasionally to prevent sticking and ensure that everything heats evenly.

If you’re entertaining guests, you can also serve this stew from a slow cooker on low heat so it stays warm throughout the evening. The stew pairs well with some fresh homemade soda bread or crusty baguette.

Remember to store any leftover stew in an airtight container and refrigerate promptly. It can be stored in the fridge for up to three days or frozen for up to three months for later enjoyment.

Tips for Perfect Results

 A bowl of Irish hospitality with the perfect balance of tender lamb and hearty vegetables.
A bowl of Irish hospitality with the perfect balance of tender lamb and hearty vegetables.

When it comes to cooking lamb, the key is not to overcook it. Overcooking will result in tough and chewy meat that won’t be enjoyable to eat. One of the easiest ways to ensure perfect results is to use a meat thermometer. When the internal temperature reaches 145°F for medium-rare, 160°F for medium, or 170°F for well done, remove the lamb from the heat immediately.

Another tip for ensuring tender meat is to brown the lamb before cooking it in the stew. Browning adds flavor and caramelizes the surface of the meat, resulting in a more complex taste.

Additionally, adding acid to the stew can help break down the connective tissue in the lamb and make it more tender. A splash of red wine vinegar or a squeeze of lemon juice can work wonders in this regard.

When working with pearl barley, make sure to soak it overnight before using it in the stew. This will help reduce cooking time and ensure that it cooks evenly. Also, be sure not to overcook the barley, as this can result in a mushy consistency.

Finally, stir your stew occasionally during cooking to prevent sticking or burning on the bottom of the pan. Use a wooden spoon or spatula when stirring to prevent scratching or damaging the surface of your cookware.

By following these tips and tricks, you’ll be able to enjoy a deliciously tender Irish Stout Lamb Stew that is perfect for any occasion!

Bottom Line

In my opinion, this Irish Stout Lamb Stew recipe is an absolute must-try for anyone who loves hearty and authentic Irish cuisine. This recipe takes traditional Irish lamb stew to a whole new level by incorporating the bold and robust flavor of Guinness Stout beer, which beautifully complements the tender lamb meat and chunky vegetables.

This stew is perfect for celebrating St. Patrick’s Day or any day you crave comfort food! With its rich flavor and irresistible aroma, it’s sure to become a family favorite. Plus, it’s a nutritious choice packed with protein, fiber, vitamins and minerals.

I urge you to give this flavorful recipe a try and see for yourself why it’s so beloved in Ireland. It’s a testament to the rich culinary history of the British Isles and will surely impress your family and friends. So don’t wait to get in the kitchen and start whipping up this amazing Irish Stout Lamb Stew!

Irish Stout Lamb Stew

Irish Stout Lamb Stew Recipe

Adapted from Steve Perlstein of the Irish American Heritage Center. I use Guinness Stout in this recipe.
Course Main Course
Cuisine Irish
Keyword < 4 Hours, European, Lamb/Sheep, Meat, St. Patrick's Day, Stew
Prep Time 35 minutes
Cook Time 3 hours
Calories 590kcal


  • 1/2 cup flour
  • 2 tablespoons flour
  • fresh ground black pepper, to taste
  • 3 lbs cubed lamb shoulder
  • 3 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • 2 cups stout beer or 2 cups dark beer
  • 1 lb red potatoes, quartered
  • 3 carrots, peeled and cut into 1 inch chunks
  • 3 parsnips, peeled and cut into 1 inch chunks
  • 1 onion, coarsely chopped
  • 1/2 lb frozen pearl onions
  • 4 stalks celery, cut into 1 inch pieces
  • 3 garlic cloves, finely chopped
  • 3 (14 1/2 ounce) cans beef broth
  • 1 cup pearl barley
  • 12 sprigs parsley
  • 3 sprigs thyme
  • 2 sprigs rosemary
  • 4 ounces frozen baby peas


  • Mix 1/2 cup flour, 1 teaspoon salt and pepper to taste in a resealable bag; add lamb.
  • Shake to coat lamb pieces.
  • Heat oil in a Dutch oven over medium-high heat.
  • Sear the lamb in batches, until browned on all sides, about 4 minutes per batch.
  • Remove each batch to a plate.
  • Stir 2 tablespoons of flour into the Dutch oven.
  • Cook, stirring, over medium heat, 1 minute.
  • Stir in the stout, scraping up the browned bits.
  • Add the parsnips, carrots, onions, celery and garlic.
  • Cook until the liquid is reduced by 1/2, about 20 minutes.
  • Return the meat to the Dutch oven.
  • Add the broth and barley.
  • Tie the parsley, thyme and rosemary in a bundle with kitchen string; add to Dutch oven.
  • Cook, stirring occasionally for 90 minutes.
  • Add potatoes and frozen peas.
  • Cook, stirring for an additional 60 minutes or until the lamb is fork tender.
  • Skim of any fat.
  • Season with salt and pepper to taste.


Serving: 466g | Calories: 590kcal | Carbohydrates: 37.8g | Protein: 29.2g | Fat: 34.1g | Saturated Fat: 13.4g | Cholesterol: 98.2mg | Sodium: 583.6mg | Fiber: 6.1g | Sugar: 4g

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