Slow Cooker Irish Stew

Since it’s St. Patrick’s Day, I figured it would be the perfect time for a recipe from Ireland. Although I’ve never had corned beef and cabbage, it really does not sound appealing to me, so for this St. Paddy’s day, I went a different route. 

Ireland is one of the countries that is near the very top of my travel bucket list. Just seeing pictures and hearing stories from friends who have been makes me really want to go there myself. It is an ancient country that has a long and storied history that I encourage you to research if you have the time. It is really such a beautiful place, based on what I’ve seen, and I would love to spend some time there. My recipe today is for a traditional Irish Stew. I remember when I was in college, a friend of mine made a pot of Irish stew for a group of us and it was really good. I don’t remember how he made it, but I do remember liking it. 

This dish is indicitive of traditional Irish cuisine, which has been largely dictated by crops and herds tended in the country. As with many “folk recipes” there really isn’t one definitive way to make an Irish stew, but lots of people have an opinion on it! Purists tend to stick with lamb and potatoes, but from what I’ve seen in my research, it should be OK to add a few ingredients to liven it up a bit. 

Here’s my take on Irish stew:

 1 pound lamb, cut into 1″ cubes (you can use beef, if you’d rather)

3 large carrots, cut into rounds (you can do parsnips too if you want)

2 medium russet potatoes, cut into cubes

**Just make sure all your pieces are roughly the same size

1 onion, diced

4 cloves garlic, smashed

2 teaspoons dried thyme

salt and pepper to taste

1 tablespoon tomato paste

1 12oz bottle Guinness Stout

3 cups beef broth

2 bay leaves

In skillet, season the meat with salt and pepper and brown on all sides. You aren’t trying to cook it all the way, just a nice sear on the outside.  

Transfer the meat to your slow cooker. If you have one that allows you to use the insert on the stovetop, you can just do it all in there and not bother with another dish. 

To the slow cooker with the meat add your chopped carrots, potatoes, onions, garlic, thyme, tomato paste, and a little more salt and pepper.  

 Add your liquids: the Guinness and beef broth. Stir together and add two bay leaves.  

Cook on low for 8-10 hours. 

This was so savory and just delicious! The veggies were soft and flavorful. The meat was fall-apart tender.

You can’t taste the Guinness much, except for a slight underlying taste that kinda just makes you wonder what it is. 

This is a keeper of a recipe for sure! I just wish I had made it last week when it was cold and rainy, not 75 and sunny like today! 


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