Recipe: Beef And Ale Stew


Looking for a real winter warmer? A great traditional British dish that requires minimal effort, other than planning ahead and sticking it in the oven nice and early. Simple, cheap and tasty recipe. What more do you want?


  • 2 large onions
  • 3 carrots
  • 3 sticks celery
  • 2 shots vegetable oil
  • 1 tbsp heaped tomato purée
  • 1 tbsp heaped plain flour
  • 1 can Guinness® beer (440ml)
  • 250 ml beef stock
  • 1 kg diced shin beef
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 1 sprig fresh thyme
  • 3 cloves garlic
  • 1 dumpling mix
  • 150 g beef suet
  • 150 g self-raising flour
  • 1 tsp salt and pepper
  • 2 tbsp horseradish sauce
Preheat oven

Step 1

Preheat Oven

Preheat the oven to 160°C.

Peel and fry veg

Step 2

Peel And Fry Veg

Hack up the peeled onions, carrots and celery into thumb-sized pieces. Dump into a large casserole pan with the oil and fry over high heat, allowing the veg to brown and scraping up the browned bits from the bottom of the pan as you go.

Add tomato purée and flour

Step 3

Add Tomato Purée And Flour

Add the tomato purée and flour once the vegetables are coloured, stirring until the flour is all mixed in.

Add beef and Guinness®

Step 4

Add Beef And Guinness®

Pour the Guinness® into the casserole, followed by the beef stock. Bring up to a gentle simmer and add the beef to the casserole. Season with salt and pepper and add the bay leaves, thyme and garlic.


Step 5


Cover the casserole with a lid and place in the preheated oven to cook for 2–3 hours, checking occasionally to stir and make sure the side isn’t catching and burning.

Prep dumplings

Step 6

Prep Dumplings

Place the suet in a bowl and sift in the flour. Using one clean hand, mix the suet and flour well, then season with salt, freshly ground black pepper and horseradish sauce. Create a ‘well’ in the centre of the mixture and add water a bit at a time. Mix with your hands until you get a firm dough that comes away cleanly from the sides of the bowl. Turn out the dough onto a clean board and sprinkle over some flour.

Add dumplings to stew

Step 7

Add Dumplings To Stew

Roll the dough out into a sausage shape, then form into 10 golf ball sized dumplings (they’ll double in size when cooking). Carefully drop the dumplings into the stew for the last half an hour of cooking.


Step 8


Serve the dumplings and beef stew in large bowls with fresh veg. You’ll know when the beef’s done because it will almost fall apart when touched. The dumplings should be light and fluffy. Serves 5-6

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