Irish Beef and Guinness Pie is a rich and hearty savory pie made with beef, onions, carrots and Guinness Stout. The filling develops a velvety rich gravy as it simmers on the stove. Puff pastry caps the ramekins for a flaky topping. Serve with some tatties and a pint of Guinness for a complete, traditional Irish meal. What is your favorite Irish recipe?
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Why I Love This Recipe
Recently I had the immense pleasure of visiting a lush, green country full of castles, 700 year old churches, medieval villages and some of the kindest people I have ever met. This intro could have easily described Italy but this time, I was in Ireland.
My travel buddy Janet and I landed in Dublin where we stayed at Jacobs Inn, a modern hostel in an old building. You have the choice of staying in a multiple pod bay or reserving a private double room with en-suite bathroom. We chose the latter and still saved money over a hotel.
Dublin can be an expensive city and staying at Jacobs Inn or nearby Molloy’s Pub is a great solution where you can mingle with the locals as well as immerse yourselves with like-minded travelers from all around the World.
I have many fond memories of Dublin including my first Beef and Guinness Pie. We ended up enjoying a few of these during our trip, we very much enjoyed them. Our first pie was at Molloy’s Pub a few doors down from Jacob’s Inn. A flaky biscuit topped a meat filled ramekin. The richness of the gravy and the super tender beef was perfectly balanced by that biscuit. It was served with ‘chips’ which we know as fries.
I enjoyed recreating this recipe and was surprised at how easy it was to make. Just cook up some onions, beef and bacon, add some beer and simmer for a few hours. The filling goes into ramekins and topped with a flaky dough. It is then baked and that’s it.
What You Will Need to Make Beef and Guinness Pie
- Beef – Any type of marbled beef will work well. I found a nice 2 lb beef roast that had a lot of marbling.
- Butter & Flour – Just a wee bit. Makes for a nice, thick gravy with the stout.
- Smoked Bacon – I always go for the thick cut but any type of smoked bacon will do nicely.
- Onion & Carrots – I used red onion but any type will do.
- Sweet Things – Some people use just plain sugar to counter the bitterness of the stout but I used a wee bit of brown sugar and craisins. Raisins would also do nicely.
- Guinness Stout – This makes a rich, velvety gravy with the beef juices.
- Egg & Pastry – I used a store-bought puff pastry to try to replicate that beautiful biscuit at the pub. I think a flaky biscuit would work well too. Originally this pie was probably made with short crust pastry, the type you would use for apple pie. The egg is just to make the pastry shiny.
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Beef and Guinness Pie Filling
This is where you can actually get creative. Traditionally the filling would be whatever the cook has in their garden. Root vegetables would be common due to Ireland and Scotland’s rainy and cloudy climate. The root veggies include potatoes, carrots, onions. parsnips and turnips or rutabagas.
You can make this vegetarian or vegan by substituting the beef for your favorite protein hacks such as TVP, tempeh, seitan, lentils and beans or go total veggie with mushrooms.
You can also just plus up the veggies that don’t grow well in these areas such as tomatoes and peppers.
Changing the profile wouldn’t be too difficult if you wanted to go Ireland meets Texas kind of situation where the filling includes brisket, BBQ sauce, onions, peppers and a Shiner Beer or Deep Ellum Beer. Don’t go bragging about this copycat variation in Dublin though, they are loud and proud.
What to Serve with Beef and Guinness Pie
This is a very rich and meat intense entree, a nice potato side is a delicious way to sop up the extra gravy. Old fashioned mash potatoes are always a winner. My favorite way of adding some tang to mashed potatoes is to add sour cream.
I always like oven-roasted potatoes as a side and with this meaty Irish pie, it’s just perfect. Batata Harra is a Lebanese-style twice cooked potato where the potatoes are first baked then fried in a skillet with spices and aromatics.
How to Make Beef and Guinness Pie
Tips For Making the Best Beef and Guinness Pie
- Be sure to simmer the filling at least three hours. This will help the beef tenderize and the gravy will thicken nicely.
- Brush beaten egg on your pastry to help it develop a pretty golden and shiny crust.
- Keep a close eye on the pastry when you put it in the oven to make sure it doesn’t burn.
- Cut your meat and chop your carrots into bite size pieces.
- If you aren’t going serve the whole recipe at once, save the filling in the fridge and bake in the ramekins with the pastry when you are ready to serve. This way the pastry will be freshly hot and not soggy.
May the road rise up to meet you.– Irish Blessing
May the wind always be at your back.
May the sun shine warm upon your face,
and rains fall soft upon your fields.
And until we meet again,
May God hold you in the palm of His hand
DO YOU LOVE IRISH RECIPES? – Check out this post on Traditional Irish Recipes for more Irish goodness.
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