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Guinness Lamb Stew with Vegetables

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The lamb in this delicious stew is braised in a flavorful Guinness-spiked broth until it almost falls apart.

guinness lamb stew

Admittedly, I don’t do much to celebrate St. Patrick’s Day (other than trying to remember to dress my kids in something green) but I do love the food. To that end, I’ve got two Irish recipes for you this week. First up is this hearty lamb stew with vegetables. The lamb is seared and then braised in a flavorful Guinness-spiked broth until it almost falls apart, and the vegetables are added at just the right time so they don’t get mushy. If you like my Beef Stew with Carrots and Potatoes, you’ll love this recipe too.

What you’ll need to make Guinness Lamb Stew with Vegetables

Begin by selecting the right cut of meat, which is lamb shoulder. Locally, I found it at Whole Foods but it was whole so I had to ask the butcher to cut it up for me. Be sure not to buy leg of lamb — it’s best for roasting or grilling, and won’t get tender in a stew. Have your butcher trim as much of the excess fat off the meat as possible, or you can do it yourself when you get home.

You can see some of the excess fat in the photo below where the yellow arrow is. Simply loosen those little flaps of fat with a knife and they pull right off.

How to make Guinness Lamb Stew with Vegetables

Season the meat with salt and pepper and then brown it in batches in a large pot or Dutch oven.

Be sure the oil is very hot and don’t crowd the pan or the meat won’t sear properly. This step is a bit time consuming but important because it caramelizes the surface of the meat and adds wonderful depth of flavor to the stew.

Set the meat aside, then add the onions and garlic to the pot, along with a few tablespoons of water to loosen the brown bits from the bottom of the pan.

Stir in the tomato paste and cook a few minutes more.

Add the lamb back to the pot and sprinkle it with flour, which will thicken the broth as it cooks.

Cook and stir for for a few minutes until the flour dissolves.

Add the braising liquid, which is simply beef broth, Guinness, water and herbs.

Bring the broth to a boil, then cover and simmer for about an hour and twenty minutes.

Add the carrots and potatoes and continue cooking until the meat is tender and the vegetables are cooked, about 30 minutes more. Be sure to stir it a few times so the vegetables don’t stick to the bottom of the pan.

As you can see below, the broth thickens up nicely as it continues to cook. Right before serving, stir in the frozen green peas. They’ll defrost and cook right in the stew.

You can definitely make this stew a day or two ahead, as the flavor only improves. Just note that the broth thickens up quite a bit in the fridge so you may need to add some water to thin it out.


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Guinness Lamb Stew with Vegetables

The lamb in this delicious stew is braised in a flavorful Guinness-spiked broth until it almost falls apart.

Servings: 4-6
Prep Time: 30 Minutes
Cook Time: 2 Hours 30 Minutes
Total Time: 3 Hours


  • 3 pounds lamb shoulder, well-trimmed and cut into 1½-inch pieces
  • 2 teaspoons salt
  • 1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 3 tablespoons vegetable or olive oil
  • 2 medium yellow onions, cut into 1½-inch
  • 6 cloves garlic, peeled and smashed
  • 3 tablespoons tomato paste
  • ¼ cup all-purpose flour
  • 1 cup Guinness
  • 3 cups beef broth
  • 2 cups water, plus 2 tablespoons more for cooking onions and garlic
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1 small sprig fresh rosemary
  • 2 teaspoons sugar
  • 4 large carrots, peeled and cut into 1-inch chunks on diagonal
  • 1 pound small white boiling potatoes (baby yukons), cut in half
  • 1 cup frozen green peas


  1. Pat the lamb dry and season with salt and pepper. In a large Dutch oven or heavy pot, heat one tablespoon of oil over medium-high heat until hot and shimmering. Brown the lamb in three batches, adding one more tablespoon of oil for each batch. Do not crowd the pan and let the meat develop a brown crust before turning with tongs. It should take 5-8 minutes per batch. Transfer the browned meat to large bowl and set aside.
  2. Add the onions, garlic and 2 tablespoons of water to the pot. Cook until the onions are soft, stirring with a wooden spoon to scrape any brown bits from the bottom of pan, about 5 minutes.
  3. Stir in the tomato paste and cook a few minutes more.
  4. Add the lamb with its juices back to the pan and sprinkle with flour. Stir with a wooden spoon until the flour is dissolved, 1-2 minutes.
  5. Add the Guinness, beef broth, water, bay leaf, rosemary sprig and sugar. Stir with a wooden spoon to loosen any brown bits from the bottom of the pan and bring to a boil. Cover the pot with a lid, turn the heat down to low and simmer for one hour and twenty minutes.
  6. Add the carrots and potatoes to the stew, then cover and continue simmering until the vegetables are cooked and the meat is very tender, 30-40 minutes. (Be sure to stir a few times to prevent vegetables from sticking to bottom.)
  7. Remove the bay leaf and rosemary sprig, and then taste and adjust seasoning if necessary. If serving right away, add the frozen peas and cook until the peas are warmed through. Otherwise, let the stew cool, then cover and store in the refrigerator until ready to serve. Reheat gently on the stovetop and add the peas right before serving.
  8. Make Ahead: This stew can be made a day or two ahead of time and reheated gently on the stovetop. Just be sure to add the peas right before serving so they stay fresh. Also, the broth will thicken in the fridge so it may be necessary to thin it with a bit of water (add it little by little).
  9. Freezer-Friendly Instructions: The stew can be frozen for up to 3 months. Just omit the potatoes because they don’t freeze well. If you’d like, boil some potatoes separately when you defrost the stew and either add them into the stew or serve them on the side.

Pair with

Nutrition Information

Powered by Edamam

  • Per serving (6 servings)
  • Calories: 789
  • Fat: 52g
  • Saturated fat: 20g
  • Carbohydrates: 36g
  • Sugar: 9g
  • Fiber: 6g
  • Protein: 42g
  • Sodium: 1242mg
  • Cholesterol: 150mg

This website is written and produced for informational purposes only. I am not a certified nutritionist and the nutritional data on this site has not been evaluated or approved by a nutritionist or the Food and Drug Administration. Nutritional information is offered as a courtesy and should not be construed as a guarantee. The data is calculated through an online nutritional calculator, Edamam.com. Although I do my best to provide accurate nutritional information, these figures should be considered estimates only. Varying factors such as product types or brands purchased, natural fluctuations in fresh produce, and the way ingredients are processed change the effective nutritional information in any given recipe. Furthermore, different online calculators provide different results depending on their own nutrition fact sources and algorithms. To obtain the most accurate nutritional information in a given recipe, you should calculate the nutritional information with the actual ingredients used in your recipe, using your preferred nutrition calculator.

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  • How long does this recipe take from start to finish if I cube the lamb shoulder myself?
    PS I love ALL of your recipes, and made two Blueberry Coffee Cakes yesterday for visiting friends and family, but made one with fresh strawberries-and they were both amazing!! Thanks for the great job you do, and for sharing your gifts and talents with all of us so generously online!

    • — Pamela R. on April 29, 2023
    • Reply
    • So glad you like the recipes! 🙂
      I’d guesstimate you should allot 3 to 3.5 hours for the stew. Hope you enjoy it!

      • — Jenn on May 1, 2023
      • Reply
  • Hopefully this turns out ok. I had to sub out beef for lamb because I couldn’t find lamb anywhere in time, but it sure smells good thus far!

    Just to note, I had this recipe/website up on my tablet and never before I have been so incredibly frustrated trying to follow along with a recipe, as pop-up ads would fill my screen about as quickly as I could clear them. Seriously, every single time I looked at the screen I had to adjust the window and remove ads just to see what I was trying to read. I realize you make money off this website and I don’t begrudge anyone trying to make a living, but when there are so many pop up ads that you can’t rightly follow the recipe you’ve gone WAY overboard.

    • — Sudz on March 26, 2023
    • Reply
    • Hi Sudz, So sorry for the frustration. Tablets can cause issues when looking at websites, especially if they are turned horizontally.

      • — Jenn on March 27, 2023
      • Reply
    • I have mac book there are ads on the right side , but no pop ups – love so many of your recipes !!

      • — Marilyn Lieberman on September 18, 2023
      • Reply
  • I doubled the recipe for a group of nine to celebrate St. Paddy’s Day and everyone loved it. It was very tasty and the lamb was nice and tender. I used the recipe as stated and I would not change anything. I was asked for the recipe. There were no leftovers and I noticed everyone had more than one helping. I had cavatelli pasta on the side and everyone liked having the stew over that. It paired very well with Irish soda bread to complete the St. Paddy’s Day celebration.

    • — Edie on March 21, 2023
    • Reply
  • I made this pretty much as is and it was very good. When I had a chance to try it again with a twist, I added about 3x the Guinness, reduced the sugar a bit, separated then reduced the braising liquid by about half, recombined, and served on mashed potatoes instead of putting halved potatoes in the stew. It was incredible and I watched people go back for 3 bowls!

    • — Tim K on March 19, 2023
    • Reply
  • Just the most awesome recipe. My husband just loved it. I followed the advice and really browned up the lamb because in Fort McMurray all I could get was a leg roast. He’s said the sauce was the best! The shine on the sauce/gravy was so great for presentation. Thank you!

    • — Colleen Schaffner on March 17, 2023
    • Reply
  • Wonderful! I trimmed off the fat and marinated the meat for four hours in one Tbsp each of coriander, garlic powder, black pepper and paprika along with the beer. I cooked the fat down and removed the cooked gristle. I then used the fat to cook the dredged lamb. I also cooked the vegetables in the fat and added the cooked lamb back to the stew. I then added the marinade beer and broth and tomato paste. I made a slurry from the dredging flour and poured it in at full boil. I added chopped green onions, since I did not have peas. Wonderful recipe! Thank you!!

    • — TK on February 22, 2023
    • Reply
  • I have a question, I have a smoked leg of lamb in my freezer. Do you think that smoked flavor would be too overpowering for this stew, or just add a little extra something? Thank you.

    • — Mistie on October 8, 2022
    • Reply
    • Hi Mistie, I wouldn’t recommend it — sorry!

      • — Jenn on October 11, 2022
      • Reply
  • It was absolutely Delicious. The only thing I did different was add a tablespoon of butter when I added the peas.

    • — Nan on June 5, 2022
    • Reply
  • Followed this recipe exactly (took 4 stores to find lamb shoulder). I have thrown all other recipes out. By far the best!

    • — Maire on March 15, 2022
    • Reply
  • Amazingly delicious! Followed recipe exactly, except I did have to buy bone in shoulder so cut the meat off but threw the bones in the pot, too. And I omitted the potatoes and served over mashed potatoes instead. – great meal for a cold day

    • — JoAnn on March 13, 2022
    • Reply
  • I would like to add parsnips and turnips. Has anyone prepared the recipe with them? Thank you.

    • — MD on February 19, 2022
    • Reply
  • Hi! I’m loving this recipe so far! It’s just in the oven and I’m wishing it was done! Can’t wait to try as it smells delicious.

    • — Beck and Bulow on February 15, 2022
    • Reply
    • Wondering how it would be to cook in the oven instead. What temperature and for how long?

      • — Karen P on March 25, 2022
      • Reply
      • Hi Karen, I’d follow the cooking time and temp from this recipe. Hope you enjoy!

        • — Jenn on March 28, 2022
        • Reply

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