Irish Beef Stew (Slow Cooker)

I love slow cooker recipes and when I saw this Drunken Irish Stew on Sydney’s site, Crepes of Wrath, I knew I wanted to make a slow cooker version of it. Who doesn’t love a beef stew? And a beef stew made in a crockpot is a winner! Serve it with a small salad and some crusty bread and you have comfort food and the perfect Sunday dinner on a cold night.

I had to resist opening the slow cooker every hour…the house smelled so good, it took all I could muster to not make a bowl before the 6 or 7 hours was up.

I put all of the veggies in the my crockpot first, then add the meat after it’s browned. Next, the broth you simmered on the stove along with two bay leaves.

The result is a nice medley of tender beef, wonderfully flavored veggies and the broth is so flavorful with both beer and red wine. This is a winner and is going to make it into our regular rotation!

Do you have a slow cooker favorite or a favorite beef stew recipe?

If you make any of recipes and decide to share them on instagram or twitter be sure to tag me @thelittlekitchn and use the hashtag #thelittlekitchenrecipes! I love seeing your posts and photos!

Irish Beef Stew (Slow Cooker) Recipe

Yield: 4-6

Prep Time: 35 min

Cook Time: 9 hours

Total Time: 9 hours 35 minutes

A slow cooker beef stew that's easy to prepare. Full of flavor from the beef broth, red wine and Irish beer; the ultimate comfort food.


  • 2 lbs russet potatoes, peeled & cut into 1/2-inch pieces, approx. 2 cups

  • 2 lbs baby red potatoes, peeled & cut into 1/2-inch pieces, approx. 2 cups

  • 4 stalks celery, chopped, approx. 1 1/2 cups

  • 4-5 carrots, peeled, cut into 1/2-inch pieces, approx. 2 cups

  • 1 medium yellow or white onion, roughly chopped

  • 2 Tbsp extra-virgin olive oil

  • 1 3/4 lbs stew beef, cut into 1-inch pieces

  • 3 garlic cloves, minced

  • 2 Tbsp salted butter

  • 2 cups low sodium beef broth

  • 3/4 cup red wine

  • 3/4 cup Guinness

  • 2 Tbsp tomato paste

  • 1 Tbsp white sugar

  • 1 Tbsp soy sauce

  • 1/2 Tbsp dried thyme

  • 2 bay leaves

  • 1 Tbsp cornstarch + 1 Tbsp water

  • salt and pepper, to taste


  1. Place the chopped vegetables into the crockpot. Rinse the meat and pat dry with paper towels. Salt and pepper the beef.

  2. In a large, heavy bottomed skillet, heat olive oil at medium to medium-high heat. Add beef to the pan and brown on all sides, about 5 to 7 minutes. Add garlic and cook for one minute, do not burn the garlic. Season with salt and pepper. Remove the beef and add to the crockpot on top of the vegetables.

  3. Turn the skillet back up to medium heat. To the skillet, add butter until it's melted. Add beef broth, red wine, beer, tomato paste, sugar, soy sauce and thyme. Using a wooden spoon, stir the liquids as well as scrape the bottom of the pan. Bring to a boil, allow to boil for at least two minutes. Then lower heat to low and allow to simmer for 10 minutes. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Add cornstarch and water and stir together.

  4. Pour broth mixture into the crockpot over vegetables and beef. Add bay leaves and cook on high for 4-6 hours or 6 to 9 hours on low.

  5. Skim the fat from the stew, if needed, before serving.

Cook's notes:
You can buy a chuck roast or round cut (except top round). I actually looked this up on this site in the store on my iPhone. But then, I opted to buy stew beef already cut up by my grocer's meat department because I needed less than 2 pounds.

Recipe modified for the slow cooker from Crepes of Wrath.

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Disclosure: There are a couple of affiliate links in this post. What does this mean? If you click on the link and make a purchase, I’ll make enough to buy a cup of coffee…so thanks!

72 Responses to “Irish Beef Stew (Slow Cooker)”

  1. 41
    Cathy Heck — March 18, 2012 @ 12:22 pm

    We made this great recipe for a fun Irish themed book club meeting and everyone loved it. Thank you. Here’s a link.’s-day-dinner-with-friends/


    • JulieD replied: March 19th, 2012 @ 8:36 am

      Looks like so much fun! Thank you for sharing, Cathy!


  2. 42
    laura — May 13, 2012 @ 3:31 pm

    i’ve used this recipe (or variations of it) many times. it’s wonderful and since i just pinned it, i thought i’d leave you some fan mail. i get hungry just THINKING about this wonderful stew! i do leave out the soy sauce and sugar, usually. and i dredge the beef in flour as it makes the sauce a little thicker. but really, as someone else said, this is perfection. thanks!


  3. 43
    Christina @ Sweet Pea's Kitchen — September 10, 2012 @ 10:29 pm

    Oh this looks great for fall! Bookmarking this one! :)


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  5. 44
    Melissa — November 25, 2012 @ 8:41 am

    Made this last night and it went over very well. Will be making this again


  6. 45
    Lara — January 10, 2013 @ 10:06 pm

    Made this for dinner tonight. I’m a slow kitchen prep person, so it probably took me an hour and a half to hour and 45 mins just to get everything into the crock pot. I warned my husband (the beef stew connoisseur) that, even if it sucked, he had to pretend it was delicious, but even if it really WAS delicious, he was going to have to accept the fact that he will never have it again (we have a toddler and our second baby is due in March – I am this a low maintenance recipe gal these days).

    Well. It looks like I will be making it again anyway (maybe time to figure out how to use my cuisinart to chop all those veggies?), because we both think it might be the most amazing thing we’ve ever eaten. That is one damn delicious stew.

    Oh – I made a couple (mostly accidental) modifications: I had a heavy hand w measuring the veggies and also did an extra onion, just because we like those a lot, so I didn’t have enough liquid in the pot. Ended up dumping an extra can of beef broth in there and an extra tablespoon or so of cornstarch (dissolved in water first).

    And I wasn’t sure – when I finished searing the meat, there was a lot of liquid in the pan. Not sure if I used too much oil (didn’t measure) or what, and I wasn’t sure if I was supposed to drain it or dump that liquid in the crock pot or melt the butter into that liquid or what. Ended up draining most of the liquid, dumping the rest of the liquid in the crock pot with the meat, and melting the butter in the dry pot. Was that right?

    Anyway – longest comment ever! But thanks for the recipe – that’s a definite keeper!


  7. 46
    Meghan @JaMonkey — January 21, 2013 @ 12:06 pm

    I just want to find those little crock pot how cute!


  8. 47
    Felica — January 28, 2013 @ 11:00 am

    can i substitute the beer and wine for anything???


    • Sherri replied: March 13th, 2014 @ 8:10 pm

      If it is the alcohol content you are worried about no need….the alcohol itself cooks off….it is safe for alcoholics and children and pregnant women…..enjoy!


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  10. 48
    Sarah — February 6, 2013 @ 10:31 am

    This looks soo good! Can’t wait to try it! Thanks!


  11. 49
    Ali — March 3, 2013 @ 3:59 pm

    This is the BEST!!! Followed the recipe to a T. This is the best thing I have ever made. I am very new to cooking so it takes me a long time doing the prep, but it’s always worth it. WONDERFULLY YUMMY!!


  12. 50
    katie — March 15, 2013 @ 10:22 am

    mmm love beef stew in the slow cooker! And I love the idea of mixing potatoes. :)


  13. 51
    Angie @ Big Bear's Wife — March 15, 2013 @ 10:24 am

    This would be perfect for this weekend!


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  15. 52
    Brenda @ a farmgirl's dabbles — March 15, 2013 @ 3:36 pm

    This looks so delicious – I wish we were going to be around on Sunday for St. Patrick’s Day, I’d totally be making this. Guess I’ll just have to celebrate a bit late – I want to try this!


  16. 53
    Lcmazzit — March 28, 2013 @ 7:52 pm

    Wow was this incredible!
    Only thing I did differently was to shake the beef in a bag of flour with salt and pepper, then browned in oil before putting in slow cooker. I also ended up adding more broth-beer-wine as the sauce got very thick. The flavors all melded so well together and we had plenty for leftovers!


  17. 54
    Anisha — August 24, 2013 @ 10:38 am

    I didn’t know how to make Irish Beef Stew, until found this recipe. thanks


  18. 55
    Stella — December 11, 2013 @ 12:50 pm

    I’ve been really getting away from slow cooker cooking as it seemed to leave everything I tried tasting the same…mushy and flavorless. THIS is the exception! Oh. My. Goodness. My husband even joked (half-joked) that I should make it for Christmas dinner. I even used (gasp) frozen stew vegetables, as I am unreasonably resistant to chopping things up. And I used flour to coat the beef before sauteing, as some suggested. It made the stew really thick and next time I will probably add a dab more wine as it’s cooking. A ten out of ten! Thank you for this recipe.


  19. 56
    Aislinn — December 18, 2013 @ 10:17 pm

    I have this cooking in my crockpot as we speak and it already smells delicious! Think this will definitely be a repeat – thank you for publishing it!


  20. 57
    Brenda Agresta — February 11, 2014 @ 9:49 pm

    Looks great- I’m going to give it a try!


  21. 58
    Jennifer Vergiels — March 17, 2014 @ 9:35 pm

    I made this tonight, omg delicious. I will be making this again.


  22. 59
    Ginger stark — March 19, 2014 @ 6:59 pm

    Thanks for a great recipe. The only issue I had was that I had to skim off almost a whole ramikin-full of fat off the top of the stew once it was cooked. I’ve made many braised dishes and don’t know why this had so much excess fat? I cut up a few beef filets for the meat. Thank you for any input you can provide,


  23. 60
    Sarah @ The Gold Lining Girl — September 21, 2014 @ 11:55 am

    Wow, that does look amazing. I actually feel very in the mood for fall comfort foods despite the temp here in Tampa hovering around 90. This looks delicious. I’m definitely a soup and stew person! Will have to try this. Thank you!


  24. 61
    John Dusek — September 29, 2014 @ 4:08 pm

    I am making this right now, I can’t wait to eat it! I have to really use my will power to not lift the lid. It smells amazing!


    • Julie Deily replied: September 29th, 2014 @ 4:13 pm

      So funny that you say that, John! I’m always opening it and mixing things up. I know they say you are not supposed to open the lid but I always do. Haha


  25. 62
    Erin — September 30, 2014 @ 1:07 pm

    Can anyone tell me what size crockpot is ideal for this recipe?


    • Julie Deily replied: September 30th, 2014 @ 1:27 pm

      Hi Erin,

      I use a 7 quart oval slow cooker…hope that helps!


  26. 63
    Alyssa — October 22, 2014 @ 12:11 pm

    Made this for my husband’s late birthday dinner last night and he’s still going on about how delicious it was. Definitely tops my mom’s Irish beef stew!


  27. 64
    Rizzie — November 13, 2014 @ 2:40 pm

    Do you think substituting venison for beef would work? My boyfriend hunts every year and with me as a vegetarian, the meat doesn’t get used up fast. He loves stews but doesn’t eat too much beef because he also likes sustainable resources. Either way, this sounds delicious!


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