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Slow-Cooker Steak and Guinness Pie


Serves 4

  • by from Fine Cooking
    Issue 110

This simple version of the classic Irish dish has the distinctive bitter flavor of Guinness stout. Although it’s slow-cooked, the hearty beef stew requires minimal prep time. When it’s ready, the puff pastry “tops” are baked separately and served alongside.

  • 1-1/8 oz. (1/4 cup) all-purpose flour; more for rolling
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 2 lb. boneless beef chuck, trimmed of excess fat, cut into 1-inch pieces
  • 2 large carrots, cut into 1/4-inch-thick rounds
  • 1 large yellow onion, coarsely chopped
  • 3 large cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 sprigs fresh thyme
  • 1 (12-oz.) bottle Guinness (or other stout)
  • 1 cup lower-salt beef broth
  • 2 large russet potatoes (about 1-1/2 lb.), washed and cut into 1-inch cubes
  • Nonstick cooking spray
  • 1 sheet frozen puff pastry (about 9 oz.), thawed overnight in the refrigerator

In a large bowl, combine the flour, 2 tsp. salt, and 1 tsp. pepper. Toss the beef in the flour mixture to coat. Transfer the mixture (including excess flour) to a 6-quart slow cooker and then add the carrots, onion, garlic, and thyme. Slowly pour in the Guinness and then stir in the beef broth. Cover and cook on low for 6 to 7 hours or on high for 4 to 5 hours. Add the potatoes and continue cooking until the meat and the potatoes are fork-tender, about 1 hour more.

Position a rack in the center of the oven and heat the oven to 375°F. Coat a large rimmed baking sheet with the cooking spray. On a lightly floured surface, roll the puff pastry sheet into a 10x14-inch rectangle. Put it on the prepared baking sheet and bake until golden-brown, 15 to 18 minutes. Remove from the oven, let cool slightly on a rack, and cut into quarters.

To serve, lay the puff pastry quarters in 4 wide, shallow bowls and spoon the stew over the pastry.

Serving Suggestions

Start this meal off with a fresh Forty Shades of Green Salad

nutrition information (per serving):
Calories (kcal): 880, Fat (kcal): 34, Fat Calories (g): 300, Saturated Fat (g): 7, Protein (g): 58, Monounsaturated Fat (g): 9, Carbohydrates (mg): 79, Polyunsaturated Fat (mg): 15, Sodium (g): 860, Cholesterol (g): 80, Fiber (g): 5,

Photo: Scott Phillips

wow so good

Great taste. I own your basic high/low crock-pot. I put the potato's in at the start. Also amended with additional ingredients, baby bella mushrooms sweated out in a cast iron pan in butter, thin sliced shallot, fresh hulled peas, coarse chopped celery. All into the pot and walk away. That why you want a slow-cooker recipe in the first place isn't it?

SO sad. I have tried so many FineCooking recipes and loved every one. As soon as my mag arrives, I immediately begin planning my grocery shopping around it. This is the first (and likely only) time I have been disappointed. I followed this to a tee and the result was bland AND bitter. Sorry, but this one just didn't cut it. :( I have no suggestions for improvement other than to look for another recipe form FineCooking. I guarantee there are plenty of other winners!

Excellent recipe have made it several times. Last time I had no Guinness so instead I added a package of onion soup mix and some water, my family said it was even better than the one with Guinness. Also, RE: POTATOES, I put them in with everything else at the beginning, no waiting an hour after I get home from work!

If you love Guinness, you're going to love this recipe. Read my entire review at:

A great tasting and simple recipe. I thoroughly enjoyed this. I loved the fact that since the pastry is done separately, I can have as much extra as I want!

Ok - not a lot of flavor. My 1" potatoes didn't cook in an hour, either, and the meat was completely falling apart before the potatoes were done (not necessarily a bad thing, but start the potatoes earlier.)

very easy and good - it was done in about 4 hrs on high; I parboiled the potatoes and added them for the last 45 minutes, also added peas a few minutes before serving. The sauce was not quite thick enough, even tho I dredged the meat in flour as per the recipe. But the flavor was yummy and the meat deliciously tender. Next time I might try Harp instead of Guinness (I know this would change the recipe name...), or even use the recipe as a springboard for other flavors - red wine, for example. But worth making as is, too.

Yummy, but not amazing. Easy to assemble. Great comfort food for a rainy day. The potatoes need more than 1 hour (when preparing the meal on a low setting). Makes enough to freeze a few servings for a later date.

Amazingly simple and yummy! However, the potatoes didn't cook through in just 1 hr. I would definitely put in at 2 hrs (on low) before serving.

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