This hearty Irish stew with Guinness is our vegan alternative to the traditional Irish beef or lamb Guinness stew. Get ready to celebrate St. Patrick's day like an Irish (a vegan one)!
What is Irish Stew?
The traditional Irish Stew aka Stobhach Gaelach, is a staple of Irish Cuisine. It's a filling one-pot meal cooked with meat and hearty root vegetables and seasoned with fresh or dried herbs. Irish Stew is normally served with Soda Bread or mashed potatoes.
Our vegan version of this hearty stew is cooked with Heura, a type of vegan protein (you can use your favourite brand for this recipe) and flavoured with Guinness and fresh herbs. This stew is rich, really tasty, packed full of veggies and quite easy to cook. We love making it for Paddy's day or a rainy and cold day when you feel like eating something hearty and yummy.
You can confidently serve this Irish recipe to your family and friends. All meat eaters will love it too!
Our Irish Stew is:
- Perfect for Paddy's Day
- Winter-autumn meal
- Easy to make
- One-pot meal
Meat substitute for Vegan or Vegetarian Irish Stew
Traditionally, this stew is cooked with lamb or beef. To substitute the meaty part of this dish, we use a vegan protein called "Heura" made in Spain, where we live. It works perfectly as it has the right texture and it can stay cooking for a long time without falling apart.
Other plant-based alternatives
You can add any other plant-based protein alternatives to your vegan stew:
Seitan. This vegan protein doesn't need much seasoning. You can separate the seitan roughly with your hands to make beef resembling pieces or use a knife to cut the seitan into smaller cubes or pieces.
Tofu. This may be the easiest alternative to find. Tofu is one of our favourite plant-based proteins and we use it really often at home. Simply cut it into small pieces and add it with the rest of the ingredients to the pot. Make sure you are using firm tofu for this recipe.
Mushrooms. Adding a mixture of mushrooms is the perfect way to substitute the meat in a Guinness stew. They have a meaty texture and will add a lovely flavour to your meal.
Quorn. You can get different products from this brand to make traditional dishes vegetarian or vegan.
Soy curls. Similar to chicken in texture and easy to find, soy curls could make for a great option to add to your stew.
How to cook our Hearty Vegan Irish Stew
Every time we cook this meal at home we are greatly surprised by the amazing flavours we get from cooking with really simple ingredients. This stew is just the perfect combination of simple ingredients to make a satisfying one-pot meal.
Vegetables. To remember which vegetables go into a proper Irish stew, simply remember the colours of the Irish flag. Onion for the white colour, carrots for the orange colour and leek and celery for the green colour.
Guinness. The star of this meal is the well-known Irish beer: Guinness. You can use bottled or canned Guinness, we prefer using canned beer. You can substitute Guinness with another type of stour beer or even red wine.
Fresh and dried herbs. We use a combination of bay leaves, fresh thyme and fresh rosemary. You can use dried thyme and rosemary and even add other herbs such as sage or fresh parsley.
Vegan protein. We use Heura to make the Irish stew but you can choose a different vegan protein.
Tomato paste. This ingredient will add a fine umami flavour to your stew. Don't leave it out! If you don't have tomato paste, you could use 1 fresh chopped tomato.
Vegan butter or vegetable oil. When we make stews we normally use vegan butter as it delivers a creamier and heartier flavour to your dish but alternatively, you can use oil.
Flour. Used to thicken up the stew.
- Add some vegan butter into a cast-iron pot to medium-high heat temperature. Add the onions and cook for 5-6 minutes until they start to brown. Then add the rest of the veggies, stir, and keep cooking for 6-7 more minutes, until they start caramelizing. To make sure the veggies don't burn or stick at the bottom of the pan, keep stirring while cooking.
- Add the vegan protein and herbs, stir, and cook for a few minutes.
- Incorporate the tomato paste and flour and stir to combine all the ingredients.
- Add the Guinness and vegetable broth. Make sure you mix all the ingredients well and using a wooden spoon scratch the bottom to make sure all the sweetness from the caramelized vegetables incorporates into the broth. Bring to a simmer, add the panela sugar or sweetener, and cook for an hour. Season with salt and black pepper, serve with bread or mashed potatoes, and enjoy!
Tips to cook with Guinness
We've learned along the way that there is a few tricks when cooking with stout beer. Using too much Guinness or not simmering the stew for a long enough time may result in a meal with a bitter taste.
Traditionally, the meat is cooked first in a cast-iron pot which later will be deglazed with the Guinness taking all the sweetness and reducing the bitterness of the beer.
When cooking this Vegan stew, we followed a few tricks to reduce the bitterness of the Guinness and make the stew absolutely delicious.
- Cook the vegetables at a high temperature, making sure they caramelize. You will have to constantly stir the veggies for this step to ensure that they don't burn. Once you add the Guinness, deglaze your pot taking all the sweetness from the caramelized veggies.
- Add the right amount of Guinness. Many recipes call for a can of Guinness. We've tried this recipe many times to make sure we love the flavours and a can of Guinness is definitely too much. You can add a whole can of Guinness if you will be cooking your stew for over two hours, but that's just too long for us.
- Once all the ingredients are in the pot, leave the stew simmering for an hour. You can leave the stew cooking for longer, but using plant-based protein, an hour will be enough for all the ingredients to be perfectly cooked.
- Add a sweetener. We add just a teaspoon of panela sugar, and it's enough to our taste.
Guinness beer Stew is such a hearty meal that is normally served as a main and only dish. At home, while we leave the stew simmering, we prepare some Irish soda bread, mashed potatoes or Colcannon, which is a traditional Irish recipe that consists of a potato and cabbage mash. The Spruce Eats have a great Vegan Colcannon recipe. Both are great side dishes to serve with this comfort meal.
Another type of crusty bread, steamed veggies, roasted root vegetables, or simply a glass of wine are great additions to this delicious one-pot meal.
If you are looking for the perfect meal to serve for Paddy's day or simply a chilli day, our Irish Stew recipe is such a great choice.
You can keep the leftovers in an airtight container for 2-3 days.
FAQ and Tips
Is Guinness vegan?
Some years ago Guinness wasn't vegan as it was made using isinglass but nowadays we are happy to tell you that Guinness is vegan.
Can I substitute the Guinness?
You can use another type of stout beer, ale, or use red wine instead. Another option is to add more vegetable stock.
What is vegan protein?
Vegan proteins are plant-based ingredients that provide a high source of protein such as tofu, edamame, seitan, seeds, nuts, etc.
Where can I find Heura?
If you are living in Spain, France, England, or the Netherlands, you can already find Heura in most big supermarkets but they are expanding quickly so hopefully, you can find them in other countries soon!
Vegan Irish Stew with Guinness
- 1 tablespoon vegan butter
- 2 leek
- 1 yellow onion
- 3 celery sticks
- 2-3 carrots
- 320 g Vegan protein
- 1 ½ tablespoon flour
- 1 tablespoon tomato paste
- 2-3 fresh thyme stalks
- 1 fresh rosemary stalk
- 2 bay leaves
- 1 ½ cup canned Guinness
- 2 ½ cups vegetable broth
- 1 teaspoon panela sugar
- Add some vegan butter or vegetable oil into a cast-iron pot to medium-high heat temperature.
- Add the onion finely chopped and cook for 5-6 minutes until they start to brown. Then add the rest of the veggies roughly chopped, stir and keep cooking for 6-7 more minutes, until they start caramelizing.
- To make sure the veggies won't burn, keep stirring while cooking. Add the vegan protein, herbs, stir and cook for a few minutes.
- Add the tomato paste and flour and stir to combine all the ingredients.
- Add the Guinness and vegetable broth. Make sure you mix all the ingredients well and using a wooden spoon scratch the bottom to make sure all the sweetness from the caramelized vegetables incorporates into the broth.
- Bring to simmer, add the panela sugar or sweetener and cook for an hour with the lid on. Stir every 10-15 minutes.
- Serve with bread or/and mashed potatoes
|If you tried our recipe, please leave a comment or tag us on Instagram @Sixhungryfeet. We are always happy to see your creations!|
Whats vegan protien. What did u use and how much
Hi Chantel, you can use any type of Vegan Protein: Tofu, Seitan, Soy Protein or even mushrooms. We use a Vegan Protein called Heura, but depending on where you live you won't be able to find it. We added 320 g of Heura (vegan chicken still pieces).
There is NOT sugar listed in the ingredients list, but in the directions, it says add sugar, but doesn't say how much??????
Hi Darryl, you are right, I just added the sugar to the ingredients list. We add 1 teaspoon and it's enough but it's totally optional.
Thanks! Delicious recipe! *We used portobello mushrooms. I love easy, healthy recipes. This one will definitely go into regular rotation here!
Thank you Teresa, so happy you enjoyed this stew!
Do you think you can use Butler Soy Curls? If so, would you hydrate in advance or just toss in?
Hi, we've personally never tried cooking with soy curls but I would say they will work really good in this recipe. Soak them in water before you add them to the stew and leave simmering with the rest of the ingredients.
The perfect addition to our St Padraig's Day - we ate it with mashed potatoes for 3 days straight & still couldn't get enough
Absolutely delicious, thank you so much for the recipe
Thank you Leoni, Really happy your family enjoyed this recipe!
I used mushrooms which were great. This was my first time using beer and I have to say I like red wine 100 times better. It wasn’t bad but doesn’t compare to using red wine. Wouldn’t make it again
Thank you Robyn. It's all about tastes, we love a red wine stew as well, but Guinness stew has this unique taste that brings us back to Ireland 🙂
Second time we've made this. This recipe is an amazing cold weather base for adding other things. We added green beans, diced baby turnip and parsnip. Also, we had left over creamy polenta instead of mashed taters - yes that's a winner. Would work with lot's of whole grains (Bulgur I'm looking at you) and couscous. Added Marjoram to the herb list cuz we had it and I'm Hungarian. Also, we added a shot of liquid aminos and vegan worchester sauce. LOL kept looking at the recipe to see where the garlic is. No, there is no garlic. It's like the only stew I make w/out garlic and it doesn't need it. Oh and I used Athletic Brewing All Out extra dark - non-alcoholic brew cuz that's what we had. Worked like a champ.
Hi Lauren, thanks for such a lovely comment. We love the little changes you made, creamy polenta sounds delicious!
Well it looks amazing. Will it freeze?
Hi Liam, I never tried before but I don't see a reason why you shouldn't!
So excited to make this on St Patrick’s Day on Friday! I just have a question beforehand to make sure it turns out as delicious as possible. What measurements would you use if you’d cook with dried thyme and rosemary instead of fresh? Thanks a mill in advance! X
Hi Freja, I am sure it will turn out yummy! You can add 1 tablespoon of thyme and 1 teaspoon of rosemary. You can always adjust to taste. Let us know how it goes 🙂
This stew was hearty, filling, and so delicious. Plant based food went up a notch when we made this! Leftovers? Not a chance!
Thank you, really glad you enjoyed this recipe!