Beef carbonnade

Warm up with this rich beer-based stew.

  • 2 hrs cooking
  • Serves 8
  • Print
This classic Belgian beef stew is known for tender beef cooked in a rich beer-based sauce. We've used Guiness for a hearty stout flavour.
Looking for more beef stews and casseroles?


  • ¼ cup (60ml) olive oil
  • 2 kg gravy beef, excess fat trimmed, cut into 3cm (1¼in) pieces
  • 50 grams butter
  • 12 shallots, sliced
  • 4 carrots (240g), chopped coarsely
  • 2 cloves garlic, crushed
  • ⅓ cup (50g) plain flour
  • 440 ml can Guinness beer
  • 3 cups (750ml) beef stock
  • 1½ tablespoons wholegrain mustard
  • 1 tablespoon brown sugar
  • 4 fresh bay leaves
  • 8 fresh thyme sprigs


  • 1
    Heat half the oil in a large 7 litre (28 cup) cast iron or other flameproof casserole dish. Cook beef, in batches, stirring, for 5 minutes or until golden; transfer each batch to a large heatproof bowl.
  • 2
    Heat butter in same dish over medium heat; cook shallots and carrot, stirring, for 5 minutes or until golden. Add garlic and flour; cook, stirring for 30 seconds. Gradually stir in beer until a smooth paste forms. Stir in stock, mustard, sugar, bay leaves and thyme sprigs. Return beef and any juices to dish; bring to the boil. Reduce heat to low; cook, covered, stirring occasionally, for 1½ hours or until beef is tender.
  • 3
    Remove lid, increase heat to medium; simmer, uncovered, for a further 30 minutes or until sauce is reduced and thickened. Remove from heat; discard bay leaves and thyme.
  • 4
    Serve half the beef carbonnade; season. Transfer remaining beef carbonnade to an airtight container; cool, then store.


Serve with garlic bagels or, if you prefer, mashed potato and garlic beans or chilli-garlic broccolini.Refrigerate beef carbonnade in an airtight container for up to 3 days. Freeze for up to 3 months; thaw in the fridge, then and reheat in a microwave.

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