Traditional Irish Stew

Traditional Irish stew

The Spruce


  • Total: 2 hrs 40 mins
  • Prep: 20 mins
  • Cook: 2 hrs 20 mins
  • Yield: Serves 4
Nutritional Guidelines (per serving)
966 Calories
33g Fat
125g Carbs
52g Protein
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Nutrition Facts
Servings: Serves 4
Amount per serving
Calories 966
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 33g 43%
Saturated Fat 11g 56%
Cholesterol 106mg 35%
Sodium 1034mg 45%
Total Carbohydrate 125g 45%
Dietary Fiber 32g 114%
Protein 52g
Calcium 519mg 40%
*The % Daily Value (DV) tells you how much a nutrient in a food serving contributes to a daily diet. 2,000 calories a day is used for general nutrition advice.
(Nutrition information is calculated using an ingredient database and should be considered an estimate.)

What could be more heartening and filling than a delicious bowl of Irish stew, Ireland's National Dish and loved the word over. Though a hugely popular dish on St Patrick's Day, this dish is far too good to keep for a few days a year; eat it when you want a comforting and warming dish. 

Irish stew was traditionally made with mutton - older sheep - but more often nowadays, is made with lamb which may seem a little of a waste but the flavor is amazing. 

Controversy reigns over whether adding vegetables other than potatoes is a perfect Irish stew. Though adding onions, leeks and carrots do add extra flavor and nutrition to the stew. Ultimately, the choice is yours. Whatever you decide it will be lovely.

The beauty of the stew when it contains vegetables is little else is needed alongside save perhaps a bowl of Colcannon.


Click Play to See This Traditional Irish Stew Recipe Come Together


  • 2 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • 1 pound mutton or lamb cutlets, bone removed, cut into 2-inch/5-centimeter chunks
  • 2 tablespoons plain flour
  • 2 pounds potatoes, peeled and cut into quarters
  • 1 cup onion, roughly chopped
  • 1 cup leeks, cleaned and finely sliced
  • 1 cup carrots, roughly chopped
  • 1 1/2 pints dark beef stock
  • Optional: 2 or 3 cabbage leaves, thinly sliced
  • Salt, to taste
  • Pepper, to taste

Steps to Make It

  1. Gather the ingredients.

    Traditional Irish Stew Ingredients
    The Spruce 
  2. Heat the oven to 350 F/ 180 C/ Gas 4.

  3. In a large frying pan heat half the oil to hot, but not smoking. Add half the lamb pieces and brown all over by turning in the hot oil. 

    cook the meat
    Spruce Images
  4. Remove the lamb with tongs and place in a casserole.

    add meat to crockpot
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  5. Cover with a half of the quartered potatoes, onions, leeks, and carrots.

    add the veggies
     Spruce Images
  6. Add the remaining oil to the frying pan, heat again then add the remaining lamb and brown all over as before and add to the casserole.

    brown the ingredients
     Spruce Images
  7. Cover with the remaining vegetables.

    add additional veggies
     Spruce Images
  8. Add the flour to the frying pan and stir really well to soak up any fat and juices. Cook on a gentle heat for 3 minutes.

    add flour to make a roue
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  9. Then add stock a ladle at a time until you have a thick, lump-free sauce.

    add chicken stock
     Spruce Images
  10. Pour this sauce over the lamb and vegetables.

    add sauce
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  11. Add the remaining stock to the casserole, cover with a tightfitting lid, cook in the oven for 1 hour.

    cook dish
     Spruce Images
  12. Add the cabbage (if using), replace the lid, and cook for another hour. Check from time to time to make sure the stock isn't reducing too much, if it is add a little boiling water. The meat and vegetables should always be covered by liquid. If the sauce is too runny at the end, you can always cook a little longer with the lid removed. Season with salt and pepper.

    add lettuce
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  13. Serve piping hot and as it already has plenty of potatoes and vegetables it is unlikely it will need more. Perhaps a little crusty  bread would be good though to soak up all that fabulous gravy.


  • Like all stews and casseroles, they benefit from being made the day before, this is no exception.

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