Traditional Scottish Stovies Recipe

Traditional Scottish Stovie

The Spruce

Ratings (91)
  • Total: 60 mins
  • Prep: 10 mins
  • Cook: 50 mins
  • Yield: Serves 6
Nutritional Guidelines (per serving)
190 Calories
5g Fat
27g Carbs
10g Protein
(Nutrition information is calculated using an ingredient database and should be considered an estimate.)

If it is real Scottish Food that you are looking for, then you won't find better than this Stovies recipe. Ask  100 Scots for the recipe, and you will get 100 different answers which is much like the English Bubble and Squeak recipe. Where you live in Scotland, what you traditionally eat for lunch on Sunday, all will have an impact on the final recipe and really is a free for all. 

The word Stovies means "bits from the stove", so is a recipe using whatever you happen to have to hand on a Monday, after your Sunday Roast. - all those leftovers, with the main constituent being the bits of meat from the roast the day before.

Not that you have to be restricted to the pickings from your Sunday lunch; Stovies can also be made using a tin of corned beef or some cooked minced beef or sausages. It really is up to you.


  • 1 tablespoons lard (or beef dripping)
  • 2 medium onions (or 1 large onion, skinned and roughly diced)
  • Optional: 4 tablespoons dark beer (or stout)
  • 4 ounces/115 grams cold roast beef (or lamb, diced; see note below)
  • 1 1/2 pounds/750 grams potatoes (washed, peeled, and cut into quarters)
  • 10 fluid ounces/300 milliliters beef stock (or lamb stock or left over gravy)
  • Any other left over vegetables
  • Salt (to taste)
  • Pepper (to taste)

Steps to Make It

  1. Preheat the oven to  375 F/190 C /Gas 5.

  2. Place a Dutch oven, or casserole dish, on the stove over medium heat. Add the lard or dripping, and melt.

  3. Add the onions and cook until soft, but not browned - about 5 to 8 minutes. Take care not to burn the onions.

  4. If using, add the beer or stout, turn the heat up and allow to boil for 2 minutes to burn the alcohol away.

  5. Add the meat and stir well.

  6. Add the potatoes in layers, seasoning each layer with salt and pepper as you go, before adding the next layer.

  7. Pour over the stock or gravy (or both).

  8. Cover with a lid and cook in the preheated oven for 45 to 50 minutes, checking from time to time to make sure the stock is not boiling dry. If it is, add a little extra stock.

  9. Ten minutes before the end of cooking, add any leftover vegetables to suit, stir well, and check the seasoning.

  10. Cover with the lid and cook for a further 10 minutes. The meat and vegetables will break up to create a thick, hearty stew like consistency. Be careful not to over boil, as you need to retain chunks of meat and vegetables. 

  11. Serve the stovies in a deep dish or bowl with rough oatcakes, and brown sauce (if you like it).

Using Other Meats in Your Stovies

  • Corned Beef: Crumble the corned beef and stir through your potatoes 20 minutes before the end of cooking.

  • Cooked Minced Beef: Stir through the potatoes 20 minutes before the end of cooking.

  • Sausages: Cook the onions as above. Using 1 pound (450 grams) of sausage, slice thickly then put one layer on the onions, followed by a layer of potatoes. Continue until all used up. Cook as above.