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Bangers and Mash with Milk Stout Gravy {Sausage and Mashed Potatoes}

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Bangers and Mash with Milk Stout Gravy! Ever had ’em? What’s not to love about delicious sausages that have been slow cooked in a creamy milk stout, layered atop fluffy mashed potatoes; smothered in a rich stout onion gravy.

We love a delicious Irish inspired dinner anytime of year, but let’s face it is much more fun around St. Patrick’s day!

You may want to try these other Irish inspired recipes: 4 Ingredient Irish Soda Bread, The Best Baked Corned Beef and Cabbage Recipe, Irish Mule, or Guinness Chocolate Cake.

I don’t claim to be even a teeny bit Irish, but, I can follow a recipe and so can you!

What are Bangers & Mash?

I’m so glad you asked! The mash is obvious; creamy, fluffy mashed potatoes, try my Roasted Garlic Mashed Potatoes with this recipe.

The bangers, they are a bit harder; I love looking into the origins of words and if the words relate to food, yipee! I enjoyed this post that explains how the name “bangers” came about, the article is quite fun, give it a read.

Pinterest image for Bangers and Mash a Delicious St Patrick's day dinner. with a white plate filled with mashed potatoes, sausages and an onion stout gravy with a bottle of Guinness in the background.

Why Are They Called Bangers?

This odd name used to describe these British sausages actually dates back to the early 20th century, during the time of World War I. Sausages were seen as a popular dish for the British working class, however, after the outbreak of the war, meat was in seriously short supply. In order to continue production and to get by on what meat they did have, cheap fillers and a high amount of water were used in the sausages which caused them to pop and explode rather violently in the cooking pan, giving them the name “bangers.”

Excerpt taken from A History of Banger’s

White plate with rustic knife and fork behind with two bangers (sausages) on top of a mound of fluffy mashed potatoes, smothered in guinness stout gravy.

Fun right!? So grab a skillet, go buy your bangers (sausages) and a bottle (or 6 pack) of your favorite dark beer and let’s make dinner.

While the obvious time of year to eat these for us Yank’s is on St. Patrick’s day, folks in the UK eat them year round and you might too!

What Can I Substitute for Bangers?

I buy my Bangers from Trader Joes, they start stocking them in late February through St. Patrick’s day, but you may also substitute Bratwurst for the bangers, or any pork sausage (or try a chicken or turkey brats if you don’t do pork).

Make sure they are not pre-cooked sausages, you want to slowly cook them in the beer. I’ve used German Weisswurst/Bockworst (white sausage) and it’s delicious too.

How to Make Bangers & Mash 

package of bangers and nitro milk stout | www.thefreshcooky.com

Heating a heavy skillet over medium high heat, pour in oil. Carefully add in sausages and stout (see options below). That little mini measuring cup is one of the most often used tools in my kitchen!

Bring to a simmer, cover with a lid and prop a wooden spoon to vent just slightly, allowing steam to escape.

Be careful your wooden spoon is not over any flame and careful when you grab it, it might be hot. Cook covered for about 5 minutes.

Pouring beer into pan with sausages | www.thefreshcooky.com

What Can I Replace the Beer with?

Replace the Stout with any dark beer you’d like, I’ve used Milk Stout, Vanilla Porter, Porter, Guinness and more. The darker the beer, the creamier, richer the flavors.

Gluten Free |  If you prefer not to use alcohol or are GF, just use a rich beef broth or beef bone broth. Just make it YOURS!

Turn the bangers and continue cooking, covered, for another 5 minutes.


Many ask me about cooking with alcohol and do I serve these meals to my kids.

My answer is yes, I do. Typically the foods that have alcohol in them are cooked long enough that the alcohol cooks down. I don’t pour them a mug of beer, but we believe removing the curiosity and stigma with alcohol allows kids to be able to say “no” when offered later.

Cook the bangers for 10 minutes until  nicely browned, remove the lid and allow the liquid to reduce slightly, thickening and coating the sausages.

Reduced Stout and browned sausages | www.thefreshcooky.com

When the liquid is almost gone, lower the heat to medium-low, with lid on continue cooking, rotating sausages occasionally, until evenly browned and cooked through, around 10 additional minutes.

Making a Stout Onion Gravy

While your bangers are cooking, in a medium saucepan, heat your butter/oil over medium to medium-high heat, add sliced onions.

Sliced Onions sauted in butter | www.thefreshcooky.com

Cook, stirring occasionally until they are slightly browned, soft and fragrant, about 10-15 minutes.

Sprinkle browned onions with all-purpose flour (substitute AP Gluten free flour), stirring and cooking for 2-3 minutes until brown bits collect on bottom of pan.

browned onions with flour | www.thefreshcooky.com

Increase heat to medium / medium-high and pour in stout (broth or other beer), scraping bottom of pan to deglaze (getting up all those rich, brown bits).

pouring stout into onions | www.thefreshcooky.com

Pour in beef broth and allow to simmer until no longer foaming, about 10-15 minutes, stirring occasionally, heat until reduced slightly, thickened and glossy.

Remove from heat, set aside, keep covered.

adding beef broth to onion gravy | www.thefreshcooky.com

Can I make Bangers Gluten Free?

You most certainly can!

  • Replace the beer with either beef broth or your favorite Gluten Free beer
  • Make sure your sausages are gluten free
  • Replace the all purpose flour in the gravy with a good GF 1-to-1 All purpose flour.

My Favorite Garlic Mashed Potatoes

Make up a batch of Roasted Garlic (roasting optional) Mashed Potatoes, details and ingredients included in printable recipe below or speed things up with these delicious Instant Pot Rustic Mashed Potatoes.

Plate piled high with two bangers (sausages) smothered in gravy on top of a pile of mashed potatoes.

To plate; serve up some mashed potatoes, place a 1-2 Bangers (sausages) on top of potatoes and smother the entire thing in the rich onion milk stout gravy serve with a couple of the items from below.

Banger’s and Mash sides from  a few of my favorite bloggers!

I made Boxty bread last year, no time to get it on the blog at the moment, however; it’s a fun thing to make with your kids and makes ye’ feel, all Irish-like! Beautiful huh!?

Boxty Bread photo | www.thefreshcooky.com

A few more great, heart-warming, totally St. Patrick’s day acceptable recipes:

Oh and one last thing, you have to end your St. Patrick’s Day celebration with one (or BOTH) of these AMAZING St. Patrick’s inspired desserts: Milk Stout Brownies or Lucky Charms Bars.

For a comprehensive list of St. Patrick’s day menu ideas, check out my 35+ St. Patrick’s Day Recipes post.

Recipe lightly adapted from the darling Self Proclaimed Foodie.

Like this recipe?
Don’t forget to give it a ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ star rating and comment below the recipe!

Kathleen Pope, The Fresh Cooky.

About Kathleen Pope

Recipe Innovator | Food Photographer | Food Writer

Hi, I’m Kathleen Pope. Here at The Fresh Cooky you will find easy, mostly from-scratch, trusted recipes for all occasions. From speedy dinners to tasty desserts, with easy step-by-step instructions. I am here to help teach you how to make mouthwatering recipes without spending hours in the kitchen. Read more about Kathleen here.

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