You must try this steak and ale pie! An Irish steak pie filled with tender beef in a flavorful and hearty beef and Guinness ale gravy, all wrapped in a cheddar pastry crust.
Anyone can make this savory and delicious Irish steak pie, a classic British comfort food; I will take you through step by step!
I enjoy giving precise details in my recipe posts to lead my readers through any questions. If you’re just here for the printable recipe, use the Jump to Recipe to head straight there!
Why You Will Love This Steak and Ale Pie
- Classic Irish Recipe – Take a bite of Ireland with one of their favorite meat pies made with stout beer and savory beef – a simple steak pie!
- Comfort Food – Saucy and tender beef, notes of tomato and thyme, and a cheesy pie crust. It’s like beef stew inside a flaky pastry crust!
- Easy Meal – An easy meal ready for the oven in 30 minutes.
Simple Ingredients for Irish Steak Pie
- Beef | Boneless beef chuck is best for slow cooking because it produces the most flavor and yields tender results.
- Flour | Use all-purpose flour to help thicken the gravy.
- Veggies | Shallots and garlic cloves add great flavor and subtle spice.
- Seasonings | Season with kosher salt, black pepper, dried thyme, and dry mustard.
- Liquids | Vegetable oil and beef or bone broth (I like organic; do not use condensed beef broth– too salty). A whole bottle of brown ale, like Irish Guinness!
- Tomatoes | Tomato paste for a richer flavor, or tomato purée if a mild flavor is preferred. Amp up the rich pie filling with Worcestershire sauce.
- Cheese | Press grated aged cheddar into the pie dough for an irresistible cheesy touch. I used Irish cheddar — so yummy!.
- Puff Pastry | Thawed store-bought puff pastry, I like all butter puff pastry.
- Egg | Make an egg wash with a beaten egg and water to give the pie a glossy finish.
How to Make Irish Steak Pie
Step 1 | Prep and season the beef
Preheating the oven to 350°F (175° C), grease a 9-inch pie plate, and pat the beef dry with a paper towel. Make sure the beef is cut into 1-inch cubes. Then, sprinkle the meat with the flour, salt, and pepper, coating all sides.
Step 2 | Brown the beef
Add oil to a large skillet or Dutch oven over medium-high heat. Once shimmering, shake off the excess flour from the beef and carefully add them to the pot in a single layer to brown on all sides.
Repeat adding a little extra oil if needed until all of the beef cubes are browned. Be sure to do this in batches, avoiding overcrowding the pot or pan and adding oil when necessary. You don’t need to cook the beef, sear it (brown it).
- Make sure your pan is screaming hot; if it is not hot, it will steam the meat; steamed meat = ew!
Step 3 | Add remaining ingredients, deglaze, and bake
Then, add the shallots, garlic, and three tablespoons of broth and scrape up any remaining brown bits on the bottom of the pan. Add the tomato paste as soon as the shallots have softened, and continue cooking for another minute.
Here’s the fun part! Reduce the stovetop to medium heat, and pour the brown ale and broth into the pan, scraping the brown bits from the bottom. This is called deglazing, releasing all of the flavor. Add the browned beef, beef drippings, Worcestershire sauce, and thyme.
Cover and slip the Dutch oven or cast-iron skillet into the preheated oven and cook for an hour and 20 minutes until the beef is tender and the sauce thickens.
Step 4 | Prepare the crust
Line the countertop with parchment paper and scatter half a cup of freshly grated cheese on top. Gently place a sheet of puff pastry over the cheese and roll it out with a rolling pin, pressing the cheese into the dough.
Sprinkle the dry mustard and the rest of the cheese and cover it with the remaining pastry sheet. Roll out the pie crust to form a 12-inch square and cut the edges off to make a 12-inch circle to chill in the fridge until needed.
- Don’t toss the puff pastry scraps; instead, brush them with egg wash, sprinkle them with Everything Bagel Seasoning, and place them on a baking sheet, adding to the oven the last 15-20 minutes of cooking the steak and ale pie.
Step 5 | Remove and cool the beef
When the beef chunks are done cooking, remove and cool for 30 minutes or so. Set it in the fridge on a trivet to speed up the process if preferred. Then, turn the oven temperature up to 425° F (220 ° C).
- It’s important to cool the beef slightly so that it doesn’t warm the puff pastry up too much before baking, for the ultimate puffing!
Step 6 | Finish assembling the pie
Once cooled, transfer the beef to the prepared pie dish and place the puff pastry cheese-side down on top, pressing the edges to the rim of the dish to seal the pie – No bottom crust is needed for this double crust pie – we have two on top for an extra crisp crust!
Whisk a tablespoon of water with the egg in a small bowl and brush the egg mixture over the pastry for a glossy finish. Cut a couple of slits with a sharp knife into the top of the pie.
Step 7 | Bake and serve!
Carefully place the pie into the oven and bake until the pastry is puffed and golden brown, about 25 minutes. Allow it to cool for five minutes after removing from the oven, then slice, serve, and enjoy!
- Cut the pastry into a large circle to cover your pie plate. In this recipe, we cut it into a 12-inch circle, fitting a 10-inch pie plate. However, yours may need to be smaller or larger depending on the size of your pie plate.
- When baking, cover any areas of the pastry that become too dark with aluminum foil to achieve an evenly cooked crust. Or use a crust protector.
- It may help to set the baking dish on a baking sheet, allowing any overflow or leaking to be caught by the pan instead of making a mess in your oven.
Make ahead steak and ale pie
To make ahead of time; make the beef and ale stew mixture, cool completely, then refrigerate in airtight container for up to 3-4 days, or freeze up to 3 months (thaw overnight in fridge). When ready to bake, warm the beef mixture on the stovetop until just warm (not bubbling, then proceed with recipe.
Stovetop Steak and Ale Stew
If preferred; make it on the stovetop instead of the oven. Instead of placing it in the oven, bring to low simmer, reduce heat and simmer for 2 hours. Remove lid, stir and simmer uncovered for another 45 minutes or so until beef is fall-apart tender and gravy thickens.
Variations & Substitutions
- Easier Crust: If preferred, skip adding the cheddar to the pastry crust and sprinkle it on top of the pie during the last few minutes.
- Pastry Crust: I have also made this using my 3 ingredient pie crust! Also delish!
- Alcohol Substitute: While Guinness imparts amazing authentic flavor to this steak pie, it can still be delicious without beer, but it won’t be a proper Irish pie. Use beef broth in its place. However, the alcohol cooks down as the recipe bakes, making it safe for the whole family.
- Add-ins: Add more yummy ingredients, like chopped white mushrooms, crisp bacon bits, diced potatoes, frozen peas, or even green beans.
- Chicken broth also works for this recipe, producing a lighter flavor than robust beef broth.
- Feel free to use whichever cheese you prefer: parmesan, gruyere, Manchego, or cheddar cheese.
- Substitute the chuck roast with ground beef for a budget-friendly option and a slightly different texture, similar to my Shepherd’s pie or this Tamale pie.
- Make mini stout pies using a muffin tin or tasty hand pies! Or, if you have excess pastry and beef filling, use it to make a couple of mini pot pies. Just be sure to adjust the cooking time accordingly.
Gluten-Free Guinness Pie Recipe
Substitute the wheat flour with gluten-free flour and cornstarch mixed with equal amounts of water and choose a gluten-free pastry dough. Double check your other ingredients, like the broth and beer (they do make gluten-free beers), are gluten-free, and you’re on your way to enjoying a gluten-free steak and ale pie!
Irish Steak Pie for a Crowd
This recipe easily doubles, if desired, make it in a 9×13 casserole dish instead of a pie plate, adjusting your puff pastry accordingly.
Frequently Asked Questions
Any ale should work for this recipe, as long as it is a true ale and not an industrially-produced lager. The best results are made with a dark and sweet variety instead of a heavy stout. Guinness Stout is often considered the best ale for this classic recipe.
Sure! Use red wine instead, or make it entirely without alcohol using beef stock or broth. Or try using alcohol-free beer instead.
When the entire crust is golden brown, the pie is finished baking – remember you already cooked the filling. Remember that it is common for the crust to bake unevenly, making some spots extra dark and others hardly golden. To bake more evenly, cover with aluminum foil.
Refrigerate – Save your leftover beef and ale pie by letting it cool completely. Then, transfer it to an airtight container, cover the pie pan with plastic wrap, and keep it in the fridge for up to five days.
Freeze – Freeze-cooled British steak pie covered with plastic wrap and foil in the freezer for up to 3 months.
Reheating – The microwave tends to result in a soggy crust. However, baking the pie at a low heat, like 350° F (175° C) for about 15 minutes covered with aluminum foil, is a better way to enjoy beef pie leftovers.
What to serve with Pub-Style Steak and Ale Pie
Best sides to serve with Irish steak pie
Traditional Irish Brown Bread Recipe
This authentic Irish Brown Bread recipe is a hearty whole wheat loaf made with buttermilk and sweetened with rich molasses. It's a traditional Irish recipe, perfect for serving with stews and soups, and of course on St. Patrick's Day!
Best desserts to serve with Steak and Ale Pie
Chocolate Guinness Cake with Irish Buttercream
Do you like dark, deep, rich chocolate? A moist, heavy and delicious cake, with notes of coffee topped with a dreamy buttercream. Well say hello to Chocolate Guinness Cake with Irish Cream Buttercream.
More Classic Irish Recipes
- Traditional Irish Brown Bread Recipe
- Skillet Shepherd’s Pie (No Bake Shepherd’s Pie)
- Chocolate Guinness Cake with Irish Buttercream
- Easy Traditional Irish Soda Bread Recipe (4 Ingredients)
- Easy Classic Irish Coffee Recipe (4 ingredients)
- Best Baked Corned Beef and Cabbage Recipe
Love beef? Try our fan favorites!
- Crock Pot Steak Bites
- Crock Pot Beef Brisket Recipe
- Sous Vide London Broil Recipe
- Best Tender Crockpot London Broil Recipe
- Healthy Mongolian Beef Recipe
- Best Philly Cheesesteak Sliders Recipe
Don’t fret if you notice charred pieces when searing the tender meat. This develops flavorful results in the final dish!
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Best Irish Steak and Ale Pie Recipe (Pub Style)
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- STAUB Cocotte, 5.75 qt, Grenadine
- 3 pounds boneless beef chuck cut into 1-inch pieces
- ¼ cup all-purpose flour or sub with Gluten Free AP Flour
- 2 teaspoons kosher salt
- 1 teaspoon pepper
- 3-4 tablespoons vegetable oil I like olive oil, avocado oil or grapeseed oil
- 1 cup shallots sliced, may be replaced with a sweet onion (about 3 larger shallots)
- 2 cloves garlic finely chopped or minced
- ⅓ cup tomato paste slightly less than a 6 ounce can
- 1 ½ cups beef broth or bone broth, or chicken broth may be substituted (do not use condensed beef broth as it's too salty)
- 1 12 ounce Guinness beer any brown ale, about this volume
- 2 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce
- ½ teaspoon dried thyme
Cheddar Puff Pastry Crust
- 1 cup grated aged cheddar I prefer an Irish Cheddar!
- 2 sheets puff pastry thawed, divided
- ¼ teaspoon dry mustard
- 1 large egg with a little water to make an egg wash (optional)
- Preheat oven to 350°F (175° C), lightly grease an 9-inch or 10-inch pie plate.
- Pat the beef cubes dry (3 lbs) with a paper towel, if they need to be cut into smaller cubes, now is a great time. Sprinkle beef with flour (¼ cup), salt (2 tsp), and pepper (1 tsp), turning cubes to properly coat all sides.
- In a large (lidded) cast iron pot or Dutch oven, heat 2 tablespoons of oil on medium-high heat until shimmering. You want the pan HOT, turn on your fan and open the windows so you don't set your fire alarm off! 🙂
- Shake excess flour from beef cubes and transfer them to the pot and sear so that all sides are browned. Place browned beef on a shallow tray and repeat the process with the remaining beef. (You will need to do this in three-four batches to get a nice sear on the meat and not to overcrowd the pot). You may need to add more oil before each addition of meat to the pot.
- Once all the beef has been browned, remove the remaining beef from the pot and set aside. If pot is really dry add a teaspoon or two of oil then reduce heat to medium. Add the shallots (1 cup), sauteing until softened for 5-7 minutes, adding garlic (2 cloves, minced) during the last minute stirring until fragrant.
- Add the tomato paste and continue stirring cooking for about one minute.
- Deglaze the pan by adding the Guinness and broth, scraping the brown bits off the bottom of the pan, then add the beef with any accumulated juices to the pot along with the remaining broth, Worcestershire sauce, and thyme. Bring to a simmer, cover with the lid, and place in the oven.
- Cook for 1 hour and 20 minutes or until the beef is tender and the sauce has thickened.
- Once the beef mixture is done, remove lid and set aside for 20-30 minutes or place in fridge (on trivet) for 15 minutes to cool slightly. (Or may be made up to 2-3 days ahead of time, keep refrigerated in airtight container.)
- Make the cheddar crust by scattering ½ cup of the grated cheese on a parchment-lined countertop. Place 1 sheet of puff pastry over top and roll it out so the cheese presses into the puff pastry. Just roll until it's even and slightly larger.
- Sprinkle dry mustard (¼ tsp) and remaining ½ cup cheese, and cover with the second puff pastry sheet. Continue to roll it out to measure 12-inch square. Measure your crust by placing your pie dish upside down and cutting a circle about 1 inch larger than the pie dish.
- Cut a 12-inch circle (or smaller/larger) from the puff pastry and place it in the fridge to chill with damp tea towel or paper towels until ready to use. See notes for what to do with the scraps.
- Increase oven temperature to 425°F (220 ° C). Once the beef has cooled, transfer it to the prepared pie plate.
- Place the puff pastry circle cheese-side down on top of the beef and press the edges to form a seal.
- Whisk together 1 tablespoon of water and egg in a shallow dish and, brush mixture over the pastry.
- Place in oven (place on baking tray to catch drips) and bake until the pastry is puffed up and golden brown about 25 minutes. Allow to cool for 5 minutes before serving.
- Add ¼ pound sliced or chopped mushrooms when sauteing the shallots
- Skip the step of adding the cheddar cheese to the puff pastry to make it a little easier. During the last minute sprinkle top of puff pastry with shredded cheddar cheese.
- If you prefer not to use beer, substitute with more beef broth.
Add small diced potatoes when simmering the beef stew if desired.
- Scraps: Brush them with egg wash, sprinkle them with Everything Bagel Seasoning, and place them on a baking sheet, adding to the oven the last 15-20 minutes of cooking the steak and ale pie.
– When searing the beef, it is okay if they are somewhat charred as this develops greater flavor in the stew.
– You can use any aged cheese. Some good options are: Parmesan, Gruyere, Manchego
– Chuck steak is best for slow-cooked braised dishes as the connective tissue and collagen melts into a full-flavored and beefy dish.
– If you find the pastry is becoming to dark during cooking cover any dark areas with foil and continue baking until pastry is uniform in color. Gluten-Free Guinness Pie Recipe | Substitute the flour with gluten-free flour and cornstarch mixed with equal amounts of water and choose a gluten-free pastry dough. Double check your other ingredients, like the broth and beer (they do make gluten-free beers) are gluten-free. Irish Steak Pie for a Crowd | This recipe easily doubles, if desired, make it in a 9×13 casserole dish instead of a pie plate, adjusting your puff pastry accordingly.