Belgian Beef and Beer Stew

Belgian Beef and Beer Stew
Mark Boughton Photography / styling: Teresa Blackburn
  • Yield: 6 servings

Wine isn’t the only way to add great flavor to a beef stew. A bottle of dark ale is the secret to this Belgian classic.


3pounds boneless chuck, trimmed, and cut into 1½–inch cubes
1teaspoon coarse salt
Freshly ground black pepper
8teaspoons vegetable oil
3 yellow onions (about 2 pounds), cut into halves and sliced 1/4-inch thick
3tablespoons all-purpose flour
3large garlic cloves, minced
1 1/2cups reduced sodium chicken broth
1 (12-ounce) bottle dark ale (Belgian ale is best)
3large thyme sprigs
1tablespoon Dijon mustard
1tablespoon red currant jelly
1teaspoon cider vinegar


  1. Preheat oven to 350F. Pat beef dry with paper towels; season generously with salt and pepper.
  2. Heat a large sauté pan over medium-high heat. Add 2 teaspoons oil and a third of the beef. Sear 2 minutes on each side, or until well browned; transfer to a large Dutch oven. Repeat with remaining beef, using 2 teaspoons oil per batch.
  3.  Add final 2 teaspoons oil to pan; reduce heat to medium. Add onions and a pinch of salt. Cover; cook 5 minutes. Uncover and sauté until onions are soft and golden, about 20 minutes. Add garlic and toss with onions 1 minute. Add flour; stir 2 minutes. Pour in broth; increase heat to a simmer. Transfer contents of pan to Dutch oven, scraping bits from bottom of pan; add ale and thyme. Return to a simmer, stir well, cover, and transfer to oven. Cook until beef is very tender, 2 to 2 1/2 hours.
  4.  Stir in mustard, jelly and vinegar; cool completely and refrigerate. (The stew is best made ahead 1 or 2 days, and gently reheated).

Nutritional Info *per serving

  • Calories 434
  • Fat 24g
  • Cholesterol 63mg
  • Sodium 703mg
  • Carbohydrate 14g
  • Fiber 1g
  • Protein 34g