Beef and Ale Casserole

Beef and Ale Casserole
When it starts to get cold… get the oven on and cook something comforting to warm your bones! This is a perfect winter chill beater – just 377 calories per serving, and the whole recipe serves 6 large portions.

I often serve ours with Leeky Mash (much nicer than plain old potatoes!) and French beans, but any green veggies (broccoli, savoy cabbage, etc.) would do just as well.

I was away from home for the afternoon when I made this, so I slow cooked our casserole in the oven at 150c (fan oven) for about three and a half hours, and the beef simply melted.  The remaining portions are now frozen in food containers for one of those days when time is short and bellies are empty!

I would suggest using a decent ale or stout – don’t use anything you wouldn’t enjoy drinking: 

“If it’s good enough to drink, it’s good enough to cook with!”
Cooper D. Brunk, The Craft Beer Kitchen: An Elevated Approach to Cooking with Beer

Beef & Ale Casserole

Beef and Ale Casserole
Prep Time
10 mins
Cook Time
2 hrs 25 mins
Total Time
2 hrs 35 mins

When it starts to get cold get the oven on and cook something comforting to warm your bones! This is a perfect winter chill beater - and just 377 calories per serving.

Course: Main Course
Cuisine: British
Servings: 6 people
Calories: 377 kcal
  • 1 tbsp Sunflower oil
  • 2 medium Onions (peeled and chopped)
  • 4 tbsp Plain flour
  • 1 tsp Flaked sea salt
  • 2 tsp Dried mixed herbs
  • 1 kg Braising beef (any visible fat removed, cut into 3cm cubes)
  • 1 Bay leaf
  • 500 ml Dark ale or stout
  • 250 ml Hot beef stock (made with 1 beef stock cube)
  • 2 tbsp Tomato puree
  • 2 tsp Sugar
  • 275 g (approx 5 medium) Carrots (peeled and thickly sliced)
  • 300 g (approx 2 medium) Parsnips (peeled, sliced lengthways and sliced)
  • Ground black pepper
  1. Preheat the oven to 180c / Gas Mark 4 / Fan 160c.

  2. Heat the oil in a large, flameproof casserole dish. Add the onions and fry them for about 5 minutes over a medium heat until lightly browned, stirring frequently. Remove the pan from the heat.

  3. Put the flour, salt and dried herbs in a large bowl and season with plenty of black pepper. Toss the beef chunks in the flour, ensuring it's evenly coated, then tip the lot into the pan with the onions.

  4. Add the bay leaf, stock, ale, tomato puree and sugar. Stir well and bring to the boil, then cover with a lid. Carefully transfer the casserole dish to the oven and cook for 1½ hours.

  5. At the end of this time, remove the casserole dish from the oven and stir in the carrots and parsnips. Put the lid back on and return the dish to the oven for a further 45 minutes until the beef and vegetables are tender.


This recipe was adapted from ‘Beef and Ale Casserole’ which can be found in the Hairy Dieters’
“How to Love Food and Lose Weight” (click on the image below to be taken to

How to Love Food and Lose Weight

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