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A Stout-Spiked Twist on Shepherd's Pie

I’ll say it once, I’ll say it twice – heck I’ll say it all day long. Just about any recipe that calls for water, broth, stock or some sort of cooking liquid can be partially substituted with beer! As a result, casseroles, stews, soups and chilis all make excellent bases for cooking with beer.

This St. Patrick’s Day, skip the corned beef and cabbage and whip up this Irish Dry Stout-inspired twist on the classic Shepherd’s Pie (also called Cottage Pie). The rich, roasted malt flavors from the beer combine with earthy mushrooms and hearty root vegetables for a satisfying feast. Topped with a hearty layer of your favorite mashed potato recipe, this "Drunken Shepherd-less Pie" is a one-stop shop for recipe success.

  • Extra-virgin olive oil

  • 1 yellow onion, chopped*

  • 2 large carrots, chopped

  • 3 celery stalks, chopped

  • 1 medium parsnip, chopped

  • 4 cloves garlic, minced

  • 2 tablespoons tomato paste

  • 2 teaspoons paprika

  • 1 cup vegetable broth

  • 1/2 pound brown mushrooms, sliced

  • 1 cup Murphy’s Irish Stout, divided

  • 2 teaspoons hot sauce

  • 2 tablespoons Braggs Liquid Aminos

  • 1/2cup peas, defrosted (or canned)

  • 4 cups prepared mashed potatoes**

*Note: Chop all stew veggies to roughly the same size. Parsnips should be chopped a bit smaller due to longer cooking time.

**Note: Use your favorite mashed potato recipe for the topping.


  1. Heat 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil in a large pot or large deep skillet and bring to medium heat. Sautee garlic for 15 seconds. Add onions, toss in oil to coat. Sauté onions until translucent, about 10 minutes,. Add carrots, celery and parsnip and cook for 5 more minutes. Add the vegetable broth, a half cup of the stout, tomato paste and paprika. Bring mixture to a boil. Reduce to a simmer and cook for 30 minutes.

  2. While veggies are simmering, heat 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil in a small sauté pan. Add mushroom and sauté for 5 minutes.  Add another half cup of stout to mushrooms and bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer for 10 minutes.

  3. Add mushrooms and reduced stout liquid to the vegetable stew. Add peas, Braggs and hot sauce. Stir mixture season to taste. Continue cooking over low heat, about 10 minutes. Pre-heat oven broiler.

  4. Carefully pour vegetable stew mixture into an 8 x 11-inch glass or ceramic baking dish. Dollop the mashed potatoes on top of the vegetable mix and spread evenly with a spatula.

  5. Broil the “pie” for until the top of the potatoes become golden. Be sure to watch carefully to avoid burning.

  6. Serve with a pint of Murphy’s Irish Stout! Cheers!

So, now you’ve got a recipe to rival the best of them, and some great beer to boot! Tell me, how will you celebrate St. Patrick’s Day?