Beef & beer pie

Beef & beer pie

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(40 ratings)

Prep: 1 hr Cook: 4 hrs

More effort

Serves 4

A steak and ale pie is a comforting classic - this version has suet pastry and a dark rich gravy

Nutrition and extra info

  • before baking

Nutrition: per serving

  • kcal1356
  • fat75g
  • saturates36g
  • carbs111g
  • sugars8g
  • fibre5g
  • protein56g
  • salt3.2g
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  • 1 onion, chopped



    Onions are endlessly versatile and an essential ingredient in countless recipes. Native to Asia…

  • 1 small celery stick, chopped



    A collection of long, thick, juicy stalks around a central, tender heart, celery ranges in…

  • 2 tbsp butter



    Butter is made when lactic-acid producing bacteria are added to cream and churned to make an…

  • 2 tbsp plain flour
  • 700g beef shin, featherblade or stewing steak, cut into large chunks



    The classic cut of meat for a British Sunday roast, beef is full of flavour, as well as being a…

  • 1 tbsp Worcestershire sauce
  • 2 beef stock cubes
  • 2 sprigs thyme


    This popular herb grows in Europe, especially the Mediterranean, and is a member of the mint…

  • 540ml can dark ale or beer

For the pastry

  • 500g plain flour, plus a little extra

For the pastry

  • 250g vegetarian suet

For the pastry

  • 1 egg, beaten



    The ultimate convenience food, eggs are powerhouses of nutrition, packed with protein and a…

For the pastry

  • a few pinches poppy seeds


  1. Heat oven to 160C/140C fan/gas 3. Using a flameproof casserole dish with a lid, soften onion and celery in the butter. Stir in the flour until it has disappeared, then stir in the beef and Worcestershire sauce. Crumble in stock cubes and add thyme. Pour over ale, bring to a simmer, then cover and cook in the oven for 2½ hrs. Remove lid and cook for another 30 mins – this should thicken the sauce nicely.

  2. Increase oven to 200C/180C fan/gas 6. For the pastry, whizz the flour, suet and 1 tsp salt in a food processor until there are no suet lumps. Keeping the motor running, dribble in 1 tbsp water at a time until the pastry starts to come together, then tip onto a lightly floured surface and bring together with your hands.

  3. Roll out half the pastry and use to line a 20-22cm pie dish. Using a slotted spoon, spoon in all of the meat, then pour over some of the sauce until the meat is just coated. Put the rest of the sauce into a saucepan. Roll out the remaining pastry to cover the pie. Trim the edge with a small, sharp knife, then crimp or fork the edges to seal. Make a small heart from cuttings. Brush top of the pie and heart with beaten egg, then dip heart into poppy seeds and stick to top. Bake for 30-40 mins until golden brown and crisp. Reheat sauce and serve with the pie along with some mash and greens.

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Comments, questions and tips

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9th Nov, 2012
As a recently diagnosed Coeliac I cant use beer, would red wine or cider be a suitable substitute?
30th Sep, 2012
Really enjoyed cooking and eating this pie its proper nice for a Sunday. Tip: buy an extra bottle of beer as boyfriend was sad there wasn't any left for him to drink. I will definitely try with honey next time as suggested.
13th Sep, 2012
YUM!!! This really is good! As suggested in other reviews I used Newcastle Brown Ale and squeezed in a tiny but of honey too just to make sure it wasn't bitter. I made the filling two days in advance and kept in fridge, plus I don't have food processor so I cheated and had a puff pastry lid instead. However, so easy to make! I served this with baked rosemary new potatoes and sea salt - delicious.
5th Aug, 2012
A great recipe, would recommend to all. We always use Newcastle Brown Ale and it never tastes bitter. We also cheat and use ready made shortcrust pastry. A firm family favourite. Thank you for sharing Sarah Cook!
20th May, 2012
Very easy to make and tasted lovely . I did make a few changes- adding baby mushrooms and a couple of tablespoons of honey, and I left the meat in all day before assembling the pie. The stout I used was very dark and the honey took away the bitterness, leaving a rich glossy sauce. It was a hit with the whole family- I will definitely be making it again .
7th Apr, 2012
Just finished this - my stomach is so happy and I have that lovely sleepy feeling only a good meal can produce. Somehow managed with a lid for my casserole dish (I used foil, topped with a baking tray), a pie dish (I used a deep cake tin) or a food processor (I just mixed the suet into the flour and added water). I also cut down the time by one hour because I started it too late - I turned the heat up to 150 fan for the first hour and then 155 fan for an extra half hour covered and the half hour uncovered - and the meat was still really tender and the sauce incredibly flavoursome without tasting like beer (which I personally don't like that much). I will definitely make this again at some point, completely following the instructions, as I'm sure it will be even nicer
jul34es's picture
24th Feb, 2012
this pie was easy to make and tasted great,the whole family loved it-it had plenty of flavour.
16th Feb, 2012
Absolutely delicious! Took a while to make the first time but turned out really tasty and I will be making this again, if I can resist the smell coming from my kitchen long enough to get the filling into the pie that is!!
16th Feb, 2012
Absolutely beautiful - time consuming with the cooking but simple and so delicious. Made a great valentines dinner - thank you!
12th Feb, 2012
I agree the meat was lovely and tender, but the gravy with the dark beer in was so bitter - I personally couldn't use it and for me spoiled it. Any suggestions please?


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