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Member recipe

Serious Steak & Ale Pie

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(62 ratings)

Member recipe by


Serves 3

Traditional English pie inspired by the fells of the lake district and a long walk up Pavey Arc and Stickle Tarn in the snow.

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  • 1/2 tbls Oil- I used olive oil.
  • 1kg Braising Steak stripped of big fatty pieces and cut into chunks;
  • 2 Garlic cloves, crushed
  • 1 Large Onion chopped roughly
  • 2 Large Carrots chopped into discs
  • 500ml Strong Ale- I used Badgers
  • 4 Beef Oxo cubes
  • 1 Vegetable cube
  • 1/2 tsp Chilli powder
  • 2-3 tsp Thyme, or a small handful of fresh thyme if preferred
  • 300g Ready to roll puff pastry
  • 1 Egg, beaten lightly, to glaze
  • pepper and salt to taste
  • You may also want to use Mushrooms, Peas, Potatoes or any other desired vegetables in this pie - depending on what you are serving with!


    1. Heat the oil in the pan with the onion and garlic for 1 mintue.
    2. Add the steak - I usually cut the steak gradually into the pan. Cook until the meat is seared all over and there is no pink left. By this time there will be some juice in the pan and this should be sizzling.
    3. Pour in half the Ale and allow to simmer for a minute, then pour in the rest with the thyme, chilli powder salt and pepper.
    4. Crumble in the oxo cubes- both the beef and the vegetables. (you may want to use more or less cubes depending on how thick you like the gravy). Add in the chopped vegetables.
    5. Simmer for 10 mintues and then transfer to a large casserol pot. If the gravy doesnt cover the meat then add some water and mix in.
    6. Pop the dish into the oven at gas mark 3 or 4 and leave for at least 1 hour 30 mins.
    7. 20 minutes before you want to serve, roll out the pastry and cut appropriate size tops for your pie dishes. Take the dish out of the oven and ladel the meat into the individual dishes. Pop on the tops on the dishes and put back in the oven for 20 mins (gas 4). You could make one large pie using the casserol disk if desiered.
    8. Take out of the oven and leave to cool for a while- as the filling can be extremely hot! Enjoy!

Comments, questions and tips

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Danielle Robb's picture
Danielle Robb
27th Feb, 2020
My gosh, so many people complaining about the stock cubes!! I absolutely love this recipe! I tend to put more vegetables in than meat though - still sticking with the 1kg of steak and then adding around 10 mushrooms, 10 carrots, and a bag (750g) of peas. I’ll often start with the recommended amount of stock cubes and add more if I want the gravy thicker (I often have to add 1 or 2 cups of water to make sure the vegetables are covered). My friends and family love this recipe and have never complained about anything being too salty.
5th Jan, 2020
Way too many stock cubes. As with all recipes on BBCGF, I'm going to use it as a rough guide and do my own thing.
18th Jul, 2019
Just made this and its absolutely disgusting!!!! 4 oxo cubes and 1 veg stock cube ????? I don't think so. Chilli powder has no place in steak and ale pie. All leaves a horrible taste in the mouth, do not use this recipe!!!!!!
6th Jan, 2019
This a big hit with my family and everyone I've cooked it for, using LOW SALT stock cubes too, Ive been making this for a few years and it's our favourite, very happy with this, can be done in the slow cooker. I done the pastry seperatly then cut it up and placed it on top once served up, proper descent.
22nd Sep, 2018
Created an account with bbc good food just to warn people NOT to make this. It is so salty and leaves an awful taste in your mouth. I don't know how it has such positive reviews. Should have read the comments first. Awful.
26th Apr, 2019
I agree. This is a bad recipe and potentially even dangerous. I didn't season mine with salt at all and it still tasted like the Med. All the flavour from the stock completely overpowers all the aromatics. This is a poor recipe. I had my suspicions from the start, mind you - no thickened for the sauce, and searing the meat in with the onions and garlic? Nope. I didn't do that.
maggiebleksley's picture
15th Jan, 2019
It does say pepper and salt according to taste and it advises you to use less (fewer) stock cubes if you prefer, so surely the saltiness is In the hands of the cook?
24th May, 2018
This recipe is awful and contains a dangerous amount of salt let alone the taste makes you wretch. £7 paid for the meat to go in the bin, what a waste. Do not attempt, foul.
maggiebleksley's picture
15th Jan, 2019
It does say salt to taste and it says use less stock cube if your prefer. Surely a bit of common sense would have saved you from wasting £7.
9th Feb, 2018
I doubled almost all of the recipe using 2 kilo of meat and a full can off Guiness. I left it for closer to 3 hours as found 2 wasn't quite enough. Very impressed though with both the taste and consistency of the gravy. A real hit this one !


26th Apr, 2019
Against my better judgement I went all in with the stock cubes. Huge mistake. Way too salty. I can't even imagine how nasty this would've tasted if I had added even more salt. Also had to add a flour slurry as it was runny as all hell after 2 hours in the oven. Whilst I was making it I did think I ought to be adding some flour in the early stages... Added some sugar to balance the saltiness out and it was palatable, At best, but the stupid amount of stock cubes completely overpowered the aromatics of the beer and the sweetness of the carrots and onion. Use a different recipe. Also, what's with browning the meat AFTER the onions and garlic are in? Makes no sense so I did it the other way around.
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