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County Clare's Guinness Beef Barley Soup

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Makes: 6 servings adjust
"This soup is one served at County Clare, an authentic Irish pub in a bed and breakfast on Milwaukee's east side at 1234 N. Astor St."



  • 1 12 pounds Beef Chuck, cut into bite sized pieces
  • 2 tablespoons Vegetable Oil
  • 8 cups Beef Stock

Step 1

In a large, heavy pot, brown the beef cubes in 2 tablespoons of vegetable oil. (I use the number "7" setting on my burner until the liquid evaporates and then turn it down to '5' to brown the meat.) Add beef stock and bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer for 1 hour.


  • 2 tablespoons Vegetable Oil
  • 1 large Onion, cut into 1/2-inch cubes
  • 3 large Carrots, cut into 1/2-inch cubes
  • 3 stalks Celery, cut into 1/2-inch cubes
  • 2 strips Bacon, chopped

Step 2

In a large skillet, add 2 tablespoons vegetable oil. Add carrots, celery, onions and bacon. Cook slowly over medium heat until vegetables are crisp tender and the onions are translucent. Add to stock pot.


  • 1 bottle Guinness, stout preferred
  • 12 teaspoon Dried Thyme
  • 3 Dried Whole Bay Leaves
  • 1 clove Garlic, pressed
  • 2 teaspoons Brown Sugar
  • 34 cup Quick Cooking Barley, (can use regular barley but just add it earlier. like when you add the beef stock)
  • 8 ounces Fresh Mushrooms, cleaned and sliced (optional)
  • 1 tablespoon Beef Soup Base, (heaping from a jar or 1 beef bouillon cube)

Step 3

Add Guinness, thyme, bay leaves, garlic, brown sugar, barley and mushrooms (if using). Stir in beef base. Simmer until vegetables and beef are very tender, about 45 minutes.


  • Salt, to taste
  • Black Pepper, to taste

Step 4

Add salt and pepper to taste. Remove bay leaves.


  • 1 12 tablespoons Corn Starch

Step 5

To thicken, if desired, mix cornstarch with a little cool broth or water then whisk into soup. Simmer for a few more minutes to thicken. I have never needed to do this.

Step 6

NOTE: Most times when I make this I make 1 1/2 recipe using 2 1/2 lb meat, browned in 2 batches.
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