This is my easy recipe for a deeply flavored Guinness Gravy made from scratch with onions, beef broth, Worcestershire sauce, and, of course, Guinness beer.

Brown gravy in a dish with mashed potato

This Guinness-onion gravy is usually what you’ll find in pubs and restaurants across the British Isles and Ireland. In England, you’d typically see it served with dishes like Bangers and Mash (sausage and mash, popular in both England and Ireland) and Shepherd’s Pie, but the addition of the stout beer makes it distinctly Irish.

A homemade brown gravy, typically made with the meat drippings from a Beef Roast. Even if you’re not roasting any meat, you can still make this delicious gravy for many applications.”

My Tips for Making the Best Guinness Gravy

One of the first things I learned in culinary school is how to make a roux. A roux is one of the essential building blocks for thickening sauces, stews, gravies, and soups. It is made by cooking one part fat to one part starch (usually flour) together. This is a crucial step to ensure that the starchy molecules of the flour are completely coated in fat. As a result, lumps are less likely to form when the liquid is added. Additionally, this process adds flavor to the gravy, as opposed to just adding a slurry of water and cornstarch to thicken.

Guinness gravy viewed from overhead

Roux Colors

There are three types of roux: white roux, blond roux, and brown roux. This refers to the length of time the roux is cooked. The longer the cooking time, the darker the roux and the deeper the flavor. However, the longer the roux is cooked, the less thickening power it has. This is why I prefer to use a blond roux. Roux is always cooked over medium-low heat.

To achieve the best results for a good, rich gravy (without the use of bouillon or granules), add aromatics (as in this recipe), such as onions, that cook in the fat before the roux is made (this is called a ‘singer’). Worcestershire sauce and good old tomato ketchup are my go-to ingredients for adding intense flavor to brown gravy. Yellow mustard is also a delicious addition, as I do in my Onion Gravy.

Unsalted Butter is Best for Sauce and Gravy

Most broths and stocks are salty, so it’s always best to cook with unsalted butter to control the salt level at the end. You can always add salt, but you can’t take it away.

When you melt butter for the start of the gravy, it’s the perfect time to add the onions to soften and add flavor. Then, add the flour and mix to cook out the raw flavor. Stir well to prevent sticking to the bottom of the pan until mixed into the butter, then slowly add beef stock or broth until it thickens. This method also works well with Roast Chicken Gravy.

Pouring gravy over mashed potato

Guinness Types

There are three types of Guinness: Draught, Stout, and Blonde. Draught is slightly stronger than Stout. You can use either in this recipe. Guinness Blonde is a lager and will not impart the same flavor.”

Guinness stout adds a delicious depth of flavor to gravy, which is why I use it in my Irish Beef and Guinness Stew, Luck of the Irish Chili Con Carne, and Steak and Kidney Pudding.

Guinness has a slightly bitter taste and when cooked this can intensify. To combat this, I taste the gravy towards the end and if needed, a tiny pinch of sugar evens out the bitterness.

Guinness Onion Gravy Serving Suggestions

If you’re planning a St. Patrick’s Day celebration and serving Irish food, this stout gravy is a great way to enhance any meat dishes like roast beef or corned beef, Irish bangers, and Colcannon (Irish mashed potatoes). In England, we like to serve chips (French fries) topped with a thick gravy, similar to the Canadian poutine but without the cheese curds.

If you’ve made this Guinness Gravy, please leave a star rating and a review, or you can also ask a question.

Yield: 4

Guinness Gravy

A small copper pot filled with gravy

A delicious brown gravy made with onions, Guinness and beef broth.

Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 15 minutes
Total Time 25 minutes


  • 3 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 1 cup (120 grams) yellow onion, sliced thin
  • 4 teaspoons flour
  • 1 cup (473 ml) beef broth/stock
  • ¼ cup Guinness stout
  • 2 teaspoons tomato ketchup
  • ½ teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
  • ½ teaspoon salt (plus more to taste depending how salty your broth is)
  • ¼ teaspoon ground black pepper
  • Small pinch sugar (if needed)


  1. Add the butter to a saucepan over medium heat. When the butter is melted and bubbling add the onions and cook, stirring often until softened, not browned.
  2. Add the flour into the butter to the onions and mix well to combine. Cook, stirring for a minute or so to cook out the raw flour taste.
  3. Add the broth, Guinness and Worcestershire sauce and stir. Whisk in the tomato ketchup until well mixed. Bring to a low simmer until thickened. Add salt and ground black pepper to taste. If it tastes a little bitter from the Guinness, add a tiny pinch of sugar.

Nutrition Information



Serving Size


Amount Per Serving Calories 118Total Fat 9gSaturated Fat 6gTrans Fat 0gUnsaturated Fat 3gCholesterol 23mgSodium 589mgCarbohydrates 9gFiber 1gSugar 3gProtein 2g

This nutrition calculation is provided by Nutronix that is only a guideline and not intended for any particular diet.