I’m bringing you some Luck of the Irish with this easy, one pan Chili Con Carne. Made with ground beef, lamb, leeks, Guinness and some good old Irish love in the form of shamrock tortilla chips. You’ll be all set for St Patrick’s Day with this dish!

Irish chili made with Guinness in a bowl

Perfect for feeding a crowd, a big pot of this Irish style chili is just what you need. This just may be the perfect make ahead dish for your St Patrick’s Day celebrations. How far ahead? You can make it a day ahead and then reheat it. And, like many dishes do, this one does actually taste better the next day which is a true hidden bonus.

Shamrock shaped tortilla chips on a board

Just look at how cute my homemade shamrock tortilla chips are! They were made by simply using a shamrock shaped cookie cutter (I used 2 different sizes). I just cut them out of corn tortillas, then fried them in oil at 350°F/177°C until crispy.

What is ‘con carne’?

Carne is Spanish for meat, con is Spanish for with. Chili (or chili) with meat.

A pan of beef and lamb Irish chili con carne

Chili con carne types

This Irish chili is inspired by my Irish Beef and Guinness Stew and is more akin to Michigan style chili. Traditional Texas chili is made with large chunks of meat rather than ground meat and no tomato product.

Best meat for Luck of the Irish Chili Con Carne

I chose ground meat for this chili because I wanted it to be ‘scoopable’ with my fancy chips, but you can use chunks of beef and lamb. You will need to cook it much longer to make the large chunks tender and the slow cooker would be the perfect method of cooking it in this case.

A bowl of chili viewed from overhead

Guinness in Chili

Guinness is a secret flavor weapon. It adds a great depth of flavor and since this is Irish chili after all, it’s a must.

Best way to serve chili

This is how I like it. Nice and hot with grated Irish cheddar (of course!), chopped cilantro, avocado and tortilla chips.

More St Patrick’s Day recipes

Yield: 6

Luck of the Irish Chili Con Carne

Meaty chili with beans in a grey bowl with a shamrock shaped tortilla chip

Made with beef, lamb, leeks, Guinness and some good old Irish love in the form of shamrock tortilla chips.

Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 1 hour
Total Time 1 hour 15 minutes


  • 2 tablespoons oil
  • 1 pound (453 grams) ground beef
  • 1 pound (453 grams) ground lamb
  • 1 cup (128 grams) yellow onion, chopped
  • 1 cup (82 grams) leek, chopped about 1 large, whites and light green part only
  • 1 teaspoon fine sea salt
  • 2 garlic cloves, finely chopped or grated
  • 2 tablespoon mild chili powder
  • 2 teaspoons ground cumin
  • Small pinch of chili flakes (you can adjust for more spice)
  • 1 tablespoon tomato paste
  • ¾ cup (180 ml) Guinness, optional replace with more beef stock
  • 1 cup (236 ml) beef stock
  • 14 ounces (410 grams) can tomato puree
  • 14 ounces (410 grams) cooked kidney beans, drained and rinsed


  1. To a large pan add the oil over medium-high heat. When hot, add the beef and lamb and cook, breaking up the meat, until almost all browned. Add the onion, leeks and salt, cook until the onion is softened.
  2. Stir in the garlic, chili powder, cumin and chili flakes, stir to toast the spices. Add the tomato paste and stir to mix.
  3. Add the Guinness to deglaze and cook for a few minutes until reduced, stirring occasionally. Add the beef stock and puree. Bring to a simmer and cook uncovered for 1 hour, stirring occasionally.
  4. After 1 hour and thickened, stir in the kidney beans, test for seasoning. Serve with your favorite toppings

Nutrition Information



Serving Size


Amount Per Serving Calories 611Total Fat 34gSaturated Fat 12gTrans Fat 1gUnsaturated Fat 18gCholesterol 141mgSodium 664mgCarbohydrates 29gFiber 7gSugar 6gProtein 48g

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