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What Goes with Irish Stew?

With Saint Patrick’s Day coming up, many people start planning an Irish menu. Irish stew may be one of the favorite recipes that come to mind. While a stew has both meat and vegetables in it, sometimes you need some side dishes to fill out the meal, especially if you have many mouths to feed. So, what goes with Irish stew?


Potatoes are a staple in Ireland. While you may have put some in your stew, you may also want to prepare a side dish of Apple Mash. This is a combination of cooked apples and potatoes that are mashed together. They are then served with a little sugar and butter. Another potato dish is Colcannon. It is made with mashed potatoes, cabbage, and onions. Some recipes also add a little bit of bacon. It is comfort food at its best and tastes wonderful. A savory potato and leek bake could also make a tasty side dish.

Another potato possibility is Boxtie, or potato cakes. This is a dish made with mashed potato, grated raw potato, salt, and flour. It is made on a hot griddle. The golden brown exterior gives way to a soft, delicious interior. It is a regional specialty from County Leitrim.


Cabbage is another Irish staple. Cabbage can be added to potatoes, as mentioned above in the Colcannon suggestion. It can also be baked with apples. Cabbage can be enjoyed on its own as a side dish when it is fried up in butter and onion in a big skillet. A little vinegar and sugar is added to create a little dressing. This may be a good choice to serve with Irish stew, since not every stew recipe includes cabbage.


Bread is an important part of every meal in Ireland. Soda bread is an Irish favorite. It can be made with herbs, currants or spices as well as plain. Buttermilk bread is another tradition. This is a bread that is made from flour, baking powder, salt, baking soda, eggs, buttermilk and raisins or currants. It can be baked into scones or bannocks. A bannock is a round loaf of bread. To serve a bannock, cut it into quarters and then slice thin pieces off.


Your Irish stew can be served in a bowl accompanied by your side dishes or you can even spoon it over a side of colcannon. Slices of bread can be dipped in the stew’s gravy. Let everyone heap their plates with their favorites and let the Irish fun begin.

If you are Irish for more than just one day per year, of course any of these recipes may appeal to your sense of history. They are certainly appropriate for any meal you wish. You can also add these side dishes to main dishes like corned beef and cabbage, roast lamb, shepherd’s pie or any number of great Irish dishes. Let the luck of the Irish fill your kitchen with delicious flavors and aromas to tempt your family into a fine meal.


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