Beer Braised Short Ribs are fall-apart tender and full of incredible flavor! They’re surprisingly easy to make and pair perfectly with fluffy cheddar mashed potatoes. This classic comfort food is perfect for a holiday dinner or a fancy date night meal at home.
This post was originally published in March of 2020, but I just updated it with more tips & tricks.
Who wouldn’t love to scoop a big forkful of tender, fall-apart-juicy ribs, nestled on a fluffy cloud of cheesy mashed potatoes?! This short rib recipe is simple to make, while still feeling like a fancy restaurant meal – perfect for special occasions or sunday dinner!
Why you’ll love this Short Rib recipe:
- Beer Braised Beef Short Ribs – Tender, fall-apart-juicy ribs are full of flavor and are easy to make!
- Cheddar Mashed Potatoes – Our tender meat is nestled on a fluffy cloud of cheesy mashed potatoes, with herby garlic butter.
- Restaurant Quality Meal – This recipe is a restaurant quality meal you can make at home – and it’s relatively simple, with most of the cook time being hands-off.
- Beef Short Ribs – Choose short ribs that have visible fat marbling (the white “veins” in the red meat), with a thin fat cap (the layer across the top). If the muscle fat cap is super thick, you may end up with tough ribs. Try to choose meaty short ribs, with a minimum of 1.5 inches of meat on top of the bone. Boneless short ribs or bone-in ribs will both work for this short ribs recipe. Most grocery stores carry short ribs, but you can also try your local butcher for better luck finding a high quality cut of beef ribs.
- Beef Broth – Any beef broth or beef stock will work.
- Beer – Use any type of dark stout that you like. Guinness would work, or a chocolate stout. This adds rich flavor to the ribs and the sauce!
- Potatoes – I love using the yukon gold potatoes here, and they’re widely considered the best for mashing.
- Cheese – Use a block of white cheddar and grate it yourself, or use a bag of shredded white cheddar. Either works fine here.
- Butter – I always use salted buter for the best flavor, but feel free to use unsalted butter if you prefer.
- Gluten-free – Use a gluten-free beer to keep this recipe gluten-free.
- Dairy-free – The ribs are dairy-free as is, but you’d need to use dairy-free butter and cheese in your mashed potatoes.
How to Make this Braised Short Rib Recipe with Step-by-Step Instructions:
Step 1: Brown the Short Ribs & Sauté the Veggies. First, season the beef short ribs with kosher salt + black pepper, and brown them on all sides, over medium-high heat, in a dutch oven. Set them aside. Add some sliced onions, carrots, and garlic to the same dutch oven and sauté for a bit to start building flavor.
Step 2: Finish Cooking the Short Ribs. Add the meat back in, and add your beer and beef broth. Cook this low and slow in the oven for the best and most tender finished ribs! Start at 325 degrees for 1 hour and 45 minutes, then reduce the oven temp to 275 and cook 45 minutes more.
Step 3: Make the Sauce. Remove the short ribs, and tent with foil on a plate. Skim off any excess fat, then transfer the veggies and braising liquid to a blender. Blend this up, and return it to the pot. Don’t worry if it looks super frothy, that’s normal. Pour this back into the dutch oven, bring to a boil, then reduce the heat to a simmer. Let it simmer for 30 minutes to reduce into a thicker, more flavorful sauce.
Add the ribs back in and gently simmer to reheat the ribs, or you can cover the pot at this point and store in the fridge for a day before serving – this allows the sauce to thicken up even more, and I must say, we LOVED eating these on the second day!
How to Make Cheddar Mashed Potatoes:
Step 1: Boil your Potatoes and Prepare your Herbed Butter. Peel and boil potatoes in a pot of salted water! While they boil, prepare your herbed butter. Add salted butter to a small saucepan with a smashed clove of garlic and a handful of fresh herbs (I had sage and thyme on hand). Let simmer over low heat a few minutes, then discard the garlic and herbs.
Step 2: Mash your Potatoes & Add the Mix-Ins. Drain and mash up your potatoes once they’re tender, and stir in milk, sour cream, & the herbed butter. Stir in the white cheddar last.
Serving + Storing this Recipe: Plate ribs with the potatoes – the meat will shred easily – and spoon plenty of the juicy sauce over top. Store leftover potatoes and short ribs separately in an airtight container in the fridge, for 3-4 days. Make this recipe for Valentine’s Day or a date night at home – it’s the perfect meal for either occasion!
Expert Success Tips:
- Picking Good Short Ribs – See notes above in “ingredients” about picking good quality short ribs.
- Brown the Ribs – Don’t skip the step of browning the ribs – it’s the best way to build and lock in lots of flavor!
- Mashed Potatoes – Always save a little bit of the cooking water to stir into your mashed potatoes for extra creaminess.
- Mashed Potatoes – Feel free to skip the cheese in your mashed potatoes, or make them dairy-free with your favorite dairy-free alternatives to the mix-ins used. You can also adjust the amounts of milk and sour cream to fit your preferences.
- Creamy Polenta – Serve these ribs over creamy polenta if you prefer.
In most cases, this is because the meat hasn’t cooked long enough. Add 10-15 minutes at a time until it is fall apart tender.
Theoretically yes, but I haven’t tested it with that method. I personally feel that the cooking method of making your short ribs slowly, at a lower temperature, gives the best results.
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- Dutch Oven – This is my absolute favorite dutch oven and I use it for SO many things – soups, no knead bread, cooking dinner, etc.
More Dinner Recipes to Love:s
- Chicken Wild Rice Soup
- Slow Cooker Honey Garlic Chicken
- Lamb Chops with Shallot Thyme Pan Sauce
- Oven or Instant Pot Beef Stew
- Cajun Seafood Boil with Garlic Butter Sauce
- Mom’s Best Homemade Lasagna
- One-Pot Lamb Barbacoa Tacos
- Cozy Chicken Dumpling Soup
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Beer Braised Short Ribs with Cheddar Mashed Potatoes
For the Short Ribs
- 3 and 1/2 lbs beef short ribs
- 3 large carrots, chopped
- 1 medium yellow onion, thinly sliced
- 3 cups beef broth
- 2 cups chocolate stout or other dark beer
For the Cheddar Mashed Potatoes
- 2 and 1/2 lbs yukon gold potatoes, washed + peeled
- salt + pepper
- 3/4 cup milk
- 1/4 cup sour cream
- 6 tbsp salted butter
- 4 large cloves of garlic
- handful of fresh thyme + sage
- 1 and 1/4 cups grated white cheddar cheese
- Make the Short Ribs: Preheat oven to 325° F. Season the ribs with salt + pepper. Add 1 tbsp of olive oil to a large dutch oven over medium heat, and brown the ribs on all sides, working in batches as needed. Set ribs aside on a plate. Add the onion + carrots to the same pot and cook over medium heat, stirring occasionally and scraping the bottom of the pan to get the flavorful browned bits incorporated, until softened – about 8 minutes. Add the beef broth and beer and bring to a boil. Add the ribs back in, cover with the lid, and cook in the oven for 1 hour and 45 minutes. After that, turn the oven temperature down to 275° F, and cook for 45 minutes more. The ribs should be fall apart tender when you try to shred them with a fork (but don't shred them all now – just test it). Set the ribs on a plate and tent with foil. Skim off any visible fat in the liquid, and then pour everything (including the vegetables) into a blender (or use a hand blender in the pot) and puree. The liquid will be frothy. Return the liquid to the pot, bring to a boil, then simmer for 30 minutes to reduce into a thicker sauce & to intensify the flavor. Return the ribs to the pot and gently reheat, or cover and let cool a bit before refrigerating to serve the next day. The sauce thickens up even more in the fridge overnight and these are fabulous on the next day!
- Make the Cheddar Mashed Potatoes: While the ribs cook, make the potatoes. Add the peeled potatoes* to a pot of salted boiling water. Cook 15-20 minutes until potatoes are tender. Meanwhile, melt butter in a small saucepan and add the garlic and herbs. Heat over low heat for 10 minutes. Then turn off the heat, and discard the garlic and herbs. When potatoes are done cooking, drain and then shake them around in the pot a bit to help fluff them. Mash the potatoes well. Keep the heat on low to help melt the cheese. Stir in the milk, sour cream, and garlic butter. Add salt + pepper to taste. Stir the cheese in last.
- Serve + Store: Serve the ribs, shredded, over the potatoes. Store leftovers of each in their own air tight containers in the fridge for 5-6 days.
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