Corned Beef and Cabbage

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Celebrate St. Patrick’s Day the right way – with corned beef and cabbage! Slices of juicy, seasoned brisket are served with creamy horseradish sauce, and plated with classic hearty veggies that will make you feel right at home.

Corned Beef and cabbage and horseradish sauce on a plate

Corned beef and cabbage is the quintessential meal for St. Patrick’s Day. But really, you can enjoy this classic Irish meal whenever you have an itch for some good old comfort food. Savory, juicy beef dipped in horseradish sauce, with slow-cooked potatoes, carrots, and cabbage? Yup, I’m all for it – especially since leftovers can be turned to a corned beef hash the next morning!

What Is Corned Beef Exactly?

In short – corned beef is salt-cured beef brisket. Since brisket is naturally a tougher cut of meat, it becomes extremely tender after it’s been brined with large salt crystals and pickling spices.

Although the packaged version is a bit higher in sodium, curing beef yourself is quite a long process. Especially with the 4 hours you already have to spend cooking it. So do yourself a favor, and opt to buy one that’s already been cured.

Pro tip: If you’re looking for a slightly healthier option, you can buy corned turkey. It has a bit less fat content, and is cured with the same pickling spices as corned beef. Just note the flavor will be a bit lighter since turkey is white meat, compared to beefy red meat.

Ingredients for corned beef and cabbage on a table

What You Need For A Classic Corned Beef and Cabbage

Now that we’ve gone over everything you need to know about buying corned beef, the rest is easy. All you need are a few core vegetables and aromatics to complete this idyllic Irish meal.

  • Corned Beef: Head on over to the meat section at your local market, and you should be able to find packaged, ready-to-cook corned beef.
  • Potatoes: Think smaller potatoes here – baby potatoes, Yukon Golds, or even red potatoes will work!
  • Carrots: I like a good amount of carrots – 6 pieces to be exact! And once they simmer, they’ll be perfectly tender.
  • Cabbage: Grab a green head of cabbage. As it cooks in the pot it’ll become softened and slightly sweet – so delish!
  • Aromatics: You just need a few bay leaves to give an extra oomph of flavor. Because the real seasoning comes from the corned beef’s spice packet!

Find the printable recipe with measurements below.

How to Shop for Corned Beef

  • Grab a 3-pound corned beef. This is the ideal size for a party of 6 since it will slightly shrink as it cooks. If you’re feeding a larger crowd or plan to make a corned beef hash the next day, grab a larger brisket!
  • Look for a deep red color. Any signs of gray coloring means it’s been refrigerated for an extensive period of time.
  • Keep an eye out for an added spice packet. Most packaged corned beefs will include a spice packet, which helps to enhance the brisket’s savory flavors.

How To Make Corned Beef and Cabbage (With A Dutch Oven)

Cooking brisket in a pot for corned beef and cabbage

Start cooking the brisket. In a large pot or Dutch oven, add the corned beef, spice packet, and bay leaves. Cover everything with water, bring it to a boil, then down to a simmer, and cover with the lid. Allow the brisket to cook for 2 ½ to 3 hours (about 50 minutes per pound of brisket).

Cooking corned beef and cabbage in a pot

In goes the veggies! Add the potatoes and carrots to the pot, and cook for 10 to 15 minutes. Then add the cabbage and cook for another 15 minutes, until tender.

A platter of corned beef and cabbage

Get ready to slice and serve. Transfer the brisket to a cutting board and plate the vegetables on a separate platter. Slice the brisket against the grain into ½-inch slices and plate it with the veggies.

A plate of corned beef and cabbage

Make This Corned Beef and Cabbage in a Slow Cooker

If you don’t have a large pot or Dutch oven, a slow cooker is the perfect alternative! The process is almost the exact same, minus the additional hours needed to cook low and slow.

  • Add the brisket and spices into the slow cooker. Place the corned beef in the slow cooker and top with the pickling spices, and bay leaves. Then cover everything with water and cook for 8-10 hours on low.
  • Toss in the veggies. After the initial 4 hours, add the potatoes and carrots to the slow cooker. Then, 2 hours before serving add the sliced cabbage.
  • Slice it up! Remove the corned beef from the slow cooker, let it rest for 10 minutes, and thinly slice it. Then add the sliced meat along with the veggies to a serving platter.

Corned Beef and Cabbage Recipe Video

Watch how easy this recipe comes together in the video below!

More St. Patrick’s Day Recipes

Celebrate St. Patrick’s Day with more Irish recipes that put comfort at the forefront of this holiday!

If you’re for all-in-one meals, this corned beef and cabbage ranks high. Once you make it, let me know what everyone thinks in a comment below!

Corned beef and cabbage on a large platter

Corned Beef and Cabbage

5 from 8 votes
Prep: 15 minutes
Cook: 3 hours 15 minutes
Total: 3 hours 30 minutes
Servings: 6 servings
Author: Lisa Bryan

Description

Celebrate St. Patrick's Day the right way – with corned beef and cabbage! Juicy, brisket, creamy horseradish sauce, and classic hearty veggies.

Video

Ingredients 
 

  • 3 to 3½ pounds corned beef brisket (with spice packet)
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 1 ½ pound baby potatoes
  • 6 medium carrots, peeled and cut into 3-inch pieces
  • 1 head green cabbage, cut into 2-inch wedges

Instructions 

  • In a large stock pot or Dutch oven, add the corned beef brisket along with spice packet, and bay leaves. Cover everything with water.
    A pot cooking brisket for corned beef and cabbage
  • Bring the liquid to a boil, then down to a simmer, and cover. Cook the brisket for 2 ½ to 3 hours (about 50 minutes per pound of brisket).
    Cooking brisket in a steel pot for corned beef and cabbage
  • Add the potatoes and carrots to the pot, and cook for 10 to 15 minutes, until almost tender. Add the cabbage and cook for another 15 minutes, until tender.
    A steel pot with corned beef and cabbage
  • Transfer the brisket to a cutting board and the vegetables to a separate serving plate. Slice the brisket against the grain and serve with the potatoes, carrots, and cabbage. Optionally, it's great served alongside horseradish sauce.
    A large platter of corned beef and cabbage

Nutrition

Calories: 599kcal | Carbohydrates: 35g | Protein: 38g | Fat: 34g | Saturated Fat: 11g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g | Monounsaturated Fat: 16g | Cholesterol: 122mg | Sodium: 2836mg | Potassium: 1604mg | Fiber: 8g | Sugar: 9g | Vitamin A: 10343IU | Vitamin C: 143mg | Calcium: 110mg | Iron: 6mg
Course: Dinner
Cuisine: Irish
Keyword: Corned Beef, Corned Beef and Cabbage
Did you make this recipe?Mention @downshiftology or tag #downshiftology!

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About the author

Lisa Bryan

Lisa is a bestselling cookbook author, recipe developer, and YouTuber (with over 2.5 million subscribers) living in sunny Southern California. She started Downshiftology in 2014, and is passionate about making healthy food with fresh, simple and seasonal ingredients.

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Recipe Rating




30 Comments

  1. Made, easy favour and made the horseradish sauce. Nice compliment to the dish. Family meal enjoyed by all5 stars

  2. I am wanting to try this corn beef recipe but I will be ordering it from my butcher. I do not know if when you order from a butcher it comes with a spice pack. When I order from my butcher what exactly should I tell him I want . Could you please help me out.
    Thank you
    Jane Morganstern

  3. Very good, and easy, too. Suggestion: cut cooking time for carrots & cabbage by a couple of minutes, and let corned beef rest for at least 10 minutes before slicing. And, the suggested plating looked great.5 stars

  4. Thank you for this recipe.  After looking at many recipes, yours was very easy and it came out delicious.  This is a keeper!!

  5. This is my first time trying corned beef and I loved it! My husband and son enjoyed it too. I also tried it with the horseradish sauce, yummy!
    Thanks Lisa!5 stars

  6. Another winning recipe!  The corn beef came out so juicy and delicious, the cabbage was tender and sweet, and the root vegetables were also delicious! I love how easy, healthy and delicious this recipe is! My family could not resist eating it! Thank you Lisa!! 5 stars

  7. I live in Australia and am a big fan of your site however a spice packet isn’t included when buying the meat in Australia. Whilst I know spices to add perhaps you could suggest spices to use.

    1. I would look up a recipe for a corned beef spice seasoning. But typically, it will include peppercorns, bay leaves, mustard seeds, dill seeds and at a few other spices.

  8. Cooked in the slow cooker. Ended up getting a 4 lb hunk of brisket and only used half a head of cabbage since that was all that would fit (gonna make the fried cabbage recipe next!!) Turned out so good and the veggies were so savory. Even my kid that doesn’t like cooked carrots ate a bunch. Easy, delicious recipe!!5 stars

  9. I’m sitting down eating my corned beef and cabbage right now and it is delicious so thanks for the recipe! I was curious as to what one does with all the leftover broth?5 stars

    1. Happy to hear you’re loving this corned beef and cabbage Mary! I haven’t figured out what to do with the leftover broth yet, but if you happen to figure something out, please let the community know :)

      1. I did google it and some recipes for soup came up but I’m not sure 🤔.

        I am however having my corned beef breakfast hash and poached eggs as we speak! 😍

  10. This recipe looks so delicious and inviting! I want to make it right now I eat it! Thanks for sharing…your recipes are always good!

    1. Can’t wait for you to try this breakfast hash! It’s so delicious and works well with other types of meats as well.

  11. Hi Lisa, I live in Adelaide, Australia and Corned Beef doesn’t come with a Spice Pack over here, can you please tell me what spices are in the pack thanks.

    This is a little different to what I normally do but I will definitely give it a go, sounds yummy.

    Thank you Lisa for all your lovely recipes :-)

    1. Hi Cilla – there’s a few variations when it comes to making your own spice pack. But, they typically include ingredients like peppercorns, bay leaves, mustard seeds, and dill seeds. I would just search for the spice packet recipe online so that you have exact measurements :)

      1. Thank you Lisa, will have a search around to see what I can find.

        I usually use ground Black Pepper and Cloves, with Potato, Carrots and Onion as flavouring veg while cooking Corned Beef. And serve with Mashed Potato, Cauli & Broccoli with a white sauce, and of course the veg cooked with the meat.

        I am always looking for new ideas so will try your version, it is good to have a change and who knows it may be my new favourite :-)