Corned beef and cabbage is about as classic a St. Patrick’s Day dish as you can make. Corned beef is slow cooked and served alongside cabbage with optional ingredients like potatoes, carrots and onions. Though corned beef and cabbage is Irish at heart, it’s not something the Irish ate often back in the day. Instead, during the 18th century, the beef-producing country exported the expensive meat to neighboring countries and dined on pork, veggies and dairy instead. Who knew?
Today, most Irish don’t consider corned beef a native dish. And believe me, we asked our resident Irishman. Rather, the salt-cured meat as we know it now is an Irish-American and New York delicatessen fusion. It’s become a St. Paddy’s favorite as part of Irish-American culture, since corned beef was a cheaper substitute for bacon in the traditional Irish dish bacon and cabbage. (Wikipedia)
Regardless of its origins or authenticity, we’re big fans of corned beef – both in sandwiches and this corned beef and cabbage dish – so we’re happy to make it at home once a year each March. To keep things as quick and simple as possible, we make our recipe in the slow cooker.
The corned beef, cabbage, potatoes, carrots and onions go in the crock with some pickling spices and water until everything is cooked through but still vibrant. It smells amazing as it cooks, so you’ll be hungry all day. When the table is set, the meat and veggies get drained and served for a delicious St. Patrick’s Day meal.
There’s only one pot to clean up and the leftovers (if there are any) make a delicious reuben sandwich. Serve the corned beef and cabbage with a good Irish beer. We’re not into the green beer, but prefer a nice stout to go with the theme: a deliciously hearty St. Patrick’s Day.
Slow Cooker Corned Beef and Cabbage
- 2 1/2 to 3 pound corned beef brisket
- 1/4 cup pickling spices
- 1 small head cabbage, quartered
- 6 thin carrots, peeled and sliced lengthwise
- 12 small fingerling potatoes, halved
- 1 bag (8 oz.) pearl onions, peeled
- Spicy brown mustard, optional
- Rinse corned beef and place in 5-6 quart slow cooker.
- Sprinkle pickling spices over meat and cover with water.
- Cover slow cooker and cook on HIGH for 5 hours or LOW for 10 hours.
- Add cabbage, carrots, potatoes and onions to slow cooker with corned beef and cook on HIGH for an additional hour. If using LOW, switch to HIGH.
- To serve, cut corned beef across the grain and plate over cabbage.
- Serve with spicy brown mustard or horseradish, if desired.
- Pickling spices can be found in the spice isle of major grocery stores.
- For variety, try yellow or purple potatoes.
The Wrap & Serve™ Slow Cooker includes five unique wraps, and the control knob is on the side of the slow cooker so you can show off your favorite pattern. It is large enough to cook a 6 lb. chicken or 4 lb. roast, perfect for family dinners, parties or other large gatherings. Now you can have stylish and festive pattern options for this versatile appliance in your kitchen.
The Wrap & Serve™ Slow Cooker comes with five unique wrap sets, and Wrap & Serve™ Slow Cooker Extra Wraps let you add additional designs like these shamrock and pumpkin wraps perfect for St. Patrick’s Day and Halloween festivities. Additional patterns available online include holidays, birthdays, seasons, sports, bridal and baby shower.
Can you substitute a smoked shoulder
Smoked shoulder was traditional in my Irish family and, in my opinion, far superior to corned beef. Do it!
Gail, it sounds like it would be delicious. We haven’t tested this, so we can’t offer our expertise here, but it sounds like Jacquie is a huge fan. Thanks for your help, Jacquie!
I used the mustard seed packet only once…many years ago and my family asked ‘what did you do…this isn’t the same as you normally make it’. I went back to adding my own dpices–basil, bay leaf, onion and garlic powders, dill and sage.
Hi Linda. Pickling spices vary from brand to brand, and many home cooks like yourself have developed their own favorite blend. Definitely use your preferred blend of pickling spices. Thanks for your comment!
I’ve got 13 lbs of corn beef…I need info on how to cook it in a roaster oven