A traditional St. Paddy’s Day recipe, this crockpot corned beef and cabbage dinner is easy and flavorful. Made with beer, potatoes, carrots and onions it’s the best corned beef recipe!
Corned beef brisket is slow cooked with seasonings, beer and vegetables for the best and most flavorful corned beef and cabbage dinner. Simple and easy to make, it’s a favorite St. Paddy’s Day tradition.
Do they really eat corned beef and cabbage in Ireland?
Corned beef and cabbage is a well known Irish-American dish that became popular once brought over to America. In Ireland, few people eat corned beef and it’s not a “traditional” St Paddy’s Day dinner like most people think. The Irish tradition is usually lamb or bacon.
Is corned beef really even Irish?
Because the Cattle Acts prohibited the export of live cattle to England wayyy back in the day, Ireland became one of the main distributors of meat to other countries because they were one of the first to cure and preserve the meat with salt. That’s why we associate corned beef with Ireland. It was actually the British who invented the term “corned beef” to describe the salt that was the size of corn kernels. Fun fact of the day!
Today, we eat corned beef and cabbage on St Patrick’s Day because over the years it’s become adopted by the Irish Americans to replace the traditional bacon and cabbage.
(For more information on the origin of corned beef, click here.)
What’s the best cut of meat for corned beef? Point cut vs flat cut, what’s the difference?
Corned beef is ultimately just salted and cured beef brisket. In grocery stores, it usually comes in two kinds: point and flat. While in my opinion, both are delicious, it really depends what you’re going for.
Point Cut: The more fattier cut of corned beef. If you want that “shredded” texture for your corned beef, this is the cut you’ll want. This is what I used in my crockpot corned beef recipe, and as long as you trim the fat before cooking, it will be a good mixture of fat and meat.
Flat Cut: This is the cut most people prefer because it’s not as fatty and much more lean. It’s also easier to find at the market. The flat cut will cut up nicely and not shred.
I’m half Italian and half Irish. Well not technically, but for the majority and to make it easy, that’s what I tell people when they ask :).
I grew up on homemade Italian food since my grandmother was 100% Italian. Even though we’re almost half Irish too, most of our meals stemmed from the Italian side, because let’s face it…authentic Italian food is DELICIOUS (especially if you have grandmother and mom who cook it so darn good).
Yet, on St. Patrick’s Day we always have the traditional corned beef and cabbage dinner with potatoes, carrots and sliced rye bread.
The corned beef is always juicy and moist and my grandma makes the BEST side of cabbage to go with it.
If you don’t like cabbage, do me a favor and try this recipe first before you swear it off. It’s cooked on high heat with olive oil until tender. The high heat brings out the natural sugars in the cabbage making it slightly sweet, buttery and delicious.
This version of crockpot corned beef is simmered in beer until juicy and fall apart tender. Typically the corned beef will come with a seasoning packet which we are adding to the mix along with some other spices for extra flavorful meat.
The best Corned Beef Spice Recipe:
- Whole Cloves
- Bay Leaf
- Mustard Seeds
- Black Pepper
While some fat is welcome (hello flavor!), I like to trim any bulky fat off of the meat before cooking. The top of the meat will have a coat of fat but anything thicker than ¼” should be cut off.
I also rinse my meat of under cold running water for a couple of minutes to get any excess salt off.
The best part of this easy crockpot corned beef dinner? Leftover corned beef sandwiches!!!
Take 2 pieces of rye bread, spread some mustard on both sides and layer the corned beef, some mashed potatoes and cabbage. (I like to even toast it with a piece of cheese on top).
Happy St. Patty’s Day foodie friends :).
And if you want another traditional American-Irish St. Paddy’s Day recipe you have to try my easy Dutch oven Irish Soda Bread!
Crockpot Corned Beef and Cabbage Dinner
Slow Cooker Irish Corned Beef
- 3 lb Corned Beef plus seasoning packet excess fat trimmed, see recipe notes
- 5 Potatoes quartered
- 2 large Yellow Onions quartered
- 3 Carrots peeled and cut into chunks
- 3 Celery Stalks cut into chunks
- 2 Bay Leaves
- 1 tsp Whole Cloves
- ½ tsp Oregano
- 1 tsp Black Pepper
- 1 tsp Garlic Powder
- 1 12 oz Bottle Beer ale or lager
- 1 cup Water
- 2 tbsp Apple Cider Vinegar
- 1 head Green Cabbage cut into 1” pieces
- ¼ cup Olive Oil
- 2 Garlic Cloves minced
- Salt to taste
- Pepper to taste
- ¼ tsp Crushed Red Pepper flakes optional
Slow Cooker Irish Corned Beef
- Trim corned beef of excess fat (you’ll want some fat, but sometimes it can have too much). Rinse under cold water for 1-2 minutes to rinse off excess salt.
- Place vegetables in the bottom of your slow cooker. Add corned beef, fat side facing up.
- Add seasonings, beer, water and vinegar. Stir gently to combine.
- Cook on low for 8-10 hours until beef is tender and falls apart with your fork.
- Rinse cabbage in cold water and place directly in a large bowl (don’t drain out the excess water; you’ll want it as it cooks in the hot pan).
- Heat oil in large pan over high heat. Add half of the chopped wet cabbage, stir.
- Add garlic, salt, pepper and red pepper flakes. Add in remaining half of the wet cabbage and stir to combine.
- Cover the pan and let the cabbage sizzle for 2 minutes.
- Turn heat to medium-low, uncover, and cook another 5-8 minutes until the cabbage is slightly wilted and tender.