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Boiled Corned Beef and Cabbage Recipe

Boiled Corned Beef and Cabbage Recipe

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Though it's fashionable to announce that corned beef and cabbage is more Irish-American than true Irish, the fact is that — while "bacon" (i.e., cured pork loin) and cabbage is more common in Ireland today — corned beef has long been happily consumed by the Irish, especially on special occasions, like St. Patrick's Day, for centuries, with cabbage, potatoes, and other accompaniments.


  • 3 pounds corned beef
  • Spices*
  • 1 large head of cabbage, sliced into 3/8-to-½-inch wide slices,
  • 3 carrots, cut to 1-inch pieces (optional)
  • 6 small new potatoes, quartered (optional)
  • Mustard and/or horseradish, for serving


Place corned beef in a large, 6-8 quart pot. Cover the beef with an inch of water. Add spices. Bring to a boil over high heat, and then reduce heat to a simmer. Simmer for 2-3 hours, until the corned beef is fork tender.

Remove the meat from the pot and transfer to a cutting board. Reserve cooking liquid for boiling cabbage.

Once you have removed the corned beef, add the cabbage and optional vegetables to the pot. Taste the cooking liquid; if it is too salty, add more water to the pot. Raise the heat until the liquid is simmering well, about medium-low. Simmer until the cabbage and any other vegetables are cooked through, about 15-30 minutes.

Cut the meat against the grain into ½-inch thick slices. Serve along with the cabbage, vegetables, and a little cooking liquid in a bowl

12oz canned CORNED BEEF
1 small CABBAGE
1 large ONION
1 large CARROT
3-4 cloves GARLIC
2-3 Tbsp VINEGAR
SALT and PEPPER to taste
OIL for cooking

3 pounds corned beef
3 cups water
6 carrots, peeled and cut in half lengthwise
6 potatoes, peeled and cut in half lengthwise
1 head cabbage, cut in wedges
6 turnips, peeled and cut into quarters

Place the corned beef in the crock pot. Add the water.

Cover the crock pot and cook on high heat for 2 hours. Reduce the heat to low and cook for 3 more hours.

Remove the corned beef from the crock pot. Place the carrots, potatoes, cabbage, and turnips to the crock pot. Place the corned beef on top of the vegetables.

Cover the crock pot and cook on high for 2-3 more hours or until the vegetables are cooked and the corned beef is tender.

Adjust the seasoning as needed with salt and pepper.

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This recipe is fantastic. Did not and would not change a thing. Classic and wonderful.

James Beard was the the M---- F------ Man. I fallowed the recipe. I did not assume I know better and replace the beef with chicken etc and then comment I didn't think it was all that. It was tender, flavorful and the Parsley Potatoes were the perfect accompaniment.

An outstanding classic. Used 3 bottles of ale plus water to coat. Will use Guinness next time. The meat was deliciously moist and tender - a much better result from stovetop than slowcooker method, which I've tried in the past. Veggies took a bit longer (5- 10 minutes?) to cook, but again - not mushy, done just right. I also steamed some small creamy potatoes in a ladlefull of the stock and then sauteed in butter, salt and parsely, then added these to the platter of meat and carrots, cabbage, etc. Not just for St Patrick's Day!!

The meat was moist and delicious. I used a bottle of ale, as suggested by some of the other reviewers. Next time, I might consider using something lighter or omitting the beer entirely I didn't enjoy the flavor on my vegetables.

Made this in slow cooker 6 hrs on low and finished it in the oven using the bourbon glaze mentioned here (made 1/2 the recipe for a 3# flat corned beef from Whole Foods, which included pickling spices). I just started with the bourbon, apple juice & guldens mustard, then added abt. 1/4C lt. brown sugar and then adjusted the sweeetness to our taste by adding honey. Baked it for abt. 30 min. at 350 degrees, after it came out of the slow cooker. Couldn't believe how great it tasted! Put glaze on the carrots too. be sure to line your pan with non-stick aluminum foil. Oh, yes, I added a whole bottle of Harp beer at the very beginning.

Family St. Pat's dinner. Everyone loved it. Iɽ definitely cook this again.

Great and simple recipe. I found a pre-seasoned raw corned beef at Whole Foods, so I didn't need to add any of my own seasonings, just a method. This was very simple. I used my Le Creuset dutch oven and the 4lb beef was tender in about 2 hours. I'll definitely do it again.

This recipe was perfect! The corned beef was so tender and moist. This is definitely a keeper. The only thing I changed was to add a bottle of ale to the water and I added the cabbage in for the last hour.

My husband and kids made me get rid of my crock pot last year and I love the simplicity for cooking while at work. I put this on before I went to work, had my nanny add onions and carrots and then I added cabbage when I got home and it was simple and delicious!

You really can't go wrong with vintage James Beard. But I make a few enhancements to his recipe to make it even better: This is great in a slow-cooker. I set mine on low and cook for 8 hours. From the start, I add a bottle of dark beer, either a stout like Guinness or a brown ale. Considering the lower cooking temp, put the veggies in sooner- like 2-3 hours before finish, and add the cabbage at least an hour before. One very key trick that adds a new dimension - stick 6-8 whole cloves into a halved onion and put that in the pot such that the cloves are submerged by the liquid/beer. Some cooks suggest cooking potatoes in the same pot but beware of the starches extracted. Best to boil the spuds separately. Yukon gold or small creamers are best pairing for this dish. Can't wait for St. Patty's Day!

Follow this exactly and you will very happy. If you want something different, go find it, but this is simple and authentic. Really, do YOU think James Beard would steer you wrong??

This recipe is nearly authentic. When I married my husband 60 years ago, his Grandmother who was from County Cork, Ireland, gave me her recipe. She said buy 1 pound of Beef for each person plus another piece all square cut. Believe me I never have leftovers. Darn..Simmer all day 6 to 8 hours. Add dark beer after about 2 hours. All veggies, including potatoes go in the last hour. The cabbage, which is quartered goes in the same pot for the last half hour. The Corned Beef need some resting time, so can be taken out when tje cbbage goes in. Our Irish family, and the new inlaws, all love it. I am now teaching my Grand daughters how to do this.

I would like to make this recipe this evening. I was thinking of cooking it for four hours, then refrigerating it UNtil Saturday when I would cook it for the last hour with the veggies. Any thoughts?

I read many of the reviews, which include some wonderful suggestions, but I opted to make this recipe exactly as written. The only this I omitted (actually forgot!)was the butter at the end. This turned out SO GOOD! I highly recommend this recipe. easy and delicious! Oh, I did change one thing. I added small potatoes to the pot with the carrots and onions, and I also went ahead and put the cabbage in then, rather than waiting. Glad I did, because it was perfectly done. This is a MUST TRY!

Classic recipe, just like Mom used to make. Like a lot of people I also add small boiling potatoes along with the carrots and onions about an hour before it is done. My mom throws in parsnips and turnips to stretch the recipe for a big crowd. I also agree the cabbage needs a good 30 minutes to cook. Great dish when the weather gets cooler.

love this recipe, the only thing I do differently is cooking the potato's with everything before I pull it all out.

We had a crowd for a birthday party. I had an 8lb brisket & 2 - 3lb. I boiled water on the stove top with a bottle of Guinness and poured it over the 8lbɾr in a roasting pan with lots of peeled carrots, sealed with foil and baked at 325 for 5 hours. The other 2 smaller ones I simmered on the stove top in seperate pots with water and a bottle of guinness for 3 hours. I then removed them from the pots and boiled potatoes in one and simmer cabbage in the other. All of the beef was excellent! Our guests where thrilled with the results. My aunt made some soda bread..I have never had it before and it was very yummy. I'm such epicurious has a recipe for it, so I'll make some next time. I usually make corned beef for my husband and me in my slow cooker (low 8 hours)..again, always turns out great!

Thanks to the reviewer who suggested baking in the oven. This cut the cooking odor substantially. I bought an 8 lb. corned beef from my butcher. The day before serving, I brought it to a boil stove-top with 3 tbsp. pickling spice, a bottle of Guinness, and water to cover. Once it boiled, I tranferred it to a 300F. oven to cook for about 5 hours. I cooled it overnight, then reheated it at 325F. the next day for 2 hours, then added cabbage, onion, carrots, and potatoes and baked for an additional hour. This could, of course, all be done the same day. But the extra sitting time added to the depth of flavour. This is a keeper!

Iɽ never eatten Corned beef and cabbage beef. I went with the Honey bourbon Glaze that's mentioned a lot. I wasn't sure what type of mustard to use, so i did use Dijon. I reduced it further on the stove after the 30 minutes. I cooked fat baby carrots and onions along with my beef all day. They were soft but didn't fall apart. Everyone liked them cooked with the beef. I also cooked the cabbage in the beef liquid. It was a definate, yes please, for the family.

We make this whenever corned beef goes on sale at the grocery store and at/around St. Patrick's Day and when we're just craving corned beef. Incredible!! If you're a foodie, take the time to read all the reviews here (a long list, I know) and implement what appeals to you. Well worth your time. Enjoy!

This was delicious!! I've never made a good corned beef. This is what I did: used flat briskets, not points. Had to purchase two to equal approx. 5 lbs. Used the packets that came with the meat to season the cooking liquid. Added 1 bottle of Guiness Beer, put a dinner plate on top of the meat to keep it submurged. Brought UP to a boil on the stove top and baked in 325 degree oven for 6 hours. Added the veggies at the appropriate times so they weren't mushy. The cabbage did take longer than 15 minutes. Received RAVE reviews. We loved it.

Excellent recipe with suggestions from other reviewers. Added the recommended Guiness Extra Stout after the first hour. Bourbon glaze from Saratoga, CA (3/16/01) was outstanding. One third of the glaze recipe was sufficient for a 4# brisket. Horseradish cream from Lakeville, MI (3/06/02) was also very good. But the bourbon glazed corned beef with superb with the following Sweet-Hot Mustard: Combine 1 cup Coleman's dry mustard with 1 cup red wine vinegar and let stand for 12 hours. Then add 1 cup sugar and 3 beaten eggs. Cook in top of double boiler until thick. Refrigerate.

I made this during St. Patty's week using a bottle of dark beer and peppercorns, simmering it on top of the stove for four hours. I added the carrots and onions during the last hour and the cabbage in the last 15 minutes. I would give the cabbage a full half hour next time, as it was still really crunchy after 15 minutes. I served it with parsley red potatoes which I cooked separately and bread and butter - yum!! My husband and 3 kids (ages 4, 3 and 20 mos) all loved it. The best version I have made yet and easy, too!

I have made Corned Beef and Cabbage many times. But, this recipe was THE BEST! I did not use the glaze but will try that the next time. I made 25lbs of corned beef for about 25 people and had just enough left for a few sandwiches the next day. I simmered the corned beef in 1/2 water 1/2 ale and finished in the oven for 30 minutes. I also made the Champ and Soda Bread from this menu. I used 10 lbs of potatoes and had very little left over. The soda bread was also a big hit. I will use these recipes every year!

Works well with corned round roast, too, decreasing the simmer time to 3 hours or so.

Reviews ( 24 )

I’ve tried a ton on online recipes and this one is one of the best. I followed the recipe but made a change on the cabbage. I added dill seed and celery seed. I can’t wait to have my Irish friends over to try this. It’s amazing

BEST CORNED BEEF RECIPE. Inexpensive corned beef turns out to be tender and melt in your mouth! Now we have it several times a year!! Thank you Cooking LIte and My Recipes!

The best thing about this recipe is the horseradish and bread crumb topping! I use Italian Seasoned bread crumb and it is fantastic! This will be our 10th year making this and it is a hit each year!

I've been making this recipe for St. Patrick's Day ever since my sister-in-law made it for us in 2003. Each component has its own special flavor -- the mustard and horseradish crust on the corned beef, the lemon in the boiled potatoes, and the caraway in the cabbage. I don't change a thing.

I use this recipe every year to make corned beef for St. Patrick's Day. It is a good, solid recipe. The breadcrumb topping is okay, but not necessary. I always save the cooking broth at the end (after staining) and freeze it to use as my stock when making split pea soup - it really pumps up the flavor of the soup.

The corned beef was very good but I don't think the breadcrumb horseradish topping did any thing for the dish. I prefer a horseradish sauce and I use non-fat yogurt with the horseradish, and a little light mayo. I would make it again, but exclude the breadcrumb topping.

Every Year I make corn beef and cabbage to honor St Patty's day. I tried this recipe and another recipe for a slow cooker. My family really enjoyed this recipe. It was really gourmet, each component of the recipe had such intrigue flavors but complimented each other. This is a family keeper.

Great recipe. I was worried about the amount of horseradish in the breadcrumbs, but it was delicious and not too spicy. Will definitely make this every year. Also it made the whole house smell wonderful while cooking.

I made this last year, and it was hands down the best I'd ever made. I'm not an expert, but I had a large dinner party and everyone agreed and there wasn't a scrap leftover

Cooking the veg separately is definitely the way to go. Adding lemon zest to the potatoes is an especially nice touch, really highlighting the overall flavors of the dish. I did cut back on the horseradish and was still pleased with the flavor of the crust. My DH really liked the "new texture" of broiling the meat as well. Overall, this is a great recipe, easily adaptable to your own tastes.

I make this every year for my 15yr old son, he loves it! Best version ever for corned beef and cabbage. I will never make it any other way. You can make it in the crockpot and it will come out just as good.

I made the FAB dinner last night for St Pat's Day. And boy did I WOW my Texas Cowboy newlywed husband! He claimed it was the Best he had EVER eaten (and I know that he has eaten alot of corned beef!). It was the first time I had ever made corned beef. The only different things that I did, was use a 12oz bottle of lager then added the water to make 16 cups and I cut the cabbage in 6-8 large wedges. But cooked it all the same that you called for and didn't vary anymore of the ingredients!. We are still talking about it today. My cowboy claimed "This recipe is a Keeper".

I wasn't nearly as thrilled as everyone else with this recipe. First, the potatoes really lacked flavor. Cooked for twenty minutes, they were ready to be mashed. The horseradish crust for the corned beef is a nice touch. I may try it on a rib roast. Quite frankly, I thought the cabbage was the best part of this meal. A little bit too much caraway for me, but acceptable. Overall, though, I've had much better corned beef and was able to cook the dinner in one pot, as opposed to the multiple pots and steps required in this recipe. Probably not worth the effort of a repeat attempt.

Fantastic & 5 stars all the way! I'll never make this dish any other way! My husband drooled. The corned beef could be cut with your fork it was so tender. Just fabulous.

My husband said it was the best corned beef he ever had and he really enjoyed the potatoes also. I don't really care for corned beef and cabbage but this was delicious. The topping really makes the dish and I don't usually like horseradish either.

I've made this every year for 5 years now, it's delicious!

St Pats Day 2011. The horserasish crust and dijion mustard were excellent. I cooked the beef on low in the crock pot all day and omitted the pickling spice since we dont care for it. Even the potatoes were very good, loved the lemony taste.

The Best Corned Beef recipe I have ever tried. I usually just make Corned Beef and cabbage for St. Patrick's day as a tradition b/c my family doesn't really like it but this time was different - everyone LOVED it.

I enjoyed this recipe but was left with the feeling like a better corned beef dinner is out there. The potato portion is pointless. I hate boiling potatoes (when roasting is so much tastier w/ better texture) except when mashing. These potatoes were bland though i added salt and dill (instead of parsley which i feel is recently extremely overrated.) I love corned beef, cabbage, dijon, and horseradish. Adding the dijon and horseradish seemed like overkill. Too many cooks in the kitchen, the cooks being strong flavors. I added extra pickling spice to the corned beef and left out the caraway seeds in the cabbage. Great recipe for both, with small variations. Very easy. In summary, these the combination of the cabbage and corned beef is a classic bc the flavors are strong with little added flavor being necessary. Keep it classic.

Quick Corned Beef and Cabbage

Make your St. Patrick's Day dinner in one pot. This recipe is a little unusual because it adds bacon to the traditional mix of cabbage, potatoes, and corned beef, but the flavor is phenomenal. And the corned beef is already cooked and sliced so it doesn't have to simmer for hours, as this cut usually does.

Most stores sell cooked corned beef in the deli section—you may have to ask someone to slice it for you. Ask for 1/2-inch thick cuts, because if the slices are any thinner they may fall apart while simmering in the broth with the vegetables. If you can't find cooked corned beef, you can cook it yourself in the crockpot or on the stovetop. Let it cool in the fridge overnight, then slice it and cook as directed in this recipe.

Serve this dish with several kinds of mustard: honey mustard, grainy mustard for texture, and Dijon mustard because of the spicy kick. Mustard is the perfect complement to the tender, slightly spicy beef and the mild vegetables.

    1. Put the brisket into a saucepan with the carrots, onions, mustard and the herbs. Cover with cold water, and bring gently to a boil. Simmer, covered, for 2 hours. Discard the outer leaves of the cabbage, cut in quarters and add to the pot. Cook for a further 1 to 2 hours or until the meat and vegetables are soft and tender.
    2. Serve the corned beef in slices, surrounded by the vegetables and cooking liquid. Serve with lots of floury potatoes and freshly made mustard.

    From Irish Traditional Cooking by Darina Allen, (C) 1995 (reprinted 2005)

    Corned Beef

    Total Time 3 hours 10 minutes


    • 4-5 lbs. Kosher Corned Beef ask your butcher for the best meat to use.
    • 1 medium whole garlic clove
    • 2 medium onions, peeled and cut into quarters
    • 2 whole cloves
    • 6-8 whole black peppercorns
    • 1 large bay leaf
    • 1/4 tsp. mustard seeds
    • 1/4 tsp. dried rosemary
    • 1 large head of cabbage,cut into quarters. optional


    …The Backstory continues: Sometimes we would drive to the Canarsie section of Brooklyn and there, the choice was simple: Grabstein’s. They offered a wide variety of fresh, down-to-earth, familiar, comfort foods. It didn’t matter what you ordered, it was always perfect. A side note: Grabstein’s catered my engagement party, my son’s bris, my parents’ 35th surprise anniversary party, and a host of other special family events. To this day, some of my favorite foods are corned beef and pastrami and 99% of the time, that’s what I ordered at Grabstein’s. The other 1% is something I can’t even recall. It is not so much that I am a creature of habit, it’s just that this is and will always be, my favorite type of food.

    Here’s how to make a good corned beef at home. I’m sorry Mr. Grabstein: I know it might not be as good as yours, but it’s pretty darn good (if I may say so myself).

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    Irish Corned Beef and Cabbage – 3 Ways!

    Ah, St. Patrick’s Day is coming and we’re going to eat corned beef and cabbage just like they do in the Old Country. Wait, with the exception of Dublin and Cork, no one eats corned beef and cabbage in Ireland! This is an Irish-American tradition, based on the boiled dinners, often bacon and cabbage, that immigrants missed when they left home. It was modified to utilize the more readily available beef here in America. It has evolved into the annual tradition that everyone looks forward to on March 17th.

    Today’s corned beef is either sold in a can or is a beef brisket that has been salt-cured, usually brined or “corned” with a coarse salt. The term “corned” refers to the large grains of salt used. This method of food preservation is common in many cultures around the world and corned beef is particularly prominent in Jewish, Irish-American, and Caribbean cuisines.

    As with any salt-cured meat, corned beef must be boiled to remove the excess salt. Every year my mother would boil it for hours with the cabbage. She didn’t know which seasonings to add so it was always a bland, boring dinner. Because she only made it once a year, she never perfected the recipe. When I got older I decided to tackle this meal and see if I could improve it. There are several techniques you can use, but they all start with boiling the meat to remove the excess salt.

    Corned beef is made from tougher cuts of meat, most often brisket, and requires long, slow cooking in a moist environment to tenderize it. This can be done on the stovetop or in the oven. Braising in liquid accomplishes this – the liquid can be simple water, you can add some beer, or chicken stock. While most come packed with a seasoning packet, and you can certainly use it, I prefer to use my own combination of simple seasonings.

    You start this by covering the beef with water and bringing it to just below a boil. When you do that, a scum will form on the surface. This is just proteins, fats, and impurities from the meat, called albumin. Scoop it out and discard it. If you leave it in, you will have a cloudy broth and the impurities leave a dull flavor that is unpleasant. If you boil the stock, the impurities will be mixed back into the stock. It is worth the few minutes of effort to skim the top. I use a slotted spoon and rinse it as needed.

    I am including several recipes so you can make corned beef in a way that pleases you and your family. You can stay with the traditional method – wonderful in its simplicity. You can serve it with sauces to spice it up, or you can coat it with a dry rub and cook to create a crust.

    I like to start cooking with just water and seasonings, and then add in some beer and chicken stock to finish braising. The beer adds depth and the stock smoothes the flavors. In addition, I add a glaze toward the end to finish it off. One of the tricks I learned was that if you weight the meat down, it compacts which makes it much easier to cut and it is less stringy. If you are going to use the leftovers to make hash, the compacted meat is much easier to cut into small cubes.

    Boiled cabbage can be bland and mushy, so I like to saute mine instead. Adding some onions and a little garlic spices it up. You can use some herbs if you like too. Thyme, oregano, or marjoram would be complementary. You can cook it as much or as little as you like. Leave it a little crunchy for a nice change of texture.

    There is a recipe for a tangy horseradish sauce that is wonderful on the side, a mustard, honey, and horseradish blend, or you can combine several mustards for your own special blend. Any of these would also be great on sandwiches the next day.

    Bobby Flay put together a fantastic recipe that combines his love of well-seasoned food and the traditional ingredients. You start the corned beef the same way, by braising it. Then coat it with a dry rub and sear it in a pan, creating a wonderful crust. This makes the corned beef taste a bit more like pastrami which I adore. If you want to try it, I think you will love it as much as I do.

    Bobby also offers his corned beef with cabbage that has roasted shallots and bacon added. These both are amazing and really make the cabbage special. Then as an extra special side, he also makes little toasts out of rye bread and smears them with bleu cheese. This adds a terrific crunch and complementary nutty, tangy flavor.

    No matter how you make your corned beef this year, I know you will enjoy serving the traditional meal. May you all be blessed with a touch of Irish Diplomacy … That is the ability to tell a man to go to hell so that he will look forward to the journey, LOL!!