If you're looking to get your fix of corned beef and cabbage to celebrate Saint Patrick's Day, this Crock Pot Corned Beef and Cabbage is a delicious and simple one-pot, hands-off recipe. It's made with just 6, simple ingredients.
How can you not love a full dinner made completely in the crockpot?! A meatloaf, potatoes and carrots dinner, a flavorful pepper steak, and ultra delicious beef and broccoli are some of my favorite ways to use my slow cooker. Of course, in addition to making crock pot corned beef and cabbage on Saint Patrick's Day.
My corned beef and cabbage slow cooker recipe uses beer- Guinness stout beer to be exact. Using Guinness in the crock pot with corned beef enhances the flavor and texture of the dish, resulting in a more delicious and satisfying meal.
This recipe makes a one pot, American style St Patrick's day meal. The corned beef, cabbage, carrots, onions and seasonings are all cooked together in the slow cooker in a broth made from savory stout beer. It takes about 6 hours to get perfect, fork-tender and flavorful results. Using beer will make this one of the best crock pot corned beef and cabbage recipes!
What Is Corned Beef?
Corned beef is a salt-cured brisket. It's seasoned with various herbs and spices, including peppercorns, bay leaves, and cloves. The beef is usually cut from the brisket or round and can be purchased precooked and canned, or raw in a package. It is often used in dishes such as sandwiches, stews, and hash. Corned beef is particularly associated with Irish cuisine, and is a popular ingredient in dishes like corned beef and cabbage, which is a traditional Irish-American dish. This recipe uses a traditional packaged flat cut corned beef brisket that is sold with the spice packet.
Why Use Beer When Cooking Corned Beef?
Cooking with beer is a great way to add flavor and tenderness to meats. The carbonation in Guinness can help to tenderize the meat, resulting in a more succulent and juicy corned beef. The alcohol also helps to break down the fibers, resulting in a more tender and melt-in-your-mouth texture. And overall, the low and slow cooking method in a crock pot allows the corned beef to absorb the flavors of the Guinness more thoroughly.
- Corned beef: use a traditional flat cut corned beef brisket that comes with the spice packet. For this recipe it can be anywhere between 3 and 5 pounds.
- Cabbage: one head of green cabbage.
- Carrots: My recipe calls for 8 large carrots, peeled and chopped. You can use more or less if you'd like.
- Guinness stout beer: the roasted malt and barley flavors in Guinness add a depth of flavor to the meat.
- Onion: one large yellow, white or sweet onion.
- Garlic: depending on your preference for garlic, use between 4 and 8 minced cloves of garlic. I use 6.
STEP 1: Remove the corned beef from the package. Drain any extra liquid and place the corned beef in the slow cooker, saving the seasoning packet. Pour the beer over the corned beef.
STEP 2: Roughly chop the onion, slice the carrots and mince the garlic. Add to the crockpot around the corned beef, along with the bay leaf. Sprinkle the seasonings from the flavoring packet on top.
STEP 3: Cover and cook on LOW for 6 hours or HIGH for 4 hours.
STEP 4: While it's cooking, roughly chop the cabbage into large pieces, discarding the core. Add the cabbage to the crock pot with 2 hours left for very soft cabbage or 30-60 minutes left for crispier cabbage. Make sure to remove the bay leaf before adding the cabbage.
Before removing from the crock pot, ensure the internal temperature has reached at least between 145 and 160 degrees Fahrenheit. Serve and enjoy!
This recipe is really simple so it doesn't take much to get it tasting great. A few things to remember are:
- Cabbage cooks quickly in the slow cooker so if you prefer crispy cabbage, only add it during the last 30 to 60 minutes of cooking time. You can also pan fry it for a few minutes and add it to the dish separately.
- Potatoes are another great ingredient to add. If you'd like to add potatoes, cut them into large chunks and add to the pot half way through cooking.
- If you want to make this recipe without beer, use 2 cups of beef or vegetable broth.
No, the beer does not need to cover the meat.
Yes! Use any Irish stout, brown ale, amber ale, Belgian ale or wheat beer.
I always recommend cooking meats on the low setting. Cooking meat on low heat for an extended period of time allows the meat to become tender and juicy as the collagen breaks down and the fat slowly renders out. On the other hand, cooking meat on high heat for a shorter period of time can lead to tough, dry meat.
Herb seasoned roasted baby potatoes, Irish soda bread, green vegetables like asparagus or green beans, and starchy vegetables like roasted cauliflower go great with traditional corned beef and cabbage dinners.
Store in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 5 days. It can be frozen for up to 6 months for optimal quality. I don't recommend freezing the cabbage, as it will turn very mushy when defrosting.
Crock Pot Corned Beef and Cabbage
- Remove the corned beef from the package. Drain any extra liquid and place the corned beef in the slow cooker, saving the spice packet. Pour the Guinness over the corned beef.
- Roughly chop the onion, slice the carrots and mince the garlic. Add the onion, carrots, garlic and bay leaf to the crockpot around the corned beef. Sprinkle the seasonings from the flavoring packet on top.
- Cover and cook on LOW for 6 hours or HIGH for 4 hours.
- While it's cooking, roughly chop the cabbage into large pieces, discarding the core. Add the cabbage to the crock pot with 2 hours left for very soft cabbage or 30-60 minutes left for crispier cabbage. Before adding the cabbage, remove the bay leaf and discard.
- Before removing from the crock pot, ensure the internal temperature has reached at least between 145 and 160 degrees Fahrenheit.