Slow Cooker Corned Beef and Cabbage Recipe
No St. Patrick’s Day Party would be complete without some traditional corned beef and cabbage.
Many corned beef recipes tell you to boil your corned beef, but my family has found that roasted corned beef is a much better way to cook your St. Patrick’s Day dinner.
Tips for Cooking the Perfect Corned Beef
IMPORTANT – A Word about Spices
If you bought a prepackaged corned beef brisket it may come with a spice packet or already be spiced. Check to see if the brisket is already seasoned before adding more. I’ve included a spice mix in the recipe and I prefer my own mix to the prepackaged – the prepackaged has too much salt for my taste. The corned beef spice mix is super easy to make and you probably already have most of the spices like clove, allspice, cinnamon sticks. peppercorns, nutmeg, ginger, mustard seed, and garlic.
Buy a Good Quality Beef Brisket
Corned beef is traditionally made using brisket, and is typically a fairly lean cut of meat. It’s always best to buy any beef or meat from a reputable butcher. I have a great butcher, but I buy a lot of my meat from BJ’s Wholesale. You may have to buy the prepackaged corned beef brisket and it may already be spiced or come with a spice packet.
Make sure the meat has a deep red color and a light fat layer. To select a good cut, first make sure the meat has a deep red color.
Choose the Right Cut of Brisket
Brisket is sold two ways, point cut or flat cuts.
- Point Cut can be more flavorful due to the significant marbling and is shaped like a triangular roast. I buy point cuts since they are more like a roast and have better marbling throughout and work really well in the slow cooker.
- Flat Cut is a leaner cut of meat with a slight layer of fat on top and is a flat rectangular shape. It is typically more expensive but that doesn’t make it better. It does slice well, so if you are really after sandwiches you may want to use a flat cut.
Low and Slow
Put everything n the slow cooker in the morning and by dinner time you’ll have the perfect corned beef. I like mine to be falling-apart tender, so I’ll let mine cook forever, but typically 8-9 hours in a slow cooker will give you great results.
Make Ahead Tip: You can cook corned beef in the slow cooker the day before or overnight. Once it has cooked refrigerate in the cooking liquid until about an hour before you are ready to serve it. Heat it in the cooking liquid on the stove over fairly low heat.
Slow Cooker Corned Beef and Cabbage
- 4 lbs corned beef brisket - with or without spice packet, cut in half
- 1 medium onion - cut into wedges
- 8 medium medium potatoes - peeled and quartered
- 2 cups baby carrots
- 2 cups water
- 12 oz Guinness beer or other dark beer
- 4 garlic cloves - fresh, crushed
- 1 bay leaf
- 2 T sugar
- 2 T cider vinegar
- 1/2 t pepper
- 1 small head cabbage - cut into wedges
Corned Beef Spice Mix
- 1/2 cup brown sugar
- 2 T Salt
- 1 stick cinnamon - broken into several pieces
- 1 t mustard seeds
- 1 t black peppercorns
- 8 whole cloves
- 8 whole allspice berries
- 12 whole juniper berries
- 2 bay leaves - crumbled
- 1/2 t ground ginger
- 1 t nutmeg
Corned Beef Spices
- Mix to combine
For Corned Beef and Cabbage
- Place the onion, potatoes, and carrots in a 5-qt. slow cooker.
- Combine beer, water, garlic, bay leaf, sugar, vinegar, pepper and contents of spice packet; pour over vegetables.
- Top with brisket and cabbage. Cover and cook on low for 8-9 hours or until meat and vegetables are tender.
- Remove bay leaf before serving.
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