This fabulously easy Slow Cooker Corned Beef and Cabbage recipe takes just minutes of work with phenomenal results! Crockpot Corned Beef gives you incredibly tender corned beef and flavorful vegetables make for a hearty, delicious dinner any night of the week!
Crockpot Corned Beef
If there’s one dish you can expect most families to make on St. Patrick’s Day, it would have to be Corned Beef and Cabbage. There is not a more quintessential Irish meal that is served here in America, especially for St. Patrick’s Day. It’s not a super popular dish in Ireland but it certainly is here in the United States for Irish-Americans.
You’ll notice that in late February, grocery stores start carrying corned beef briskets and that’s about the only time of the year I can find them. Which is a shame because this hearty, delicious dish is so easy to make. It’s about this time that I start getting a craving for this crockpot corned beef!
What Is Corned Beef?
Corned beef refers to a beef brisket that has been brined and salt-cured usually with spices. The combination of curing and brining helps to make the beef brisket tender and by cooking it in the crockpot, it will definitely be fall-apart tender. Corned beef can also be roasted or boiled but I definitely think slow cooking a corned beef results in the most tender and flavorful meat.
Corned beef is usually packaged with a seasoning packet which is used when cooking the brisket and it enhances the flavor of the meat. I use the seasoning packet in this recipe because it has such a great blend of spices that go great with corned beef!
More St. Patrick’s Day Recipes
If you’re looking to round out your St. Patrick’s Day menu in addition to this crockpot corned beef, here are some of our favorite ways to celebrate:
Slow Cooker Corned Beef and Cabbage Ingredients
Slow cooking a corned beef is really the best way to get super tender meat. You’ll be surprised at how few ingredients are needed for this recipe. The corned beef is already full of flavor and the spice packet that comes with it pretty much finishes the job. We’re basically adding some ingredients to round out the meal and enhance the flavor of the meat.
As always, you can find the full printable recipe with complete instructions in the recipe card at the end of this post. Let’s take a look at what you’ll need:
- corned beef brisket – look for a 3 to 5 pound corned beef (with spice packet).
- onion – yellow, sweet or white onion will work best here.
- bay leaves – also included in the spice packet, the bay leaves add a nice flavor to the dish.
- garlic – I like to use three whole cloves for this recipe but you add more or less if you prefer. Crushing the garlic really allows for the aromatics to seep into the corned beef and cabbage in the crockpot.
- carrots – I typically add 2 to 3 large carrots, peeled and then chopped into 2 inch lengths. Baby carrots can also be used but should be added a few hours into the cooking or that tend to get really soft.
- potatoes – creamer potatoes are great because you don’t even half to cut them. But larger potatoes, halved or quartered, will also work. Red, white and gold potatoes are my favorite in this recipe.
- low-sodium chicken broth – Other options are beef broth, vegetable broth or even beer. Opt for low sodium because the corned beef is salt-cured and is already quite salty.
- green cabbage – a small cabbage, quartered or half of a larger cabbage cut into wedges is perfect for this recipe.
Garlic Herb Butter Topping for Vegetables
This is a little topping that I like to add to cooked veggies (and also doubles as a tasty garlic bread spread). It’s totally optional but a terrific way to add a little flavor and brightness to the Crockpot Corned Beef.
- salted butter
- minced garlic
- chopped fresh parsley
How To Make Crockpot Corned Beef
- Pat corned beef dry with paper towels.
- Place onion pieces in the bottom of the slow cooker.
- Add the corned beef (fat side up) and then sprinkle with the contents of the spice packet.
- Put the bay leaves and crushed garlic on top of the corned beef.
- Add the potatoes and carrots.
- Pour in the chicken (or beef) broth.
- Cook on low for 6 hours.
- Add the cabbage wedges and continue cooking for another 2 to 3 hours or until the corned beef is tender.
- Remove corned beef and let rest for 10 to 15 minutes before slicing thinly against the grain.
- Serve with vegetables and garlic herb butter.
Slow Cooker Corned Beef and Veggie Topping
- Add the butter, parsley and garlic to a small bowl and melt in microwave.
- Drizzle or brush on the veggies and corned beef if desired.
- Serve slow cooker corned beef and cabbage with carrots and potatoes.
You can also serve with sour cream, horseradish and/or whole grain mustard on the side.
If you prefer your vegetables to be on the firmer side, consider adding them in about 2 hours into the cooking process.
Refrigerator: Leftover slow cooker corned beef should be stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 3 days.
Freezer: Corned beef (and the vegetables without the cabbage) should be cooled and then transferred to a freezer safe, airtight container for up to 2 months. Thaw overnight in the refrigerator and warm tightly covered, with a little extra broth, in the oven or in the microwave.
Slow Cooker Corned Beef Tips and Tricks
This easy slow cooker corned beef and cabbage recipe is super easy to prepare but take note of my favorite tips for the best results:
- Using baby carrots cuts down a bit on the prep work but keep in mind that they will cook fast and could get too soft if cooked the entire time. Consider adding baby carrots about 2 hours into the cooking time.
- I like to use whole, creamer potatoes because I’m a fan of less work. That being said, any size or type of potato will work in this recipe. Cut in half or quarter, if necessary. I like to use a mix of red, white and gold potatoes but use what is available to you.
- Do not throw out that spice packet! It’s a savory blend of seasoning and spices that really need to be added to this recipe. The spice packet usually contains a mixture of coriander. peppercorns, bay leaves, mustard seeds, anise seeds, dill seeds and red pepper flakes.
- I like to use chicken broth or beef broth, and sometimes a combination of both. Beer can also be used in this recipe if you prefer a stronger flavor or even vegetable broth.
Take note of the grain of the corned beef and slice against the grain. Slicing with the grain could result in chewy, tough meat. Slicing against the grain will give you tender pieces of meat.
More Crockpot Recipes
- Crockpot Chili
- Crockpot Ham and Bean Soup
- Slow Cooker Shrimp Boil
- Slow Cooker Cowboy Beans
- Crockpot Cranberry Sauce
How To Make Slow Cooker Corned Beef and Cabbage
Slow Cooker Corned Beef and Cabbage
- 3 to 5poundcorned beef brisket with spice packet
- 1onioncut into quarters
- 2bay leaves
- 2 to 3large carrotspeeled and chopped into 2 inch pieces (or use baby carrots)
- 1poundcreamer potatoesor larger potatoes halved or quartered
- 2 ½cupslow-sodium chicken broth or beef broth
- 1small green cabbagequartered or half of a larger cabbage cut into wedges
Garlic Herb Butter Topping for Vegetables
- 5tablespoonssalted butter
- 1 to 2clovesgarlicminced
- 2tablespoonsfresh parsleychopped
- Spray a 6 to 7 quarter slow cooker with nonstick cooking spray. Carefully remove the corned beef from it’s packaging and set spice packet aside (we will be using that later). Pat corned beef dry with paper towels.
- Place onion quarters or pieces in the bottom of the slow cooker. Add the corned beef (fat side up) on top of the onions and then sprinkle with the contents of the spice packet (that came with the corned beef).1 onion, 3 to 5 pound corned beef brisket
- Put the bay leaves and crushed garlic on top of the corned beef. Add the potatoes and carrots to the slow cooker placing them around the corned beef.2 bay leaves, 3 cloves garlic, 2 to 3 large carrots, 1 pound creamer potatoes
- Carefully add the chicken (or beef) broth, pouring over the top of the vegetables.2 ½ cups low-sodium chicken broth
- Cook on low for 6 hours.
- Add the cabbage wedges to the slow cooker and continue cooking on low for another 2 to 3 hours or until the corned beef is tender.1 small green cabbage
- Gently remove the corned beef from the slow cooker and let rest for 10 to 15 minutes before slicing thinly against the grain.
Prepare the garlic herb butter.
- Add the butter, parsley and garlic to a small bowl. Melt in the microwave in 20 second increments on medium power, stirring in between, until the butter is fully melted. Drizzle or brush on the veggies and corned beef if desired.5 tablespoons salted butter, 1 to 2 cloves garlic, 2 tablespoons fresh parsley
- Serve corned beef with cabbage, carrots and potatoes. You can also serve with sour cream, horseradish and/or whole grain mustard on the side.