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Corned Beef and Cabbage: A North American Addition to St. Patrick’s Day

Joe Shlabotnik via CC

I grew up basking in the smell of corned beef and cabbage wafting through the house every St. Patrick’s Day. It was heaven! I haven’t continued the tradition. Until this year.

Everyone knows Corned Beef is just part of the St. Patrick’s Day routine, like wearing green. Right? Only in North America! Was I surprised when I discovered this little fact. Apparently the idea of this dish being served was due to corned beef being substituted for pork in the dish.

Corned beef is not an Irish recipe. Unfortunately, most people in Ireland could not afford to buy beef, hence the potato history. An interesting note, the potato famine sprung from the use of good farmland to graze cattle.

Regardless of where it came from, Corned Beef and Cabbage has become ingrained in Irish-American heritage, so eat up!

Here’s the recipe I will be using courtesy of


  • 6 carrots, cut into chunks
  • 2 onions, chopped
  • 2-3 lb. corned beef brisket with seasoning packet
  • 12 oz. can beer (non alcoholic is fine)
  • 2 Tbsp. yellow mustard
  • 1/4 cup brown sugar
  • 1 cup water
  • 8 wedges cabbage


In 4-6 quart crockpot, combine carrots and onions. Rinse corned beef under cold running water and pat dry with paper towels. Place in crockpot and sprinkle with contents of seasoning mix. Pour beer over brisket and spread mustard on brisket. In small bowl mix brown sugar with water and pour over brisket. Cover crockpot and cook on low setting for 10-12 hours.Remove corned beef from crockpot and cover with foil, then put into 200 degrees F oven to keep warm. Add cabbage wedges to vegetables and liquid in crockpot. Cover crockpot and cook on high for additional 30-40 minutes or until cabbage is crisp tender.To serve, cut corned beef across grain into thin slices. Remove vegetables from slow cooker with slotted spoon and serve with corned beef. Serve cooking juices over the food, if desired. (A side of mustard can be served as well).


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