Corned Beef and Caramelized Cabbage

That’s right, the quintessential St.Patrick’s Day dinner. And, if you aren’t familiar with corned beef let me introduce you to a staple here in the midwest.

Corned beef is a piece of beef brisket, a very tough piece of meat, and becomes “corned” by salt curing it. You’ll typically find it at the store around March already sitting in a salt-sugar-spice brine. Most of the work is done for you! There is also almost always a little spice packet that comes tucked inside that package. Again, very helpful unless you have severe food allergies and you will definitely want to make your own, who knows what those spices have come in contact with!

Chicago has an enormous Irish Catholic population, so St.Patricks Day is a huge celebration here. Hence the river being dyed green every year, the parades (that typically happen) and the bars that overflow with eager drinkers ready for an excuse to party during the day while wearing head to toe green. While the green beer/bar scene wasn’t in my repertoire until I went to college, I did grow up having corned beef, cabbage, potatoes and carrots on St.Patricks Day and it’s a fun little tradition. A fresh loaf of soda bread completes the meal, served warm, with a hearty slather of butter or vegan margarine and MAN it’s heaven.

Now the only thing you really need for this recipe is time. It’s very easy but it needs to cook for a good 3-4 hours depending on the size of your corned beef. But a pressure cooker can for sure cut that time down and a slow cooker is the perfect thing for this! Only have a dutch oven? No worries! Pop that baby in the oven and go about your afternoon. Get ready for your house to smell delicious and for a tasty little dinner.


“A wish that every day for you will be happy from the start

and may you always have good luck and a song within your heart.”

Irish Blessing

Corned Beef and Caramelized Cabbage

Free From the Top-9 Food Allergens

Serves: 8

Prep Time: 20 minutes + 4 hours cooking time

  • 4 pound pre-brined beef brisket with spice packet*
  • 1 onion, halved
  • 4 carrots
  • 4 stalks celery
  • 4 bay leaves
  • 6-8 qt. water
  • 1 green cabbage, cut into 2″ wedges with the core intact (it helps hold the wedges together!)
  • 3 Tbs. white wine
  • 1/4 c. chicken broth
  • For serving: boiled or roasted potatoes, steamed or roasted carrots
  • *if you need to prepare your own spice packet because of allergy concerns, please find the recipe below


  1. Remove the brisket from packaging and rub with the spice packet. Place in a large dutch oven.
  2. Add the halved onion, carrots, celery, bay leaves and cover with 6-8 qt. of water until fully covered.
  3. Bring to a boil then turn down to a low simmer and cook for 3-4 hours until it’s very tender and almost falls apart when you pull a fork through.
  4. While the brisket rests, prepare the cabbage. Preheat a large nonstick pan over medium heat. Add a good glug of olive oil (and some butter if you can have cow dairy).
  5. Lay the cabbage wedges in the pan in a single layer (you might need to work in batches) and cook until nice and golden brown, about 5-6 minutes. Flip over and cook another few minutes on the other side until golden.
  6. Add the white wine and cook until reduced by about half.
  7. Add the chicken broth and cover. Simmer for 5-6 minutes until the cabbage is very soft when a fork is pressed into it.
  8. Slice the corned beef across the grain (this is VERY IMPORTANT!) and serve with the cabbage and other sides, if desired.

*homemade spice packet: 

  • 2 Tbs. coriander seeds
  • 2 tsp. whole peppercorn
  • 1 tsp. mustard seeds
  • 1 tsp. fennel seeds
  • 4 bay leaves, light crushed
  • 1 whole clove

Toast the spices for 1-2 minutes until they just become fragrant. Add to a spice grinder and pulse a few times until just starting to crush. You should still see big pieces of the seeds.


Happy Foods are the Best Foods!