Classic Corned Beef and Cabbage Dinner

Irish Cuisine, Corned Beef, Cabbage an Roasted Potatoes
grandriver / Getty Images
Prep: 15 mins
Cook: 4 hrs
Total: 4 hrs 15 mins
Servings: 8 to 10 servings
Nutritional Guidelines (per serving)
532 Calories
24g Fat
20g Carbs
57g Protein
See Full Nutritional Guidelines Hide Full Nutritional Guidelines
Nutrition Facts
Servings: 8 to 10
Amount per serving
Calories 532
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 24g 31%
Saturated Fat 9g 46%
Cholesterol 174mg 58%
Sodium 168mg 7%
Total Carbohydrate 20g 7%
Dietary Fiber 5g 19%
Protein 57g
Calcium 98mg 8%
*The % Daily Value (DV) tells you how much a nutrient in a food serving contributes to a daily diet. 2,000 calories a day is used for general nutrition advice.
(Nutrition information is calculated using an ingredient database and should be considered an estimate.)

This recipe is for a classic corned beef dinner with rutabagas, carrots, onions, potatoes, and cabbage. As an additional option, you can serve the corned beef with a mustard sauce or horseradish sauce.

This one-pot meal is a real timesaver on busy days when you can set this to cook while you multitask. It also reheats and freezes well, so making a double portion is not a bad idea. Consider it for your next potluck.


  • 1 (4-pound) corned beef brisket
  • 1 small bay leaf
  • 6 peppercorns
  • 2 to 3 rutabagas (peeled and cut into chunks)
  • 1 pound carrots (about 8 to 10 carrots, trimmed, scraped, and left whole)
  • 12 small whole onions (peeled)
  • 6 medium potatoes (peeled)
  • 1 medium head of cabbage (cut into wedges)

Steps to Make It

  1. Gather the ingredients.

  2. Place meat in a deep saucepan or Dutch oven; cover with water. Add bay leaf and peppercorns. Bring to a boil, skimming off foam as needed. Reduce heat, cover, and simmer for 3 hours.

  3. Add rutabagas, carrots, onion, potatoes, and cabbage and simmer for about 45 minutes longer, or until vegetables and meat are tender.

  4. Remove from heat and serve corned beef surrounded with vegetables and pot juices.

The Origins of Corned Beef and Cabbage

Contrary to popular belief, corned beef and cabbage didn't originate in the Emerald Isle—it's as American as apple pie. The dish came about when Irish immigrants to New York City reinterpreted their beloved dish of Irish bacon by substituting corned beef, which was a cheaper alternative to pork in the States, and to which they were introduced at many Jewish delis.

Cabbage entered the picture because it was a more economical substitute for the potatoes usually present in the original boiled dinner (although, these days, potatoes also are added). It was cooked in the same pot as the spiced, salty beef and absorbed the wonderful flavors to create a taste sensation.

This one-pot dish was easy to prepare and relatively affordable for most immigrants and forever became linked to Irish cuisine and St. Paddy's Day celebrations.

What Exactly Is a Boiled Dinner?

Most people associate a boiled dinner with corned beef and cabbage, but it goes way beyond that cut of meat.

Essentially, a boiled dinner is made with any meat, smoked or not, including lamb, beef, and pork, that has a lot of connective tissue and requires long, slow cooking known as braising.

A variety of spices and vegetables are added, including potatoes and carrots at the very least, to create a one-pot dish that is eaten like a stew with the pot juices alongside to be sopped up by crusty bread or a roll.

Typically, there are enough leftovers for a late-night snack and to be turned into hash the next morning.