Easy Beer Braised Cabbage

Easy Beer Braised Cabbage
Katie Workman / themom100 / Evi Abeler
Prep: 5 mins
Cook: 45 mins
Total: 50 mins
Servings: 8 servings
Nutrition Facts (per serving)
108 Calories
3g Fat
13g Carbs
6g Protein
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Nutrition Facts
Servings: 8
Amount per serving
Calories 108
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 3g 4%
Saturated Fat 1g 5%
Cholesterol 9mg 3%
Sodium 160mg 7%
Total Carbohydrate 13g 5%
Dietary Fiber 3g 12%
Total Sugars 6g
Protein 6g
Vitamin C 61mg 303%
Calcium 85mg 7%
Iron 0mg 2%
Potassium 411mg 9%
*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.)

Cabbage is a quintessential part of Irish cuisine, along with bacon and potatoes. Tenant farmers in the 17th century were forced to pay substantial rents to their landlords and relied heavily on their crops of nutrient-dense cabbage and calorie-dense potatoes, both hardy vegetables, to get them through the year, especially in the winter. The more prosperous farmers also grew pigs, so were able to season their vegetables with the parts that weren’t needed to pay off their monthly tariff. 

When the Great Potato Famine hit Ireland in 1845, eradicating much of the country’s potato crop, cabbage became even more critical as a food source. On St. Patrick’s Day, it’s quite customary to eat cabbage in some form. It remains one of the most affordable and durable vegetables around, a reliable source of something green in the colder months, and when paired with its old compatriot bacon, it may be humble but it’s delicious. Sometimes the simplest dishes are the most memorable.

Here the bacon is crisped up in a heavy large pot, and then some onions are quickly sautéed in a bit of the remaining pork fat. Then the cabbage is added, along with the beer of your choice, and in 30 minutes you have a dish that may be modest in cost and appearance, but quite grand in flavor. This would go very well with corned beef, but also with roast chicken, roast pork, salmon, a steak, pretty much anything.


  • 6 strips bacon, halved

  • 1 cup chopped onion

  • 1 head cabbage, quartered, cored, thinly sliced

  • 1 (12-ounce) bottle beer

  • Kosher salt, to taste, optional

  • Freshly ground black pepper, to taste, optional

Steps to Make It

  1. Heat a large heavy pot or Dutch oven over medium heat and cook the bacon until crisp, turning as needed, 5 to 6 minutes in all. Remove to a plate lined with paper towels.

  2. Pour off all but a tablespoon of the fat from the pan, and return to medium heat. Add the onion and sauté for 5 minutes, until golden brown. Add the cabbage and toss occasionally in the pot for 3 or 4 minutes until the cabbage begins to wilt and is well mixed with the onions.

  3. Pour in the beer and bring to a simmer over medium-high heat. Partially cover the pot, lower the heat to medium-low, and simmer for about 30 minutes, stirring occasionally, until the cabbage is tender and most of the liquid is evaporated.

  4. Crumble the reserved bacon and stir it into the cabbage. Serve hot or warm.