Best Easy Crock Pot Corned Beef Recipe (2024)

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I love making this Corned Beef Crock Pot recipe. It’s so easy and turns out delicious every time. For a big St. Patrick’s Day feast it’s great paired with my 30 minute Shepherd’s Pie recipe but we love it year around and the leftovers are so tasty too!

Updated with instructions for Instant pot corned beef and cabbage.

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We wait all year to have this meal in my family. Ever since I was a little girl we would celebrate St. Patrick’s Day with Corned Beef and I LOOOOVED it. I would wear my giant green pin that said “A Wee Bit Irish” and look forward to Corned Beef and Cabbageand green lemonade for dinner.

We still get together for this treat every year. I pull out my St. Patrick’s Day pillows, make some St. Paddy’s Snack mix and finish the meal with either Rainbow Fondue or Easy Key Lime Pie. For us corned beef on St. Pat’s is just as much as a staple as cooking ham on Easter!

It is the BEST. Often we’ll buy extra corned beef roasts and make this later on in the year, especially for Father’s Day since it’s my dad’s very favorite!

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What We Love About Cooking Corned Beef in Crock Pot

Growing up I never knew it could be so easy to make corned beef but today I’m sharing the absolute easiest recipe for corned beef that you can make right in your crock pot. It doesn’t have to be saved for March though.

This corned beef crock pot recipe is simple and should be enjoyed as much as oven fried chicken, easy crock pot white chili or my other favorite slow cooker roast!

  • Super easy and foolproof! This is literally a stick everything in and the the crock pot do the magic type of recipe. In fact even if you have never cooked anything in your life I promise you can make this!
  • Delicious rich flavorful meat. This recipe gives you tender corned beef with the perfect texture. I’ve had other corned beef that was all dried out (boo) so I was always nervous to try it. But with this technique you get flavorful, moist meat every single time!
  • Reliable cooking. This turns out perfect every single time. No guesswork.
  • This makes the best leftovers. We like to make enough that everyone can take some home.
  • You can cook the corned beef and cabbage with potatoes in one shot or you can cook the corned beef all on it’s own.

If you want you can can even cook the potatoes and cabbage right there with it but I personally like to do those separate.

I like to have more control over the doneness and seasonings of the sides so I’ll tell you how I get the mingled flavor at the end.

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Corned Beef and Cabbage Recipe Ingredients

Do you need to rinse your corned beef? Nope. I do not. I know other people who do. If you want a more mild flavor you certainly can.

  • Corned Beef – one package, it comes in a brine with seasoning pack from the grocery store.
  • Water – I just use tap water

I almost always cook my corned beef by itself. I tend to stuff the slow cooker full so there’s not much room for potatoes or cabbage but you can absolutely cook everything together.

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Even if you want to cook them separately there’s a great trick for getting that slow simmered flavor even if your crock pot is bursting with beef.

That being said feel free to eat corned beef with Mac and Cheese or something else. But since I get so many questions about potatoes and cabbage I’m including information for preparing those too.

  • Potatoes – I like to use small red potatoes
  • Cabbage – Whole head, cut into wedges

How to Make Corned Beef in the Slow Cooker

  1. Place the corned beef in your crock pot (I like this one).
  2. Top with the seasoning pack that comes with the corned beef.
  3. Pour 1 and 1/2 cups of water into the packaging the corned beef was in to get the last bits of flavor that stuck and pour that on top of your the beef.
  4. Cook on high for 4-5 hours or low for 6-8 hours.

Should you cook corned beef on high or on low? It’s really up to you and how much time you have. I have done both and can honestly say I do not have a preference. Just go by how much time you have to work with.

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How to Cook Corned Beef Cabbage and Potatoes in the Crock Pot

So easy right? Now if you also want cabbage you can just throw it on top during the last few hours of cooking or what I prefer to do is boil the cabbage with a big ladle or two of the cooking juices from the corned beef.

I feel like sometimes when I add the cabbage in with the corned beef it’s really easy for it to get super salty. I love salt too so that’s saying something.

To cook the potatoes in the crock pot add them when you have 4 hours left before serving. Then add the cabbage when you have 2 hours left before serving.

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How to Make Corned Beef and Cabbage in the Instant Pot

Want to make use your pressure cooker to make corned beef? You bet you can do that.

Put the corned beef in the insert with the water and seasoning packet. Cook on manual or high pressure for 90 minutes and allow to natural pressure release for at least 12 minutes.

Remove the meat and while you are letting it rest cook your cabbage and potatoes for 5 minutes on high and then do a quick release.

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How to Make Mustard Glazed Corned Beef

My family loves their corn beef with a sweet mustard glaze but even though I am firmly in the mustard is not edible camp I will share my mom’s recipe with you lol.

Mix 2-3 TBS yellow mustard with 1 cup brown sugar. Mix it together and adjust to your taste. Spread over the top of your cooked corned beef roast in an oven proof dish. And then broil until it’s nice and pretty.

What to do with Corned Beef Leftovers!

Our favorite part of having Corned Beef is gobbling up the leftovers. We will make extra just so we can have a good stash to eat for the rest of the week.

It will last for about a week in a sealed container in the refrigerator or if you have a lot extra put it in the freezer. I love pulling it out to throw on baked potatoes or nachos!

  • Open face Corned beef cheese and avocado melts
  • Corned Beef Egg Scramble (or omelette)
  • Corned Beef Pastry Squares
  • Corned Beef Mac and Cheese
  • Reuben Sandwiches
  • Homemade Pizza

The Best Crock Pot Corned Beef Recipe

Course Main Course

How to make corned beef in the slow cooker. Perfect for St. Patrick's day! Best recipe for crock pot corned beef.


  • 1 package corned beef
  • 1 1/2 C Water


  • Place the corned beef in your crock pot.

  • Top with the seasoning pack that comes with the corned beef.

  • Pour 1 and 1/2 cups of water into the packaging the corned beef was in to get the last bits of flavor that stuck and pour that on top of your the beef.

  • Cook on high for 4-5 hours or low for 6-8 hours.


How to Cook Cabbage and Potatoes

I prefer to cook my cabbage and potatoes separately from my corned beef. To get a good flavor I boil the cabbage and potatoes with a big ladle or two of the cooking juices from the corned beef.

To cook the potatoes in the crock pot add them when you have 4 hours left before serving. Then add the cabbage when you have 2 hours left before serving.

Instant Pot Directions

To cook this in the Instant Pot add the water and corned beef and cook on high pressure or manual for 90 minutes and natural pressure release for at least 12 minutes.

If cooking potatoes and cabbage remove cooked meat and add veggies in and cook for 5 minutes on high or manual with a quick release.

Love this recipe?Follow @RaeGunRamblings or tag #RaeGunRamblings!

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Best Easy Crock Pot Corned Beef Recipe (2024)


Should corned beef be completely covered in water in crock pot? ›

Crock Pot. Remove Corned Beef from package and place in crock pot and completely cover with water.

What is the secret to best corned beef? ›

Simmering corned beef on the stovetop is a tried-and-true method that results in very tender beef. One of the keys to simmering corned beef correctly is the amount of water in the pot. When there's not ample liquid to cover the meat, your dreams of tender corned beef may be replaced by a tough, chewy result.

What is the best and easiest way to cook corned beef? ›

Slow cooker: Corned beef cooks well in a slow cooker or Instant Pot. In a slow cooker, add the brisket, enough water to cover it, and the spices from the spice packet or your own spices. Cook on low for 9 to 11 hours or high for about 4½ hours. For cooking in an Instant Pot, follow the manufacturer's instructions.

Why is my corned beef in the crock pot still tough? ›

To improve the tenderness of corned beef cooked in a crock pot, you can try the following:
  1. Cook at a slightly higher temperature for a shorter time.
  2. Ensure the meat is submerged in liquid (such as water or broth) to help tenderize it.
Feb 16, 2023

Why does my corned beef look GREY in the crock pot? ›

The color difference is due to one ingredient: nitrates, either in the form of sodium nitrate or saltpeter, added into the salty brine that gives brisket its corned taste and flavor.

What happens if you don't rinse corned beef? ›

Depending on the pickling solution used for the meat, you may be in for a saltier meal than you bargained for if you cook the meat without rinsing it. And don't worry: Rinsing won't make the beef taste bland! The flavor is infused deep into the beef during the curing process.

What is the most tender way to cook corned beef? ›

CROCKPOT: Set on high cover; cook for 8-10 hours. When done, using 2 large spoons or spatulas, carefully remove briskets to serving platter and let rest. The meat will be extremely tender, and will easily break apart if you use a meat fork.

Does corned beef get more tender the longer you cook it? ›

Information. Corned beef is made from one of several less tender cuts of beef like the brisket, rump, or round. Therefore, it requires long, moist cooking. Corned beef is safe once the internal temperature has reached at least 145 °F, with a three minute rest time, but cooking it longer will make it fork-tender.

Should you use the juice in the corned beef package? ›

To make the corned beef, open the sealed package right over the slow cooker, because you want to include the brine in the cooking liquid. Don't discard the brine. Place the meat into the cooker and add enough cold water to cover. Add the pickling spices, cover, and cook on high for 6–8 hours.

Can you overcook corned beef in a slow cooker? ›

You can overcook corned beef in a Crock-Pot if it's cooked for too long at too high of a temperature. Overcooked corned beef can taste tough and stringy. It's best to follow the recommended cook time and temperature within the recipe.

Do you cook corned beef fat side up or down? ›

Place the corned beef fat-side up in a roasting pan with a rack or use an oven-safe rack set inside a rimmed baking sheet. If you don't have either, set the corned beef on top of a bed of chopped onions so it's elevated from the pan.

Do you rinse corned beef before slow cooking? ›

Yes, corned beef should be rinsed because it is cured in a salt brine; there is probably excess salt on the meat.

How do you know when corned beef is done in a crock pot? ›

Typically, it takes about 8-10 hours on low heat or 4-6 hours on high heat for the corned beef to become tender. Probe with a Fork: After the recommended cooking time, use a fork to gently probe the meat. If it's tender and easily pulls apart, it's likely done.

Is it better to boil or slow cook corned beef? ›

Corned beef is a brisket that has been brined. It is often sold precooked, but if you have purchased it raw, the best way to cook corned beef is slowly. You can bake, boil, or cook it in your slow cooker, but the key to a tender, flavorful meal requires at least a few hours.

Why isn't my meat tender in the crock pot? ›

If your crock pot roast is tough, it is possible you didn't use a boneless chuck roast, in which cases some cuts of meat will never become fall-apart tender OR more likely, you did not cook your beef long enough. If your pot roast seems tough, cook on!

Does meat in crock pot need to be covered with liquid? ›

Water or liquid is necessary to create steam. When cooking meat or poultry, the water or liquid level should cover the ingredients to ensure effective heat transfer throughout the crock. Some manufacturers of slow cookers recommend adding liquid to fill the stoneware 1/2 to 3/4 full.

Should meat be fully submerged in crock pot? ›

To keep a pot roast from drying out, your slow cooker needs liquid to create a moist environment, and that can include meat or vegetable stock, wine or water. This doesn't mean the meat should be submerged; a cup or two of liquid will be enough, since the cooker is covered and liquids stay trapped inside.

Does water have to cover meat in crock pot? ›

There is no need to cover the meat in liquid when cooking with a slow cooker, you only need enough liquid to cover the base of the slow cooker as the meat and vegetables will release liquid as they cook. Slow cooking beef is a simple and soothing winter option that never goes out of style.

Is corned beef supposed to be submerged in water? ›

Yes, corned beef should be submerged in water when cooking it in a slow cooker. This is important for several reasons: Moisture and tenderness: Submerging the corned beef in water helps to keep the meat moist and tender during the slow cooking process [1].

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