This easy preparation results in a super tender, yummy roast beef brisket that is even better the next day on a Reuben sandwich or better yet… Corned Beef Hash! Sometimes the leftovers are better than the original dish, right!?
Just keep in mind that the corned beef shrinks a lot when it cooks, so make sure you grab one big enough to feed the whole family. I usually plan on about 1 pound (precooked) per person.
A few things to note:
Many recipes call for you to rinse the corned beef before placing it in the slow cooker. Every time I’ve ever done this, I end up with a rather flavorless corned beef and even worse vegetables. On the package I once noticed that they recommended using the juices from the package when cooking. Despite the rather unpleasant look of the stuff, it added tons of flavor to the dish and I’ve done it that way ever since. If you’re watching your sodium intake, you can certainly rinse it first – just know you’ll be sacrificing flavor as well.
Speaking of flavor, I also add more pickling spice because I find that the tiny packet they include with the corned beef is just too small for a 5 to 6 pound brisket. Again, it’s totally optional, but I highly recommend it.
When it comes to the cook time, this is a super long one. I like my brisket pull apart tender. Yes, you can cook it for a shorter amount of time if you want it more “sliceable.”
When it comes to the veggies, I like big chunks for the long cook time so they won’t all cook to mush. I prefer using a small waxy potato that’s about 1 1/2 inches in size – something like a small red or yellow potato. Leaving the skin on helps it keep its shape as well. But this recipe makes super tender potatoes, carrots, onions, and celery. If you want more texture to them, proceed with the recipe and just add the potatoes, carrots, onions, and celery about halfway through the cooking time. I’d only ever add the cabbage about 1 hour before the cook time is over, though.
Slow Cooker Corned Beef and Cabbage
- 1 5 to 6 pound flat cut corned beef (with pickling spices)
- 4 to 6 small potatoes, halved if they are larger than 2 inches (I like to use red "new" potatoes or something like Yukon Gold.)
- 1 large onion, quartered
- 1 1/2 cups baby carrots
- 2 ribs of celery, cut into 3-inch pieces
- 3 cloves garlic
- 2 tablespoons pickling spice (optional)
- 2 to 4 cups beef broth
- 1 medium head cabbage, cut into 1 inch wedges
- Place the potatoes, onions, carrots, celery, and garlic cloves in the bottom of a 6-quart slow cooker.
- Add the corned beef to the slow cooker on top of the vegetables with the fat side up. I also add any juices from the package to the slow cooker as well for extra flavor. Add the packet of pickling spices that came with the corned beef. If you like lots of flavor, add an additional 2 tablespoons of an all-purpose pickling spice.
- Add enough beef broth to just barely reach the top of the corned beef. I usually use about 3 cups but it will vary based on the size of your slow cooker and the size of your corned beef. Cover and cook on low for about 9 hours.
- About an hour before serving, add the cut cabbage into 1 inch wedges and add it to the broth around the brisket. Cover and cook for about an hour or until the cabbage has reached your desired tenderness.
- Once done cooking, remove the brisket from the slow cooker and remove the fat layer, if desired. Shred or slice the beef against the grain and serve with spicy mustard or a horseradish sauce along with the cabbage and other vegetables.