Smoked corned beef and cabbage is a St. Patrick’s Day staple. This smoked corned beef is a delicious tradition in our house and hopefully will soon become one in yours! This guide will be your go to recipe and method for deliciously tender smoked corned beef and tasty cabbage every time.
What is Corned Beef?
Corned beef is a tough cut of beef that is cured in a nitrate/nitrite solution to add flavor, tenderness, and that iconic pink hue. It is typically made from brisket points, flats, or from round roasts. I have an amazing recipe for making corned beef at home, if you’ve got a week’s worth of time and a desire to take the curing process into your own hands. Follow the CORNED BEEF CURE RECIPE HERE and then come on back to this post when you’re ready to cook! If you’re buying your corned beef from the store, read on for details on what to look for!
There are corned beef briskets (point and flat) and corned beef rounds. You can purchase whatever kind you like, but if you are buying your first ever corned beef let me give you a little info about each:
A corned beef brisket is a cut from the pectoral muscle of the cow. It is notoriously tough, requiring long cook times to tenderize the meat. A brisket point is cut from the brisket and typically more marbled with fat and therefore more tender and flavorful. The point is my preference when it comes to store bought corned beef brisket. A brisket flat is less fatty, but has a tendency to be a little more tough, even after a long cook. A brisket flat has a more even thickness, so it is my choice for curing at home.
A corned beef round is a cut from the rear leg of the cow. Also a tough cut of meat, this roast is well suited for thinly sliced corned beef, used on sandwiches or in corned beef hash. For this recipe, I used a corned beef round, but a brisket (either point or flat) would work just as well.
Corned Beef and Cabbage
Corned beef is best when cooked for a long time at a low temperature (I believe all of the best foods are). This will help transform the tough cut of meat into tender, beefy deliciousness. First, I smoked my corned beef roast on my smoker for an added layer of flavor. If you don’t have access to a smoker then this process can still be done in your oven, just add an extra 2-3 hours to the braising time.
Braise the corned beef and cabbage, onions, and carrots in beef stock at a low temperature in a 4.5 quart enameled cast iron pot. Adding in potatoes for a fully rounded meal is totally optional. The potatoes go in during the last two hours of cooking so they don’t get mushy.
Corned Beef and Cabbage Recipe
- 1 3-5 lb corned beef roast brisket or round
- 1 tablespoon pickling spice
- 1 yellow onion sliced
- 1 cup baby carrots
- 1 small head green cabbage quartered
- 3 cups beef stock
Before cooking, remove your corned beef from the brine and rinse any excess liquid from the surface of the roast. Start up your smoker and shoot for a temperature around 250 degrees F. Place the roast on your grill, close the lid and smoke for 3 hours.
While the roast is smoking, prepare the vegetable and braising liquid. Place the onions and carrots in the bottom of a heavy dutch oven pot. Position the cabbage quarters on top of the carrots and onions. Pour the beef broth over the vegetables and sprinkle with the pickling spice seasoning packet.
After the roast has smoked for 3 hours remove it from the grill and place it on top of the vegetables. Sprinkle the roast with additional pickling spice, if desired. Cover the dutch oven with a lid and return to the grill or oven with the temperature set at 250 degrees F. Braise for 4-5 hours or until the internal temperature of the roast is 205-210 degrees F.
During the last two hours of braising, add in 1 1/2 pounds of washed and cubed potatoes or whole fingerling potatoes to the braising liquid.
- Remove the roast and allow it to rest for 10-15 minutes before slicing. Return the sliced corned beef to the vegetables in the pot and serve.