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Corned Beef Basics

The first corned beef was packed in salt, and sometimes spices, in order to cure it. It got its name from the corn kernel-sized grains of salt it was packed in.

Today, corned beef is usually made by soaking a brisket roast in a brine of water, salt, and spices. While it's not traditional in Ireland, corned beef is what most Americans prepare for St. Patrick's Day feasts.

About the Beef

For centuries, corned beef was a food reserved for special occasions. Beef was considered to be a decadent indulgence up until the 20th century. It was only available to very wealthy people, because most cows were kept for their milk or for breeding.

About the Brisket

Brisket comes from the heavily exercised front limbs of the animal, and is consequently a tough cut of meat. When cooked properly--braised--this cut is tender, juicy and succulent. Corned beef and other forms of brisket need to be cooked for a long time with low heat and plenty of moisture in order to realize their full potential as the star of your dinner table.


To cook prepared corned beef, place it in a large pot along with the liquid and spices that accompanied it in the package. Pour in enough water to cover the beef, then bring the water to a boil on the stovetop. Reduce the heat to a simmer, and cover the pot. A three-pound corned beef will take about three hours to become perfectly tender. Check the meat occasionally, adding more water if necessary. The beef is ready when it pulls apart easily. For a one-pot feast, you can add shredded cabbage and chunks of potatoes and carrots to the pot during the last half hour of cooking.

Corning Beef

If you'd like to prepare your own corned beef from a fresh brisket, try these recipes:

Find more Irish recipes in our St. Patrick's Day collection.

Sep. 20, 2009 6:01 am
The easiest way to prepare corned beef is to cook it in a crockpot. The "pot" does your work for you. You're welcomed home with the fabulous aroma of dinner ready to serve. It's at least as yummy. if not better than cooked on the stovetop!
Paula's favorites 
Oct. 16, 2009 6:34 pm
We love corned beef with cabbage, carrots, and potatoes. This is a great recipe, but I altered it putting it in the slow cooker with a can of cheaa beer. Bring to to temperature, then turn it down to low and let it cook all night. The next morning, the smell is tantalizing. enjoy!
Feb. 15, 2010 3:56 am
In charge of corn beef and cabbage dinner for 150 peo. Have 10 cooks that will be cooking the cornbeef, pot, carrots and cabbage. Need to buy the most tender corn beef available and cooking directions to pass along to the cooks. Also How many pounds of corn been do I need, knowing that the cornbeef shrinks . Appreciate you imput. Ellie
Feb. 18, 2010 5:28 pm
No matter how much water I use to cover my corned beef brisket for cooking or how long I simmer it per pound it still comes out dry. Any suggestions appreciated.
Feb. 25, 2010 11:21 am
Rita, Dry meat usually means overdone. Are you cutting the temperature as soon as it comes to a boil? Maybe you should reduce the cooing time as well; 1 hour per pound is the absolute longest I go. When we simmer the brisket it isn't adding moisture to it. If it was the brisket would expand not contract. I hope this helps. Jeff
Loon Lake Lady 
Mar. 2, 2010 2:27 pm
HELP! I plan to serve this meal on March 17 at a church dinner for about 40 people. As we don't have enough crock pots to use, can this corned beef with cabbage, potatoes & carrots dinner be prepared as successfully in a large, electric oven in lieu of multiple crock pots? Appreciate your kind help. Jenny
Mar. 4, 2010 12:16 pm
Rita - you also need to serve it with some of the liquid. I usually take mine out and slice it up and then put it back in the pot when I add the vegetables. When the veggies are ready, everything is ready to serve right from the pot. I always spoon some of the liquid over everything when serving.
Mar. 5, 2010 7:22 am
I usually simmer mine with red potatoes and carrots When meat is done make a honey mustard glaze (like you woould use on ham) and put under broiler for about 5 min. I boil cabbage separatly and serve with butter S&P. Also use creamy horseradish for dipping corned beef in. YUM
Mar. 5, 2010 12:26 pm
How do I get the corned beef to not be so salty? whats the trick
Mar. 7, 2010 8:49 am
To make the corned beef less salty, place in pot of cold water, no seasonings. Bring to just boiling point, dump water and start over again for total of three times. After that follow recipe.
Ms Sam 
Mar. 10, 2010 9:18 am
I see that there are different cuts of corned beef. What do you recommend?
Mar. 10, 2010 11:45 am
To Loon Lake Lady/Jenny: Simply put your corned beef & spice packets into a dutch oven as if you were stove-top cooking, cover with liquid, lay foil over the pot, then add the lid to the pot and if you can bring to boil on stovetop, do so; if not, just add enough time to the oven cooking (350 degrees)for liquid to come to simmer. Overall, you need an hour per pound to braise until tender. This is how I make pot roast and it is awesome...way better than crockpot which tends to cook to quickly these days, boiling the heck out of everything, even on low!
Mar. 10, 2010 11:47 am
Sorry, Loon Lake Jenny - the oven cooking needs to be at least 3 hours...I didn't account for anything smaller than 3 pounds.
Mar. 12, 2010 4:45 pm
I have an 17 pound whole corned beef brisket. How to roast in oven???
Mar. 13, 2010 11:35 pm
Jenny (Loon Lake Lady): I just served this dinner for a church group of about 70 people. Yes, you can cook the meal in large electric ovens (we used 18 quart roaster pans)instead of crock pots. We bought point pieces of corned beef as they were the least expensive and they worked great - flat pieces would be even better. Because the roasts were small (2.5-4 lbs) we put 4-5 roasts in each roasting pan. Use the juice from the meat package along with all the spices from the packets and completely cover the meat with water. I cooked the roasts on low (about 250 degrees) overnight for about 7-8 hours. You can tell that the meat is done when it is pliable, but not shredding apart-you want it to have some body or else it will just be a shredded pile of meat (still tasty, but unattractive). Remove the roasts and put into a large aluminum pan covered with foil to cool slightly for about 20 minutes. When the meat is ready to slice, it is very easy to first "wipe" away the layer of fat that co
Mar. 14, 2010 8:33 pm
My husband & I have been doing St Pats dinner for last 23 years...have boiled it and slow roasted in oven. The last few years we have found that the best, tastiest & tenderest corned beef is done by slowly cooking it over a gas bbq. We place 2 corned beef flats, fat side up, in aluminum roasting pans & cover 3/4 of meat with a mixture of Guinness & beef broth. Preheat grill to 400 degrees then turn outside burners to med. & inside burners to low. Cover roasting pan with aluminum foil and place in center of grill and slowly cook, flipping flats every hour. If liquid appears to be evaporating quickly, add more beer or broth. Cooking time will vary according to grills. Ours averages a little less than an hour a pound. Remove foil for about last 45 minutes of cooking time so it gets that caramelized crisp. Be sure to baste during cooking time. We let the flats sit for a while after cooking before we slice them. We have also found that if you cook the corned beef the day before y
Mar. 15, 2010 12:23 pm
WOW-Great tips all, thank you so much. Enjoyed reading everything everyone said! HAPPY ST. PAT'S DAY TO ALL!!!
Mar. 15, 2010 1:08 pm
Ms. Sam. A point cut is fatty & the flat cut is less fatty.The flat cut is not. Patty 1980, Thanks for the info on how to cut the salt. My husband loves corned beef, but the salt gives him horrific heart burn.I will try your little trick the next time I make this.
Mar. 15, 2010 11:34 pm
Question 1: I have 3 points to cook (about 3 lb each, 9 lb total). Since they are separate pieces, do I simmer for the time of one 3 lb piece (about 3 hrs) or as a 9 lb piece or what? Question 2: what's the best internal temp so the meat's not dried out?
Mar. 16, 2010 6:52 am
my brisket did not have any spices included what shall I use?
Mar. 16, 2010 2:20 pm
If you've never made corned beef or have trouble with it coming out dry, use the SLOW COOKED CORNED BEEF FOR SANDWICHES recipe on this site. I have never had a failure and the flavour is out of this world. Don't let the name fool you, all you have to do is let the corned beef cook slowly all day (crockpot) or 4-5 hours on the stovetop. When done, drain the cooking liquid into a large pot and add all your veggies (I add cabbage, potatoes, turnips, celery and onions) and let them cook 20-30 minutes till tender. I always have my veggies peeled and cut and ready to throw in the pot and we're sitting down to a fantastic meal a half hour after we get home from work.
Mar. 17, 2010 10:26 am
I have found that corned beef rounds come out more succulent than the brisket! I don't have a crock pot or a dutch oven so I usually boil mine on the stove stop first (apple cider and guiness)then trasnfer it to a tukey bag to finish braising in the oven. Don't add any spices to the liquid until AFTER you skim away the fat that rises to the top! As always, cover your meat with foil once you pull it out of the oven and let rest before slicing into it!
Mar. 17, 2010 10:33 am
MK- 1)Rub fresh cracked pepper and fresh salt over your beef to taste. 2) Take some cheesecloth (or I take a tea bag and remove the tea), and add 2 teaspoons Peppercorns, 4 Allspice berries and 2 whole Cloves. Stick in the pot AFTER you skim the fat that rises to the surface. Also, add 2 bay leaves to the pot but not in the tea bag. Hope this helps! Happy St. Patrick's Day!!
Mar. 28, 2010 8:59 am
I used to bake my corned beef in a dutch oven but when I discovered the results from my pressure cooker, I was hooked. We just had corned beef last night, in fact. I have several pressure cookers, one os which is the size of a deep chef's (or saute) pan. It accomodates a flat of corned beef perfectly. I use boxed or canned low-sodium chicken broth for the liquid, put the brisket on the perforated rack insert fat-side up, press the whole spices from the packet into the fat layer and pressure cook for 55 minutes. I let the pressure reduce naturally while I separately steam the cabbage, carrots and potatoes. The resulting corned beef is so tender and juicy that I won't make it any other way. Not to mention the time savings. If you own a pressure cooker, try it sometime.
Howard Schwartz 
Aug. 4, 2010 10:46 am
Who says Corned Beef is not traditional in Ireland??? Certainly nobody from Ireland I know and I'm married to a Dublin girl and go there regularly.
Sep. 20, 2010 5:54 pm
"Who says Corned Beef is not traditional in Ireland???" I'm from Ireland and had never seen American-style corned beef until I moved here in my 30s. I certainly ate lots of 'corned beef' sandwiches for my school lunches as a kid, but it's a shredded cold meat taken from little cans produced in Brazil or Argentina! You can make slices with it when it's cold, but it falls apart if you try to heat it up. Corned beef is certainly not a traditional Irish meal for St. Patrick's Day, though I have seen it offered in pubs and restaurants in recent years. But it's totally a Irish-American tradition that has actually nowadays been imported into Ireland (and a great one, too!) I rate it along with little shamrock stamps on Guinness head; another US import you'll see on the tourist trail.
Oct. 2, 2010 8:07 am
I've had the most success using a slow cooker, with Guinness or another dark beer for the liquid. Comes out great, moist and tender every time!
Oct. 31, 2010 7:54 am
I add minced garlic and bay leaves to the water as the beef simmers slowly. I also change the water at least 3 times during cooking to reduce the saltiness of the meat.
Dec. 19, 2010 6:53 pm
I had never cooked a brisket before and This was so simple to follow and my brisket was so tender it fell apart.
Jan. 9, 2011 12:05 pm
i cooked mine in my electric pressure cooker for 90 minutes for a 4 pound brisket i added 2 cups of water and a can of beer and it was very good. love my electric pressure cooker!!!
Feb. 19, 2011 10:56 am
Thanks for all the helpful hints. Question: Do I skim the fat from the top of the pot while I'm cooking it, or wait until it's done? Also, is there such a thing as cooking the corned beef brisket with too much water? I added more to cover it, but it's floating! Thanks...
Mar. 8, 2011 7:57 am
A crockpot is great for smaller amounts. If you are having a crowd use the oven Place brisket with the spice packets in a large roasting pan (turkey), cover with water.Cover tightly with heavy duty foil. Put into a 350 degree oven and let it cook. The shrinkage will be a little less and you arenot boiling out all the flavor. Check after 2 hours and continue cooking til tender. Drain the water and juice into a large pan to cook your cabbage in. Cut in quarters remove core and simmer till done. As far as how may people will a pound serve...depends on appetites. Shrinkage and fat consume 50% of the product. So if 10 people want 1/2 lb per person, that's 5 lbs of cooked. You need 10 lbs due to fat and shrinkage. Good Luck!!
Mar. 12, 2011 9:42 am
I have only made a brisket about four times. Three times the packages said to cook in the oven in water, covered, which I did. Once it turned out great, the other tow were tough. Today I tried another one. The package said to cook in a pot on the stovetop covered in water. Bring to a boil, then simmer for 2.5-3 hours. DOne at 160 degrees. After one hour it was already 160 degrees! Yes, I had my stove on simmer, I even questioned (flattop stove) if it was still on as the water was not moving (bubbling) around the roast. My goal is to make one that is tender! Help please!! :)
Mar. 12, 2011 6:08 pm
I cook my corn beef stove top for at least 3 hours.It has always turn out tender.I add carrots and potatoes about 30min before its should be done, then add cabbage last.this seems to work for me.Please check meat with fork to be sure its tender before adding veggies.Happy Saint Patrick's Day To All.
Mar. 13, 2011 7:32 am
Gena, the brisket (corned beef) is a heavily exercised muscle...because of that, it's tough and needs a lot of time to break down and become tender. I'm sure it can reach an internal temperature of 160 degrees in as little as an hour, but that doesn't mean the muscle/fat/connective tissue/etc will be sufficiently broken down at that point. Don't focus on the internal temperature--keep it cooking until it reaches the desired tenderness (at least an hour per pound...usually longer, though).
Mar. 13, 2011 11:23 am
Rinse off the briskets first. It helps reduce some of the salt also. Meat goes into a pot to boil for 3-4 hours with the spices, garlic, onion, 50/50 water guiness mix. Remove meat from pot and throw in veggies(parsnips, potatoes, carrots, and celery for 30 mins then throw in cabbage for another 20mins. When the veggies are cooking the meat goes on charcoal grill and baste with real apple cider, stone ground mustard, honey and some good Irish whiskey. Let the meat set for at least 10 mins and slice.
Mar. 13, 2011 4:56 pm
looking delicious, i would lke to try it one of this days..:)
Mar. 16, 2011 10:20 am
I'm cooking corned beef and cabbage for 20 people tomorrow. I bought 5 Briskets totalling 18 ibs. How lonf should I cook these. It says an hour a pound. Does this mean I have to cook it foe 18 hours?
Howard Schwartz 
Mar. 16, 2011 1:24 pm
Who says corned beef is not traditional in Ireland? Certainly no one who as ever actually been there on St Patrick's Day. They call it Salt Beef but trust me, it's the same thing and it's mega-traditional in Ireland.
Mar. 16, 2011 6:31 pm
Hey aslan... Glad you posted! I've got 20 people coming over too and have the same question! Hope you get an answer so I don't mess up the dinner here!
Mar. 17, 2011 9:05 am
Aslan and Royall-if the brisket was one piece at 18#, yes that would be your cooking time. Since you have smaller pieces, say 4 or 5# each, the cooking time is for that amount, even if you have a few pieces in a single cooking pan. They will cook and tenderize individually, not based on the total pounds. Advice: cook like sizes together. A 3# piece and a 5# piece will be done differently if cooked together. Hope this helps.
Mar. 17, 2011 11:46 am
Thanks Jarvia! I was thinking that would be the way but just wanted to be sure. Didn't want to ruin the meal! Aloha, Royall
chef rudy 
Mar. 20, 2011 7:31 am
Why does everyone think that the BRISKET you buy in the store is automatically CORNED BEEF? A brisket is a brisket unless it is cured in a brine before slowly simmering it in water with pickling spice. Only then does it become CORNED BEEF! When you buy the "Corned Beef" in the store and it is raw and it includes the "mystery packet" it is just a BRISKET! If you were to wander over to the deli section and ask for corned beef, you will get corned beef. However, this has already been brined, cured and boiled.
Mar. 27, 2011 6:22 pm
Does anybody have any hints on what to do with the left over broth? I hate to throw it out! Thank you.
Apr. 5, 2011 1:14 pm
OK I havent read all the comments but for a really quick meal esp when camping....1 or two cans of corned beef put in pot over heat add barbque sauce you like heat and stir mix well and serve on any type bread you want
Oct. 4, 2011 1:15 pm
Don't throw out that broth, it's the best of the dinner, when cooking the corn beef, add a diced onion to it, the spices that come with it, cover the roast with water so you have plenty broth, when it's tender add the potatoes , 15 minutes before its done, add the cut up cabbage, serve in a bowl like beef stew, that broth is awsome
Oct. 4, 2011 1:20 pm
corn beef stew, I for got to tell you to make sure to season with salt and pepper for the corn beef stew, its awwsome, best broth in the world
Oct. 4, 2011 1:43 pm
You have to get a corn beef brisket, it has a package of seasoning
Oct. 5, 2011 6:55 pm
I love corn beef Sliced thin on rye bread
Feb. 11, 2012 12:08 am
point or flat what'syour preference + why?
Mar. 6, 2012 6:34 am
Mar. 6, 2012 11:52 am
Another great idea for the leftover corned beef is the Barbecue sauce, but add sliced olives and grated cheddar cheese. Put this on your choice of buns wrap them in foil and heat in a 350 degree oven for about 10 minutes. They are wonderful, especially on a cool afternoon. Great even if you are using canned Corned Beef.
Mar. 7, 2012 5:46 am
I have found that after many hits and misses that cooking corned beef in a pressure cooker for about an hour almost guarantees a successful outcome.
Mar. 7, 2012 6:06 am
I use McCormick pickling spices picking out the majority of the cloves. Too much is just ... to much clove. I add a quart of water and and bag the brisket removing all the air and sealing the bag. Place it in the frig and turn it over every 12 hours for three days. Then rinse thoroughly and remove the spices. Put the brisket in a roasting pan with one bottle of Amber beer and add enough water to just cover it. Cook at 300 degrees in the oven for three to three and a half hours, covered. Let cool completely before slicing.
Mar. 7, 2012 6:17 am
Love the traditional corned beef and cabbage dinner but for a little flavor change and extra vegies I have added some yellow turnip (a.k.a. rutabagas)cut into lg. bite size chunks and it has now become the favorite way for my family and friends enjoyment. I add the turnips when adding my carrots and potatoes in the last hour of cooking and add the cabbage in the last half hour. Can't wait to make it again soon ! Yummy !
Mar. 7, 2012 8:02 am
nutmegger Crockpot is so much better than stove top. I just can't boil meat. I actually prefer it in the oven. Pan with rack ;cup of water in bottom, cover tightly with foil, 2hrs. Bet you never boil again, never comes out dry.
Mar. 7, 2012 8:07 am
nutmegger cabbage: saute chopped cabbage in olive oil add onions and /or apples.Boiling vegetables ruins the taste and you lose the vitamins.
Mar. 7, 2012 8:25 am
The best way to cook corned beef is to roast it in the oven. Use a large roasting pan with a cover, like one you would use to cook a turkey in. Make sure you buy the flat cut, not the point cut of corned beef. The point cut is much stringier and tougher. Place the corned beef in your roasting pan fat side up, sprinkle the packet of spices on top, and fill the pan with at least 1 inch of water and make sure you cover the pan. Bake at least 2 hours at around 300 or so then add cut up sections of cabbage, potatoes, carrots, and onions. I also like to throw in whole mushrooms. Cook another 1 to 1-1/2 hours, checking every once in a while and spooning some of the seasoned water over any veggies that aren't covered. I make this every year and anyone who has had boiled corned beef and then had roasted always prefers roasted. It retains the seasonings much better, doesn't get boiled out into the water.
Mar. 7, 2012 8:26 am
WHERE can I purchase already 'corned' beef??
Mar. 7, 2012 8:32 am
The packet of seasonings I referred to in the above post comes with the corned beef. You don't need to buy a separate packet of seasonings. Also, the amount of time it takes of course depends on how big a cut of beef you have. But the most important thing is that if you want a nice tender and flavorful piece of corned beef, roast it at a lower temp. for at least 3-1/2 to 4 hours and buy the flat cut, not the point cut.
Mar. 7, 2012 8:34 am
MAC, you can buy already "corned" beef at most any supermarket. I buy mine every year at the local grocery store.
Mar. 7, 2012 8:35 am
Great News! Thanks!
Mar. 7, 2012 9:13 am
Has anyone cooked corned beef in a pressure cooker? Would that make it dry? I haven't cooked corned beef in a long time, something in the store bought brine disagrees with me. Think I will try "corning" my own. Thanks for the information.
Mar. 7, 2012 9:23 am
Paula: what is cheaa beer?
Mar. 7, 2012 9:23 am
does Guiness beer make the corned beef bitter?
Mar. 7, 2012 9:27 am
I throw the corned beef, water and juices in a roaster. Cook it at 375F for 2 hours, then add cabbage, onion, potatoes, carrots. the whole meal in one pot! Spray roaster with pam and easy clean up after!! YUMMY My kids love it!!
Mar. 7, 2012 9:34 am
In Canadian stores they have the Corned Beef Brisket, which is right in the brine. Just dump in roaster with water and cook!!
Mar. 7, 2012 9:38 am
I always put pickling spices in a little sachet made from a coffee filter tied closed with dental floss. It flavors the corned beef and keeps all the little spices in a neat little packet... and not in your food. Just the flavor!
Mar. 7, 2012 9:43 am
Leftover corned beef is not common in my house... I use all the little bits from when I slice it for dinner to make corned beef hash for breakfast! I do not use the potatoes that I cooked with the corned beef as it is too much of the same flavors... I dice partially microwaved russet potatoes or red potatoes, heat a little oil, butter, onion and garlic in a frying pan.... add the diced potatoes... until they are crispy and brown... add corned beef bits and pieces... serve with over easy eggs.... YUMMMM! A family fav.
Mar. 7, 2012 10:06 am
If you want to make corned beef from a regular brisket, see my recipe for Corned Venison, this website, and substitute a beef brisket for the venison. I've cooked via crockpot, stovetop and pressure stovetop the best. My son-in-law adores the corned venison and I made about 50 lbs. of it this year for him. I've also used this recipe to "corn" other wild game. It's a lot less fatty and lower cholesterol than the beef. Never have a problem with it being dry.
Mar. 7, 2012 10:12 am
As the very first posting says, I find the slow cooker to be the easiest and least risky way to cook corned beef. I start with several pints of flat beer and add enough water to cover. 8 hrs on LOW. Be sure to let the beef stand for 20 minutes or so after removing from pot. It will consolidate both flavor and moisture wonderfully. Use this time to finish up sides.
Mar. 7, 2012 10:14 am
By the way, to make the Corned Beef from scratch, the recipe calls for Morton's Tender Quick. This is NOT salt, but a curing agent and not easily found. It can be obtained easily over the internet. The "corning" process takes 5-7 days depending on the size of the brisket...
Mar. 7, 2012 10:22 am
We like corned beef any time of year. It seems like we always choose it at the last minute though. Microwave defrost, then an hour in the PRESSURE COOKER @ 15lbs. Don't put the cabbage and potatoes in at the start or you will have goo. Brussel sprouts are great with this, just shake some malt vinegar on the sprouts. Yum!
Mar. 7, 2012 10:27 am
Everyone here has their own way of doing their corned beef but my tip can be done anyway you want to cook it. Just replace the water with apple juice and this brings the best flavor to the cut and gets rid of the saltiness.(Been doing it this way for 30 years) I have always simmered mine on top of the stove in the apple juice for 3 to 4 hours, but I think I will try it in the oven this year. Give it a try you won't regret it!!!
Mar. 7, 2012 11:49 am
When I make it I cook it in v8 juice instead of water. It breaks down the meat, adds flavor. I add sliced potatoes, cabbage and carrots during the last 45 minutes. It really is delicious!
Mar. 7, 2012 1:10 pm
This is a general tip for spicing liquids when you don't want "leaves" to show up in the final dish: I use my teaball to hold the chunk spices and even herbs if they aren't fresh on the stem. Hang the hook over the edge of your pan, & it's 1-2-3-Easy to remove when seasoning is all done. Chain doesn't reach the broth? Tie a bit of string to your pot handle and the teaball hook--Anchors aweigh, Cap'n!
Mar. 7, 2012 1:55 pm
I cover my corned meat with cold water,add 1 heaped tablespoon brown sugar,same of malt vinegar, 1 large quartered onion,2 carrots halved & a few peppercorns. Simmer slowly for at least 3 hrs. The main thing to do for really moist meat is to leave it to cool in the cooking liquid for about 2 hrs if possible. In Australia and New Zealand our corned beef is no longer over salted, though we did use to change the water after the first hour of cooking. Also we have a low salt version. I also prefer to cook my vegies separate from the meat,although its easy to add them in the last 1/2 hr.
Mar. 7, 2012 2:28 pm
Corned beef in the pressure cooker is the way to go. About 10 pounds pressure & about 45 minutes per pound.Pressure cooker will tenderize shoe leather but nobody cooks in them much anymore
Mar. 8, 2012 5:15 am
I've been using Reynolds Cooking Bags for making my corned beef for over 25 years. Recipe is in the cooking bag under "beef". I put in the corned beef by itself for about an hour and a half, then carefully open it and put in my cabbage, potatoes, celery, carrots and rhutabaga and cook for an additional hour to an hour and a half. The juices from the corned beef give it a delicious flavor and is not bland.
Mar. 8, 2012 5:42 am
I have found that adding a little vinegar to the crockpot with the water and spices helps tenderize the beef without the flavor being evident. Add vegetables near the end of cooking when the vinegar has been absorbed and 'cooked off'.
Mar. 8, 2012 6:53 am
I go one further. After thoroughly cooking corned beef per instructions, I remove it from liquid. Place in shallow oven safe dish with about 1/2 cup of cooking liquid. In separate bowl, mix a paste of brown sugar, a little mustard & a little allspice. Spread over top of beef. Place in 375-400 deg oven for few minutes til toping becomes caramelized or glazed. Delish!
Mar. 9, 2012 5:26 am
I love this discussion! Part Irish American, part German, and half Scottish, I was brought up with Corned Beef on a regular basis (German butchers are credited with bringing "brisket" to Texas BBQ) I have used all of the cooking methods listed: Braising covered in the oven,(1hr./lb.) braising (not boiling!) on the stovetop (1hr./lb.), Pressure Cooker (cut to 3 lb. pieces, make sure you have at least 1.5 cups of liquid, 25 minutes once up to pressure), or slow-cooking at low for 8 hours. Always use brine and spices that come with Brisket. I add 8 allspice berries, 2 Bay leaves, a dozen peppercorns, 5 carrots and two onions. Cook until a fork enters easily. Check water occasionally. Where I break from tradition is with the veg. I boil the quartered cabbage in the brisket broth while the meat rests. I roast the other veg. I find roasting concentrates the flavors. I use potatoes (white and sweet?), carrots, and other root vegetables (parsnips, turnips, beets?) cut into bite-sized pieces, t
Mar. 10, 2012 8:57 pm
So, what is your favorite way to cook it, JKT? !?!
Mar. 11, 2012 5:02 am
Do you cook a Corned Beef Round for the same amount of time you would cook a brisket about 55 min per lb. Is a round as salty as a brisket?
chris m 
Mar. 11, 2012 8:42 am
Whether or not there is a spice packet included, I always add a small onion studded with cloves to the water before simmering. Brush brisket when done with a brown sugar/mustard mixture, wrap in foil, and finish in a slow oven for 30 minutes. Mom's recipe never fails.
Mar. 11, 2012 8:47 am
My family and I like our corned beef to taste like it came from a good Jewish Deli- with lots of flavor. I cook it the night before we are going to eat it. I make about 3 flat cut corned beefs at one time in one LARGE stock pot and not only throw in the seasoning packet contents but add an additional tablespoon more of McCormick Pickling spices, along with about 30 cloves (yes, 30) of peeled garlic and about 12 bay leaves. Cover the corned beefs with water until they start boiling. Turn down to a simmer or slight low boil for 3-4 more hours. You know the beef is done when a knife inserts very easily. Then I take the beef out of the water, cool them down a bit and place them in the refrigerator. I also reserve about 2 cup of the water that the beef cooked in, but I strain it before putting in the frig. The next day, about an hour before we eat, I slice the corned beef thinly with a good carving knife, place it in a shallow baking dish and then drizzle just some of the reserved strain
Mar. 11, 2012 2:49 pm
I've never made corned beef, or even eaten any, but it sounds so good I think I'll try it. When do you skim fat from the liquid? Also do you strain liquid before adding veggies?
Mar. 12, 2012 6:54 am
My husband is a butcher from Dublin, Ireland and his family have been pickling beef for 2 generations. There is spiced beef and pickled(corned) beef. My father in law made the BEST corned beef in Dublin. He pickled his beef in large marble baths. He delivered his pickled beef to all the local pubs in Dublin. When we go home (Ireland) I can't find corned beef like we used to get. My father in law has since retired and sadly his method of pickling the beef hasretired with him. He claims it was the marble baths he used. Corned beef and cabbage was always a staple in our day in Ireland - 30 years ago.
Mar. 12, 2012 12:52 pm
always remember to run cold water on your corned beef when done cooking..this will make slicing it a breeze
Mar. 13, 2012 5:18 pm
I need to cook a large corned beef. It is about 10 lbs. What is the best way to cook it? I will be using my slicer to cut it to sandwich slices 2 days later. All ideas appreciated!!! Thanks!
Mar. 17, 2012 12:04 am
Mar. 17, 2012 12:07 am
Mar. 17, 2012 12:40 pm
Quick question, are pickling spices usually sold bottled, fresh or packaged? Thanks for your help... =)
Mar. 19, 2012 6:36 am
To GrammaDenny, Pickling spices are dry, packaged, available in cooking spice section in Ontario Canada stores. Once opened, I store in glass jar with tight fitting lid, in kitchen cupboard.
Mar. 19, 2012 1:22 pm
Still haven't seen suggestions to help eliminate terrible shrinkage of meat. I will be using some of these suggestions anyway, but would like to have more to eat after I cook it. By the way, I make gravy with the cooking water. It is delish!
Apr. 18, 2012 12:41 am
CROCK POT!!!! The best way to do this cut....
Apr. 18, 2012 12:43 am
Regarding the shrinkage, isn't that from the fat cooking out? I'm not sure there's a real true remedy, but I cook my Corned beef brisket in the crock pot so that I don't have to worry about messing it up.... comes out fab every time unless I try a new brand- then sometimes I notice the salt content or the taste is different. Other than that it's been bliss :) Happy Corning :)
Feb. 28, 2013 7:43 am
if you put cornbeef on low 200 cook for 5 to 6 hrs slow and make sure add water half way and I put olive oil and garlic and the season pk on top cover in crockpot or roaster it comes out perfect
Feb. 28, 2013 7:45 am
im a great cook and I can make it anyone needs advise I can give it to ya my family and friends love my cooking
Mar. 2, 2013 4:23 pm
I usually make a 10-12 pound corned beef and I cook it in my electric roaster on low and slow. It usually takes 4-6 hours. Add potatoes and carrots after a few hours but be sure to remove when cooked even if the meat is not done. Cabbage should be added last. Great way to save room on your stovetop or conventional oven.
Mar. 6, 2013 1:38 am
I bring the corned beef to a boil & boil for 1 hour. I change the water to get rid of most of the salt & fat. I then add the spices & continue cooking until tender, either on the stove, or in the slow cooker. You can add the veggies after the water has been changed so that they don't obsorb the salt & fat.
Mar. 6, 2013 1:40 am
For the "cookielady". The leaner the cut of corned beef, the less it shrinks.
Mar. 8, 2013 7:08 am
love corned beef by Grobbel's - best in the world, made in Dearborn MI. and if u want a really easy way to prepare it, use your pressure cooker - less than an hour and soooo good :)
Mar. 8, 2013 3:19 pm
The problem with using the packet of spices that comes with the corned beef, is that if you do add cabbage, potatoes or other items at the end, the spices -- which are rather large and chunky -- get in the food. This becomes a real problem if, like me, you cook the brisket in yellow split peas. My solution is to put the spices in cheesecloth and tie them into a bundle. This seems to work OK.
Mar. 11, 2013 9:13 am
Please help! I am in charge of cooking the corned beef and cabbage for 65 on Friday. How far in advance can I cook the beef? Can I cook the potatoes with the beef too? Will it all be good reheated?
Mar. 17, 2013 12:35 pm
Can anyone tell me if the brisket is supposed to float to the top and if I should try to add more water when it does? Please HELP ASAP, cooking now
Mar. 17, 2013 1:33 pm
Ana, your brisket has to much fat on it if it floats.Trim some of the fat off of it till it doesn't float.After removing the fat put it in a pan of water and you will see that it floats all by itself.Do not add more water.You might save the water to cook your veggies in if you used seasoned broth to cook your brisket.I hope this helps.
Mar. 18, 2013 4:30 pm
Apparently I bought a point cut, and also left too much fat on it when cooking it. When I cut into it after cooking it in a dutch oven practically the whole thing is fat with small amounts of meat. It is not appetizing and neither my husband nor I want to eat it. We tried slicing a little off and pan frying it and sure enough it tastes similar to fried bacon fat. Is there anything I can do now with the left overs?
Jul. 15, 2013 7:34 am
HI,can anyone advice me on how to cook salt beef as they do in deli's,as for example in brick lane london,and how they keep that reddish colour?thanks
Deb Moz 
Mar. 2, 2014 8:07 am
Hi Can anyone help please. I have two pieces of corned beef to cook each about 3.5 - 4 pounds. So do I cook for 4 hours or 7 considering their combined weight? My thoughts are to use the 4 pound weight and add a little bit because there are two pieces? Help! Company coming over today!
Mar. 7, 2014 4:35 pm
I am cooking for 30 people using my electric roaster for the corned beef and cabbage with carrot recipe. I am thinking about 15 pounds of corned beef. Any suggestions as to temperature and how long to cook it?
Mar. 9, 2014 2:14 pm
can I cook corned beef a day or two in advance and reheat? I am having a lot of people!
Mar. 16, 2014 11:00 am
Can I cut a 4 pound corned beef in half and cook in 2 pots to lessen cooking time to100 minutes?
Mar. 17, 2014 3:23 pm
When I use McCormick or other brands of pickling spice, I find it has way too much heat --- I think it's from red pepper in the mix. My grandmother's corned beef recipe says to use pickling spice, but her corned beef never tasted of any "hot" spices. What am I doing wrong?!?
Mar. 20, 2014 3:27 am
This didn't work for me. Granted, I have no experience cooking meats submerged in water, but I wanted to give it a try... Slabs of beef like roasts need to be brought to about 160 - 165 deg. F, internal temperature by thermometer read, to be fully cooked. At a simmer, which is essentially a low boil, the water is just under 212 F. so the meat cooks too quickly and hence will lack the tenderness... So seeing that this was cooking too fast at 5 lbs pre-cook weight, I pulled it, and let the meat drain and cool. While still pink in the very center I 'rescued' it a little, because there was a little cook time yet, by throwing onto my infra-red BBQ, ironically. This kinda BBQ is by far the best for moisture retention and natural flavor... Well there it is... I will stick with a roasting/covered water bath, to cook next time, as I normally would.
Mar. 22, 2014 2:50 pm
I bought a bottle of expensive German beer to cook with my corned beef one year, but we disliked the flavor it gave. I may try a cheap beer in the future, as one person shared here. Thanks; and also for the tip about the pickling spices, and how to use them. As far as buying the pickling spices, one person "mjm2525" said the kind they bought (McCormick-which is usually in a little metal box)didn't taste the same as the kind their grandma used. I had that same trouble with buying a spice (curry, in the package- it didn't taste anything like the brand name I purchased formerly in the little glass jar). I recommend trying another brand,in glass, like Schilling or Spice Islands.
Mar. 11, 2015 11:46 am
If I have 3 flat corn beef briskets at2 lbs each can I cook them in the same pot and for how long
Mar. 17, 2015 9:38 am
So Corned Beef is not traditionally eaten on St. Patricks day in Ireland or it is not something eaten in Ireland at all?
Mar. 17, 2015 10:13 am
Hi, what is corned beef I have had the sandwiches,etc but cooked by someone else. I currentlly live in France. Possibly the French name for it or how to explain what I want.
Mar. 17, 2015 3:12 pm
What if I have a 4 pound brisket AND a 2 pound brisket both sitting in the same massive pot. How long should I simmer then?
Mar. 17, 2015 8:10 pm
I have been cooking corned beef and cabbage for years. I HATE chomping on the spices included in the package, but realize that they are essential to the all around taste of the dish, so I came up with a trick to using them. I use a tea ball and drop it into the pot! Just fill it up and when your corned beef and veggies are ready, just fish it out and toss out the spices. My tea ball has a little hook on the end of the chain, so if you use the stove top method, you can hook it on the side of the pot so it's easier to find. No more yucky spice to accident bite into, but the dish is perfectly seasoned! ;)
Mommy Amy 
Mar. 18, 2015 6:30 am
Having big crowd in a few days and wondering if I can prepare corned beef in advance (day before??). Would love guests to arrive and kitchen not be a disaster with all the cooking & meat slicing in process!
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