Crock-Pot Corned Beef

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Slow cooker corned beef brisket is so good,  you’ll be making it far more often than once a year.

Is there anything better than coming home to the smell of a meal that’s simmering in the crock-pot? Making corned beef in the slow cooker is so easy it practically makes itself.

close up photos of corned beef with cabbage

Slow Cooker Corned Beef Brisket

Perfectly moist, sliceable or shreddable, slow cooker corned beef brisket is possible with just a few minutes of effort. All you have to do is place the corned beef in the crockpot, sprinkle it with seasonings and add a bit of water.

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Then, just turn on the crockpot and wait. Cooking at low temperature for 8 hours yields the most tender, pull-apart forkfuls of corned beef you could hope for.

It’s great in this recipe, and you’ll find a use for the leftovers in many others.

corned beef brisket in the crockpot - before cooking

Not sure how to cook corned beef in the slow cooker? There’s no reason to be intimidated. Cooking corned beef brisket doesn’t get any simpler than this crock-pot method!

The tender texture and meaty flavor of corned beef was always a treat for us as kids and it still feels like a special meal to me.

We like to eat our corned beef with Colcannon or roasted potatoes. If you’re lucky enough to have leftover corned beef, you’ll want to set some aside for a classic Reuben sandwich.

And speaking of Reubens, we love that flavor combination so much that we turned the famous NYC deli sandwich into this Reuben Soup.

cooked corned beef in slow cooker

Easy Corned Beef Recipe

  1. Place the corned beef in the crock-pot, fat side up. (Do not rinse first.) Sprinkle with the spice packet. Add 1 cup of water, or just enough to be about 1/2″ up the side of the roast.
  2. Cook on LOW for 8 hours, taking care not to overcook or the meat will begin to fall apart. (Still delicious, but not sliceable.) If you prefer your corned beef to fall apart, simply cook it a little longer.
  3. If desired, add cabbage to the crock-pot after about 6 hours of cooking. In the remaining 2 hours of cooking time, the cabbage will soften and cook through while also absorbing a bit of flavor from the beef.
slow cooker corned beef with cabbage

Corned Beef in Crockpot

While you can certainly cook the corned beef on its own, we enjoy the traditional pairing of crockpot corned beef and cabbage.

If desired, you can add cabbage wedges to the crock pot after about 6 hours of cooking. In the remaining 2 hours of cooking time, the cabbage will soften and cook through while also absorbing a bit of flavor from the beef.

Slow cookers or crockpots are an appliance of which I have more than one. If you are an avid slow cooker user like I am, you might understand the need for more than one. So, let’s talk about my favorites:

First up is this 6-quart slow cooker that has a locking lid. These crockpots are fantastic for transporting foods. Mine has gone everywhere from church potlucks to barbecues, game nights to Thanksgiving dinner. However, fair warning, these slow cookers run crazy hot. Low is closer to a boil than a simmer, the warm setting actually simmers. So trust me when I say HIGH is high.

My everyday slow cooker is this 8-quart Crockpot. It’s my go-to appliance for cooking large roasts and big batches of chili. Fun fact: did you know that a full 4-quart cooker, actually cooks more slowly than a half-full 8-quart cooker?

For just cooking a few pounds of chicken to shred for enchiladas or other smaller recipes, this 3-quart version is perfect.

Thanksgiving has become a breeze since I have mastered how to hold all of the side dishes using these medium-sized round slow cookers.

If you aren’t a fan of the idea of keeping more than one slow cooker in the house, these CrockPockets are a game-changer when it comes to preparing and holding multiple dishes at the same time. They slide into a standard 6-quart crockpot, dividing it into two sections that are perfect for serving different side dishes or keeping taco fillings warm for parties.

crockpot corned beef served with cabbage on platter

With creamy potatoes, tender leftover meat, and savory broth, Corned Beef and Cabbage Stew is another go-to method for using cooked corned beef. I think it’s tasty enough to be worth baking corned beef the day before just for the opportunity to make this comforting stew.

Then there’s the hash I crave more than any other: Corned Beef and Red Potato Hash. This skillet-fried recipe is delicious with a fried egg on top or served just as is for breakfast, brunch or anytime you need a quick and satisfying meal.

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crockpot corned beef served with cabbage on platter

Crockpot Corned Beef

5 from 5 votes
This crock-pot corned beef is so good, you'll be making it far more often than once a year!
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Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: 6 hours
Total Time: 6 hours 5 minutes
Servings: 8

Ingredients 

  • 2½-3 pounds pre-brined corned beef with the packet
  • 1 – 1¼ cups water adjust as needed
  • ½ large head of green cabbage cut into wedges OPTIONAL

Instructions

  • Place the corned beef in the crock-pot, fat side up. (Do not rinse first.) Sprinkle with the spice packet. Add 1 cup of water, or just enough to be about 1/2" up the side of the roast.
  • Cook on LOW for 8 hours, taking care not to overcook or the meat will begin to fall apart. (Still delicious, but not sliceable.) If you prefer your corned beef to fall apart, simply cook it a little longer.
  • If desired, add cabbage to the crock-pot after about 6 hours of cooking. In the remaining 2 hours of cooking time, the cabbage will soften and cook through while also absorbing a bit of flavor from the beef.

Nutrition

Calories: 281kcal · Carbohydrates: 0.2g · Protein: 21g · Fat: 21g · Saturated Fat: 7g · Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g · Monounsaturated Fat: 10g · Cholesterol: 77mg · Sodium: 1728mg · Potassium: 421mg · Vitamin C: 38mg · Calcium: 12mg · Iron: 2mg
Tried this recipe?Mention @barefeetkitchen or tag #barefeetkitchen!
crockpot filled with corned beef and wedges of cabbage
close up of sliced corned beef with cabbage on a platter

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Mary Younkin

Mary Younkin

Hi, I’m Mary. I’m the author, cook, photographer, and travel lover behind the scenes here at Barefeet In The Kitchen. I'm also the author of three cookbooks dedicated to making cooking from scratch as simple as possible.

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  1. Christine E. Speight says

    What a brilliant idea to cook the corned beef in a slow cooker. Thank you for the addition of cabbage, too. Yummy and soooo easy. I have used the following slow cookers and people laugh that I have more than one but they are very useful: Crockpot™ 4.5-Quart Lift & Serve Hinged Lid Slow Cooker, Crockpot™ 3.5-Quart Casserole Crock™ Slow Cooker with Oven-safe, 9″ x 13″ stoneware, Crockpot™ 7-Quart MyTime™ Cook & Carry™ Programmable Slow Cooker and Crockpot™ Hook Ups – 2-1 quart, 1-2 quart, and 1-3 quart.5 stars

  2. Holly says

    I love corned beef but I’m only one person. How long week l do i cook a 1 pound corned beef in the crock pot on Low?? Thanks.

    • Mary Younkin says

      Unfortunately, I don’t have the exact time for that, as I’ve never tried it myself, Holly. My guess would be about 4-5 hours on low, as a 2-3lb roast will usually be cooked in 7-8 hours on low or 3-4 hours on high.