St. Patrick's Day dinner doesn't get easier than this slow cooker Guinness corned beef! After simmering in Guinness and an array of warm spices, this corned beef becomes fork tender and full of flavor. Whether you serve it with a side of cabbage or piled high on a sandwich, everyone always loves this easy-as-can-be corned beef.
Why You Need to Make This Recipe
I've never met a holiday I didn't love, I never turn down an opportunity to host, and I'm ready for any excuse to celebrate. So it probably comes as no surprise that I throw a St. Paddy's Day celebration every year. This slow cooker Guinness corned beef makes an annual appearance, which means it’s a well-tested, beloved favorite.
Hey, I wouldn’t serve it year after year if it wasn’t a hit. True story.
To make the most unbelievably delicious corned beef, we cook our meat low and slow in plenty of spices for a burst of flavor in each bite. Corned beef is a cured brisket, which is a tough cut that requires a low temperature and long cooking time to break down. But once it does, we’re rewarded with an ultra tender slab of meat.
And best of all, this corned beef takes little prep time and couldn't be easier to make. Can you pour a beer? Measure a few spices? Great! You have all the skills necessary to make this slow cooker corned beef and look like a culinary genius in the process.
Bonus: If you need some other St. Patrick's Day dinner ideas, my Guinness lamb stew is another delicious option! Or you can try another cooking method and make my smoked corned beef.
Now let's organize our ingredients. Here's everything we need to make this slow cooker Guinness corned beef.
- Corned beef
- Beef bouillon
- Whole cloves
- Mustard powder
- Bay leaves
- Brown sugar
- Worcestershire sauce
Flat-Cut vs. Point-Cut Corned Beef
Typically, when you pick up corned beef at the grocery store, it comes as either flat-cut or point-cut brisket. This recipe works for both cuts. Ultimately, it comes down to your preference.
Flat-cut corned beef is leaner than its point-cut counterpart, which has more fat marbling. Because the butcher doesn't trim the fat from the point-cut corned beef, it's generally cheaper. I happen to love the butteriness a little fat adds to beef, but if you prefer lean meat, you'll be happier with the flat-cut corned beef. Extra fat or not, both cuts come out incredibly tender in the slow cooker, so you can't go wrong either way.
Get ready for one easy recipe. Seriously, I don't think an easier recipe exists.
To make our Guinness corned beef, we remove it from the bag and locate the included spice mix. Even though we're adding our own spices, I like to still use this packet for an extra flavor boost. If you happened to misplace the packet, here's a recipe for making your own corned beef spices.
Now we add our Guinness, beef bouillon, spices, the contents of the seasoning packet, brown sugar and Worcestershire sauce to the slow cooker. We stir everything to combine, place our corned beef inside the liquid and cook low for eight hours.
That's it! With hardly any effort, we now have one unbelievably tender slab of corned beef ready for your St. Patrick's Day celebrations.
See? I wouldn't lie to you. Cooking doesn't get easier than this Guinness corned beef.
How to Serve
As you can see in the photos, I shredded my corned beef. I've always been a shredded brisket kind of lady, and I bring that attitude to my corned beef as well. Plus, I find shredded corned beef is easier to serve and eat a party. I simply shred the corned beef with two forks right in the slow cooker, and then people can add piles of shredded corned beef to bread, buns or right on their plate for easy eating with no knives involved. Shredded corned beef is also great if you plan to use it for Irish nachos or something similar.
However, if you prefer corned beef slices, you can certainly serve it that way. Just make sure you slice the corned beef against the grain for better texture.
Our perfect beer pairing is obvious, right? Grab some Guinness and call it a day. After the corned beef slowly cooks, you'll find it picks up a lot of those spices. The roasted malt is a delicious match for the warm cloves and other savory flavors.
Looking for a wine? I love a pinot noir. With a pinot noir, we get these earthy notes that pair beautifully with our spicy cloves and mustard powder. Pinot noir also comes with a nice acidic bite, which livens up those spices and cuts through the fat.
Or maybe you're looking for a festive St. Patrick's Day cocktail. My Irish mule or Irish whiskey smash are delicious options.
For a festive St. Patrick's Day celebration, I hope you try this slow cooker Guinness corned beef. This crowd-pleasing, easy recipe will make entertaining a breeze.
Looking for More St. Patrick's Day Ideas?
- Fudgy stout brownies
- Baileys ice cream
- Irish whiskey chocolate cake
- Baileys mousse
- Herbed roasted potato salad
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Slow Cooker Guinness Corned Beef
- Slow cooker
- 2 (12-ounce) bottles of Guinness
- 4-5 pounds corned beef with seasoning packet
- 2 dried bay leaves
- ⅓ cup packed brown sugar
- 2 teaspoons beef bouillon (see note)
- 1 teaspoon ground coriander
- 1 teaspoon whole cloves
- ½ teaspoon mustard powder
- ⅛ teaspoon ground allspice
- A few dashes Worcestershire sauce
- Pour the Guinness into a slow cooker. Add the contents of the seasoning packet from the corned beef, bay leaves, brown sugar, beef bouillon, coriander, cloves, mustard powder, allspice and Worcestershire sauce. Stir to combine.
- Add the corned beef with the fatty side up. Cook on low for eight to 10 hours until the corned beef is fork tender. To serve, slice against the grain or shred with two forks. Enjoy!
- For the beef bouillon, I highly recommend Better Than Bouillon Beef Base, which you can find at just about any grocery store or on Amazon.
- Nutritional information is only an estimate. The accuracy of the nutritional information for any recipe on this site is not guaranteed.
Hi- you shred directly in the cooker. What do you do with the fat cap at the point? do you separate or skim the fat? there must be a ton of liquid left. Thanks
Amanda McGrory-Dixon says
You can just scrape off what's left with a fork. It won’t be hard to discard any fat once it’s cooked. The liquid isn’t a problem if you shred it — just use tongs. That said, you can transfer it to a cutting board and dab it with a paper towel if you prefer. Totally up to your personal preference.