Instant Pot Corned Beef and Cabbage is an easy go-to recipe for many American’s who like to celebrate the flavors of St. Patrick’s Day. This recipe yields fork-tender corned beef in just 2.5 hours time.
St. Patrick’s Day is just around the corner. A few years ago I started experimenting with my Corned Beef and Cabbage recipe cooked in the Instant Pot. I knew it could be done, but wasn’t sure how it would all work out. After testing countless times I perfected my Instant Pot Corned Beef and Cabbage recipe.
For as long as I can remember, I’ve always cooked my Corned Beef & Cabbage in the slow cooker. One of the first things I was surprised by when the beef was done cooking in the Instant pot was how much the meat shrunk. Be prepared–with this method the meat reduces down by almost half. I was shocked. Here I was planning all these ways to use up the leftovers, and instead I had just enough to have dinner with my family.
Best of all–one pot and cooked within 2.5 hours. Not 8-10 hours in a slow cooker or a few hours on the stove top. If you cook the corned beef on a stove top you know you have to be home the entire time.
At least with this method you can put the meat into the Instant Pot, and then leave to run a few errands. Coming back to your home knowing that your house will be fine and in tact and dinner is just about cooked.
Table of contents
Here are the basic ingredients you’ll need to cook corned beef and cabbage in a pressure cooker.
- Corned Beef – The larger the corned beef the better whenever you are cooking in the Instant Pot. The beef will shrink as it cooks.
- Onion – The onions flavor the other vegetables and add for a nice side.
- Garlic – A few smashed cloves go a long way!
- Water – I use water, but you could also use a bottle of beer if you’d like. I would stay away from broth since they tend to be greasy and full of additional salt.
- Mini Potatoes – I use a mix of white and red baby potatoes.
- Carrots – I like to use baby carrots but whole carrots work too. Just make sure you peel the whole carrots before cooking.
- Cabbage – One whole cabbage cut into quarters.
However, once I sliced into the corned beef and we began eating I realized this was the most tender corned beef I had ever had! So my consensus–I’m okay with cooking my corned beef in the Instant Pot and it shrinking to half the size of the original cut I bought.
Because of the tenderness it yielded was perfection. It’s what I strive to do each and every year when I make this meal. Which by the way–I try to not reserve this meal for just on St. Patrick’s Day. I try to make it at least 2-3 times a year.
Place the corned beef in the Instant Pot fat side up. Add the onion, garlic, and water.
Close lid and pressure cook on “Meat” setting for 70 minutes. Allow a Natural Release for 15 minutes. Then, release the remaining pressure by turning the venting knob from sealing position to venting position.
Open lid carefully (always away from your face). Remove the corned beef from the Instant Pot and drain half of the liquid from the pot.
Place the mini potatoes, baby carrots and cabbage in the Instant Pot. Close lid and pressure cook on Manual at High Pressure for 2 – 3 minutes, followed by a Quick Release. Open the lid carefully away from your face.
Slice the Corned Beef in half-inch thick pieces cutting against the grain. Divide evenly among plates and enjoy.
FAQs for Corned Beef in the Instant Pot
Here are some of the most frequently asked questions for my Corned Beef and Cabbage Instant Pot Recipe.
A 2.5 pound corned beef will feed roughly 4 adults. If you would like leftovers double the amount of corned beef as it tends to shrink when you cook it!
No you don’t need to rinse the corned beef off before cooking. In fact, I pour the pickling juices right into the pot to give it additional flavor.
Whenever you cook a corned beef brisket in liquid you want to cook it fat side up. This will help keep the meat moist and full of flavor.
I like to cook the meat first, then the vegetables. I have found that all you need is 2-3 minutes on high pressure to steam the cabbage, potatoes, and carrots! That’s it.
For this recipe in the Instant Pot I used baby potatoes and baby carrots. I found by not using larger potatoes and carrots it cut down on the prep time (you know all that chopping and peeling).
It’s all a preference and to me a big time saver to use the smaller no-prep version. I just had to rinse and place them in the Instant Pot. I didn’t need to peel and chop. It cut down about 10 minutes of time, and with two little ones to run after I’m all about quick prep!
Here are the vegetables I like to cook with my corned beef.
Corned Beef and Cabbage is the traditional St. Patrick’s Day meal thanks to Irish-American immigrants many years ago.
Tips & Tricks
Here are some of my tips for Cooking Corned Beef in the Instant Pot.
- Cooking Time – The Corned Beef has to cook for 70 minutes, and I knew if I was to put all the vegetables in with the meat they would be shriveled to nothing by the time the meat was done cooking.
- Meat First, Then Veggies – I did something I don’t always do… I cooked the meat first, and then removed the meat and then cooked the carrots, potatoes and cabbage together. The veggies took minutes compared to the meat. I highly recommend this method so your vegetables aren’t mush by the time your meat is finally done!
- Pickling Spices – If your corned beef comes with the pickling spices, feel free to add it directly to the Instant Pot.
Irish Leftover Recipes
If you happen to have any corned beef leftover here are a few of my favorite ways to use up the leftovers!
- Sweet Potato Corned Beef Hash
- Reuben Panini’s
- Sweet Potato Irish Fries
- Corned Beef Hash & Egg Breakfast Skillet
- Irish Breakfast Wrap
- Corned Beef Hash
If you own an Instant Pot and ever wondered if you could cook your favorite Irish dinner in it–then give it a try this St. Patrick’s Day!
If you make my Instant Pot Corned Beef without Beer recipe, I would be honored and love for you to take the time to leave a star rating and comment! I spend hours developing and testing these recipes, and always love to hear feedback and user experience!
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Instant Pot Corned Beef and Cabbage
- Instant Pot
- 2.5 lbs Corned Beef + spice packet
- 2 onions quartered
- 3 cloves garlic smashed
- 4 cups water
- 2 lbs. mini potatoes
- 2 lbs. baby carrots
- 1 cabbage head cored and quartered
- Place the corned beef and spices in the Instant Pot fat side up. Add the onion, garlic, and water. Close lid and pressure cook on "Meat" setting for 70 minutes. Allow a Natural Release for 15 minutes. Then, release the remaining pressure by turning the venting knob from sealing position to venting position. Open lid carefully (always away from your face).
- Remove the corned beef from the Instant Pot and drain half of the liquid from the pot.
- Place the mini potatoes, baby carrots and cabbage in the Instant Pot. Close lid and pressure cook on Manual at High Pressure for 2 – 3 minutes, followed by a Quick Release. Open the lid carefully away from your face.
- Slice the Corned Beef in half-inch thick pieces cutting against the grain. Divide evenly among plates and enjoy.
- Spices – If your corned beef does not come with the spice packets you can use 1 tablespoon pickling spices in it’s place.
- Rinsing Corned Beef – Do not rinse the corned beef. Simply dump in all contents including the brineing liquid.
- Fat Side Up – Whenever you cook corned beef in liquid you always want to keep the fat side up. This will ensure a moist flavorful corned beef.
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Originally published March 5, 2018. Updated with new text on March 6, 2020, and updated again on March 1, 2021.
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