What Do You Eat With Corned Beef?

Corned beef is a flavorful, hearty meat that frequently serves as the centerpiece of various dishes, especially during festivals such as St. Patrick’s Day. But what truly completes a corned beef entrée are the accompanying sides. So, what do you eat with corned beef?

Whether you’re arranging a family dinner or are simply curious about what complements this classic dish, this article will provide you with tasty and complementary side dishes.

What Do You Eat With Corned Beef?

Corned beef can be prepared and served in many ways with various accompaniments. Here are some popular accompaniments and side dishes for corned beef:

Traditional Sides

  • Cabbage: As a standard side dish, cabbage can be boiled with corned beef to incorporate its flavor or sautéed with butter and garlic for faster preparation. It is a delicate, fibrous vegetable that complements the richness of the meat.
  • Potatoes: Whether you choose mashed potatoes with garlic and butter, roasted potatoes with rosemary, or simple boiled potatoes, they are a tasty and satisfying accompaniment to corned beef.
  • Carrots: Carrots provide a mildly sweet contrast to corned beef and potatoes, with which they are frequently prepared. They can be glazed with honey or brown sugar to enhance their flavor.


  • Rye Bread: Rye bread is ideal for corned beef sandwiches, as its tanginess complements the beef well. Add mustard or sauerkraut to corned beef segments, and you have a classic sandwich.
  • Irish Soda Bread: This quick bread, which is typically prepared with buttermilk and flavored with caraway seeds, pairs particularly well with corned beef on St. Patrick’s Day. Its robust, tender texture complements the meat well.

Condiments and Sauces

  • Mustard: A sprinkling of mustard can significantly enhance the flavor of corned beef. Dijon mustard is silky, while whole-grain mustard adds texture.
  • Horseradish Sauce: For those who enjoy a touch of heat, a creamy horseradish sauce can enhance the flavor of each bite of corned beef.

Starchy Sides

  • Rice or Risotto: Corned beef is a hearty complement to rice pilaf or creamy Parmesan risotto. This is particularly effective if the corned beef is included in a hash or stew.
  • Noodles or Pasta: If you have leftover corned beef, consider dicing it and incorporating it into a straightforward stir-fry of noodles or a creamy pasta dish.


  • Green Beans: Green beans are a versatile vegetable that can be steamed, sautéed with garlic and almonds, or even roasted with lemon essence for a zesty side dish.
  • Asparagus: Roasting asparagus with Parmesan cheese and olive oil will elevate your corned beef entrée to a gourmet level.
  • Peas: A basic side dish of buttered peas can be both satisfying and comforting. The sweetness of the peas is a pleasant complement to the saltiness of the corned beef.
  • Brussels Sprouts: By roasting Brussels Sprouts with olive oil, salt, and perhaps bacon pieces, you can create a crunchy and flavorful side dish.
  • Onions and Peppers: For a more rustic dish, such as corned beef hash, onions and peppers that have been sautéed are optimal. They contribute both flavor and color.
  • Beets: Their inherent sweetness can balance the salinity of corned beef, whether pickled or roasted with olive oil and thyme.


  • Vegetable Broth: The water used to boil corned beef can be used as a flavorful broth foundation for a hearty vegetable or barley soup.


  • Coleslaw: The crunchiness and sourness of coleslaw provide a contrast to the richness of corned beef. You can choose between a traditional coleslaw made with mayonnaise or one made with vinegar.
  • Potato Salad: Potato salad is the traditional side dish that can be served heated or cold. Variations may incorporate mustard, dill, and even minced pickles.


  • Beer: An Irish stout or lager, such as Guinness, pairs flawlessly with the salty, robust flavors of corned beef.
  • Red Wine: A Cabernet Sauvignon or Zinfandel can hold its own against the robust flavors of corned beef.

By considering these pairing options, you can construct a meal featuring corned beef that is more nuanced and satisfying.

What Is The Most Popular Way To Cook Corned Beef?

The most common method for preparing corned beef involves simmering it in a pot of water, frequently with the addition of seasonings and aromatic vegetables such as onions, carrots, and celery. This approach, known as the “boiled” method, is uncomplicated yet effective. The corned beef is placed in a large vessel, covered with water, and brought to a boil. 

Then, reduce the heat to a simmer & cook until tender for several hours. The slow simmering enables the spices to penetrate the meat, resulting in a tender & flavorful corned beef. This technique is particularly popular for St. Patrick’s Day dishes such as corned beef and cabbage.

Bottom Line

This was all about what do you eat with corned beef. Adding the proper sides to corned beef can transform a decent meal into a great one. From traditional options such as cabbage and potatoes to more inventive options such as tangy coleslaw or roasted vegetables, the proper pairing enhances both the flavor and the consuming experience. 

Thank you for reading!

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