Crispy Slow Cooker Corned Beef

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Crispy Slow Cooker Corned Beef with perfectly juicy slices of beef and crispy crust this is the only corned beef recipe you’ll ever use!

We’re getting all of our St. Patrick’s Day recipe ready to go, and this year we’re serving Roasted Cabbage Steaks (these are AMAZING as leftovers in my Cabbage Soup), Roasted Carrots, and Scalloped Potatoes and we’re using leftovers in our Corned Beef Hash!


Corned Beef

Crispy Slow Cooker Corned Beef has been a dish we make year round since we bought our deep freezer. Why you ask? Because since I had the ability to stock up during the “season” we now enjoy corned beef dinners and sandwiches all year long. You can serve this slow cooker version of this Irish-American classic with carrots, cabbage, or potatoes for St. Patrick’s Day.

The magic of the Crispy Slow Cooker Corned Beef is in the liquids. I normally say don’t add any liquid, but in this case the vinegar and the bay leaf need a helping hand. The little bit of water you’re using is a vehicle for your bay leaf and vinegar to help flavor the meat. This recipe needs a total time of 9-10 hours, so I recommend setting this up in the crock pot in the morning if you’re having it for dinner that night.


It is definitely possible to overcook any beef in the crock pot, resulting in a cut of beef that is bordering too soft. This recipe calls for cooking on low for 9-10 hours. I would try to stick with this cooking time. I also like to keep the slow cooker on low so the brisket has more time to cook, making it tender and juicy. You could try cooking this for a shorter time on high if you’re pressed for time.


You can rinse corned beef, but it’s not a requirement. Rinsing the brisket removes any excess salt from the meat, resulting in a more mild flavor. Or you can put the beef in the crock pot without rinsing at all.


You can buy pre-brined corned beef, or get a brisket and add the seasoning to the corned beef yourself. I like to go with a round cut of brisket in the slow cooker, because it holds its shape better than a point cut and shrinks less in the pot, which is better if you have people over for St. Patricks day. But due to the point cut having more fat, it can turn out more tender than round cut. It’s a personal choice, because in the end both are used for this dish.


For food safety, you want to make sure your beef is cooked to at least 145 degrees F. Use a meat thermometer to check the temperature. There shouldn’t be an issue if you cook the beef for the entire time.

Crispy Corned Beef

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You can store leftover crock pot corned beef in the refrigerator in an airtight container for 2-3 days. Honestly, this usually doesn’t last past the second day at my house. You can also freeze your beef brisket with your favorite cabbage recipe for several months.

Slow Cooker Corned Beef


  • You can fill the slow cooker up with water for a more traditional corned beef, but keep in mine that the texture of the dish will not get crispy if it’s completely covered in liquid.
  • You can add cabbage, sliced carrots, onions, and potatoes to the slow cooker when there’s about 2 hours left in the cooking time. The liquid from the corned beef will add a ton of flavor to the vegetables.
  • This may look like a lot of spices, but crock pot corned beef gets its signature flavor from this so don’t worry, go ahead and use the seasoning packet as direction on your beef brisket.
  • If your corned beef or beef brisket is too fatty, you can cut some of it off before placing in the crock pot. But leave a little bit, as this adds a lot of flavor to the dish.
  • If you need more cabbage recipes try my Stuffed Cabbage Casserole, or Stuffed Cabbage Sloppy Joes! Or mix shredded cabbage together with mashed potatoes for a basic colcannon.
  • In the morning shred leftover beef together with cabbage and potatoes to make Corned Beef Hash.
  • I don’t recommend using the leftover drippings from the beef brisket in the slow cooker for any kind of gravy, because it will be really salty. Cooking bland vegetables, like potatoes, carrots, and cabbage, work well with this water because it will season them. Add some more flavor with allspice or celery.
  • Serve your slow cooker corned beef recipe with horseradish or dijon mustard (you can also roast potatoes with dijon like these Dijon Roasted Potatoes) on St. Patrick’s Day!

Crispy Slow Cooker Corned Beef with a crispy crust. No soggy Corned Beef, even from a slow cooker!

Tools Used in making this Slow Cooker Corned Beef:
Slow Cooker: Love this slow cooker and how programmable it is, it has been a workhorse for me… until…
My New Slow Cooker: For larger roasts I also brown the meat in the insert and not lose a bunch of the flavor by transferring the meat and leaving the browned bits behind. If you’re thinking of a new slow cooker, consider it if your budget is more open.

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Crispy Slow Cooker Corned Beef

5 from 80 votes
  • Yield: 8 servings
  • Prep Time: 5 minutes
  • Cook Time: 9 hours
  • Total Time: 9 hours 5 minutes
  • Course: Main Dish
  • Cuisine: Irish
  • Author: Sabrina Snyder
Crispy Slow Cooker Corned Beef with a crispy crust. No soggy Corned Beef, even from a slow cooker!


  • 3 pounds corned beef , with packet
  • 1 cups water , maybe less depending on size of slow cooker
  • 3 cloves garlic , minced
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 2 tablespoons sugar
  • 2 tablespoons cider vinegar
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper


Note: click on times in the instructions to start a kitchen timer while cooking.

  1. Add corned beef, fat side up, to the slow cooker.
  2. Add the minced garlic, spice packet, sugar and pepper to the top of the meat and rub on.
  3. Add the vinegar and bay leaf to the side of the corned beef and add just enough water to come up about 25% of the way to the top of the meat.
  4. Cook on low for 8-9 hours.

  5. If for some reason the corned beef is not browned on top, or enough to your liking, put under a broiler (6-7 inches away) for 1-2 minutes.

  6. Leave the oven door open a bit so you can look in, this isn't something you can leave unattended.

Nutrition Information

Yield: 8 servings, Amount per serving: 351 calories, Calories: 351g, Carbohydrates: 3g, Protein: 25g, Fat: 25g, Saturated Fat: 8g, Cholesterol: 91mg, Sodium: 2072mg, Potassium: 509mg, Sugar: 3g, Vitamin C: 46.3g, Calcium: 14g, Iron: 2.9g

All images and text © for Dinner, then Dessert.

Keywords: corned beef, Crispy Slow Cooker Corned Beef

Crispy Slow Cooker Corned Beef


Crispy Slow Cooker Corned Beef with a crispy crust. No soggy Corned Beef, even from a slow cooker!
Crispy Slow Cooker Corned Beef with a crispy crust. No soggy Corned Beef, even from a slow cooker!

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  1. I’m 65 , this is the best corned beef I’ve ever had! I didn’t bother crisping up the top and it was still delicious. Thanks foe the recipe!

  2. I have varied recipes for Corned Beef Briset since I married at 17.
    This recipe, by far, is the best I have seen! From start to finished, yes… sometimes the top does require broiling to achieve correct crispyness, all have come out delicious! We watch our salt intake as I’m an X-ray technologist & my man has slight high blood pressure. 2nd try, I rinsed the brisket, just awesomely delicious! Thx so much & you must have the bay leaf! Makes the world of difference in yummy ness, PROMISE!!!
    Regina Francisco

  3. And advice to cook it from frozen if your recipe is from unfrozen? Also would it be ok to cook it like 6-7 hours, stop for an hour then finish the last 2-3 hours?

    1. I don’t recommend making this from frozen. It’ll release too much liquid while cooking and will end up steaming it vs resulting in a crisp.

  4. Do I add the red brining gel or throw it out? Also I am diabetic so I used Splenda to replace the sugar. I saw another comment and you said the sugar is to make to brown. How can it brown if it is on the bottom of the corned beef? Will it brown the underside?

    1. I don’t use it as the corned beef will cook down and release liquid keeping it moist while also allowing it to crisp up. Hope this helps!

    1. The spice packet usually comes with the corned beef (in a little packet attached). If not, you can buy a mix in the spice aisle as that might be more cost effective since it has many spices in it. Hope this helps.

  5. Hi, this recipe is not clear if you are using a corn beef prebrined or not since youkeeps switching g back and forth referring to it as brisket or corned beef before cooking and about prerinsing. Can you clarify? Hi

    1. I used corned beef but you can use a brisket and add the corned beef seasoning yourself for this recipe. Hope this clears things up!

    1. I tried this recipe and cooked it in a roaster. Cooked it low and slow 200 degrees for 10 hours. Putting the vegetables in the last 2. It was too tuff to eat. Vegetable where hard yet uncooked. The picture looks delicious as mine looked as good too. Just was not edible

  6. This my favorite recipe! However, I don’t have access to my crockpot or a Dutch oven will an aluminum pan work? I’m in a crunch! Please advise!!

    1. Are you cooking it fully in the aluminum pan? Or just finishing it in the pan? If you need a recipe for fully oven cooked let me know and I can cut/paste one for you I’ve been working on but hasn’t been posted yet.

  7. Hello – I live in England, UK, and my slow cooker is a real workhorse in my kitchen for stews, pot roasts and Sunday roasts and I am always looking for new recipes. I have recently developed an interest in American-style foods and this Corned beef looks delicious. Brisket beef is melt in the mouth delish cooked in red wine, red onions and French-style herbs. My question is that we cannot buy “corned beef” other than in tins in our British Supermarkets. Can you please tell me whether this is something of a specialty of the USA which I would need to purchase over the net, or if how I can prepare it before making your wonderful recipe above.

    1. You’ll want to look for a flat cut brisket and add your own “corned beef” spices. Look in the spice aisle for a pre-made corned beef seasoning. Enjoy!

    2. If you google “Alton Brown Corned Beef” he has a great recipe for Corning your own brisket. Also, if you have any irish grocers near you, they may carry it.

    1. That sounds delicious! Brown sugar is just 1 cup white sugar with 1 to 2 tablespoons of molasses mixed in. (1=Light, 2=Dark)

  8. I made this yesterday, followed the recipe exactly, except I did not add bay leaves and it was delicious. I cooked my corned beef on low for 9 hours. After reading the previous comments I decided not to cook my cabbage with my corned beef so after cooking on low for 9 hours I removed the corned beef from the Crock-Pot and then put my cabbage in the same liquid the corned beef created for one hour on high. Everything was delicious even the cabbage tasted delicious with the apple cider flavor from the corned beef. The corned beef was tender and firm.

  9. Best corned beef I’ve ever had hands down! I grew up eating corned beef from a couple Jewish deli’s. This recipe surpasses anything from those places and more. It’s absolutely delicious!!! What a great recipe. Definitely going to make it again

    1. I like using it because it accelerates the browning and helps with making the crust. If you’re not worried about those then yes, you can leave it out. Enjoy!

  10. Great recipe for a single 70 ish guy who loved his Mom’s Corn-Beef & Cabbage… I frequently eat the corn beef with a Cajun-spicey Mint jelly from a store here called Piggly Wiggly…. It is as good as Lamb with mint sauce… and a little sweet, kick !

    Thanks for this great recipe, the images, and slow cooker suggestion… I own the 6 quart, non-programmable… but will buy the programmable to brown the meats AND to make another favorite….French Onion soup… needs to get temps a bit higher than the simple 6 qt, so as to caramelize the onions

  11. I love this recipe!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!may I ask your advice to still get this crispy corned beef using an instant pot. I’m running short on time and can’t slow cook it like I have before.

  12. We had this for dinner tonight and I was asked more than once when I’m making it again. It was fantastic! I was hesitant to use so much sugar but I was pleasantly surprised. I did add about a Tbsp of salt to the rub and I used thyme instead of bay leaves. I added carrots, potatoes, and cabbage for about the last hour and a half and made some soda bread biscuits… and it was St. Patrick’s Day part 2

  13. This looks amazing, and I plan to make it – but I dont have a spice packet with my corned beef? What are the ingredients, so I can make my own?
    THank yoU!

    1. I don’t have an exact recipe but I’m sure you could find one online. Also, look in the spice aisle of your grocery store. They usually have a pre-made seasoning mix there as well.

  14. Crispy Corned Beef Recipe–
    It states “fill Crockpot with water to come up about 25% of the way to the top of the meat.”
    To me, and possibly others, this is confusing. Does it mean 25% from the bottom of the top of the meat? Seems ambiguous.
    I believe stating “Fill with water to ¾ up side of corned beef” would be clearer.

    The recipe looks delicious! I will cook it tomorrow.

    Thank you

      1. Now I am confused because 1 cup of water isn’t anywhere near 2/3 of my 5qt slow cooker… That barely spreads out to be a 1/2 inch of the bottom of the pan….

  15. Im trying this recipe but adding 1/2 c beer, 1/2 c water, then draping the beef with smoked bacon and maple syrup instead of sugar. I’m left enough space between the bacon slices so the top will still get crispy or I’ll just reserve it and do the broiler like you suggested ? I’m excited

  16. Hi! I can’t wait to try this tomorrow! I do have a quick question though. I have a 2 lb “thin cut” corned beef. How would I adjust the time for this? I’m estimating 6-7 hours instead of 8-9 hours but I wanted to know what you thought. Thanks for this recipe 🙂