Corned Beef and Cabbage Soup

Learn how to make the best corned beef and cabbage soup step-by-step. Salty, savory, with a hint of sweetness, it's a hearty soup recipe you'll make on repeat.
Three’s-a-Charm Shamrock Soup Recipe photo by Taste of Home

Satisfying and simple to prepare, hearty corned beef and cabbage soup is comfort food in a bowl. As far as Irish-style soups go, this one is easily in our top five. Deeply nourishing and brimming with flavor thanks to corned beef, tender vegetables and plenty of seasonings, this soup is a breeze to put together. It might not be strictly traditional Irish food, but it has lots of Irish components.

This soup is a great way to use up leftover corned beef and cabbage from your St. Patrick’s Day dinner, but you can pull it together with deli meat and kitchen staples for a soul-warming soup any time of year. Like most soups, you’ll get started with vegetables and broth, then add the meat and cabbage later, as they’re probably already cooked. Make sure to serve it with some crusty bread or Irish brown bread.

Corned Beef and Cabbage Soup Ingredients

  • Corned beef: Salty and savory with a hint of spice, corned beef headlines this delicious soup recipe. Homemade corned beef tastes phenomenal, and if your fridge is stocked with leftovers, you can whip this soup up in no time. You can also use corned beef from your local deli, or even canned corned beef. Any route you take, because the meat is already cooked, make sure to add it towards the end of the cook time. If you stir it in too early, it may disintegrate into the broth.
  • Cabbage: Cooked cabbage is the gold standard for corned beef and cabbage soup. It’s naturally sweeter than raw cabbage, which complements the spices in the corned beef. If using uncooked cabbage, cook it with the other vegetables.
  • Potatoes: An absolute must-have, potatoes bring additional heartiness to corned beef and cabbage soup. The best potatoes for soups are all-purpose spuds or waxy varieties. For the types of potatoes to use, reach for Yukon Golds, red potatoes or fingerlings. Peel the potatoes or leave the skin on—both options are delicious!
  • Carrots and celery: These staple vegetables are the aromatic building blocks of your soup. Carrots, in particular, have a subtle sweetness that goes beautifully with the savory saltiness of corned beef. When simmering the carrots and celery, you can leave them a few minutes longer so they’re completely tender, or add the rest of the ingredients sooner if you prefer your vegetables with a hint of crunch.
  • Beef broth: You can use beef broth or water as the base of the soup. However, beef broth will add a lot more flavor. Use your favorite store-bought brand, or make your own homemade beef broth.


Step 1: Boil the vegetables

In a large soup pot, add the celery, carrots, potatoes and broth (or water), and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat, and pop the lid on the pot. Simmer the vegetables until tender, about 20 minutes.

Editor’s Tip: Depending on how large you’ve cut the potatoes, they may need a few minutes longer than the celery and carrots to soften. For best results, chop the vegetables about the same size (1-inch chunks work). Use a fork to test the potatoes before moving on to Step 2.

Step 2: Finish the soup

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Add the corned beef, cabbage, dill, salt, seasoned salt and white pepper to the pot. Place the lid back on the pot, and simmer the soup for another 15 to 20 minutes, until all the ingredients are heated through.

Corned Beef and Cabbage Soup Variations

  • Make it creamy: Mix in some heavy cream, milk or a dairy-free option for a richer, creamier texture to your soup.
  • Add more veggies: Add aromatics like onions, leeks, shallots and garlic for a more complex-tasting soup. Vegetables with mixed colors and textures, like bell peppers, mushrooms, parsnips and corn, would make this hearty soup even heartier.
  • Add grains: Add 1/4 cup rice or pearled barley to give this soup an extra dose of heft.
  • Spice it up: Try a pinch of celery seed or a dash of paprika, or toss in a bay leaf or a teaspoon of whole black peppercorns. Fresh herbs like parsley, rosemary and thyme will brighten up your corned beef and cabbage soup with fragrant aromas.
  • Swap the broth: Substitute the beef broth for chicken or vegetable. Keeping an eye on your salt intake? Use a low-sodium option, or opt for water instead of broth.

How to Store Corned Beef and Cabbage Soup

Store cooled corned beef and cabbage soup in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to four days. Like all soups, this one will taste even better the next day after you cook it.

Can you freeze corned beef and cabbage soup?

You can freeze corned beef and cabbage soup for up to three months. Don’t forget to cool it first, and leave an inch or two of space in the container so the liquid can expand. Thaw the soup in the fridge overnight, and reheat it slowly on the stovetop.

Corned Beef and Cabbage Soup Tips

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What’s the best type of corned beef for corned beef and cabbage soup?

Whether you opt for homemade, from the deli, or canned, any corned beef will do. While we think homemade corned beef gives the best flavor, canned will do in a pinch.

Is cooked or raw cabbage better for making corned beef and cabbage soup?

Cooked cabbage is more convenient since you can add it to the broth with the corned beef. It’s also handy if you’re using up leftovers. That said, if you have a small head of cabbage in the fridge, you can thinly slice it and stir it into the broth with the other vegetables.

What to serve with corned beef and cabbage soup?

To go with your corned beef and cabbage soup, serve things like potato rolls or thick-cut slabs of Irish soda bread for mopping your bowl. Since the soup is basically a meal in itself, you can serve it with a simple green salad or roasted vegetables like garlic roasted broccoli.

Corned Beef and Cabbage Soup

There's no better way to use up leftover St. Patrick's Day corned beef, cabbage and potatoes than to make a hearty soup. This second-time-around soup is one of my best.
Three’s-a-Charm Shamrock Soup Recipe photo by Taste of Home
Total Time

Prep: 10 min. Cook: 40 min.


10 servings (2-1/2 quarts)


  • 6 celery ribs, chopped
  • 4 medium carrots, sliced
  • 2 cups cubed peeled potatoes
  • 5 cups water or beef broth
  • 3 cups diced cooked corned beef
  • 2 cups chopped cooked cabbage
  • 1 teaspoon dill weed
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon seasoned salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon white pepper


  1. In a large soup kettle, bring the celery, carrots, potatoes and water to a boil. Reduce heat; cover and simmer until vegetables are tender, about 20 minutes.
  2. Stir in the remaining ingredients. Cover and simmer for 15-20 minutes or until heated through.

Nutrition Facts

1 cup: 132 calories, 7g fat (2g saturated fat), 34mg cholesterol, 818mg sodium, 11g carbohydrate (2g sugars, 2g fiber), 7g protein.