This simple corned beef recipe will have you whipping up a classic Jewish culinary dish in no time. With only three ingredients, it’s gluten-free, dairy-free, and delicious.
I love corned beef, and it turns out to be easy to make at home with our simple corned beef recipe. Whether it’s thinly sliced and piled high on rye bread with mustard, or thickly sliced and served alongside mashed potatoes and coleslaw, it’s a winner at our house. Growing up in a Jewish neighborhood in America, it was easy to get. While I just called it corned beef, I never fully understood the importance of the word “kosher-style” when describing my favorite deli meat.
Well, now I live in New Zealand, and let me tell you, the deli meat from the local store that is labeled corned beef has little resemblance to the wonderful flavors I grew up with. Our simple corned beef recipe is the solution to enjoying the taste I love.
Our homemade corned beef ticks all of the boxes
What kind of meat do I use?
Corned silverside is what they call the cured brisket in New Zealand (where I live). By using this meat, we shorten the 10-day process my grandma used to do down to just a few hours. It’s available at most major supermarket chains, some smaller stores, and at butcher shops.
Ready-to-cook corned beef is what it is called in the states, according to Google. I have never looked for it, so I can’t offer guidance on where to find it.
What you need for our simple corned beef recipe
(The full recipe is near the bottom of the page)
Prepared on the stovetop, you need only either a large saucepan or small stockpot. And while we provided exact measurements below for the two ingredients added to the meat, precision measuring is not terribly important for this boiled corned beef recipe. Here are the three corned beef ingredients in our recipe.
- Corned silverside
- Brown sugar
- White or malt vinegar
Step by step photos to our simple corned beef recipe
I almost didn’t write this recipe as the meat just doesn’t look “appealing” as it boils. And it gets even worse when it is done and the fat rises to the top. Even once removed from the pan it doesn’t offer a photo opportunity. However, a quick flick of the knife over the top, and like magic, it looks like the corned beef I grew up eating. And best of all, it tastes like it too.
- A traditional corned beef sandwich with the thinly sliced meat piled high and served on rye bread with mustard.
- As an ingredient in a Reuben sandwich. I know the spicier pastrami is popular, but I always prefer a corned beef Reuben made with Swiss cheese, sauerkraut, and Russian dressing.
- Another favorite deli sandwich of mine: corned beef and chopped liver on rye bread.
- Or, I love it thickly sliced for dinner and served warm alongside mashed potatoes and Jeff’s homemade coleslaw.
- Similarly, in summer we serve it cold with a side of coleslaw and one of our favorite potato salads.
Just for fun . . .
In our Kibitz Spot Facebook group, I simply posted:
Corned beef on white bread
Well, this resulted in quite a bit of kibitzing, 79 comments so far. Here are some of my favorite replies:
- I don’t think so!!
- Sacrilegious. Mustard only.
- Noooo, either on a French onion roll with mustard or on rye bread with mustard.
- Oh hell no!
- No, no, no – corned beef on seeded rye with mustard and coleslaw on the side! That’s how we eat it in NYC!
- Ugh, there’s one in every crowd.
Our simple corned beef recipe
This recipe was contributed by Jeff Albom.
- 2.2 pounds (1 kilogram) corned silverside (ready-to-cook corned beef)
- 1/4 cup brown sugar
- 1/2 cup white vinegar
- Place corned silverside/brisket in a saucepan or stockpot.
- Add the brown sugar on top of the meat and use a spoon to coat the meat with the sugar.
- Pour the vinegar into the saucepan and fill with water until the meat is mostly covered.
- Heat the saucepan on the stove on high until boiling, then lower to simmer.
- Cook the meat for 50-60 minutes per pound (500 grams). This will be 2 hours for 1 kg size beef we used.
- After cooking, remove the meat from the saucepan, trim excess fat, slice, and serve.
Serving size based on 5oz of cooked meat. Note that after cooking and removing the fat, the meat will be about ⅔ of its original size.
Nutrition Information:Yield: 5 Serving Size: 5oz (140 grams)
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 120Total Fat: 4gSaturated Fat: 2gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 2gCholesterol: 32mgSodium: 16mgCarbohydrates: 9gFiber: 0gSugar: 9gProtein: 10g
Nutritional information isn't always accurate and it will vary based on the specific ingredients used.
Start here if you want to cure your own beef
Curing your own beef isn’t quick. Be prepared to wait days for the process to be complete. It’s not something I am willing to wait for, especially when the pre-packaged meat is readily available. However, if you want to cure corned beef, check out one of these articles:
- Here’s a 10-day option from Taste of Home.
- This method of curing by Simply Recipes requires five to seven days.
- If you want lots of detail and all the science of curing meats, then read this: The Science Of Curing Meats Safely.
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