Crock Pot Corned Beef Brisket

Corned Beef Brisket

Last year, I made corned beef brisket with Guinness and I didn’t really love it. Don’t get me wrong, I love Guinness, especially the Foreign Extra version, but the beer flavor took away from the corned beef brine and acidity.

So this year, my corned beef stayed sober. I asked my facebook followers how they wanted me to prepare it and (along with my husband in Afghanistan, whose vote counts twice), the Crock Pot preparation won hands down.

Slow cookers make meals easy when you have a busy day planned, but I still like the flavor high heat gives to meat. So before this bad boy was thrown in the pot, I seared him up on the stovetop to lock in the brine and juices.

Then, I didn’t go fancy at all, just some pickling spice, apple cider vinegar and water. Then, a splash of Worcestershire sauce to accent the beef flavor amid all the acid. I thought it would take 8-9 hours to cook on low, but it was ready in 4 ½.

Crock Pot Corned Beef Brisket

Crock Pot Corned Beef Brisket


  • 1 3-lb. corned beef brisket
  • salt and pepper
  • ¼ cup olive oil
  • ¼ cup apple cider vinegar
  • ½ cup water
  • 1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
  • 2 tablespoons pickling spice

Season the brisket all over with salt and pepper. Heat the olive oil in a large pan over medium-high heat and add the brisket to the pan.

Sear on all sides, about 5-10 minutes per side.

Place the seared beef in a Crock Pot (fat side up). Add the vinegar, water, Worcestershire sauce and pickling spice. Put the lid on top and cook on low for 4-6 hours.

Slice and serve with cabbage and potatoes or on sandwiches.
Corned Beef Brisket from Zestuous


  • Jonathan says:

    Searing does not seal in juices, in fact, there is a slightly greater moisture loss. This was debunked a while ago. We are willing to exchange the slight moisture loss for the browning flavors developed by the Maillard reaction. For reference, start with Harold McGee’s On Food and Cooking.

  • Terry Rowland says:

    Well after the other very aware and cearly experienced comments, not alot needs to be added. unless your making sandwiches, cool the meat in the frige to ease the slicing and less hacking, less juice soaking a perfectly toasted bun. you can always heat abit to melt swiss or whatever cheese or sauerkraut. We have boiled, baked, slow cooked, the “BBQPIT” slow roast is by far the best way to prepare. We have corned beef at least 5-6 times a year.

  • Anonymous says:

    Searing imparts wonderful flavor but the idea that it seals in juices is a well debunked myth.

  • Anonymous says:

    You slice corned beef against the grain to get a smooth slice instead of the stringy slices shown in your photo.

    • Phil says:

      Yep, I noticed that also. NOT the proper way to slice a brisket! Also, there is no way on earth I would EVER sear a corned beef brisket! Seeing that the brisket is going to be slow cooked in water searing it will do absolutely nothing to seal in the juices.

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