This Is Why You Should Try Making Instant Pot Corned Beef This St. Patrick's Day
You like corned beef but maybe you're not so in love with making it: It's a pretty common phenomenon. There are two main routes to homemade corned beef. The traditional way involves planning ahead; two weeks of curing the meat or "corning" it with spices, with that big piece of meat taking up space in your refrigerator. The other way is to buy an already corned brisket at the grocery store, saving two weeks but not selecting the spices or amounts of spices used for corning, and either cooking it on the stove top or in your slow cooker.
Now, however, there is a third method, and we believe it's even better and faster-the Instant Pot. While the slow cooker method takes more than five hours (or over nine hours if you use the low setting), the Instant Pot is the way to go if you're always short on time and want corned beef that really tastes delicious and is meltingly tender. Even if you're an Instant Pot skeptic you should try this Instant Pot Corned Beef and Cabbage. When I was asked to develop the recipe, I was doutbtful. It's natural to be skeptical of something that is so vastly against everything that you've ever been taught or learned. I went to culinary school and there and throughout every kitchen job that I've ever had, I've been told that low and slow is the way to go if you want tender, flavorful meat. It makes sense; tough meat needs a long time to break down and absorb flavors.
This Instant Pot Corned Beef recipe has taught me that there are some applications where I'm now willing to skirt the low-and-slow rule. Here's why the Instant Pot is the ultimate way to make corned beef.
Pressure cooking can reduce your cooking time by up to 30 percent. Sure you can cook just anything in the Instant Pot, but it does some things better than others. The one thing it does really well is large pieces of meat. What would braise away for hours on the stovetop or in the oven, can be done in a multicooker in an hour, more or less.
Pressure cooking helps concentrate flavors, so you can still achieve the slow-cooked flavor with less time and effort. For this recipe, starting with a pre-corned brisket was just one more way to simplify the process. Using heavy-hitter spices like mustard seeds, juniper berries, and allspice berries help impart a unique flavor to a brisket that has already been corned.
It can be off putting when your home smells like corned beef (or anything other than freshly-baked chocolate chip cookies) for hours on end. The Instant Pot keeps the odors contained until you release the pressure.
Pre-corned beef varies greatly in levels of saltiness. As a result, we don't call for any additional seasoning in our recipe. Make sure to taste your cooking liquid and vegetables and season to taste.