Connemara Corned Beef Cabbage Soup

Connemara Corned Beef Cabbage Soup

My Connemara Corned Beef Cabbage Soup is inspired by a recipe I found years ago on the website of The Mill at Simon Pearce Restaurant in Vermont. It’s not on their site any longer, but over the years I’ve changed it up quite a bit and I wanted to share it as an option to use a little leftover Corned Beef, maybe from your St. Patrick’s Day celebration.

Connemara Corned Beef Cabbage Soup

Connemara Corned Beef Cabbage Soup


That is if you have any leftover corned beef! At any rate, this soup alone would be a great excuse to make a little extra corned beef (plan ahead and buy one that’s a little larger than you need) or a great excuse to hoard any leftovers you do have. I don’t know, hide it in the bottom of the veggie drawer or something until you have a chance to make this! If you’d like to see recipes for Corned Beef and some other options for leftover corned beef or any other Irish-leaning recipes, check out my post on 40 plus Recipes for St. Patrick’s Day.


About Connemara Corned Beef Cabbage Soup:

This soup, out of all my recipes for leftover corned beef is my fave use for that precious ingredient. And yeah, this soup is really that good. It’s a glorified tomatoey-based soup flavored with the Corned Beef and brimming with tomato, potatoes, carrots, and healthy cabbage. And of course, not only can your leftover corned beef go in this soup, but if you have any leftover veggies, they can be tossed in, too. Just heat them through at the end if they’re already pretty soft.

My favorite little ninja way with this soup, though, is to use some of the briny liquid from cooking your corned beef and cabbage dinner in it! It’s like a special little magic touch. If you happen to be making Reubens and have sauerkraut on hand, you can add just a bit of sauerkraut or a little of that liquid too, right at the end or a touch of vinegar. It brightens everything up; just go by taste. You’re going to see something a little strange for me, especially in a soup. There’s a little smidge of sugar and it gives this soup some balance and an indefinable little bit of a faint sweet/sour twang. Don’t leave it out!

This is a great, versatile recipe to have on hand. It usually goes over well with those who aren’t happy about a straight, no-meat vegetable soup like my Classic Vegetable Soup, Perfected. The flavor’s incredible, and I know I mentioned it’s healthy; don’t for a minute think this tastes like it is, lol! How good is this? I literally made it three times in the past week! We just couldn’t get enough of it!

Serve with muffins, a good, Ballymaloe Soda Bread, Parmesan Toast, or my Crusty Bread (shown in the photos.) A sandwich wouldn’t go wrong, here, either. This soup is hearty but low in calories so you might want to fill the meal out.

Connemara Corned Beef Cabbage Soup

Connemara Corned Beef Cabbage Soup

Making Connemara Corned Beef Cabbage Soup:

There couldn’t be an easier soup to make! Saute the onions, add in the garlic, then a little tomato paste. Then in go the broth, potatoes, and carrots. That broth can be from the liquid your corned beef was cooked in (you might have quite a bit, especially if you made your corned beef in a slow cooker and/or chicken stock or a combination. That corned beef broth really is the magic!

Once the potatoes are just about cooked through toss in some cabbage. Once tender, in goes the seasonings: the bit of sugar, and salt & pepper along with the corned beef; it only needs to heat through.

All that’s left is to taste and adjust the seasonings. I mentioned you can add in a little sauerkraut or some of the brine from the can or bag if you happen to have some in the fridge. Maybe you’re making Reubens, too? If not just add a little vinegar. Go by taste.

If you have leftover vegetables from your corned beef dinner, toss them in, too, if you’d like at the end, just to heat through. They’re probably pretty soft anyway so you don’t want to cook them more, just heat them up. No waste!

Storing any Leftovers:

Yeah, it’s a great thing, imho, when your leftovers have leftovers! And a lucky thing if there’s any of this left, maybe for a quick lunch.

  • Store in the fridge in an airtight container for three to five days. If storing a larger amount than a serving or two, cool to room temperature before adding to the fridge.
  • Connemara Soup freezes very well. Heat from frozen or thaw overnight in the refrigerator.
  • When reheating, either the microwave or stovetop works well.

Saving Money on Connemara Corned Beef Cabbage Soup:

Corned Beef can be pricey even when it’s on sale. Making a whole new meal out of any leftovers is a great way to cost average that beef and stretch it a little more than just eating the leftovers on their own. Technically, the price of the corned beef can be divided (at least in our heads) between the two meals. It’s a bit of a flex to get into the habit of doing this anytime there is a main dish protein that’s a little pricier and serves as the star for meal #1. Set aside part of that protein for meal #2 where it turns up again as more of a “supporting” actor.

Around St. Paddy’s, you’re going to find potatoes, carrots, and probably onions on the cheap and there’s no better time to pick up cabbage at a discounted price. As a matter of fact, pick up several cabbages if you have room to store them and make things like cabbage rolls, stir-fries, and slaws.

Pantry Items like canned tomatoes and tomato paste usually drop to a low about once a quarter; stock up when they are on sale in enough quantity so you’ll never run through them before the next sale and have to pay regular price. It’s a great strategy for any pantry item.

Connemara Corned Beef Cabbage Soup

Connemara Corned Beef Cabbage Soup


Connemara Corned Beef Soup

  • Author: inspired by The Mill at Simon Pearce
  • Total Time: 40 minutes
  • Yield: 6 servings 1x
  • Category: Soups
  • Cuisine: Irish


  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 large onion, diced
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 tablespoon (heaping) of tomato paste
  • 1 quart chicken stock or leftover corned beef stock or a combination *
  • 1 29 ounce can tomatoes with juice, pulsed in blender
  • 3 medium carrots, peeled and chopped into about 1/2” to 3/4″ dice
  • 3 large potatoes, 3/4″ diced **
  • 1 small or 1/2 larger head green cabbage, about 3 cups in bite-sized pieces **
  • 1/2 cup or more leftover corned beef; diced if not already in bite-sized shreds
  • 1/2 teaspoon sugar
  • salt & pepper to taste
  • about 2 tablespoons (to taste) sauerkraut brine or white wine vinegar
  • optional: 1/4 to 1/2 cup sauerkraut (may omit the brine or vinegar if using


In a Dutch oven, add oil and heat over medium-high heat. Add onions and saute until tender six to eight minutes. Add garlic and continue to saute until fragrant. Add the tomato paste and stir in, cooking for a minute or two until it just begins to lightly caramelize.

Working quickly so tomato paste doesn’t burn, add in the stock, then potatoes and carrots, and bring to a boil. Reduce heat, and simmer until the potatoes are nearly done, 15 minutes or so. At that point add the cabbage and simmer another 10 to 15 minutes or so until cabbage is tender. Add the corned beef to heat through, dicing first if necessary. Add the sugar, salt, and pepper to taste. A tablespoon or two of brine from leftover sauerkraut (if you have it on hand) or vinegar brightens this soup. If there is leftover sauerkraut available, omit the brine or vinegar and add in 1/4 to 1/2 cup.

  • *If your corned beef broth is very strong, only use part of it mixed with some stock or cut it with water.
  • **If you wish and have enough, you can make this with all of your leftover corned beef dinner vegetables. Just add them in after the tomato paste is caramelized and the stock is in. Simmer long enough to heat through and proceed with the recipe. If you don’t have enough leftover vegetables to make the soup, what vegetables you do have can be added to heat through at the end.

Nutrition: Using smaller amounts of meat: Calories 180; Total Fat 3 g, 4 %; Saturated Fat 1 g 5 %; Monounsaturated Fat 0 g; Polyunsaturated Fat 0 g; Trans Fat 0 g; Cholesterol 12 mg 4 %; Sodium 265 mg 11 %; Potassium 1030 mg 29 %; Total Carbohydrate 33 g 11 %; Dietary Fiber 5 g 21 %; Sugars 9 g; Protein 8 g 16 %; Vitamin A 25 %; Vitamin C 113 %; Calcium 6 %; Iron 11 %

Keywords: Bacon, Bargain Meal of the Week, Cabbage, Chicken Stock, Corned Beef, Freezes Well, Irish, leftover corned beef, Leftovers, Potatoes, Sauerkraut, Simon Pearce, Soup, Tomatoes

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If there was ever any reason to hoard your corned beef, Connemara Corned Beef Cabbage Soup has GOT to be it! It's so crave-worthy! #CornedBeefSoup #LeftoverCornedBeefSoup #LeftoverCornedBeef #Irish Recipe #IrishSoup

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12 thoughts on “Connemara Corned Beef Cabbage Soup

  1. Ruth

    A little confusion about when to add carrots and cabbage. Carrots with potatoes? Cabbage where instructions say carrots?

    • FrugalHausfrau

      Hi Ruth, I’m mortified! You were absolutely correct and so kind! I’ve fixed it up and corrected a few typos, too. Mollie

    • I’m so jealous! But our snow is gone, the ice on the lake is starting to go out, but we’re just at that time when everything is so brown, dreary and dull. This brightened my day up, though. This is good just as a tomato soup, too! 🙂

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