There are many ways to prepare corned beef. Please keep in mind the below-mentioned cooking times are based on corned beef that is not frozen at the time of cooking.
Some recommend “fork-tender” to gauge if corned beef is done. We recommend using a food thermometer to get a precise reading of the internal temperature of 160°F.
Most importantly, allow the meat to rest for a minimum of five minutes before carving or plating.
OVEN: Set the oven for 350 °F or no lower than 325 °F. Place brisket fat-side up. Barely cover the meat with water–about 1 inch–and keep the container covered throughout the cooking time. Allow about 1 hour per pound.
OVEN COOKING BAG: Preheat the oven to 325 °F. Add 1 tablespoon of flour to the bag plus 1/2 cup water. Follow the manufacturer’s instructions for closing the bag. For a 2 to 3-pound corned beef brisket, cook for 2 1/2 to 3 hours. For a 3 to 5-pound corned beef brisket, cook for 3 to 3 1/2 hours.
STOVE: Place brisket fat-side up in a large pot and cover it with water. Bring the water to a boil; then reduce the heat and simmer, allowing about 1 hour per pound. Vegetables may be added during the last 20 to 30 minutes of cooking. Cook vegetables to desired tenderness.
SLOW COOKER: If using root vegetables such as potatoes and carrots, put them in the bottom of slow cooker. Place brisket on top of vegetables (if using) or in bottom of cooker. Add about 1-1/2 cups of water or enough to cover meat. Cover and cook on high setting for the first hour of cooking. Then cook for 10 to 12 hours on the low setting or 5 to 6 hours on high. Cabbage wedges may be added on top of the brisket during the last 3 hours of cooking.
MICROWAVE: Calculate cooking time at 20 to 30 minutes per pound. Place brisket in a large casserole dish and add 1-1/2 cups of water. Cover with lid or vented plastic wrap and microwave on medium-low (30 percent power) for half the estimated time. Turn meat over and rotate dish. Microwave on high for remainder of time or until fork tender. Vegetables may be added during the final 30 minutes of cooking.
If there are leftovers, corned beef should be refrigerated within 2 hours of cooking or reheating. Consume this corned beef within 3 to 4 days. Reheat leftovers to 165 °F as measured with a food thermometer.
Many customers prefer to cook our corned beef ahead of time. It is easier to cut uniform slices when corned beef is cold. Cooking ahead also makes it easier to reheat and serve later. After cooking a whole corned beef, cut it into several pieces for faster cooling-or slice it, if you like. Place the beef in small, shallow containers and cool it in the refrigerator quickly.