Samuel Adams Corned Beef

Samuel Adams Corned Beef

You don’t have to be Irish to appreciate a great corned beef.  And to make the ultimate corned beef, using Samuel Adams Boston Lager or Irish Red as a base for this classic brine will only make everything better.  


*Pink Salt #1 is typically available at specialty stores, and is a combination of table salt and a small amount of sodium nitrite.  This will help in the curing process and also give the meat its distinct pink hue most people associate with corned beef.  If you choose not to use the pink salt, your corned beef will have a greyer, boiled look to it, but don’t worry!  It’ll still taste delicious.   


  • bottles of Samuel Adams Boston Lager or Irish Red
  • cloves of garlic, smashed
  • medium onions, peeled and chopped
  • carrots, peeled and chopped
  • celery ribs, chooped
  • 1  Cup  kosher salt
  • 3/4  Cups  brown sugar
  • bay leaves
  • 1  Tablespoon  whole black peppercorns
  • 2  Teaspoons  mustard seed
  • allspice berries
  • juniper berries
  • cloves
  • cinnamon sticks
  • 2  Teaspoons  ground ginger
  • 1  Teaspoon  pink salt* (optional)
  • trays of ice, about 2 quarts
  • beef brisket, approx. 5 lbs


Pour the Samuel Adams beer into a stockpot, and add all ingredients except for the ice, beef brisket, and half of the carrots and onions. Bring to a simmer over medium heat, stirring until the salt and sugar are fully dissolved. Once dissolved, remove from the heat and add the ice.


Place brisket in a sealable container large enough to hold both the meat and liquid, and pour the liquid over the meat. If possible, place an inverted plate on top of the meat to keep it fully submerged in liquid, and seal the container. Refrigerate for at least 24 hours, and up to 7 days, flipping the meat daily to ensure even brining. 


Remove the brisket from the brine, and strain, reserving spices. 


Place the brisket in a large braising pan or pot, add the reserved spices, along with the remaining carrots and onion. Cover with water (or better yet, more Sam Adams!), bring to a simmer, and cook until tender.

Corned Beef Shopping Tip

Most cattle are fed a diet of grass until they are sent to a feedlot – where they are finished on corn. When possible, choose beef from cattle that are “100% grass fed” - it will be more expensive, but better for your health.

Corned Beef Cooking Tip

The method used to cook beef is dependent on the cut. Cuts that are more tender, like filet mignon, should be cooked for a relatively short amount of time over high heat by grilling or sautéing. While less tender cuts, like brisket and short ribs, should be cooked for a longer time with lower heat by braising or stewing.

Corned Beef Wine Pairing

Most red wines, including cabernet sauvignon, cabernet franc, mourvèdre, Rhône blends, zinfandel, petite sirah, nebbiolo, nero d'avola, primitivo, barbera, and sangiovese.