Smoked Corned Beef and Cabbage

Cook Time

360 mins

Cooking Method






Prep Time

50 mins




Course Black Pepper

1/3 Cup Butter

1 large head Cabbage

Corned Beef Brisket

Pit Boss Sweet Heat Rub

Cooking Instructions

Corned Beef is one of the most popular ways to utilize the brisket beef cut. This St. Patrick’s Day traditional recipe originated in Ireland where it was dubbed Corned Beef because of the large size of the salt kernels used to cure the meat. While the dish is usually boiled, this Smoked Corned Beef recipe forgoes the blandness of cooking in water in favor of wood fired flavor. Sometimes smoked corned beef is referred to as pastrami, so if you’re craving a sandwich, feel free to slice thin and place on your favorite rye or sourdough bread.

How to Smoke Corned Beef

Similar to smoking a full brisket, set your pellet grill to 225°F and smoke until the meat reaches 165°F. Then wrap tightly in foil until your corned beef reaches 203°F. It should be probe tender, meaning the probe should slide in without any resistance.

Smoked Corned Beef Rub

Season the meat generously with course black pepper. The brisket is already brined in salt, so we don’t need more salty flavors. Black pepper alone should do the trick.

Note: It is recommended to use Classic Hardwood Pellets with this recipe.

This recipe uses the Pit Boss Sweet Heat Rub which combines elements of sugar, cayenne, and coffee.

  1. Remove your corn beef brisket from the package, rinse under cool water, and pat dry. Then, season the meat generously with course black pepper. After its seasoned, let the meat rest for about 30 minutes.
  2. Start your Pit Boss on “smoke”. Once it’s fired up, set the temperature to 225°F.
  3. Lay the meat on the grill to smoke until it has a nice mahogany color and bark on the outside. This is around 2-3 hours or an internal temperature of 165°F. Then wrap in foil and put it back on the grill until it reaches a final temperature of 202°F to 203°F.
  4. For the cabbage, cut the core out of the cabbage head to create a cavity. Set the core aside to use as a lid.
  5. Season the cavity in the cabbage head with sweet heat rub and toss in the butter. Re-insert the core and wrap in foil about two-thirds of the way up, leaving the top exposed. Hot tip: if the cabbage does not sit up on its own, you can use extra foil to create a donut shaped base around the bottom.
  6. Add the cabbage to the grill about 3 hours before the corn beef is finished. Smoke with the top exposed for 1 ½ hours. You should see a nice brown color before you cover the rest of the cabbage with foil. Cook for 1 more hour or until the cabbage is tender to your liking.
  7. When the cabbage and corn beef finish, leave the corn beef wrapped in foil and set it aside to rest for about 15-20 minutes. Slice your cabbage into wedges and when it comes time to slice the beef be sure to slice the meat against the grain for tender slices.

Special Tools

  • Aluminum Foil

Bigger. Hotter. Heavier. Tip

If you’re making your own corned beef cabbage from scratch, buy a brisket flat instead of a whole brisket.

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