Easy Irish Food Recipes:
Satisfy Your Hunger for Ireland!

Is there any better way to express your Irish side than serving traditional Irish food recipes to friends and family? We can't think of one!  And you don't even have to wait for St Patrick's Day.  Good Irish cooking is welcome on any day!

Irish Expressions:  Irish Food Recipes.  Image of corned beef and cabbage.

Here are 31 of our favorite delicious recipes, with examples of Irish main courses, side dishes, desserts and drinks.  The fun facts and stories about Irish cuisine come at no extra charge :-).  For example: corned beef?  Not so much.  More on that later.

If you are in a hurry, here are some quick links to 10 of the most popular recipes on our list.  Click on one and enjoy!

  1. Traditional Irish Stew
  2. Bangers and Mash
  3. Shepherd's Pie
  4. Irish Soda Bread
  5. Irish Potato Soup
  6. Irish Boxty
  7. Guinness Chocolate Cake
  8. Irish Apple Cake
  9. Irish Coffee
  10. Guinness Stout (Irish Beer Brands)

If you have a bit of time and want to know more about Irish food recipes in general, take a moment to complete our fun, free quiz below.

Want to See How Much You Already Know?

Ever wondered if you know enough about delicious Irish food recipes?  Take our fun, free Irish Food Quiz to find out!  

Every answer is in the form of a picture, so you get to 'see' a little bit of Ireland as you enjoy the quiz...  Then come back and brush up on the recipes you would like to know more about, using the links below!

So ... How Did You Do?

If you scored 80 or higher - congratulations!  You are a pro at expressing your Irish side through food!

If your score was in the 60-70 range, you are well on your way!  Brush up on your knowledge below, and then take the quiz again if you like (you can enjoy it as often as you want).

If you scored 50 or less - well, you have definitely come to the right place! :-)

Let's See Some Irish Food Recipes!

Serving Irish food is a great way to express our love for Irish culture.  We'll start with short descriptions of 10 of our favorite Irish dishes.  Links inside each description will take you to the recipe itself.  Then we'll keep going and before you know it you will have seen 31 easy Irish food recipes.  Enjoy!

1 - Traditional Irish Stew

Irish Expressions: Easy Irish Food Recipes.  Image of traditional Irish Stew per license with Shutterstock.

Basic Irish lamb stew is one of the most traditional dishes, based on lamb/mutton, and root vegetables including potato and onion. These were the ingredients that were cheap and available to Irish farmers who based their living on sheep and root crops.  Click on the picture for our favorite Irish Stew recipe.

2 - Bangers and Mash

Irish Expressions:  Easy Irish Food Recipes.  Image of bangers and mash per license with Shutterstock.

Ever wondered why on earth they call it 'bangers and mash?'  Click on the picture to find out!  And oh yeah - you'll get the bangers and mash recipe, so you will be able to make this incredibly delicious meal from home.

3 - Shepherd's Pie

Irish Expressions:  Easy Irish Food Recipes.  Image of Shepherd's pie on triangle plate with steamed carrots.

Ok, this picture was taken in a restaurant in Cork, on fancy tableware.  But you get the idea - a traditional Irish dish containing hearty meats and vegetables topped by ...mmmm... mashed potatoes.  Click the picture for our favorite recipe!

4 - Irish Soda Bread

Irish Expressions:  Easy Irish Food Recipes.  Image of sliced Irish soda bread per license with Shutterstock.

A famous and delicious Irish food recipe that enhances almost any meal is traditional Irish Soda Bread. It comes in many shapes and flavors, all delicious!  Click the picture for our favorite recipe!

5 - Irish Potato Soup

Irish Expressions:  Easy Irish Food Recipes.  Image of potato soup suspended with spoon per license with Shutterstock.

The humble potato takes another bow with this delicious Irish comfort food and preview to a perfect Irish meal.  Click on the picture for our favorite potato soup recipe.

6 - Irish Boxty

Irish Expressions:  Easy Irish Food Recipes.  Image of four boxty cakes per license with Shutterstock.

Side dish?  Main course?  Who cares?  In our opinion, no Irish recipe book would be complete without Irish Boxty.  Think of it as Irish potato cakes.  Frankly, we could eat this delicious dish morning, noon and night.  And many people do!  Click on the picture to find out why!

7 - Guinness Chocolate Cake

Irish Expressions:  Easy Irish Food Recipes.  Image of dense chocolate cake with one large slice missing per license with Shutterstock.

Our visitors love to contribute Irish dessert recipes - so much so that we have an entire section dedicated to Irish desserts!  Our favorite? You guessed it!  Click on the picture to find out why we love Guinness Chocolate Cake, and how to make it from the comfort of home!

8 - Irish Apple Cake

Irish Expressions:  Easy Irish Food Recipes.  Image of Irish Apple Cake per license with Shutterstock.

So many wonderful Irish recipes to taste, so little time.  We had better get started!  A perfect way to start is with Irish Apple Cake.  Click the picture to find out why!

9 - Irish Coffee

Irish Expressions:  Easy Irish Food Recipes. Image of two glasses of Irish Coffee per license with Shutterstock.

A discussion of Irish food recipes would not be complete without a selection of  Irish drinks. Among the best is the classic Irish coffee, with its tot of Irish whiskey and dollop of whipped cream.  If you are not an expert in 'tots' and 'dollops' you should probably click the picture to learn how to make a proper Irish Coffee!

10 - Guinness Stout (Irish Beer)

Irish Expressions:  Easy Irish Food Recipes.  Image of three bottles of Guinness Original per license with Shutterstock.

Ireland sports a number of excellent beer brands, including such recognizable names as Guinness Stout and Harp lager.  Click the picture to learn more about Guinness and other quality Irish beers.

More Easy Irish Food Recipes

What, you thought we were going to stop with 10?  Nope.  The list of traditional recipes (and some not so traditional) goes on. 

11.  Corned Beef and Cabbage

Irish Expressions: Easy Irish Food Recipes. Image of corned beef and cabbage courtesy of Shutterstock.

Once you have a corned beef and cabbage recipe under your belt, you are 'all set' for Irish cooking, right? Well... no. But it's a really, really good start!  Corned beef is not very common in Ireland - a more authentic Irish dish is actually boiled bacon and cabbage.  But let's start with more globally popular vision - find a delicious recipe here!

12.  Guinness Beef Stew

Irish Expressions: Easy Irish Food Recipes.  Image of Guinness beef stew courtesy of Shutterstock.

We love Irish stew in all its varieties, and Guinness beef stew is one of our absolute favorite meals from the Emerald Isle...  As with any Irish stew the ingredients are simple and flavorful. The finished dish is a delicious, hearty meal!   Here is our favorite recipe for Irish beef stew with a taste of Guinness Stout! 

13.  Steak and Guinness Pie

Irish Expressions:  Easy Irish Food Recipes.  Image of Steak and Guinness Pie courtesy of Shutterstock.

Steak and Guinness pie is one of those dishes that works for any occasion. Serve it as a simple, stand-alone meal after a hard day at work, or serve it as a unique delicacy during an Irish-themed party or holiday celebration.  The addition of Guinness, bacon and onions to the gravy gives this delicious meal a uniquely Irish flavor.  Find our favorite recipe here!

14. Dublin Coddle

Irish Expressions:  Easy Irish Recipes.  Image of Dublin Coddle courtesy of Shutterstock.

Here is Dublin Coddle: one of the most quintessentially Irish food recipes, full of Irish flavors and charm. Easy to make, satisfying to eat, preparing this recipe is a terrific way to express your Irish side wherever you are in the world!  Learn how to make it here!

15.  Fried Cabbage with Bacon

Irish Expressions: Easy Irish Food Recipes.  Image of Fried Cabbage with Bacon courtesy of Shutterstock.

Cabbage has always been a prominent vegetable for the Irish. In fact, historiansbelieve that it became a staple around 600-400 B.C.The Celts brought it to Ireland where the cool climate allowed it to thrive.Even though the potato became quite popular, during the great potato faminein Ireland cabbage surged back to popularity.Today, Fried Irish Cabbage, Cabbage Soup and Corned Beef and Cabbage arevery popular St Patrick Day recipes.The quickest to prepare is fried Irish cabbage with Bacon.

Fried Cabbage with Bacon:  Ingredients

  • 1-12 to16 ounce package of bacon 
  • ¼ cup bacon drippings 
  • 1-small cabbage head finely cored and shredded
  • Freshly ground black pepper to taste

Fried Cabbage with Bacon:  Preparation

  1. Use a large skillet to cook the bacon until crisp. If you’re in a hurry, you can clip the bacon in smaller pieces with kitchen scissors before cooking. It allows you to fit more in the frying pan.
  2. Remove bacon from the pan and allow it to drain on a paper plate covered with a paper towel or two.
  3. Remove grease from the pan, reserving ¼ cup to return to the skillet.
  4. Put the chopped cabbage in the frying pan and turn the burner to medium, stirring frequently. It takes approximately 5 to 7minutes for the cabbage to cook to a wilted state.
  5. Crumble the pieces of bacon over the cabbage and mix. Set the heat on simmer and stir the mixture as it cooks for the next two to three minutes to mix and warm the bacon.
  6. Season the mixture to taste with freshly ground black pepper.
  7. Serve as a side dish alone or piled over mashed potatoes.

16. Shrove Tuesday Pancakes

Irish Expressions: Easy Irish Food Recipes. Image of Shrove Tuesday pancakes courtesy of Shutterstock.

Shrove Tuesday pancakes have as many variations as the tradition they represent...What's the occasion? The start of the Lenten Fast leading up to Easter and the last day to use up your meat, fat, butter, eggs, milk, etc. Shrove Tuesday brings with it a thin pancake which closely resembles the French crepe. This pancake can be made into sweet or savory dishes and eaten all day long.  Hungry for more?  Here's the recipe!

Shrove Tuesday Pancakes:  Ingredients

  • 4 large eggs
  • 1 cup milk (do not use low-fat or nonfat) 
  • 1 tablespoon butter, melted
  • 1 tablespoon sugar 
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla, extract 
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt 
  • 1 cup all-purpose flour 
  • Additional melted butter
  • Powdered sugar or granulated sugar as preferred
  • Fresh lemon juice

Shrove Tuesday Pancakes:  Preparation

First preheat the oven to 350 degrees, then:

  1. Blend first 6 ingredients in blender.
  2. Gradually add flour; blend until smooth. Let stand 15 minutes.
  3. Heat medium nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Brush with butter.
  4. Add 2 generous tablespoons batter, tilting pan to coat bottom.
  5. Cook until golden on bottom, about 45 seconds.
  6. Turn pancake over. Cook until bottom is speckled with brown, about 30 seconds.
  7. Turn out onto paper towel. Cover with another paper towel. Or store on a heated dish in the oven.
  8. Repeat with remaining batter, brushing skillet with butter as needed.
  9. Butter oven-proof dish.
  10. Sift powdered sugar over speckled side of each pancake, then sprinkle lightly with lemon juice; fold pancakes into quarters.
  11. Overlap pancakes in prepared dish
  12. Cover; bake until heated through, about 10 minutes.
  13. Serve with more powdered or granulated sugar and lemon juice.

17.  Holiday Spiced Beef

Irish Expressions:  Easy Irish Food Recipes. Image of holiday spiced beef, courtesy of Shutterstock.

A traditional Irish Christmas recipe in my house is the classic spiced beef. While there was a time you couldn’t purchase the saltpeter required for the recipe and it never tasted quite as good, you can now get salt peter at most pharmacies or online, so it’s now back on our Christmas menu. This delicious meat is wonderful to snack on throughout the holiday season. It’s also wonderful for a sandwich with a combination of mustard and mayonnaise.  Want to give it a try?  Here you go!

Holiday Spiced Beef:  Ingredients

  • 3 kg joint of beef- my favorite is eye of round but you can use silverside or topside
  • 15 grams of crushed black peppercorns—1 tbsp
  • 60 grams of brown sugar (muscovado is my choice)—4 tbsp
  • 15 grams of molasses—1tbsp
  • 5 grams cloves—1tsp
  • 5 grams nutmeg—1 tsp
  • 5 grams mace---1 tsp
  • 15 grams juniper berries—1 tbsp
  • 12 grams of saltpeter
  • 100 grams of sea salt---about 8 tbsp
  • Optional ingredients 
  • 1 Bottle of Guinness
  • 1 crushed garlic clove

Holiday Spiced Beef:  Preparation

  1. Mix everything but the Guinness and beef together to create a rub.
  2. Rub the beef with the mixture thoroughly and place into a snugly fitting glass or plastic container. Cover the container and store in the refrigerator. Turn the meat daily for 7 to 8 days, basting with the juices.
  3. Tie the meat firmly. Place in a large pot and cover with water or a mixture of water and Guinness. (I prefer the second.) Simmer the meat gently for six hours.
  4. Let the meat cool. Wrap it in cling film and put into a clean dish with a top weight on it.
  5. Serve cold and thinly sliced.

18.  Irish Colcannon

Irish Expressions:  Easy Irish Food Recipes.  Image of bowl of Irish Colcannon, courtesy of Shutterstock.

Today's Irish colcannon has Gaelic origins. 'Colcannon' comes from the word ‘cal ceannann,’ meaning ‘white-headed cabbage.’ Like many popular Irish food recipes, colcannon is simple to make, and involves inexpensive ingredients, such as potatoes and cabbage. The keys to making our favorite version of colcannon are bacon (naturally) and onion gravy (of course!). Here is our favorite recipe!

19. Irish Potato Pancakes

Irish Expressions:  Easy Irish Food Recipes.  Image of stack of potato pancakes, courtesy of Shutterstock.

Irish potato pancakes are made from a combination of mashed potatoes and raw potatoes.Typically made using leftovers from the previous day, this recipe hearkens back to the traditionally frugal Irish lifestyle. Potato pancakes with a little Irish butter are also a terrific meal for the days following a holiday meal, when there’s almost always a bit too much on the table!  Have a look and see what we mean!

20.  Irish Black Pudding

Irish Expressions:  Easy Irish Food Recipes.  Image of black pudding on wood slab, courtesy of Shutterstock.

A traditional food that has firm roots in Irish history - and is a key component of a full Irish breakfast - is Irish black pudding, sometimes referred to as 'blood pudding'. In contrast to sweet puddings, black pudding in Ireland traditionally consists of pork products, onions, oatmeal and additional flavorings. While it s an acquired taste to many, the history of this food shows why it is a key part of Irish culture.  Learn a little about that and find an authentic recipe here.

21.  Irish Potato Bread

Irish Expressions:  Easy Irish Food Recipes. Image of sliced potato bread courtesy of Shutterstock.

One of our favorite easy Irish food recipes, Irish potato bread, makes a regular appearance on our dinner table.  Potato bread is a filling and rich type of bread that is great to serve at parties with various dips or along with dinner or just about any gathering. This bread in its simplest form isn't difficult to make. The fun is in the experimenting!  Click here to begin the experiment!

22.  Irish Brown Bread

Irish Expressions:  Easy Irish Food Recipes.  Image of Irish Brown Bread per license with Shutterstock.

As with so many Irish foods, an Irish brown bread recipe is distinguished by simple, plain ingredients. But don't let that fool you, it is one of the tastiest ways to express your Irish side.Our family loves brown bread from Ireland for breakfast toast or as a side dish to Guinness stew. Want to give it a try?  Find our favorite recipe here!

23.  Guinness Bread

Irish Expressions:  Easy Irish Food Recipes.  Image of sliced Guinness Bread courtesy of Shutterstock.

Guinness Bread is surprisingly quick to make. The beer adds an amazing flavor to the bread and the carbonation helps give it the fluffy texture. This recipe makes two loaves, and we recommend you make the full amount, if not more! For one thing it's more frugal to bake two or loaves more at a time.For another, well... there is magic involved. the first loaf will disappear - poof! - by the end of the meal.  Learn the spell ... er ... recipe here.

24.  Leek and Oatmeal Soup

Leek Oatmeal Soup

Adapted from the book, “A Taste of Ireland” by Biddy White Lennon andGeorgina Campbell, this is one of our more popular St Patrick Day recipes.  Here you go!

Leek and Oatmeal Soup:  Ingredients

  • 2-cups of beef or chicken broth
  • 2-cups milk
  • 2-Tbs of butter
  • 2-Tbs. of pinhead oats
  • 4- Large leeks with the ends removed. Use only the light green and white parts
  • ¼ cup heavy cream or heavy whipping cream
  • 5-scallions-finely sliced
  • White pepper
  • Salt
  • Fresh chopped chives or minced parsley

Leek and Oatmeal Soup:  Preparation

  1. Mix the broth with the milk in a large saucepan and heat over medium heat. Gradually sprinkle in the oatmeal, stirring as you do. Do not boil; just simmer
  2. Simmer for 15 minutes
  3. Slice the leeks in half, lengthwise, rinse them well. Cut each length into 1- inch sections and rinse thoroughly
  4. In a medium size skillet, melt butter on low. Add the leeks and cook them until soft, but not browned, stirring frequently.
  5. Add the cooked leaks and sliced scallions to the milk/broth/oatmeal mixture that is simmering. Stir well. Allow the mixture to simmer for 20 minutes, stirring frequently.
  6. Remove mixture from heat. Season the soup with salt and white pepper, then stir in the heavy cream. Use parsley or chives to garnish before serving.

25.  Irish Cream Bundt Cake

Irish Expressions:  Easy Irish Food Recipes.  Image if Irish Cream Bundt Cake per license from Shutterstock.

Our next Irish dessert recipe, Irish cream bundt cake, qualifies as an Irish expression due to its secret (ok maybe not so secret) ingredient... Wait for it...Irish cream! True Irish cream is made with cream, sugar and typically Irish whiskey. This type of whiskey is very much a part of the recent history of Ireland and therefore, any recipes including Irish cream instantly become Irish expressions. Plus they usually taste terrific!  Don't take our word for it - try it out for yourself!

26.  Irish Whiskey Cake

Irish Expressions: Easy Irish Food Recipes.  Image of sliced Irish Whiskey Cake per license from Shutterstock.

When we first tried Irish whiskey cake we were doubtful. Would the flavors 'work' together? Could you taste the whiskey? After trying it, we knew the answers were 'yes' and 'yes!' Since then it has become one of our favorite ways to express our Irish side at almost any occasion, with or without an Irish theme. Click here to see a couple variations of this delicious dessert.

27.  Irish Cream Cheescake

Irish Expressions:  Easy Irish Food Recipes.  Image of Irish Cream Cheesecake per license with Shutterstock.

The uniquely Irish flavor in Irish cream cheesecake is - you guessed it! Bailey's Irish cream. While there are many variations to this dessert, the core recipe is simple and easy to make at home. Here is our family's favorite recipe for this delicious cheesecake!

28.  Irish Cream Fudge

Irish Expressions:  Easy Irish Food Recipes.  Image of Irish Cream Fudge bites per license with Shutterstock.

Irish cream fudge ... mmmmm... Nothing expresses Irish culture quite like Baileys Irish Cream, the delicious beverage that comprises 50% of the spirits exported from Ireland. And we have found from experience that Bailey’s goes great with the taste of good ‘ol chocolate fudge… Sooooo – what better way to get your Irish mojo working than throwing a bangon party, filled with two of Earth’s most delicious flavors?  Learn to combine them here!

29.  Irish Bread Pudding

Irish Expressions:  Easy Irish Food Recipes.  Image of Irish Bread Pudding per license with Shutterstock.

We've been told Irish bread pudding has no historical roots in Ireland.  Awwww...But it's so delicious we don't really care! The recipe below contains lovely Irish flavors. Think of it as an Irish twist on a classic dessert.  As with many authentic Irish meals, it is made of simple ingredients and is simple to make. Breakfast, snack or comfort food, Irish or not, you should really give it a try. Your taste buds will thank you for it!  Learn to make it here.

30.  Carrigaline Whiskey Pie

Irish Expressions:  Easy Irish Food Recipes.  Image of Carrigaline Whiskey Pie per courtesy of EuropeanCuisines.com.

When you think of traditional Irish spirits, you normally think of whiskey first.  Of course, the vegetable of choice is the potato. Carrigaline whiskey pie combines the two unto an unforgettable St Patrick’sDay dessert. You start this easy Irish food recipe as though you’re making a soufflé by whipping egg whites and beating the yolks with sugar - then the magic really begins!  Click here for the magic spell ... er... recipe.    I know, I used that one before.

31.  Irish Apple Scones

Irish Expressions: Easy Irish Food Recipes.  Image of Irish Scones per license with Shutterstock.

This Irish apple scone recipe reflects traditional Irish thriftiness and also satisfies the typical Irish sweet tooth!  Irish scones embody the best of Ireland because they don't use any expensive imported fruit as ingredients – just the simple apple, one of the few fruits that grows well in the climate of the Emerald Isle.  I don't know about you, but my mouth is watering. How about we go make one of these?