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South African corned beef refers to a cured and brined beef product commonly consumed in South Africa. It is different from traditional corned beef, which is typically associated with Irish cuisine.

South African corned beef is made by taking a cut of beef, often from the brisket or silverside, and curing it in a mixture of salt, sugar, and various spices. The beef is usually soaked or rubbed with the brine solution for some time

How to cook corned beef South Africa

South African corned beef is a popular ingredient in dishes like sandwiches, stews, and curries. It is also commonly served with sides such as boiled potatoes, cabbage, or vegetables.
It's worth noting that South African corned beef may differ slightly in flavor and preparation from region to region or even from one household to another, as personal preferences and family recipes can vary.
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Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 2 hours 30 minutes
Total Time 2 hours 50 minutes
Course Dinner
Cuisine South African


  • 2 pounds (approximately 1 kg) corned beef

  • 1 onion, peeled and quartered

  • 3 cloves of garlic, minced

  • 2 bay leaves

  • 4 whole cloves
  • 4 black peppercorns

  • 2 teaspoons mustard seeds

  • 2 teaspoons mustard seeds

  • 2 teaspoons brown sugar

  • 4 cups water

  • Salt, to taste

  • Freshly ground black pepper, to taste


  • Rinse the corned beef under cold water to remove any excess brine or salt. Pat it dry with paper towels.
  • Place the corned beef in a large pot or Dutch oven. Add the onion, garlic, bay leaves, cloves, peppercorns, mustard seeds, coriander seeds, and brown sugar.
  • Pour in enough water to cover the corned beef completely. This is usually around 4 cups of water, but you may need more depending on the size of your pot.
  • Bring the water to a boil over high heat. Once it boils, reduce the heat to low and cover the pot.
  • Simmer the corned beef gently for about 3 to 4 hours, or until it becomes tender. Check periodically to ensure the water level remains above the meat. If needed, add more water during the cooking process.
  • After the corned beef has cooked, remove it from the pot and let it rest for a few minutes.
  • Slice the corned beef against the grain into thin slices.
  • Taste the cooking liquid and adjust the seasoning with salt and freshly ground black pepper, if necessary.
  • Serve the sliced corned beef with the cooking liquid as a flavorful broth.
    South African corned beef is often enjoyed with sides such as boiled potatoes, cabbage, and carrots. You can also serve it with mustard or a tangy relish for added flavor.



Corned beef may vary in saltiness, so it's a good idea to taste the cooking liquid before adding additional salt.


Serving: 100g
Keyword South African corned beef
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to enhance its flavor and tenderness.

The brine solution typically contains ingredients like salt, brown sugar, garlic, black pepper, coriander seeds, mustard seeds, and cloves. These spices contribute to the distinctive taste of South African corned beef.

After the curing process, the corned beef is often cooked by simmering it in water or a flavorful broth until it becomes tender. It is then sliced and served with the cooking liquid as a broth or used as an ingredient in various dishes.

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