7 Traditional Irish Recipes and The History Behind Their Food

Posted on March 14 2018

Saint Patrick's Day is a cultural and religious celebration held on March 17th to celebrate the life of St. Patrick, the patron saint of Ireland. While Americans typically celebrate this day by making corned beef and cabbage and turning their beers green, neither of these things are actually something they do in Ireland! Contrary to popular belief, corned beef and cabbage is not from Ireland and the Irish would snarl at the thought of putting food dye in your beer. Instead, make one of these traditional Irish recipes and drink a pint of Guinness if that’s your thing.

1. Bangers and Mash with Stout Onion Gravy

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Stout and onion gravy tops this masterpiece off to give it a rich and flavorful finish that will draw you back for 2nds… and let’s be realistic, 3rds and maybe even 4ths! This sausage and mashed potato recipe is perfect for St. Patrick’s Day, but we find it a little hard to imagine anyone resisting the urge and only making this once a year.

Did you know: The word “bangers” originated during the First World War because there was little meat in sausages at the time, mostly just scraps and water. Because of this, they sizzled a lot when they were being fried and made little explosions or “bangs” to give it the name “bangers and mash.”

Get the recipe from Self Proclaimed Foodie.

2. Irish Potato Soup

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A traditional Irish Potato Soup that will warm you up on these cold March days! It’s a simple recipe that will end up being a staple in your house every winter.

Did you know: Even though potatoes are synonymous with Ireland, they didn’t actually originate there. In fact - the Spanish conquistadors discovered them in the Andes Mountains and they didn’t make their way over to Europe until the 1500s.

Get the recipe from Grits and Pinecones.

3. Dublin Coddle

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The Dublin Coddle is a slow-cooking classic Irish dish made with potatoes, onions, rashers (bacon) and bangers (sausages) with some beer and chicken broth thrown in. To be an authentic Irish Coddle, everything would need to be boiled together, but this recipe calls for browned sausage to give it a more unique flavor profile - you can’t go wrong either way!

Did you know: Originating in the 1700s, the legend is that this dish became popular because housewives were able to make it before they went to bed and let it simmer on the stove. Then, when their husbands returned home from the pub, they were able to eat a warm meal that’s been simmering on the stove for hours.

Get the recipe from Saving Room for Dessert.

4. Easy Beef and Veggie Hand Pies

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You can’t go wrong with crispy Pillsbury™ biscuits and a savory meat and potato filling! A real Irish hand pie would start by making the dough fresh, but let’s be real, creating the dough from scratch may be a little too ambitious for our busy lives. Pillsbury has already done this tedious work for us, so we can use their pre-made dough to simplify the meal and cut out a lot of prepping time!

Did you know: The first pies were actually called “coffins” or “coffyns” and are loosely traced back to the ancient Egyptians. The dough was originally used to preserve the filling and was too hard to eat.

Get the recipe from Pillsbury.

5. Irish Beef Stew

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Stew is arguably one of the best winter comfort foods that you could possibly make! This one takes it to the next level adding a hearty Guinness beer into the mix. When you’re ready to dig in, the beef will be so soft, it will fall apart and melt in your mouth! MMMHMM! Delicious!

Did you know: Modern Irish stew is usually made with beef, but the early versions of it were made with Mutton (or sheep) because they were more available than beef at the time.

Get the recipe from Recipe Tin Eats.

6. Guinness Braised Short Ribs

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This recipe is not one that you will be able to spin up quick, but if you have the time to cook it nice and slow, you will be happy you did. These short ribs will fall right off the bone and melt in your mouth for a delicious St. Patrick’s Day meal!

Did you know: More than 13 million pints of Guinness beer are guzzled around the world on St. Patrick’s Day. Let’s cheers to that - or should we say, Sláinte!

Get the recipe from Jo Cooks.

7. Irish Soda Bread

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The original Irish soda breads only contained four ingredients - flour, baking soda, soured milk, and salt. We know this doesn’t sound very appetizing, but at the time, many families in Ireland couldn’t afford much more, so this was a staple in their diet. This recipe is an updated version of Irish soda bread and requires just 9 ingredients - and you should be relieved to know soured milk is not one of them! Don’t be fooled, this updated version of the traditional Irish soda bread is very tasty!

Did you know: Traditional Irish soda bread has a cross on the top of it. Legend has it that they did this to “let the devil out” while it baked for good luck.

Get the recipe from Cincy Shopper.

What’s your favorite meal to make for St. Patrick’s day? Let us know in the comments below!

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