Easy Irish Colcannon Recipe

5 from 9 votes
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This Easy Irish Colcannon Recipe is a delicious combination of creamy mashed potatoes and pan fried cabbage that is lightly seasoned. It’s a must-try for those who haven’t experienced a tasty Irish dish.

mashed potato and kale irish colcannon in a blue dutch oven

Traditional Irish Colcannon

St. Patrick’s Day is just around the corner! If you are cooking a big Irish feast to celebrate, this tasty traditional Irish colcannon should definitely be a part of your celebration. Although this recipe is perfect for St. Patrick’s day celebrations, it’s so amazing that you can make it part of your regular meal rotation. 

Colcannon is simply a traditional Irish dish with mashed potatoes and cabbage. It’s so easy to make, but seriously delicious. Even if you aren’t a skilled cook, you can successfully make this dish with confidence. 

a pot full of mashed potato and kale irish colcannon

How To Make Easy Irish Colcannon

This delicious dish comes together quickly and easily with no complicated techniques or ingredients. Here’s what you’ll need to get started:  

  • Potatoes– I used russet potatoes, but you could use Yukon Gold potatoes as well. Peel and cut them into large chunks. 
  • Unsalted butter– You will need butter for frying the cabbage as well as more for serving. 
  • Salt and pepper– You’ll need salt to add to the potatoes while they cook as well as salt and pepper to season the dish. 
  • Cabbage– Traditionally, cabbage or kale is used in this recipe, but you can also use chard or another leafy green. Pack the cabbage in your measuring cup. 
  • Green onions– Mince about 3 green onions to add to your cabbage. It should make about ½ a cup. 
  • Milk– You can use milk or cream in this recipe. This helps to blend the potatoes and cabbage into a delicious dish. 

With simple ingredients and no complicated techniques, you can whip this Irish dish up like a pro. Follow the steps below!

  1. First, place your peeled and cut potatoes into a medium sized pot. Then, cover them with water. 
  2. Add salt to the water, and bring the potatoes to a boil. 
  3. Cook the potatoes until they are soft enough to be easily pierced with a fork. Then, drain them in a colander, and place them in a large bowl. 
  4. Next, add butter to a skillet and heat it until it is light and foamy. 
  5. Stir in your cabbage or other greens and cook them until they are wilted. Stir continuously. 
  6. Once the cabbage has wilted, add the green onions and cook for an additional minute. 
  7. Next, pour in the milk and reduce the heat to medium. Add the potatoes and use a masher to mix and mash them with the greens.
  8. Cook and stir everything on medium heat just until everything is warmed back up. 
  9. Season with salt and pepper to taste. 
  10. Serve and Enjoy!
picture of mashed potato and kale irish colcannon in a blue dutch oven

Tips and Tricks to Perfect Irish Colcannon and FAQs: 

  • Add butter in the center when serving. This adds more deliciousness to this dish. 
  • For best results, cover the potatoes with water that is at least an inch higher than potatoes. 
  • Stir the cabbage or other greens continuously. You don’t want them to burn. Only cook them until they have wilted. 


What temperature should I cook the cabbage and potatoes at?

You will first need to boil the potatoes over medium high heat. Once they reach a boil, you can turn the heat down to medium low and cook until soft. You will then cook your cabbage over medium high heat, but will turn it down to medium after you add the milk. 

How long does this recipe take to make?

Not long at all! You will need 10-minutes of prep time and about 10-15 minutes of cooking time. So, these easy Irish colcannon should be ready to go in about 20-25 minutes. 

How do I store leftovers?

Irish colcannon can be stored in an airtight container in your refrigerator. It’s best eaten within 3-days. If you are using leftover mashed potatoes, I would not recommend keeping the leftovers longer than a day. 

What type of potatoes can I use?

Traditional Irish colcannon recipes use “floury” potatoes. However, the closest potato to the true Irish recipe in the United States would be the russet potato. However, the creamy nature of the Yukon Gold potatoes make this dish just as delicious. Other varieties of potatoes may not work for this recipe. 

Why is it called colcannon?

Colcannon is a Gaelic term called “Cal ceannann”. It means white-headed cabbage. Since this recipe mixes fried cabbage mixed with potatoes, it’s called Irish colcannon which means Irish cabbage. 

mashed potato and kale irish colcannon in a blue dutch oven

What To Serve With Easy Irish Colcannon

Irish colcannon is traditionally served with boiled ham, Irish bacon, slices of salted pork, corned beef and cabbage, Fried Cabbage and Sausage, or hearty lamb stew. But, you can pair this delicious side dish with anything you would eat mashed potatoes with such as Air Fried Chicken Drumsticks, Pan Fried Ribeye Steaks, Easy Baked Pork Chops, or Prime Rib.

For more St. Patricks Day recipes, click here.

mashed potato and kale irish colcannon in a blue dutch oven

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mashed potato and kale irish colcannon in a blue dutch oven

Easy Irish Colcannon

Made with mashed potatoes and cabbage, this Easy Irish Colcannon Recipe is irresistibly delicious and perfect for St. Patrick’s Day too!
Course Side dishes
Cuisine Irish
Keyword irish food, kale, potatoes, saint patricks day, side dish
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 10 minutes
Total Time 20 minutes
Servings 6
Calories 350kcal
Author Courtney O’Dell


  • 4 russet potatoes 2 to 2 1/2 pounds, peeled and cut into large chunks
  • Celtic sea Salt and pepper to taste
  • 5 to 6 tablespoons unsalted butter plus more for serving
  • 3 lightly packed cups chopped kale cabbage, chard, or other leafy green
  • 3 green onions minced (about 1/2 cup)
  • 1 cup milk or cream


  • Boil peeled, chopped potatoes in a medium pot – you don't need to measure out water, just make sure your water covers over your potatoes. Be sure to cut potatoes into large chunks to help them cook faster. You can also skip this step and use frozen peeled potatoes and microwave or boil until soft.
  • Add a pinch of salt to the water, and bring to a boil.
  • When potatoes are soft enough to be easily pierced with a fork, they are done. Drain in a colander, let sit for a moment while melting butter.
  • Add butter to a pan and heat until light and foamy. Stir in greens, and let wilt and cook down, stirring to prevent burning.
  • Add green onions and cook an additional minute.
  • Pour in milk slowly, stirring as you pour it in, and mix well. Reduce heat to medium.
  • Add in potatoes, and use a masher or a hand mixer to start mixing potatoes and mash them with greens, don't overwork potatoes but mash to soft.
  • Season with salt and pepper to taste – I like to add a bit of garlic powder too sometimes, though it is not strictly traditional.
  • Add a pat of butter in the center when serving, and a crack of fresh pepper on top!


Serving: 1g | Calories: 350kcal | Carbohydrates: 49g | Protein: 8g | Fat: 15g | Saturated Fat: 9g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 5g | Cholesterol: 39mg | Sodium: 206mg | Fiber: 6g | Sugar: 5g

About Courtney

Courtney loves to share great wine, good food, and loves to explore far flung places- all while masting an everyday elegant and easy style at lifestyle blog Sweet C’s Designs. Sweet C's devoted to finding the best food and drinks you'll want to make or find, around the world!

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