MeatEater’s Top 8 St. Patrick’s Day Recipes

Patrick’s Day is a religious holiday that the Irish have observed for over 1,000 years. In modern times in America, it’s usually celebrated with parades, green beers, and eating overly salty beef, shriveled cabbage, and mushy potatoes.

After swallowing a couple of car bombs, just about anything will taste good, but these recipes are a welcome diversion from the classic St. Patrick’s Day corned beef meal. So play the bagpipes, pour yourself a pint and fire up the stove to cook up some wild takes on classic Irish dishes.


venison pie
In most parts of the country, St. Patrick’s Day often falls during a stretch of not-so-great weather. Cold, rainy, muddy springs are best remedied with a heaping plate of mashed potatoes, ground beef, silky gravy, and just a little sprinkling of vegetables. In our humble opinion, the rich flavor of venison lends itself to meatloaf better than ground beef.

goose pastrami

wild goose pastrami
We have heard all the negative descriptors applied to geese. Metal. Muddy. Gamey. Strong. And yes, those stereotypes often come from people who willingly shot that speaker. And yes, they are doing it wrong. Pastrami is basically the Italian version of corning or pickling and turns the sometimes delicate meat of Canadas or snows into something so exquisite that it could pass for Wagyu beef.

venison hash

Venison hash for breakfast
Whether you’re laying out a base before having some celebratory drinks or recovering from them the next morning, breakfast can be the most important St. Patrick’s Day meal. Replace your standard canned beef hash with this variety of venison sausage. It’s loaded with bell peppers and onions and calls for cauliflower rice instead of potatoes, but we’ll understand if substituting potatoes is out of the question on this particular day.

venison pie

venison patties
Butte, Montana is the most Irish city in the United States. Yes, that’s true: per capita they have the largest population of Irish Americans. Their local delicacy is the pie, a meat-filled pie popularized in Butte by Irish immigrant miners more than a century ago. We bet some of those early Montana patties were made with venison, just like ours.

Irish sausage for breakfast

Venison Irish Breakfast Sausage
Although the sausages in this recipe are meant to be served with a full Irish breakfast, they really can be the centerpiece of any meal. With sweet and earthy flavors, these links work well in hash or mash. Or, skip the casings and opt for a loose sausage, which is perfect for biscuits and gravy or breakfast pizza.

Reuben Duck

Reuben duck sandwich
Both New York City and Omaha, Nebraska claim to be the home of Reuben, and Omaha has gone so far in controversy as to declare an official Reuben Sandwich day. Shots. No matter which side you’re on, the combination of corned beef, sauerkraut, Swiss, Thousand Island, and rye bread has been around for about 100 years without ever losing popularity. And it’s better with duck than almost anything else. Why? Because the meat just isn’t much better than the duck you caught and harvested.


Homemade Sauerkraut
Want to make an even better Reuben sandwich? Add homemade sauerkraut. And what chases pints of green beer better than a brat covered in kraut and mustard? Little bit. While sauerkraut has Chinese origins and a German namesake, the humble cabbage is a staple in classic Irish cuisine. The transformation into kraut through lacto-fermentation is easier than you imagine.

guinness stew

Irish venison soup
If you didn’t drink your share of Guinness on St. Patrick’s Day, here’s your chance to eat your fill. This recipe adds the dark brew not once but twice to ensure a rich and flavorful stew loaded with notes of malty sweetness. Served in a sourdough bread bowl, this hearty soup is sure to satisfy.