Come March 17, the world will turn green in honor of St. Patrick’s Day. From rivers and beer (and rivers of beer) to parades of people, Ireland’s unofficial national color will flood our streets as the festivities get underway. But the holiday didn’t begin as one of parties and banquets. In 1631, the Catholic Church named the day an official Feast Day for St. Patrick, the patron saint of Ireland. What began as a day of religious observation has turned into an international day of celebration, a day in which everything Irish—particularly food and drink—is enjoyed.
From traditional Irish dishes to those that have become staples of celebrations around the globe, here are 10 recipes to try during your St. Patrick’s Day festivities this year.
This classic Shepherd’s Pie recipe is warm, comforting, and perfect for your St. Patrick’s Day feast. You can feed a crowd with this hearty casserole-style dish that combines layers of ground beef, peas, carrots, and mashed potatoes. If you are entertaining vegetarian guests at your St. Patty’s Day celebration, substitute additional vegetables for the ground beef to make a vegetarian Shepherd’s Pie that will please the whole crowd. This video will show you how to make Shepherd’s Pie.
Try a comforting Irish stew to warm up after a morning spent cheering on one of the many St. Patrick’s Day parades. Versions like this hearty beef and mushroom stew are easy to make and have tons of spices for a good-for-you and flavorful treat that will get the feeling back in your hands…just in time to start lifting a few pints of green beer.
What is corned beef? While it may sound complicated, corned beef is really just meat cured with salt. To make a more traditional version of the dish, like this corned beef and cabbage recipe, add the spices and simmer your beef for two hours on the stove before serving it with a side of cabbage. Prefer an easier recipe for a day filled with celebrations? Try this slow cooker corned beef recipe and put your meat, spices, and veggies in the slow cooker and let it simmer all day while you get your shamrock on.
Irish Soda Bread
Every meal needs a side of bread, and on St. Patty’s Day, there’s no other choice but soda bread. It’s easy to make and an essential component of every Irish meal. This classic Irish soda bread recipe is filled with raisins and is perfect for breakfast or lunch. For a more savory option, try this delicious Irish cheese soda bread. Whatever direction you take, soda bread is the perfect accompaniment to any meal…and a great accompaniment to all those festive libations.
Caraway Cheese Spread
If you’re going to make a batch of soda bread, you will need a delicious cheesy dip to go with it. Caraway cheese spread is one that ticks all the boxes: it’s easy to make, a crowd pleaser at any party, and can be paired with Irish soda bread or a handful of veggie sticks for a lower-calorie option.
Irish Potato Wedges and Dip
You can’t celebrate one of Ireland’s biggest holidays without paying tribute to the potato. While it may seem a bit cliché, there’s no ignoring the fact that the spud is closely intertwined with the identity and history of Ireland. Plus, potatoes are perfect party fare. You can roast them up and serve them with your main dish, or for a more festive take, try this potato wedge recipe with your choice of dip dyed green.
Luck o’ the Irish Cake Pops
It may not be a traditional Irish dessert, but it certainly is a delicious one worthy of any St. Patrick’s Day celebration. Our St. Patrick’s Day cake pops are a creamy and tasty treat that can add a bit of festive flair to your party spread. To help keep your younger guests occupied during the festivities, make the cake pops ahead of time and then let the little ones decorate them with all of their favorite green toppings.
Green Ombre Cake
If you want a St. Patrick’s Day dessert that will really impress, bake a three-layer cake that pays tribute to the holiday spirit. Split your packaged cake mix (the two-layer size) into three parts, and dye each a different shade of green. When you cut through the finished masterpiece, the lime-to-emerald rainbow will create a stunning effect.
Caraway Stout Irish Cocktail
Beer is a staple of St. Patrick’s Day celebrations—especially in the U.S. where, for one day only, it often comes dyed green—but this whiskey and beer cocktail may just be the most Irish of them all. Combine Guinness with Irish whiskey and a little bit of Caraway simple syrup to get a taste of the mother country all in one sip.
The only thing better than enjoying dessert and a cocktail is combining the two, and that’s exactly what you get with this St. Patrick’s Day drink. This Irish cream and vodka cocktail recipe with peppermint whipped cream joins the delicious taste of peppermint and vanilla with a dash of cream to make a rich and velvety cocktail that is the perfect cap to a day of celebrations.