Delicious Vegan Colcannon is a popular Irish mashed potato recipe with tender sautéed cabbage. It is so flavorful and delicious, served as a main with vegan sausages or as a side dish. The perfect dish to add to your St. Patrick’s Day menu!

 

If you love mashed potatoes and haven’t tried Vegan Colcannon with cabbage yet, you really should. Colcannon takes your average mashed potatoes to another level. It reminds me of my  Caramelized Onions Mashed Potatoes and my Garlic Rosemary Mashed Potatoes.

I have been seeing colcannon recipes for years now, especially as it gets closer to St. Patrick’s Day, so I decided to do my research on this dish, and I fell in love with it right away.

I remember the first time I tried it. It was like a frenzy going on in my mouth, in such a good way. This is how I have kept vegan colcannon in my life since then.

Vegan Colcannon is the ultimate Irish side dish on St. Patrick’s Day. It is embedded in a deep history of Irish tradition and culture; it is very popular in Ireland and was brought by Irish immigrants to the USA. It is traditionally eaten at Halloween and on the 1st of May; however, it can be eaten all year round. It is also supposed to bring good luck (I don’t really believe in superstition, but here’s my recipe regardless).

This Vegan version is made with mashed potato, cabbage, and onions. It’s vegan, vegetarian, and gluten-free. This humble colcannon recipe probably isn’t going to convert any meat-eaters, but it is delicious and comforting for a chilly winter’s night.

Vegan Colcannon

What Is Colcannon?

So what is colcannon? It’s a dish of mashed potatoes mixed with butter and kale or cabbage. It’s hearty, comforting, and delicious!

According to Irish scholar Patrick Weston Joyce, it is “mashed potatoes with milk and butter, chopped cabbage, and pot herbs.” Other ingredients, including scallions, leeks, laverbread, onions, and chives, can be added. Some recipes call for cabbage instead of kale. This popular dish comes in a variety of regional versions. It was a year-round, low-cost food. Boiled ham, salt pork, or Irish bacon are common accompaniments. To accompany corned beef and cabbage, it’s ideal.

Colcannon’s History

In the 1600s and 1700s, cabbages, potatoes, and leeks were considered common man’s fare in Europe and Ireland; therefore, it was obvious that a dish combining all three elements would evolve. Colcannon is derived from the Gaelic phrase “cal ceannann,” which means “white-headed cabbage.” It’s also thought to be derived from the old Irish “cainnenin,” which means “garlic, onion, or leek.”

Colcannon is traditionally served as the main course at Halloween celebrations in Ireland, and the evening is known as “Colcannon Night.” Colcannon is used to forecast marriages as Americans believe in the amusing belief that the single young girl who catches the bridal bouquet will marry next. Young single Irish ladies want to find the ring concealed in their colcannon plate.

An unmarried woman blindfolded is to pick the head of kale or cabbage from the garden that is used in the colcannon dish. In bowls of colcannon, charms like rings, thimbles, and money are wrapped and hidden. This is a really interesting evening for young men and women.

If an unmarried young girl is fortunate enough to locate a ring in the bowl, she may soon get a marriage proposal and will almost certainly marry prior to the following Colcannon Night. Other young maidens would hang their stockings from the front door handle with their 1st and last spoonfuls of colcannon. The first man to go through the door is expected to be their future husband.

Small coins, such as threepenny and sixpenny bits, were also hidden inside the dish as prizes. Other things could be a stick representing an unhappy marriage and a rag representing a life of poverty.

Champ is similar, except it’s made with scallions, milk, and butter. It was customary to offer the fairies a part of a champ by setting a plate of colcannon and the spoon at the base of a hawthorn.

Colcannon was brought to American cuisine by Irish immigrants, and it is now more typically served on Saint Patrick’s Day in the United States. One of the favorite ways to eat colcannon is to form a great mountain-shaped mound on the plate and make a large hole or well in the center of the pile. A substantial part of butter is inserted into the hole, which quickly melts. A layer of cream then surrounds the colcannon pile. If you do this, you’ll have a taste of heaven on your tongue.

Vegan Colcannon Cabbage Steaming

Why Will You Enjoy This Recipe?

  • This mashed potatoes recipe is at its finest: creamy, fluffy, and buttery. In addition, this side dish has a “magically delicious” texture and sweetness.
  • If you’re a potato lover (and who isn’t?), you’re going to fall in love with this delectably Irish version.
  • This is a quick and easy recipe that only requires a few ingredients.
  • The main ingredients, cabbage, and potatoes, are both long-lasting vegetables that can be kept on hand at all times.
  • Colcannon is a delicious side dish for any occasion. But it’s particularly appropriate for St. Patrick’s Day.
  • It’s delicious, filling, and makes a great everyday side dish for beef, chicken, or pork.
  • This Vegan Colcannon pairs well with so many main dishes.
  • Thanks to the cabbage and potato, this dish is also healthy and nutritious.
  • And, not to mention the fact that it’s super cheap as it is prepared with readily available ingredients.

How To Make Vegan Colcannon?

  • Easy to prepare and so worth it, first peel, chop, and boil potatoes covered in a pot of salted water. While the potatoes were being cooked, I prepared the cabbage.
  • I chopped, washed cabbage, and sautéed it with vegan butter, onions, and garlic. I didn’t need to add extra liquid to the cabbage while sautéing because of the extra water remaining from washing the cabbage, but you can add vegetable broth if needed. The cabbage is better if it is really soft and tender.
  • I mashed the potatoes, added vegan butter, vegan half-and-half (but you can use any non-dairy milk you choose), salt, and stirred to combine. Next, I fold in the sautéed cabbage and green onions.
  • You can also add sautéed vegan sausage, coconut bacon, vegan corned beef.
  • It is usually enjoyed by placing a pile of colcannon on your plate, making a hole in the center, and adding butter to the center.

Chef’s Notes

  • The secret to achieving a fluffy, creamy texture is to use starchy potatoes! I used Yukon Golds in this recipe, although Russets would also work.
  • Before boiling the potatoes, cut them into evenly sized chunks. If you cut them too small, they will become waterlogged. It’s best to quarter the potatoes.
  • Make sure the potatoes aren’t overcooked. They should be done when they can be pierced with a fork. Then, drain them in a colander right away.
  • Boiled potatoes can begin to jell and even grow larger if they are left in water for an extended period. As a result, it’s critical to drain the potatoes right away in a colander after they’ve been cooked.
  • Traditionally, dairy milk is used to make them extra creamy. But I make it vegan by using almond milk! Any plant-based milk will suffice. They’re all fantastic.
  • I used Earth Balance Buttery Spread for that traditional buttery flavor, but you can also substitute coconut oil.
  • Finely shred the cabbage so that it cooks in about 5 minutes.
  • If fresh seasonal cabbage isn’t available, kale can be substituted.
  • Before adding the milk and butter, make sure they’re both warm. This means that the potatoes won’t have to cook anymore because the milk and butter are already warm.
  • Colcannon Cakes: Colcannon can be made into cakes, which is a wonderful and delicious variation. 1 cup all-purpose gluten-free flour, 2 tablespoons, and a dash of salt and pepper are required per every 3 cups of colcannon. Mix everything together, form the mash into cakes, and cook until nicely golden brown on all sides in vegetable oil. You can top it off with some hollandaise sauce with a poached egg. These cakes are also an excellent way to make use of leftovers.
Vegan Colcannon flat lay

 

Frequently Asked Questions:

Why Is It Called Colcannon?

Colcannon gets its name from the Gaelic words cál (or kale) and caineann (leek). Other linguistic explanations of the name refer to “white-headed cabbage.”

What Is The Difference Between Champ And Colcannon?

Champ is made with mashed potatoes and green onions, while colcannon includes kale or cabbage!

Is Colcannon An Irish Or Scottish Dish?

Colcannon is an Irish dish that resembles Rumbledethumps, a Scottish dish, and Bubble and Squeak, an English dish. All of these dishes include potatoes and cabbage (or some other type of greens), which are common crops of the area. As a result, no food will go to waste with these recipes.

How To Make Colcannon Vegan?

It is quite easy! Regular cow’s milk can be substituted for almond milk, and regular butter can be substituted for vegan butter!

What Goes Well With Colcannon?

Colcannon is usually served with Irish bacon or boiled ham, but it would be great with vegan Irish Vegetarian Stew!

How Should Leftover Colcannon Be Stored?

Colcannon can be kept in the refrigerator by simply storing it in an airtight container. In the refrigerator, it will last three to five days.

When scooping leftovers from the storage container, always use a clean spoon and don’t keep spoons in the container when storing. Also, make sure the container is airtight.

How To Reheat Leftover Colcannon?

Reheating this dish in the microwave is as easy as reheating any other mashed potatoes. Individual servings should be reheated in the microwave.

A casserole dish can be used to reheat a substantial portion of potatoes if you need to do so. Reheat at 350° for 30 minutes, or until warm in the center, covered with aluminum foil to prevent drying.

What Other Greens Can I Substitute For Cabbage?

You can replace the cabbage with kale or any other leafy green.

Can Vegan Colcannon Be Made In Advance?

The best way to enjoy colcannon potatoes is to eat them right away. However, you can prepare this dish ahead of time, refrigerate it, cover it with foil, and reheat it in a low oven.

Is This A Gluten-Free Dish?

Yes, vegan colcannon is gluten-free.

What’s The Best Method For Mashing Potatoes?

You can mash potatoes with a simple potato masher, a ricer, or a food mill. Avoid using an electric mixer, as this will result in gluey potatoes.

What Can I Make With Leftover Colcannon?

It’s a bonus if there are any leftovers! Use leftovers to make patties, top a shepherd’s pie or make Colcannon Cakes.

Other  Cabbage Recipes

  1. 20 Amazing Cabbage Recipes
  2. Curry Cabbage
  3. Vegan Cabbage Casserole
  4. Jamaican Steamed Cabbage
  5. Vegan Cabbage Soup
  6. Vegan Southern Fried Cabbage
  7. Cabbage Dumplings In Gravy

Try this Vegan Colcannon recipe for a wonderful taste experience! And, don’t forget to share your feedback with me by leaving a comment below!

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Categories

Nutrition

(Per 100g)
  • Energy: 253 kcal / 1058 kJ
  • Fat: 12 g
  • Protein: 4 g
  • Carbs: 33 g

Cook Time

  • Preparation: 15 min
  • Cooking: 20 min
  • Ready in: 35 min
  • For: 6 servings

Ingredients

Optional ingredients

Instructions

  1. Place potatoes in a pot of salted water and bring to boil over medium-high. Reduce heat to simmer for about 20 minutes or until tender, drain and set aside.
  2. While potatoes are cooking heat 2 tablespoons vegan butter or coconut oil in a large saucepan over medium-high heat. Add onions and garlic, saute until soft, about 3 minutes. Add cabbage and stir cooking for about 8 minutes until cabbage is wilted and tender.
  3. Using a fork or potato masher, mash potatoes. Add remaining 2 tablespoons vegan butter, vegan half-and-half/almond milk, and salt. Stir in cabbage and green onions. Serve in a bowl, make a well in the center, add a knob of vegan butter and garnish with green onions.
  4. Adapted from The Country Cooking of Ireland by Colman Andrews

Notes

Vegan Irish Colcannon pin
Recipe author's Gravatar image

Michelle Blackwood, RN

Hi, I’m Michelle, I’m the voice, content creator and photographer behind Healthier Steps. I share vegan and gluten-free recipes because of past health issues. My goal is to help you make healthier choices and show you how healthy eating is easy and delicious.