What Irish People Actually Eat on St. Patrick’s Day?

So, you think St. Patrick’s Day means green beer and mountains of corned beef? Well, those things might be associated with the holiday in America, but in Ireland, the celebrations focus on something a little different – delicious, authentic Irish fare.

Here’s what you’ll find on Irish tables on St. Patrick’s Day March 17th 2024:

1. A hearty Irish Fry

No better way to fuel up for a day of festivities than a classic Irish breakfast. Think sausage, rashers (Irish bacon), fried eggs, baked beans, tomatoes, and white pudding (a savory sausage mixture). It’s a full-on feast to keep you going strong.

A hearty Irish Fry

2. Bacon and Cabbage

This might surprise you, but corned beef is actually an American adaptation of the Irish staple – bacon and cabbage. Here, succulent bacon is boiled or simmered with tender cabbage for a simple yet incredibly flavorful dish.

Bacon and Cabbage

3. Seafood and Soda Bread

Ireland boasts some of the freshest seafood in the world, and St. Patrick’s Day is a perfect occasion to indulge. You might find smoked salmon with Guinness brown bread, or creamy seafood chowder.

Seafood and Soda Bread

Don’t forget the Irish soda bread, a slightly sweet and dense bread perfect for mopping up every last bit of sauce.

4. Irish Stew

This slow-cooked stew is pure Irish comfort food. Mutton or lamb is simmered with vegetables like potatoes, carrots, and onions, resulting in a hearty and satisfying meal that warms you from the inside out.

Irish Stew

5. Apple Tart or Irish Coffee

For dessert, skip the green cupcakes and opt for a traditional Irish apple tart. Made with simple ingredients and fresh apples, it’s a delightful and rustic end to the meal.

And to complete the celebration, raise a toast with a steaming mug of Irish coffee – a delicious combination of coffee, whiskey, and cream.

Apple Tart or Irish Coffee

So, on this St. Patrick’s Day, ditch the stereotypes and delve into the real flavors of Ireland. You might just discover your new favorite meal.


St. Patrick’s Day is a time to celebrate Irish culture, and what better way to do that than through food?  While green beer and corned beef have their place, exploring the authentic dishes above will give you a taste of the real Ireland.  

So ditch the food coloring this year, and grab some friends and family to create your own Irish feast.  Sláinte (pronounced slawn-cha), and happy eating.