This fresh twist on the classic Irish Colcannon recipe switches out cabbage for ultra-healthy kale but delivers the same savory flavor!

Potatoes and a bag of kale are cooked in a creamy butter sauce with salt and pepper.

It’s the perfect quick side to any St. Patrick’s Day feast or any time of year!

Colcannon Recipe in a bowl with butter

What is Colcannon?

  • Colcannon is a traditional Irish dish made with fried cabbage and onion, with creamy mashed potatoes. Although it’s served year-round in Ireland, it’s often served on St. Patrick’s Day in other parts of the world.
  • This recipe for Colcannon is Irish comfort food at its best!
  • Make this recipe in advance and enjoy all week long as the flavors continue to blend!
  • Colcannon is great served with corned beef or brown sugar ham.
potatoes , kale , onion , cream , butter , garlic powder , salt and pepper with labels to make Colcannon Recipe

Ingredients & Variations

Potatoes – Starchy potatoes like Russets and Yukons are best to add the right amount of starch to the sauce, making it extra creamy. You could even use leftover mashed potatoes in Step 3, if you have them.

Kale – Kale doesn’t need to be thawed- simply toss it in the skillet in Step 2! A bag of coleslaw works if kale isn’t available, and so will some shredded Brussels sprouts for more texture, flavor, and a bump in nutrients!

Onion – Besides regular onion, leeks or green onions can be used instead.

Sauce – Lots of butter and heavy cream make this dish rich and flavorful! A spoonful of sour cream or Greek yogurt will make it extra creamy if desired.

Variations – Feel free to mix in some bacon crumbles, diced ham, or sliced summer sausages to make Colcannon a main dish.

How to Make Colcannon

  1. Cook and drain potatoes as directed in recipe below.
  2. Saute onion in butter in a skillet. Add kale and garlic powder and cook until tender.
  3. Add potatoes and half the warmed cream to the pot. Mash potatoes to desired consistency.
  4. Stir in additional cream and fold in kale onion mixture. Season before serving.

Tips for the Best Colcannon Potatoes

  • Potatoes can be left unpeeled if desired. Be sure they are the same size so they cook evenly.
  • If cooking kale from frozen, be sure to cook it long enough to reduce the moisture, otherwise, the dish will be too runny.
bowl of Colcannon Recipe with a spoon

How to Store Leftovers

Keep leftover Colcannon in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 4 days. To reheat it, place it on the stovetop with a little cream to keep the consistency of the mashed potatoes. Freeze portions in zippered bags for up to one month. Use leftovers for pancakes or to top a shepherd’s pie.

Other Cabbage Inspired Dishes!

Did you enjoy this recipe for Colcannon? Leave a comment and rating below!

Colcannon Recipe in a bowl
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Colcannon Recipe

Choose ultra-healthy kale over the traditional cabbage for a fresh take on this Colcannon recipe!
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 15 minutes
Total Time 30 minutes
Servings 6 servings
Author Holly


  • 2 pounds baking potatoes , peeled & cut into 1-inch pieces
  • ¼ cup butter , or more to taste
  • 1 small onion , diced
  • 10 ounces frozen kale
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • ½ cup heavy cream , warmed
  • salt & pepper , to taste


  • Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Add the potatoes and simmer for 12 to 14 minutes or until tender. Drain well.
  • While the potatoes are cooking, in a medium skillet, cook the onion in butter over medium heat for 3 to 4 minutes or until it begins to soften. Add the kale and garlic powder and cook for an additional 7 minutes or until tender.
  • Add the drained potatoes back to the pot along with half of the warmed cream. Using a potato masher mash the potatoes adding additional cream as needed.
  • Once smooth, fold in the kale and onion mixture. Season with salt and pepper.


  • Choose to peel, or not to peel, the potatoes!
  • Cut potatoes to similar sizes for even cooking.
  • Cook kale enough to reduce the moisture in the dish, or run the risk of it becoming runny.
  • Refrigerate leftovers covered for up to 4 days. Leftovers can also be added to other recipes.
  • Reheat leftovers in the microwave, on the stovetop, or covered with foil in the oven until warmed through.
5 from 2 votes↑ Click stars to rate now!
Or to leave a comment, click here!

Nutrition Information

Calories: 278kcal | Carbohydrates: 31g | Protein: 5g | Fat: 16g | Saturated Fat: 10g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g | Monounsaturated Fat: 4g | Trans Fat: 0.3g | Cholesterol: 43mg | Sodium: 100mg | Potassium: 839mg | Fiber: 4g | Sugar: 2g | Vitamin A: 5250IU | Vitamin C: 54mg | Calcium: 158mg | Iron: 2mg

Nutrition information provided is an estimate and will vary based on cooking methods and brands of ingredients used.

Course Side Dish
Cuisine Irish’

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