Colcannon Recipe – Paleo Style

Last Updated on June 24, 2019 by Ellen Christian

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Colcannon is a traditional Irish dish that is made with potatoes.  Since I enjoy eating traditional Irish foods around St. Patrick’s Day, it’s a dish that I used to make regularly. Now that I am on the Paleo diet, potatoes are no longer something that I eat.  When I received a copy of the cookbook, (affiliate) The Paleo Effect, I was excited to find out that there was an Irish Colcannon recipe that had been modified to fit the Paleo diet.  The Paleo Effect contains 150 natural recipes that are suitable for a grain free, dairy free lifestyle.

Irish Colcannon Recipe - Paleo Style

Colcannon Recipe – Paleo Style

Yields 4

Colcannon Recipe - Paleo Style

As always, try to find organic local ingredients. I made a quick run to our natural food coop for veggies since I did not have these at home. Thankfully, they are all in season so it worked wonderfully.

5 minPrep Time

35 minCook Time

40 minTotal Time

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  • 1 lb parsnips
  • 1 tbs olive oil
  • 2 cups kale
  • 3 strips bacon (omit for vegan)
  • 1 small white onion
  • 2 tbsp chicken stock (use vegetable stock for vegan)
  • 1/4 cup coconut milk
  • sea salt & black pepper to taste
  • green onions (I used leeks)


  1. Preheat the oven to 400F.
  2. Peel and roughly chop the parsnips into 1/2" pieces, discarding the tops and tips. Toss with olive oil, sea salt and black pepper. We use roughly 1/2 tsp of each. Then spread out on a baking sheet and bake in the middle rack for about 20 - 25 minutes or until fork tender.
  3. As the parsnips are cooking, dice the bacon and cook in a pan over medium high heat until desired crispiness is achieved.
  4. Once the bacon is crispy, remove if from the fat and set aside for later. Save the bacon fat.
  5. Place the pan with the fat back on the burner and add the diced onion.
  6. Cook the onions till browned and caramelized. Then remove them from the pan and set aside with the bacon.
  7. Remove the ribs from the kale, dice kale into small pieces and add it to the pan. Turn the heat down to medium low, cover and cook until the kale is tender (about 5 minutes).
  8. Add the kale, any leftover bacon fat, coconut milk and stock to the bacon and onions. When the parsnips are ready, add the chicken stock to the bacon and onions and mash until it is the consistency that you want.
  9. Season with sea salt and black pepper and garnish with green onions.

Colcannon Recipe Paleo Style

Colcannon can be a side dish when you serve corned beef and cabbage or you can enjoy it as an entree on its own. Parsnips are loaded with vitamins and minerals and are a great source of fiber.  They are in season between November and April. Have you tried my fried parsnip sticks recipe? Kale is high in iron, Vitamin K and antioxidants and is also high in fiber.  It is also anti-inflammatory and is a great choice for those trying to fight inflammation.  It’s a great detox food to help keep your liver clean.

Have you ever tried an Irish Colcannon recipe with or without potatoes?


44 thoughts on “Colcannon Recipe – Paleo Style”

  1. I didn't make this recipe only because there was a run on parsnips the past weekend, and I couldn't find any, but what I did make was totally inspired by this recipe, and I have to thank you for that. I gave you a mention and thank you on by blog post. Thanks again, I couldn't have done it without you. 
  2. I hadn't realized that potatoes were not allowed in the Paleo diet.  But I do love parsnips if they've overwintered, so I think I'll try this if the snow ever melts!
  3. This looks so tasty, I like the use of parsnips and I have plenty of kale in my garden right now that needs to be used. I've been Paleo for about 3 months now and love how I feel, I'm adding this recipe for dinner one night. Thank you.
  4. Pingback: Over 40 St. Patrick's Day Recipes - Coupons in Motion
  5. Thanks for sharing, this looks delicious.. I'm moving into the paleo direction and love all the tips I can get on your blog, keep up the great reading them
  6. I would definitely miss the potatoes but I have to tell you, that looks pretty amazing!! Thanks for sharing!
  7. i've never heard of this dish before. looks super yummy. i just love new recipes to try. maybe i'll give it a try! 

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