Bubble and Squeak Recipe

Janette Fuschi | Culinary Ginger

Bubble and Squeak is a mixture of mashed potatoes and cabbage browned in butter. So amazing!

Bubble and squeak is the funny name given to a dish made of leftovers from a British roast dinner. Leftover mashed potato is mixed with leftover cabbage and cooked in butter.

Bubble and Squeak Photo

What’s in a name? The name has two meanings. The one I know is that it came from the sounds the ingredients make as they cook.

The other (which I’m not so sure about) is the noises your stomach makes after eating it.

If you’re familiar with British Cockney rhyming slang (if you’re not you will have to do a Google search to know what I’m talking about), Brits often refer to Greeks as Bubbles (as in bubble and squeak = Greek).

Bubble and Squeak Picture

It is said that the dish originates back to 1770 and originally contained meat; boiled beef, actually.

It wasn’t until around 1951 that the meat was omitted and only potatoes and vegetables started to be used, and that has carried on until now.

Bubble and squeak is very similar to Irish colcannon which is a mix of mashed potato and cabbage. The difference is that bubble and squeak is cooked again after mixing.

Depending on what you had for your roast dinner, there’s any combination of ingredients that can be used, but there must be potato as the main ingredient.

How I was taught to make it by my mother is, after mixing it all gets put in a pan with melted butter and cook until the potato is browned.

Now, this does not make for prettiest of dishes when made this way.

Bubble and Squeak Image

For the sake of presentation, I form the mix into patties and shallow fried in a pan. Food should look appetizing, after all.

If you don’t have the leftovers to make this dish, I have been known to make the potatoes and cabbage just so I can enjoy this dish.

There’s no real traditional way to serve bubble and squeak, but on this particular occasion, I made British bangers and gravy – the mashed potatoes were left over from having bangers and mash a few days earlier.

Check out more British recipes on Food Fanatic.

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Bubble and Squeak Recipe

    6 Servings


  • 6 cups Mashed Potatoes
  • 2 cups Cabbage
  • 1 tablespoon Butter


  1. Add the mash and cabbage to a bowl and mix well.
  2. Take 1 cup of mash and shape into patties. Use a little flour if they stick to your hands.
  3. Heat butter in a sauté pan over medium heat.
  4. Sauté the patties for 2-3 minutes per side until brown.


Cooking Method:
Side Dishes
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Related Recipes:
British Recipes, Side Dish Recipes, Potato Recipes, Cabbage Recipes, Sauteed Recipes, Easy Recipes
Recipe Yields:
6 servings
Prep Time:
Cook Time:
Total Time:
Related Post:
Author: Janette Fuschi
Recipe Yields: 6 servings
Prep Time: 1 minutes
Cook Time: 6 minutes
Total Time: 7 minutes

Nutrition Facts

Servings Per Recipe 6

Amount Per Serving
Calories from Fat 79
Calories 261

% Daily Value*
Total Fat 10g
  Saturated Fat 4g
Sodium 671mg
Total Carbohydrate 36g
  Dietary Fiber 4g
  Sugars 4g
Protein 3g

* Percent Daily Value are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your daily values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.
** Nutrition Facts are estimated based on ingredients and data provided by Fat Secret. Please consult a doctor if you have special dietary needs.
Janette Fuschi

About Janette

Janette is a British ex-pat living in Southern California. On her blog, Culinary Ginger, you'll learn all about it. On Food Fanatic, you'll see her favorite British classics, and ours too!

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