14 Cabbage Recipes You’re Sure To Love
When asked to name our favorite vegetable, we might be likely to cite ever-popular produce items such as potatoes, tomatoes, and carrots — some of the most-consumed veggies in the United States in 2021 (via Statista). Some of us would choose sweet bell peppers or dark green, leafy kale, but we might be less inclined to name cabbage — the hearty cruciferous vegetable that comes in a wide variety, from frilly Napa to basic ol’ green.
But when you think about the range of culinary possibilities offered by cabbage, you might consider bumping it up to the top of your list. From adding sweetness and crunch to salads to bringing body and texture to soup to wrapping all kinds of fillings, cabbage is a dependable standby we can count on to round out many a meal. Here are 14 cabbage recipes that showcase the deliciousness and versatility of this often-taken-for-granted veggie.
1. Southern Fried Cabbage
If the word "cabbage" doesn’t really get you excited, the word "fried" might help. To make this side dish — a perfect accompaniment to Southern classics such as fried chicken, meatloaf, and mashed potatoes — ribbons of green cabbage are fried in butter with chopped bacon, slivers of onion and green bell pepper, and a sprinkling of Creole seasoning. Once tender, the porky cabbage is ready to be heaped onto dinner plates.
2. Easy Boiled Cabbage
File this one under "tastes better than it sounds." While boiling might not be the sexiest way to treat vegetables, these wedges of green cabbage aren’t simply simmered and served. Before digging in, you’ll douse the pieces with plenty of melted butter and cracked black pepper as well as optional flavorful touches of fresh lemon juice and chopped parsley, if you like.
3. Kale Slaw
You could consider this bright and crunchy slaw a double-cabbage salad, since kale is a member of the cabbage family (via Healthline). In this slaw, the dark, leafy greens are chopped and mixed with shredded red cabbage and grated carrots before being tossed with a creamy dressing made of Greek yogurt, extra-virgin olive oil, apple cider vinegar, and whole grain mustard. The colorful dish makes a perfect sidekick to BBQ staples, such as grilled chicken or salmon, or even seared tofu.
4. Grilled Cabbage
As it does for a range of other veggies, grilling brings out the natural sweetness and earthiness of green cabbage, which, in this case, is cut into thick wedges and then grilled over medium-high heat until tender on the inside and lightly charred on the outside. But wait, here comes the extra-tasty part: Post-grilling, the soft cabbage is liberally topped with a homemade chimichurri — that delicious Argentinian condiment made from olive oil and plenty of fresh parsley and oregano that’s blended with garlic, vinegar, salt, black pepper, and red pepper flakes until smooth.
5. Old-Fashioned Cabbage Soup
If there’s one thing your grandmother most likely knew, it was that cabbage + soup = yumminess. Many cultures the world over prepare cabbage soup — from the famous Russian, Ukrainian, and Polish borscht (via Encyclopedia Britannica) to Italian zuppa di cavolo, featuring little more than cabbage, stale bread, and rich chicken stock (via Delicious Magazine).
So the next time you’re craving a deep, warm bowl of soup, do as your grandma did and go for cabbage. This old-fashioned preparation starts with a quick sauté of hearty root veggies including potatoes and carrots, then adds chopped cabbage, canned tomatoes, and chicken broth. After simmering for about 30 to 40 minutes until all the vegetables are tender, the soup is ready to be garnished with chopped parsley and enjoyed.
6. Asian-Inspired Coleslaw
If you love coleslaw but are looking for flavors that deviate from the standard mayo-based variety you get at barbecues, then this Asian-inspired side dish is the recipe for you. Combining shredded red and green cabbage and carrots as well as diced red bell pepper, the fresh slaw is dressed in a vinaigrette flavored with soy sauce, honey, lime juice, crushed garlic, and chopped hot chili. Garnished with scallions and sesame seeds, it’s a bright option to serve atop chicken sandwiches or hot dogs.
7. Charred Cabbage With Guinness
If your notion of celebrating St. Patrick’s Day consists of gulping down a green-dyed beer, then you might want to extend the festivities to the realm of the kitchen and whip up this delightful charred cabbage to accompany your homemade (or store-bought) corned beef.
The recipe starts with chopped Savoy cabbage, which is charred over high heat. As the cabbage starts to wilt, caraway seeds and crushed red pepper are tossed in and Guinness beer is added, which reduces in the pan. To finish the dish, caramelized red onion slices and a bright touch of fresh lemon juice join the party.
8. Roasted Cabbage Wedges
This creative side dish starts with wedges of green cabbage, which are brushed with a flavorful mixture of olive oil, melted butter, garlic, lemon juice, and red pepper flakes. Then, the pieces are seasoned with salt and pepper and roasted in a 400-degree Fahrenheit oven until tender with browned edges. Served warm with crumbled feta cheese and chopped fresh parsley — and any leftover dressing, if you like — the sweet, soft cabbage goes perfectly with grilled kebabs and fluffy rice pilaf as well as a range of other dishes.
9. Carrot Slaw
Often playing a mere supporting role in coleslaw, carrots take center stage in this bright slaw — which, nevertheless, features green cabbage too. The grated veggies join sliced red onion and a creamy dressing of mayo, olive oil, apple cider vinegar, honey, lemon juice, and mustard — plus, an optional finishing touch of chopped scallions. Whether served alongside grilled meat, heaped atop a sandwich, or folded with some drained canned tuna, this sweet and crunchy slaw is an all-around winner.
10. Cabbage Au Gratin
Whether you’re applying the au gratin technique to potatoes, cauliflower, or something else, you can’t go wrong: Any recipe that involves bathing veggies in warm cream, topping them with shredded cheese, and then baking them until they’re creamy underneath and browned on top is bound to turn out delicious.
This creative take on gratin calls for wedges of green cabbage that are first roasted until tender, then placed in a baking dish and topped with a rich cream sauce that’s seasoned with sliced onion, minced garlic, thyme, and rosemary. The cabbage returns to the oven to bake in the sauce and then gets topped with plenty of shredded Gouda. A brief trip under the broiler melts the cheese until it’s golden brown. The cabbage gratin is ready to enjoy alongside roast chicken, sliced roast beef, or simply a crusty baguette and a green salad.
11. Grilled Cabbage And Mango Slaw
So many fruits and vegetables take wonderfully to grilling, and while they can be tasty when enjoyed simply seasoned and grilled, why not try them in a fresh slaw? That’s what you’ll do to make this colorful, spicy side dish. The recipe starts with quartered red and green cabbages and a peeled and pitted mango, which are all oiled and then grilled until lightly charred. Once cooled, the cabbages and mango are thinly sliced, then tossed in a large bowl with a sweet-and-spicy dressing whisked together from olive oil, orange and lime juices, molasses, minced garlic and jalapeño, and plenty of chopped cilantro.
12. Cabbage Roll Soup
Stuffed cabbage rolls are a common feature of various cuisines — from Ukrainian holubtsi to French sou fassum. Often enveloping a combination of ground meat and rice, these braised cabbage rolls are invariably delicious but making them can be a time-consuming task — what with blanching and rolling individual cabbage leaves around the fillings.
If you love stuffed cabbage but are looking for a shortcut, this hearty soup evokes all the same flavors with far less time and effort. It combines ground beef and long-grain rice, which get stewed along with chopped green cabbage, beef broth, familiar ingredients like canned tomatoes, and seasonings including bay leaf, thyme, and paprika. Once simmered to perfection, the soup is served with a garnish of fresh parsley for a big bowl of cabbage roll-evoking comfort.
13. Vegetarian Egg Rolls
Who doesn’t love to order a platter of hot and crispy egg rolls when dining on Chinese food? Surprisingly, this irresistible appetizer is not all that complicated to make at home. We love this vegetarian version from Tasting Table recipe developer Alexandra Shytsman, which calls for finely chopping cabbage and shiitake mushrooms, grating carrots, and then sautéeing the veggies in canola oil seasoned with sesame oil. Minced garlic and ginger, soy sauce, and freshly ground black pepper complete the flavorful filling, which is left to cool down for a few minutes.
When the filling is ready, it’s rolled tightly into store-bought egg roll wrappers. The rolls are then fried in hot canola oil until they’re crisp and golden brown. Once drained on paper towels, the tasty bites are ready for dipping in hoisin or duck sauce.
14. Napa Cabbage Salad
Napa cabbage is a wide-ribbed, frilly-leafed variety that is commonly featured in a range of different Asian dishes, boasting a mild flavor that can be enjoyed cooked or raw. This refreshing salad takes the latter approach, combining strips of the crunchy cruciferous vegetable with ribbons of carrot, chopped red bell pepper and scallions, and a flavorful dressing of soy sauce, garlic powder, honey, sesame oil, and rice vinegar. After being garnished with a sprinkle of crunchy sesame seeds, the salad is ready to be enjoyed on top of a sandwich or alongside any number of grilled dishes, adding a fresh pop of flavor to your meal.