Easy Cabbage Recipes
With a Few Twists

These easy cabbage recipes are way better than when I was a kid the only time we had cabbage was for St. Patrick's Day and we had "Corned Beef and Cabbage".  When that is your only memory of cabbage it's kind of hard to have an open mind about it!!  Not that boiled cabbage is bad but it doesn't exactly inspire the taste buds!!  But when I started adding more veggies into my diet - cabbage quickly became a favorite - once I knew all the options!! 

SELECTION AND STORAGE:

When selecting cabbage be sure to choose a cabbage with free of cracks, bruises, browning and bruises.  Too much damage can be a sign of damage caused by worms which can show up in the core of the cabbage.  If there is one thing that grosses me out it is bugs on my veggies - sorry Andrew Zimmerman but I cannot eat bugs!!

Cabbage also happens to be one of the veggies that does not have to be ORGANIC since it is low in pesticides. 

And avoid buying pre-cut cabbage because when cabbage is cut in advance it actually loses Vitamin C and after all the whole point of increasing our veggies is for the nutritional value.  PLUS….those pre-cut veggies cost extra and now you are paying more for LESS value.

Just keep cabbage stored in your refrigerator in a plastic bag and it can stay for up to 2 weeks.  IF you have to cut the cabbage to use only half of the cabbage - then tightly wrap the remaining half and use it in the next few days as it will begin to lose the Vitamin C.

PREPARATION AND COOKING TIPS FOR EASY CABBAGE RECIPES

I LOVE shredded cabbage but everyone is different and prefers different textures and cuts.   

To begin - quarter the cabbage and remove the hard inner core.  Then you can shred it, slice it, dice it or chop it.  Really any way is correct - it just depends on the size of bites you want, etc.

The best and healthiest way to prepare cabbage is in a saute.  Sauteeing retains most of the nutrients while bringing out the best flavor.  It certainly beats the boiled cabbage version I was accustomed to as a kid…. BLAH!!

Cabbage can also be roasted, baked, braised, boiled in a soup and eaten raw.  The possibilities are endless!!


BASIC EASY CABBAGE RECIPE

Let's start with a basic sauteed cabbage recipe and then we will use our CABBAGE FLAVOR COMBOS to CHANGE IT UP.


1/2 head of cabbage sliced thin

2-4 cloves of garlic, minced

2 TBSP. Olive Oil

Chicken broth or Veggie Broth

Salt and Pepper

  1.  Saute garlic in oil and cook until you can smell the garlic.  I always walk away at the wrong moment only to turn around and it is BURNT.  NEVER use burnt garlic….it gives everything a bitter taste.  Also be sure to keep the heat low when sauteeing garlic.
  2. When garlic is ready add the shredded cabbage and toss.  I like to add a bit of liquid so I don't use more oil if the cabbage is dry and starts to fry.  Using a stock adds flavor with less calories.
  3. Continue to toss in your pan until golden.  Add salt and pepper to season.

Now….this is pretty darn simple….but it's also pretty dull!!

So take a look at these CABBAGE FLAVOR COMBOS and see if you have any of these ingredients on hand to change up this easy cabbage recipe.

Apples and apple cider

Bacon

Bay leaf

Beans

Beef

Peppers

Butter

Caraway seeds

Carrots

Celery

Cheese; feta, goat, parmesan

Chicken

Chile sauce

Chili peppers

Cilantro

Coconut

Coriander


Cream; especially coconut

Cumin

Curry leaves

Dill

Fennel and fennel seeds

Garlic

Ginger

Jicama

Juniper berries

Kale

Leeks

Lemon and lime juice

Mustard

Oil; peanut, sesame and olive

Olives

Onion

Paprika


Parsley

Pasta

Pecans

Pepper

Pork

Potatoes and sweet potatoes

Raisins

Red pepper flakes

Rice

Salmon

Salt; esp. Kosher

Soy sauce or Bragg’s Amino Acid

Spinach

Tarragon

Thyme

Tomatoes

Vinegar and vinaigrettes


Now you have got to have some of these ingredients in your kitchen!!!

Cabbage with a Twist

cabbage with granny smith apples

Easy Cabbage Recipe #1 -  Cabbage with apples and coconut milk

I stumbled upon making my cabbage with apples and coconut milk one day when I had little to nothing in my refrigerator.  I made a sauteed cabbage except when I was sauteeing the cabbage I added carrots to my Ninja food processor and chopped them up and added them to the cabbage while it was cooking. 

When the cabbage came close to being done I added some coconut milk mixed with low sodium soy sauce and some cayenne pepper so it had a salty/spicy flavor.  THEN….to offset the salty/spicy I added diced raw apples just at the end.  But I first tossed the apples in a little bit of lemon juice so they didn't brown - then I tossed it in the cabbage mixture - but I did not cook the apples because I wanted them to stay crunchy.

This became one of my favorite recipes with cabbage in my house.  The elements of sweet, salty, spicy works great when experimenting with flavors.

Easy Cabbage Recipe #2 - Pasta Toss makes

Now you do not have to use these particular ingredients - because remember that any of those food combos above will work so you can create multiple recipes with cabbage.  They all work well together.  Maybe you want to use raisins and pecans?  Or some goat cheese and kale?

Or add in some pasta noodles - I like to use egg noodles.  I boil the egg noodles as directed on the package and then toss them in with my sauteed recipe above in Option #1 and top with some grilled chicken slices.  This makes for an easy cabbage recipe - except without using a recipe!!

Easy Cabbage Recipe #3 - Roasted Cabbage Wedges

Sometimes the thought of shredding cabbage is just plain ole' too much!! So what I can do that is easy and quick is to make Roasted Cabbage Wedges.  After all - we all love those salad wedges that are loaded with Ranch or Blue Cheese Dressing - but when we are on a fat loss journey this won't exactly help us out.  Soooo….let's use Cabbage and make it healthy!!


  1. Pre-heat oven to 400 degrees
  2. Cut the cabbage into 4-6 wedges. 
  3. Using the Flavor Combos above….I am going to pick something to make a marinade.  So I will use Olive Oil, lemon juice, salt, pepper , soy sauce and some fennel seeds.

**Now you are probably asking "how much of each Jennifer??  How much of everything do I put?"

The standard is to use about 2 TBSP. of oil.  Remember oil is high in calories but we need something like it so the marinade doesn't dry up.  But to add more liquid I use lemon juice and soy sauce.  Maybe you like more lemon or maybe you like it more salty so you may want to use more soy sauce.  Always start with a tablespoon or so and then mix the ingredients together and taste it.  If it tastes the way you like - then you are good!! If you would like it to have more tang - add more lemon.  

If you don't have lemon you can use a vinegar - maybe a balsamic or red wine vinegar.  There really isn't a "right" way……the way you like it is the right way for you.  As long as you know what flavors work well together you really cannot go wrong.

After you make your marinade - drizzle it on top of the cabbage and bake it for 30-40 minutes or until the cabbage reaches your desired tenderness.

Easy Cabbage Recipe #4 - Turkey Cabbage Soup

I used to live in New York and the winters were long and cold.  My favorite thing to make in the winter was soup.  I was obsessed with making soup!!  And one of my favorites was turkey-cabbage soup - but the original recipe was nothing like it.  It was actually a beef and cabbage soup but I don't really like to eat beef and I thought the broth was kind of plain so I completely changed it!!

Soup is so easy to make from scratch.  We now we need one thing - a broth.

So plan to have about 5 cups of a liquid.  I actually used vegetable broth and low sodium tomato juice.  I had some tomato juice leftover from when my dad was visiting and I don't really like it - but it was a liquid and tomatoes are a good Flavor Combo that goes with cabbage - so I made my broth base out of 3 cups of veggie broth and 2 cups of tomato juice.

Then I needed some seasonings - so look on the FLAVOR COMBO list above and choose some seasonings that you like.  I used onions, garlic, salt, pepper and crushed red pepper flakes.  I sauteed the onion in about 1 TBSP. olive oil and about 2 TBSP. of veggie broth.  I then added the garlic and a 2 chicken boullion cubes to my broth for a little extra flavor.

So far these are pretty are easy cabbage recipes - don't you think?

I also browned some ground turkey and placed in on the side.

I sliced up about 3 cups of green cabbage.

Then I took a look in my veggie drawer in my fridge and had some carrots, celery, leeks and fennel.  I chopped those up and added everything to the broth and let it cook until the cabbage and veggies were tender.

 

Voila!!! Simple!!!

 

There was plenty left over for lunch the next day.  Easy cabbage recipes to make nutritious, whole foods.


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