Lebanese Cabbage Rolls

Lebanese Cabbage Rolls

2 Reviews
From: EatingWell Magazine, September/October 2012

These Lebanese cabbage rolls are stuffed with lamb and infused with the flavors of turmeric, ground ginger and allspice.

Ingredients 4 servings

for serving adjustment
Serving size has been adjusted!
Original recipe yields 4 servings
Nutrition per serving may change if servings are adjusted.
  • ½ cup bulgur
  • 1 large head Savoy cabbage
  • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 2 cups finely chopped onion
  • 1 cup finely chopped leeks, white and light green parts only
  • ¾ teaspoon salt
  • ¾ teaspoon freshly ground pepper
  • ½ teaspoon ground turmeric
  • ¼ teaspoon ground ginger
  • ¼ teaspoon ground allspice
  • Pinch of ground cinnamon
  • 12 ounces ground lamb
  • ½ cup chopped flat-leaf parsley
  • 2 teaspoons chopped fresh mint
  • 1 large egg, lightly beaten
  • ½ cup white wine
  • ½ cup reduced-sodium chicken broth
  • 2 teaspoons grated lemon zest
  • 3 tablespoons lemon juice, divided
  • 1 egg yolk


  • Active

  • Ready In

  1. Prepare bulgur according to package directions; transfer to a medium bowl.
  2. Preheat oven to 325°F.
  3. Bring 2½ cups water to a boil in a large skillet. Trim bottom of cabbage and separate leaves. Add the 8 largest leaves to the boiling water, cover, reduce heat to medium-high and simmer until softened, 5 to 7 minutes. Transfer to a clean work surface to cool. Reserve the remaining leaves.
  4. Meanwhile, heat oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Stir in onion and leeks. Cover and cook, stirring occasionally, until the vegetables are soft, 5 to 8 minutes. Stir in salt, pepper, turmeric, ginger, allspice and cinnamon; cook, stirring, 1 minute more. Transfer the mixture to the bowl with the bulgur and let stand until cool enough to handle, about 5 minutes. Add the lamb, parsley, mint and lightly beaten egg. Gently knead the mixture with your hands until well blended.
  5. Line a 9-by-13-inch baking pan with some of the uncooked cabbage leaves. Place about ½ cup of filling over the root end of each cooked leaf. Fold in the sides and roll up to form a bundle. Lay the cabbage rolls seam-side down in the pan. Combine wine, broth, lemon zest and 2 tablespoons lemon juice. Pour over the cabbage rolls. Cover tightly with foil.
  6. Bake until the thicker ribs of the cabbage leaves are very tender and an instant-read thermometer inserted into a roll registers at least 165°F, 45 minutes to 1 hour.
  7. Transfer the rolls and cabbage leaves to a serving platter; tent with foil to keep warm. Carefully pour the juice from the pan into a small saucepan; bring to a boil over medium-high heat and boil until reduced by about half, 6 to 10 minutes. Whisk the remaining 1 tablespoon lemon juice and egg yolk in a small bowl. Whisk the reduced liquid into the lemon-yolk mixture, then pour the sauce back into the pan. Cook over low heat, whisking constantly, until thickened enough to coat the back of a spoon, 2 to 4 minutes. (Take care not to overheat the sauce or the egg will curdle.) Serve the rolls with the sauce.
  • Make Ahead Tip: Prepare cabbage leaves (Step 3); make stuffing (Steps 1 & 4), omit egg; refrigerate separately up to 1 day. Add egg and continue with Steps 5-7.

Nutrition information

  • Serving size: 2 cabbage rolls & 2 tablespoons sauce
  • Per serving: 521 calories; 30 g fat(11 g sat); 10 g fiber; 38 g carbohydrates; 24 g protein; 214 mcg folate; 155 mg cholesterol; 9 g sugars; 0 g added sugars; 2,879 IU vitamin A; 77 mg vitamin C; 146 mg calcium; 4 mg iron; 642 mg sodium; 951 mg potassium
  • Nutrition Bonus: Vitamin C (128% daily value), Vitamin A (58% dv), Folate (54% dv), Iron (22% dv)
  • Carbohydrate Servings:
  • Exchanges: 2½ medium-fat meat, 1 starch, 5 vegetable, 3½ fat

Reviews 2

February 27, 2013
profile image
By: EatingWell User
Great! Everyone LOVES this......with a few adjustments. The wine was not popular so I left that out. I used regular cabbage so needed 2 heads to use up all the filling. I found on another website that it is easier to take the leaves off by putting the cabbage in the microwave in a dish of water for 10 minutes. It takes some time to prepare but definitely worth the effort!
January 13, 2013
profile image
By: EatingWell User
Outstanding flavor but a bit labor-intensive We loved the flavor and texture of this tasty recipe. I substituted instant brown rice for bulgur and ground beef for lamb. Otherwise, the recipe was followed to the letter. Even though the brown rice was a leftover, it still seemed to take forever to put this together. In the end, it was absolutely worth it, but just be forewarned not to try this on the fly. I think it would be an excellent dish for guests. Pros: Unusual, interesting; Delicate balance of flavors; addictive! Cons: Each step took some time; make sure you aren't in a hurry!
More Reviews