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Vegetarian Stuffed Cabbage

March/April 2014

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Though traditional stuffed cabbage recipes are made with meat, here Savoy cabbage leaves are stuffed with a combination of rice, mushrooms, onions, garlic and herbs for a healthy vegetarian stuffed cabbage recipe. The stuffed cabbage leaves gently bake in a simple tomato sauce. This easy stuffed cabbage recipe can be made ahead of time and baked just before serving.


Makes: 4 servings

Serving Size: 2 rolls

Active Time:

Total Time:

Ingredients

Cabbage & Filling

  • 1 cup water
  • 1/2 cup short-grain brown rice
  • 1 teaspoon extra-virgin olive oil plus 2 tablespoons, divided
  • 1 large Savoy cabbage (2-3 pounds)
  • 1 pound baby bella mushrooms, finely chopped
  • 1 large onion, finely chopped
  • 4 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried rubbed sage
  • 1/2 teaspoon crumbled dried rosemary
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt, divided
  • 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground pepper plus 1/8 teaspoon, divided
  • 1/2 cup red wine
  • 1/4 cup dried currants
  • 1/3 cup toasted pine nuts (see Tips), chopped

Sauce

  • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, divided
  • 1 small onion, chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground pepper
  • 1 28-ounce can no-salt-added crushed tomatoes (see Tips)
  • 1/2 cup red wine

Preparation

  1. To prepare cabbage & filling: Combine water, rice and 1 teaspoon oil in a medium saucepan; bring to a boil. Reduce heat to maintain the barest simmer, cover and cook until the water is absorbed and the rice is just tender, 40 to 50 minutes. Transfer to a large bowl and set aside.
  2. Meanwhile, half fill a large pot with water and bring to a boil. Line a baking sheet with a clean kitchen towel and place near the stove.
  3. Using a small, sharp knife, remove the core from the bottom of the cabbage. Add the cabbage to the boiling water and cook for 5 minutes. As the leaves soften, use tongs to gently remove 8 large outer leaves. Transfer the leaves to the baking sheet and pat with more towels to thoroughly dry. Set aside.
  4. Drain the remaining cabbage in a colander for a few minutes. Finely chop enough to get about 3 cups. (Save any remaining cabbage for another use.)
  5. Heat 1 1/2 tablespoons oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add mushrooms, onion, garlic, sage, rosemary and 1/4 teaspoon each salt and pepper; cook, stirring, until the mushrooms have released their juices and the pan is fairly dry, 8 to 10 minutes. Add wine and cook, stirring, until evaporated, about 3 minutes more. Add the mixture to the cooked rice along with currants and pine nuts.
  6. Heat the remaining 1/2 tablespoon oil in the skillet over medium-high. Add the chopped cabbage, the remaining 1/4 teaspoon salt and 1/8 teaspoon pepper; cook, stirring, until the cabbage is wilted and just beginning to brown, 3 to 5 minutes. Add to the rice mixture.
  7. To prepare sauce: Heat 1 tablespoon oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add onion, garlic, salt and pepper and cook, stirring, until starting to soften, 2 to 4 minutes. Add tomatoes and wine; bring to a simmer and cook until slightly thickened, about 10 minutes.
  8. Preheat oven to 375°F.
  9. To stuff cabbage: Place a reserved cabbage leaf on your work surface; cut out the thick stem in the center, keeping the leaf intact. Place about 3/4 cup filling in the center. Fold both sides over the filling and roll up. Repeat with the remaining 7 leaves and filling.
  10. Spread 1 cup of the tomato sauce in a 9-by-13-inch baking dish. Place the stuffed cabbage rolls, seam side down, on the sauce. Pour the remaining sauce over the rolls and drizzle with the remaining 1 tablespoon oil.
  11. Bake, uncovered, basting twice with the sauce, until hot, about 45 minutes.

Tips & Notes

  • Make Ahead Tip: Prepare through Step 10, cover and refrigerate for up to 1 day. Let stand at room temperature for about 30 minutes before baking.
  • For the best flavor, toast nuts and seeds before using in a recipe. To toast small nuts, chopped nuts & seeds, place in a small dry skillet and cook over medium-low heat, stirring constantly, until fragrant and lightly browned, 2 to 4 minutes.
  • Sodium amounts vary widely among brands of plum and crushed. And although it can be hard to find any labeled “no-salt-added,” for the best tomato flavor we use brands that have little or no added sodium. Compare nutrition labels and choose one that has 190 mg sodium or less per 1/2-cup serving.

Nutrition

Per serving: 543 calories; 24 g fat (3 g sat, 14 g mono); 0 mg cholesterol; 61 g carbohydrates; 0 g added sugars; 22 g total sugars; 14 g protein; 12 g fiber; 499 mg sodium; 1830 mg potassium.

Nutrition Bonus: Vitamin C (118% daily value), Vitamin A (67% dv), Potassium (52% dv), Folate (45% dv), Iron (36% dv), Magnesium (26% dv), Zinc (18% dv)

Carbohydrate Servings: 3 1/2

Exchanges: 1 starch, 6 vegetable, 4 1/2 fat


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Recipe Categories

Type of Dish
Main dish, vegetarian
Ethnic/Regional
Middle Eastern
Ease of Preparation
Moderate
Total Time
More than 1 hour
Main Ingredient
Vegetarian, other
Preparation/ Technique
Bake
Saute
Meal/Course
Dinner

Publication
March/April 2014
20 minute dinner recipes
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