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Red Cabbage Recipes

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Van Gogh's Red Cabbage And Onions

Even Van Gogh was inspired by delicious red cabbages!

Even Van Gogh was inspired by delicious red cabbages!

Red Cabbage, But It's Really Purple

Red cabbage is not one of those vegetable you here people raving about but it is quite tasty. Especially when you cook it with pork or some other meat. I can't remember when I first had red cabbage but I do know that I have always loved it. My first experiences with cabbage were with my grandmother when I was less than 8 years old. She would prepare elaborate southern buffets for the family that included sauer kraut, stewed cabbage, cabbage rolls, cole slaws and other cabbage based delights. Later my family moved to Germany where I continued my love affair with the crunchy leaf. If you don't already know, cabbage is an important food stuff in Europe.

  • Red Cabbage has a bright purple color and is sometimes called purple cabbage, purple kraut or even blue kraut. The plant, depending on pH, can sometimes be a deep dark blue. Red cabbage will also turn a much more vivid jewel toned purple with the addition of acid to your recipes. This is easy to see with my braised red cabbage recipe.

Eventually we returned to the states and went on to college. Upon entering culinary school I was introduced to a much wider variety of cabbage than I had every known. There are dozens of varieties of cabbage from around the world and cabbage is a prominent feature of nearly every type of cuisine. I like them all but this article is about the red kind so these are the recipes I am including. Be on the look out for follow up pieces focused on Napa Cabbage, Savoy Cabbage, Eastern Style Cabbage Recipes and more!


  • 2 strips bacon, small dice
  • 1 yellow onion, small dice
  • 1 head red cabbage, julienned
  • 1 15 ounce can, chicken broth
  • 1/4 cup red wine vinegar
  • 1 bay leaf
  • to taste salt and pepper

Braised Red Cabbage, A Meal By Itself

Braised red cabbage is my favorite way to make red cabbage. Braising is a method of cooking similar to stewing that involves moist heat. To make the dish we first create a delicious broth from bacon, onions and chicken stock that we then use to braise the cabbage. One crucial step in making the broth is to sauté the cabbage in the bacon and onions before adding the broth. The resulting dish is so delicious, rich and hearty that it can stand up as a meal on its own.

  • I like to served red cabbage with roast chicken, pot roast, barbecue pork and hamburgers. It also goes well with roast corn and mashed potatoes. Another great way is to serve it with bratwurst, sausages or fried pork chops.

Cook Time

Prep timeCook timeReady inYields

30 min

2 hours

2 hours 30 min

Vary depending on size of cabbage, 4-8 servings

Instructions For Braised Red Cabbage

  1. First warm a pan on medium heat, then add in the diced bacon. Stir while cooking. Cook until fat is rendered and the bacon is turning brown.
  2. Add the diced onions. Stir while cooking, cook until the onions are softened and browning with the bacon.
  3. Next add in the cabbage. After you put it in the pot let it sit without stirring for a few minutes so the pan can heat back up. When you can hear the sizzle come back begin to stir, allowing the cabbage time to saute.
  4. This is the fun part. When the cabbage is sauteed it is time to add the vinegar. Pour it in and stir, your cabbage will change to a rich purple color that borders on blue.
  5. Now add the broth and the bay leaf, bring to a simmer, reduce heat and allow to cook uncovered for 1-2 hours. You may need to add water occasionally but not too much, you're not making soup.

Red Cabbage Is Great With Game Meats

Braised red cabbage is great with game meat like this saddle of venison, duck breast or wild boar.

Braised red cabbage is great with game meat like this saddle of venison, duck breast or wild boar.

Rate These Cabbage Recipes

Creole Red Cabbage Slaw

  • 1 head of red cabbage, shredded
  • 1 carrot finely julienned or shredded
  • 1 red bell pepper finely julienned
  • 1 rib celery finely julienned
  • 1 cup mayonaise
  • 1/4 cup red wine vinegar
  • 1 tsp garlic powder
  • 1 tsp onion poweder
  • 1 tsp cayenne pepper
  • 1/2 TBLS dry thyme
  • 1/2 TBLS ground coriander
  • Salt and pepper to taste
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Red Cabbage Cole Slaw

Red cabbage makes a fun and delicious cole slaw that is great on sandwiches, next to BBQ chicken or by itself. You can use any old cole slaw recipe you want and substitute red cabbage but I have found that I like this recipe the best. This recipe for Creole Style Red Cabbage Slaw is one that I developed during my tenure as Sous Chef at the Biltmore Forest Country Club. We served this as a side dish for lunch and on buffets ranging from Mothers Day to Thanksgiving Day. Since then I have also used it in many other restaurants as a side dish and topper for hot dogs, sandwiches and BBQ.

  • To make Creole Style Red Cabbage Slaw first combine the mayonnaise, vinegar and spices and mix well.
  • Next, pour the dressing over the other ingredients and mix thoroughly, cover and let sit for an hour in the fridge.
  • Before serving give it one last good stir to combine the flavors

If you do not want to use my spice mix you can also substitute 2 TBLS of cajun seasoning, blackening spice or Old Bay for the spices listed here.

The Inside Of A Red Cabbage

Cabbage has a beautiful color. The rich color is a sign of antioxidents like anthocyanin and others.

Cabbage has a beautiful color. The rich color is a sign of antioxidents like anthocyanin and others.


Kristen Howe from Northeast Ohio on April 11, 2015:

Great hub on red cabbage with good recipes too as a side dish. This brings back memories of when my mom and I had jarred red cabbage from the store to use with a beef dishes. I crave red cabbage now. I might try it again this spring. Voted up for useful!

Michelle Dee from Charlotte, NC on January 04, 2014:

I love red cabbage but don't eat it enough. Now I have an excuse to make some :-)

Vivek Pal from New Delhi on August 01, 2013:

Wow Looking Yummy !! Great Recipe

Devika Primić from Dubrovnik, Croatia on August 01, 2013:

Great recipe and looks so delicious, red cabbage is another one of good foods.

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