This Cabbage Roll In A Bowl recipe is made with ground beef, rice, and tomato sauce. These unstuffed cabbage rolls are healthy and easy!
The idea of making straight-up cabbage rolls seemed a little cumbersome so to simplify things I deconstructed it - This Unstuffed Cabbage Rolls are everything that's awesome about cabbage rolls but WAY simpler to make!
Things have been a little chaotic in our neck of the woods lately. My husband and I decided to purchase our first home. We are now settled and in love with the place but the road leading up to this point has been...stressful.
Packing up all our belongings and moving during the most brutal winter in recent history (the HIGH temperature on the day we moved was 0 degrees Fahrenheit) coupled with a nonstop bout of cold and flu made the whole process a trying one.
Nothing about the past few months has been smooth but I'm in my new kitchen and excited to get back into the cooking swing of things!
I thought I'd get back into it and attempt to establish some kind of normalcy with a dish that celebrates one of my favorite holidays - St. Patrick's Day.
My favorite thing about this holiday are the cabbage rolls that are served at our local pub during their annual Irish buffet.
What Is A Cabbage Roll?
A cabbage roll is a dish that consists of rice and some form of minced meat that is cooked and then stuffed into a boiled cabbage leaf. The rolls are then baked and sometimes covered in a sauce.
There is no 'one' variety of cabbage roll - You can find them in the cuisines of Poland and Eastern Europe, the Balkans, and even Iran. I went for one that closely mimicked the flavors of those at my beloved Irish buffet.
AND because my life has been utter chaos the past few months I went ahead and made it in bowl-form. Instead of boiling and stuffing the cabbage leaves in this version the cabbage is chopped.
How To Make Unstuffed Cabbage Rolls
- Take 1 head of cabbage and shred it with a knife. Be sure to remove any dirty or damaged outer leaves and also to remove the core.
- Cut the remainder of the cabbage into thin shreds with your knife.
Sauté The Ground Beef
The next step is to saute the meat along with some minced garlic and onions.
You can use any type of meat you like with this recipe - I went for ground hamburger because it's what I had on hand but you could use ground turkey, chicken, lamb, or even venison.
- Start by mincing 6 cloves of garlic and 1 large onion.
- Heat a skillet to medium and add 1 Tbsp. of olive oil.
- Add the minced garlic and onions to the skillet and saute for 2-3 minutes, stirring often.
- Add 1 lb. of ground beef (or meat of choice) along with ½ tsp. kosher salt and pepper to the skillet and saute for 5-6 minutes or until fully cooked through. Break the meat apart with a spatula and stir often as it cooks.
- Add 2 tsp. smoked paprika and 2 tsp. Italian seasoning to the beef. Stir until incorporated.
How To Make Rice For Cabbage Roll In A Bowl
The rice is another essential component in this dish - It's made in a separate skillet but can be prepared at the same time as the meat making this a quick and simple meal!
- Heat a separate skillet to medium and add 1 Tbsp. of olive oil.
- Add 1 ½ cups of long-grain white rice to the skillet and saute for 1-2 minutes, stirring often. This helps to toast the rice and deepens the flavor a little bit.
- Add 2 cups of low-sodium chicken broth (you can also use beef or vegetable broth) and stir to combine.
- Add 1 15 oz. can and 1 8 oz. can of tomato sauce to the rice and broth and stir to combine.
- Bring to a light boil and then reduce the heat to medium-low.
- Cover the rice and cook for 20-25 minutes, stirring every 5 minutes or so to prevent sticking. Remove the rice from heat when it is fully cooked and all the liquid has been absorbed.
*If rice appears to dry out simply add more chicken stock and cook until it reaches desired consistency. Cooking times may vary slightly.
Add Cabbage To The Skillet
After the meat is cooked (and while the rice is cooking) add the shredded cabbage to the skillet. You can use as much as you like. 1 head of cabbage yields about 8 cups - I added 6 cups to this recipe but you can add the full head if you like.
- Add the shredded cabbage to the skillet along with ½ tsp. of kosher salt and pepper (it will seem like A LOT of cabbage at first but it does cook down).
- Saute the cabbage for 5-8 minutes or until it has cooked down quite a bit.
- Add 2 Tbsp. of Worcestershire sauce and 2 Tbsp. of apple cider vinegar to the skillet. Stir to combine.
What To Serve With Cabbage Roll In A Bowl
At this point all the components are finished and everything gets tossed together. Spoon the cooked rice into the skillet with the sauteed meat and cabbage. Stir everything together until completely combined.
Alternately, you can place the rice on the bottom of the bowl and top it with the cabbage/beef mixture. Either way is delicious!
This recipe is modeled after the 'Egg Roll In A Bowl' that has been super popular over the past few years. The ingredients are basically tossed in a big bowl instead of getting stuffed, wrapped, or rolled.
Looking for more ground beef recipes? Dont' miss these!
- Tater Tot Hotdish
- Philly Cheese Steak Sloppy Joes
- Juicy Lucy Burger
- Cheesy Beef and Bean Enchiladas
- Slow Cooker Ground Beef Chili
- Pizza Stuffed Peppers
- Blue Cheese Burgers
- Southwest Poblano Burgers
This dish totally tastes like a cabbage roll - The rice is cooked in tomato sauce which makes it a little tangy, the Worcestershire sauce gives it a nice savory quality, the apple cider vinegar brightens it up, and the cabbage makes it, well, cabbage-y.
If you love the original but don't have the time to make them then this is the dish for you!
How Long Does This Unstuffed Cabbage Roll Last?
This Cabbage Roll In A Bowl should last 3-4 days stored in an airtight container in the fridge.
Be sure to allow it to come to room temperature before placing in fridge.
Here's hoping for calmer days and for Minnesota to come out of the deep freeze we've experienced the past few months. And here's to lots of tasty cabbage dishes this St. Patrick's Day!
Love cabbage? Check out these recipes!
- Light and Crunchy Coleslaw
- Asian Cabbage Slaw
- Fish Tacos with Spicy Cilantro Slaw
- Blue Cheese Coleslaw
- Smoky Chipotle Coleslaw
- Turkey Rachel with Coleslaw
- Corned Beef Reuben with Sauerkraut
- Sheet Pan German Sausage
Looking For More Cabbage Dishes? Don't Miss These!
Cabbage Roll In A Bowl
- 6 cloves garlic
- 1 large onion
- 6-8 cups cabbage red or green cabbage will work
- 1 lb. ground hamburger can use turkey, chicken, lamb, or venison
- 2 Tbsp. olive oil split
- 1 ½ cups long grain white rice
- 2 cups low sodium chicken broth
- 1 15 oz. can tomato sauce
- 1 8 oz. can tomato sauce
- 2 tsp. smoked paprika or regular paprika
- 2 tsp. Italian seasoning
- 2 Tbsp. Worcestershire sauce
- 2 Tbsp. apple cider vinegar
- 1 tsp. salt split
- 1 tsp. pepper split
- Mince 6 cloves of garlic and 1 large onion.
- Remove and discard the out leaves from 1 head of cabbage. Shred the cabbage with a knife, removing the core (yields about 8 cups of cabbage).
- Heat a large skillet or Dutch oven to medium and add 1 Tbsp. of olive oil. Add the garlic and onions to the skillet and saute for 2-3 minutes, stirring often.
- Add 1 lb. of ground beef (can use ground turkey, chicken, lamb, or venison as well) along with ½ tsp. kosher salt and pepper to the garlic and onions. Saute the hamburger for 5-6 minutes, breaking it up with a spatula. Continue until meat is fully cooked through. Add 2 tsp. smoked paprika and 2 tsp. Italian seasoning to the beef. Stir until incorporated.
- Heat a separate skillet to medium and add 1 Tbsp. of olive oil. Add 1 ½ cups of long-grain white rice. Saute the rice for 1-2 minutes, stirring often.
- Add 2 cups of low-sodium chicken broth (can use vegetable or beef broth) to the rice along with 1 15 oz. can and 1 8 oz. can of tomato sauce. Stir to incorporate. Bring the rice to a light boil and then reduce heat to medium-low. Cover and cook for 20-25 minutes or until the rice has softened and all of the liquid has absorbed. Stir every 5 minutes or so to prevent sticking. Remove from heat when finished.*If rice appears to dry out simply add more chicken stock and cook until it reaches desired consistency.
- While the rice is cooking add 6-8 cups of chopped cabbage to the cooked hamburger along with ½ tsp. kosher salt and pepper. Saute the cabbage for 6-8 minutes, stirring often. The cabbage should cook down quite a bit during this process.
- Add the cooked rice to the cabbage and hamburger mixture. Stir all of the ingredients together until combined. Adjust salt and pepper to taste.Alternately, you can serve the cabbage/beef mixture on top of the rice.