Tuesday, March 14, 2017

Deconstructed Cabbage Roll Skillet

I love cabbage rolls on chilly late winter days - they're homey, comfort food, frugal and filling.  But I don't make them often, as I find the whole process of cooking and then rolling the cabbage to be tedious, and when I'm after simple comfort food, the last thing I want is tedious work.

So, this is my lazy day (or busy day) version - the same homestyle taste, with much easier preparation. It loses a bit in the presentation, but when I'm having One of Those Days, that is not my priority.

As with most of my recipes, this isn't fussy  and it's very modifiable - use whatever ground meat you have on hand (pork sausage is a nice touch), toss in an extra vegetable if you like, and switch up the seasoning - I suggest an Italian seasoning blend mainly because I always have it on hand, but you could use a Mexican seasoning (not traditional, but tasty!), or a Greek seasoning - or just stick to salt and pepper if that's what you have.

Same with the tomatoes - I like the little kick I get from Rotel, but a large can of fire roasted tomatoes is just fine, or your homemade stewed, or none at all if your family has issues with cooked tomato bits.  If you leave them out, do add extra tomato sauce/juice, etc.

See what I mean? This is meant to be done using whatever it is you generally have on hand and like.

And while I just did the whole thing as a one pot skillet meal, you could certainly turn it into a casserole and let it bake awhile, perhaps topped with more tomato sauce and some cheese.

(what kind of cheese? Whatever kind you have, of course!)

Deconstructed Cabbage Roll Skillet
Serves 4-6

2 Tblsp olive oil
1 onion, diced
1 lb ground beef or other ground meat
1 Tblsp minced garlic
1 Tblsp Worchestershire Sauce
1 cup uncooked rice
2 cans Rotel, undrained
2 cans V-8 juice, tomato juice, or a can of tomato paste + water (total liquid should be about 2 1/2 cups)
1 head cabbage, chopped or shredded
1 Tblsp Italian seasoning blend
Salt and fresh black pepper to taste

Heat a large skillet, dutch oven or wok (you want plenty of room for mixing), add olive oil, and onion, and cook until soft and browned. Add minced garlic, and cook until fragrant (just a minute or so), the add ground meat and Worchestershire, and cook through.

When cooked, drain some of the grease if necessary, and add uncooked rice, mixing with cooked meat to incorporate.

Add chopped cabbage, mixing to blend.

Add seasonings and canned tomatoes and tomato juice (if you prefer use tomato paste and water instead), and mix.

Bring to a boil, then cover and simmer for about a half hour.  Check to make sure cabbage is soft and rice is cooked, and adjust seasonings as needed (I notice this recipe tends to 'eat' seasoning, so often need to add more near the end).  If it needs a bit more liquid, just add some and let it cook a few more minutes - if it is too liquidy, cook uncovered until it reduces down.

It is extremely forgiving of adjustments and extra cooking / warming time. Perfect for a busy family!

Finally, if you like, top with some cheese to serve (we used some cheddar we shredded because it was there - but mozzerella, or Swiss, or a good sprinkle of Parmesan would also be nice with this).

Comfort in a bowl - it's what's for dinner!


  1. I've been meaning to find a one-pot deconstructed cabbage roll recipe, and I think this is the one to try! I often get home from work about an hour before my husband and son do, so this looks like a great weeknight meal. Thanks for sharing it!

  2. Oh wow, yum! Love cabbage! Dropping in from Brag About It to thank you for linking up with us! Pinned :)

  3. Galumpkis (that's what we call them) are one of my favorites. I love how you deconstructed them, so much easier. Thank you for sharing your recipe at the Creative Muster. PINNED
    Robin | Fluster Buster

  4. I make a dish similar to this a and the family loves it. Cabbage is really cheap right now. Thanks for linking up with blogging grandmothers.

  5. Oh, goodness! This looks and sounds so good! Thank you for sharing and thank you for the visit and sweet comment at The Dedicated House. It means the world! Feel free to share this post at my Make it Pretty Monday party which will be live Mon. at 8am. Here's the link to the last party if you want to peruse (I took this week off since we are on Spring Break). http://www.thededicatedhouse.com/2017/03/make-pretty-monday-week-209.html Have a great weekend! Toodles, Kathryn @TheDedicatedHouse

  6. Been making this a couple decades from a friend's recipe. So good. And have you tried the stuffed green pepper soup? Deconstructed the same way.

    1. That'd be a great idea! I can't eat bell peppers - but my husband can, and a batch of that now and then would make him happy!

  7. I think it's fine to make it this way. I mean, it turns out this way after you use your fork to cut into the cabbage roll to eat it :) Thank you Lynda for sharing at #BloggingGrandmothersLinkParty #LinkUp #BlogParty. I shared on social media.

  8. This looks great! I have the same issue; I love cabbage rolls, but only make them when I have time. This makes it where we can have them on work night. Thanks, for sharing!

  9. A great non-fussy recipe. I can never have enough of those and I happen to love cabbage. Thank you for sharing with #blogginggrandmotherslinkparty. #linkparty, #party. I have shared on social media.

  10. I love cabbage and this sounds like a yummy recipe. Thanks for sharing with SYC.

  11. My sister has a huge garden and always plants more cabbage than she knows what to do with, so she gifts it to us. I always run out of ideas as to what to do with it- so I think I'll have try this recipe! Thanks for sharing at My Busy Beehives #beeparty! Hope to see you again!

  12. one pot meals are a favourite of mine, I love the addition of the cheese and I know this would be a great success with my family.



  13. Hey, we make this, too! My family is Ukrainian, so cabbage rolls are comfort food for me too...but too much work unless it's a holiday!

    In fact, we call this dish Holubsti in a Pan, after the Ukrainian word for cabbage rolls - ha ha

    Mmmm...definitely comfort food - glad to hear someone else knows it, too!


    Book By Book

  14. Your Cabbage Roll Skillet looks fantastic! Hope you are having a great week and thanks so much for sharing with us at Full Plate Thursday!
    Miz Helen

  15. Yum, this looks great! Thanks for sharing at the Family Joy Blog Link Party this week!

  16. I am soooo totally going to have to make this soon! Thanks for sharing it with us at #FridayFrivolity!

  17. This looks super yummy! We also have a very similar version here in Greece but without the Worchestershire sauce. Pinning!

  18. Hi,
    Thanks for coming to Blogger's Pit Stop last week.
    Janice, Pit Stop Crew

  19. This looks so good! Thanks for sharing at the Friday at the Fire Station link-up!

  20. I know I would love this skillet dinner. Looks delicious. Thank you for sharing at the Snickerdoodle Create~Bake~Make link party!Pinning

  21. Looks good! Thanks for sharing on the What's for Dinner link up.