Cabbage and Noodles, pan-fried with onions in butter, is pure comfort food. It’s the type of plain and simple fare that makes bellies full and happy. Serve it as a side dish or, as we often do in our house, as a full meal. This is a budget-friendly dish that your family will love.
Where I grew up, in the mountains of the coal and steel region of southwestern Pennsylvania, just outside of Pittsburgh, we call this haluski (pronounced hal-oosh-sky). And in Pittsburgh and the surrounding region, it’s a very popular dish – no fair, food truck or celebration is complete without it. It’s is a dish of central and eastern European origins, particularly Polish, Ukrainian, Slovak, German, and/or Hungarian traditions (although my Polish husband would probably call this kluski z kapusta), but it’s also a common Pennsylvania Dutch recipe, referred to simply as Fried Cabbage and Noodles.
And while other cooks in other parts of the world sometimes make their versions of this recipe with potato dumplings, Pittsburgh-style haluski is typically made with homemade or store-bought egg noodles, along with cabbage, caramelized onions, and lots and lots of butter. It’s seasoned simply with just salt and pepper, and maybe a dash of paprika. Add in some kielbasa, and/or some bacon to make it an even heartier meal. Plain, simple, and oh-so-delicious.
Before we get to the recipe, let’s talk ingredients:
Butter – Use your favorite salted or unsalted butter in this recipe. This is a very unfussy recipe, and you can adjust the amount of salt to your liking when seasoning the dish.
Canola oil – I like to add a tablespoon of oil just to keep the butter from getting dark and burning, but you can skip the oil and use all butter – just be careful not to burn it. You can also use another kind of neutral-flavored, like grapeseed or avocado oil, in place of canola. Olive oil is also acceptable but it might add a slight olive-oil flavor.
Onions – I prefer a yellow onion, but use whatever onion you like and have on hand.
Cabbage – A small to medium-sized head of green cabbage is what I use. Savoy cabbage will work, too. I’m not precise in my measurements here because the recipe is flexible. If you love cabbage or want to reduce the carbs, use fewer noodles and more cabbage. If you are more interested in the buttered noodles, use more noodles and less cabbage.
Egg Noodles – If I’m not using my homemade egg noodles, I like to use the store-bought wide egg noodles that are made without the yolks. They have a bit of a firmer texture and seem to hold up well in this recipe. Use whatever egg noodle you prefer.
- When boiling the noodles, don’t overcook them. They should still be firm and slightly chewy because they will continue to cook when added to the cabbage.
- Before draining the noodles, reserve 1/4 cup of the starchy cooking liquid. I sometimes find it helpful to have on hand in case the cabbage and noodles seem too dry or I feel like I need to add in a little bit of liquid to bring everything together.
- Although it’s not a traditional ingredient, I sometimes add finely-diced green bell pepper for a little extra flavor.
- If you want to round out the dish with some meat, add some bacon and/or kielbasa to this recipe.
- If you plan on adding in some bacon, don’t waste the delicious bacon grease. Cook your bacon, then remove to a towel-lined plate. Then go ahead and fry the onions and cabbage in the bacon grease, adding in a tablespoon of butter (or two) if necessary. Crumble in the cooked bacon at the end and toss everything to combine.
- If adding kielbasa, you’ll want to slice the kielbasa and saute until golden brown, then toss with the finished dish.
- If you enjoy a creamy dish, toss the fried cabbage and noodles with a bit of cottage cheese and/or sour cream.
If you try this recipe, I hope you love it! Leave a review for this recipe or give it a rating in the comments below.
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