Stuffed Cabbage Soup

Among the vegetables I grow in my fall garden, I would have a hard time choosing a favorite. But if for some crazy reason I absolutely had to choose one favorite fall vegetable, it would be the cabbage. I love them all – green, red, savoy, napa, bok choy. But I sometimes feel like the humble cabbage doesn’t get its due, and has been overshadowed in recent years by it’s trendier cousin kale. Now don’t get me wrong, I love kale, too, and we sure eat plenty of it. But for me, cabbage is a favorite fall and winter staple. It’s got a lot going for it – cheap, healthy, and versatile (and with many available varieties).  And a head of cabbage is a good keeper, too –  if kept cool, it can last in storage for many weeks.

Hearty Homemade Stuffed Cabbage Soup

Because cabbage is available year-round at the supermarket, those who aren’t gardeners may not realize that cabbage is primarily a cool weather (fall and spring) vegetable. And cool weather is when cabbage is truly at its best. Now a supermarket cabbage is just fine, but if you can grow a few heads of cabbage in the fall, or pick up a locally-grown one at your market, do it. Trust me on this. A frost-kissed, locally-grown fall cabbage is just so sweet and tasty. There is something about harvesting cabbage in the cool weather, just after a light frost that brings out its natural sweetness. Where I live in the southern Appalachians, these sweet fall and spring cabbages are known as mountain cabbages. And though I do grow some of my own cabbage, I usually end up buying several more mountain cabbages at a local farm. I use them all fall and winter in soups, stews, casseroles, and even just fried in a skillet.

One of my favorite ways to eat cabbage is in stuffed cabbage rolls (or golabki as my Polish husband calls them.)  The thing is, cabbage rolls take a lot of time and effort. A big pan of stuffed cabbages is just right for a Sunday dinner.  But on a busy weeknight? Definitely not. So for a simpler version, I often make this Stuffed Cabbage Soup. Easy to make, basic ingredients, inexpensive, nourishing, and delicious – I mean, does it get any better? Just brown the meat, chop the veggies, and throw everything in a pot to simmer. Done.

Hearty Homemade Stuffed Cabbage Soup

If you enjoy meal-prepping, you can even chop the veggies the evening before. As an added bonus, this soup freezes well, so you may want to spend a few extra minutes of preparation and make a double batch to have some for the freezer. Just reheat for an easy, quick meal. And I like to keep it simple and serve with a side of warm, crusty bread slathered with butter!

I hope you try this recipe, and if you do, I hope you love it. Please let me know in the comments below.


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Hearty Homemade Stuffed Cabbage Soup

Stuffed Cabbage Soup

Yield: 6-8 Servings


  • 1 tablespoon olive or avocado oil
  • 1 ½ pounds 85% ground beef (grass-fed, if possible)
  • 1 onion, diced
  • 1 green bell pepper, diced
  • 1 medium head of cabbage, cored and coarsely chopped
  • 1 28-ounce can crushed tomatoes
  • 6 cups beef stock or broth
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1 teaspoon dried dill weed
  • 2 teaspoons paprika
  • Dash of Worcestershire sauce
  • ½ cup uncooked rice
  • Salt and Pepper


  1. In a large stock pot or Dutch oven, heat oil over medium heat. Add ground beef, onion, and bell peppers. Season with a big pinch of salt and pepper. Cook until beef is browned and cooked through and and vegetables are soft and slightly golden.
  2. Add chopped cabbage, tomatoes, stock, bay leaf, dill, paprika and Worcestershire sauce. Bring to a boil, then reduce to a simmer. Simmer, uncovered for 45 minutes, or until cabbage is just tender.
  3. Add rice and simmer for another 30 minutes.
  4. Season to taste with salt and pepper.

Homemade Stuffed Cabbage Soup

Want more great recipes? Visit my friends at the following blogs:

Full Plate Thursday at Miz Helen’s Country Cottage

Meal Plan Monday at a Southern Bite

Weekend Potluck at The Country Cook


  • Miz Helen
    October 1, 2018 at 5:58 pm

    We will love your Stuffed Cabbage Soup, it looks delicious! Thanks so much for sharing with Full Plate Thursday and have a great week!
    Miz Helen

    • Melissa
      October 2, 2018 at 1:55 am

      Thank-you, Miz Helen, for always being such a gracious hostess!

  • Barbara Warner
    October 6, 2018 at 5:37 pm

    You can be sure I’m making this. I love stuffed cabbage rolls and this is an easy way to achieve that flavor without actually rolling cabbage leaves! Love soup, too, and it will hit the spot on a cool autumn day. Thanks for sharing.

    • Melissa
      October 8, 2018 at 3:12 pm

      I hope you enjoy!

  • Donna B
    October 8, 2018 at 2:20 pm

    This week will be cool in SOCa so I’m looking forward to soup on my menu before we get our Santa Ana winds and we’re back to salads for a while! This recipe looks delicious and easy. Hooray for Fall!!

    • Melissa
      October 8, 2018 at 3:11 pm

      I totally agree – hooray for fall! And I hope you enjoy the soup!

  • Laura
    October 10, 2018 at 1:47 am

    I’m really looking forward to making this soup!

    • Melissa
      October 10, 2018 at 2:54 pm

      It really is a great fall soup. I hope you enjoy it!

      • Laura
        October 16, 2018 at 1:37 am

        It is fabulous! I made the soup tonight and loved it. Fortunately, I have some remaining, so I can have a lunch at work I’ll actually look forward to!

        • Melissa
          October 17, 2018 at 5:10 pm

          I am so glad you liked it!

  • Pat
    October 18, 2018 at 3:30 pm

    Your receipes sound delicious going to try cabbage soup

    • Melissa
      October 19, 2018 at 5:49 pm

      Hope you enjoy!

  • Baboo
    December 29, 2018 at 8:00 pm

    When I have a soup that calls for rice, I like to cook the rice separately . Then I put my rice in the bottom of my soup bowl and add the soup over the rice. By doing it this way the rice doesn’t get mushy if I have leftover soup. I look forward to trying this soon.

    • Melissa
      December 30, 2018 at 3:40 pm

      Great idea! I hope you enjoy!

  • Dani
    August 11, 2020 at 4:59 pm

    So good! I made a second batch just for the freezer.

  • Barb
    August 11, 2020 at 5:04 pm

    The whole family loved it and we had leftover for lunch the next day.

  • Nancy Sands
    January 1, 2022 at 3:25 pm

    Going to make this but use cauliflower rice to cut carbs

  • Lorraine
    January 2, 2022 at 7:37 pm

    My Mother always made Kapusta, a Polish cabbage soup. However, I never asked for the recipe so now I will try this one.

    Thanks so much for sharing.


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