Stuffed Cabbage Rolls

I’m always looking for a new way to jazz up an old favorite. I’m also a big fan of one dish meals. So when I saw some beautiful napa cabbage at the farmer’s market last week, I knew immediately that I wanted to make stuffed cabbage rolls. Now, I’ve never had a cabbage roll I didn’t like. Most of them have the same basic ingredients – ground beef, cabbage, tomato sauce. Pretty standard, right? The difference is in the spices (and if you’ve looked at some of my previous posts, you know how I love spices!)


These cabbage rolls have a hint of clove in the beef mixture that gives them an herby sweet aroma. Doused in a cilantro scented tomato sauce, each round pocket is packed with flavor. I recommend trying out your own favorite spices in this easy-to-make dish and surprise yourself with your own ingenuity! At around 50 calories per roll, you have every reason to enjoy!


  • 24 napa cabbage leaves
  • 1 lb extra lean ground beef (97/3)
  • 1/3 cup chopped onion
  • 1/3 cup chopped celery
  • 2/3 cup chopped mushrooms
  • 1 tsp garlic powder
  • 1 tsp ground cloves
  • 1 tsp paprika
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 2 tsp ground black pepper, divided
  • 1 tsp red pepper flakes
  • ¼ cup chopped fresh cilantro
  • 1 28oz can crushed tomatoes



Preheat oven to 350 degrees.


In a large bowl place the ground beef, onion, celery, mushroom, garlic powder, cloves, paprika, salt and 1 teaspoons of the black pepper. Using your hands, mix until combined. Set aside.


Heat a large pot of water over medium high heat until simmering. Dunk the cabbage leaves in the water and cook until softened, about 5 minutes. Carefully remove each leaf from the pot, letting the excess water drip off, and lay flat on a platter. Let cool for 5 minutes.

On a flat surface, lay out one of the cabbage leaves. Place about 2 tablespoons of the beef mixture in the middle of the leaf. Roll up from the stem end, tucking in the sides. Line up the rolls in a 9×13 glass baking dish.

In another large bowl, stir together the crushed tomatoes, cilantro, red pepper flakes and the remaining 1 teaspoon of black pepper. Pour the sauce evenly over the cabbage rolls.

Cover with foil and bake for 45 minutes, removing the foil for the last 10 minutes of cooking time. Remove from the oven and let cool for about 8 minutes.

Using a large spoon, dish out the rolls on each plate to serve.

Servings: 12    Serving Size: 2 rolls

Calories: 109               Fat: 3g             Sat. Fat: 1.2g   Carbs: 8.1g

Sodium: 753.5mg        Fiber: 2.5g       Sugar: 2.7g      Protein: 12.3g

6 Responses to “Stuffed Cabbage Rolls”

  • Great photos – they look fabulous! Yum, I love stuffed cabbage rolls.

  • Mom says:

    Another recipe I will have to try. Thanks.

  • Tricia Berg says:

    We made this last night but with lower amounts of seasoning. Even cutting them all by more than half it was too much for my kids. My hubby and I liked it, but I think I will use no more than 1/8 tsp of clove and the salt and pepper will get the minimize as well.

    I love the concept, but this dish would have been inedible for us with the spice measures listed.

    • Barbara says:


      Thank you for the comment. I went back and double checked my original recipe for the spice amounts and I had made a mistake with some of the spices listed as I had originally created this as a double recipe. Thank you for bringing this to my attention. I have corrected the spice amounts.

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Hi! I'm Barbara and yes, I cook! Welcome to my world of mouth-watering delicious food that you don't have to feel guilty about.
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