Delicious Vegan Smothered Cabbage Recipe

Are you craving a hearty and comforting meal that is both vegan and full of flavor? Look no further than this vegan smothered cabbage recipe! Inspired by the classic Southern fried cabbage dish, this recipe provides a satisfying and healthy twist on a beloved favorite.

The secret to this dish is the fragrant combination of spices like black pepper, mustard seeds, and red pepper flakes that add depth to the shredded green cabbage. The caramelized onions also add a sweet and savory note that will have your taste buds dancing with delight.

Not only is this dish delicious, but it is also packed with nutrients from the cabbage, making it an excellent choice for anyone looking to increase their vegetable intake. Plus, it’s budget-friendly and easy to whip up in under an hour!

Whether you’re in the mood for a cozy weeknight dinner or need a crowd-pleasing side dish for your next gathering, this vegan smothered cabbage recipe will not disappoint. Get ready to enjoy Southern comfort food with a plant-based twist!

Why You’ll Love This Recipe

Vegan Smothered Cabbage
Vegan Smothered Cabbage

When it comes to comfort foods, there’s nothing quite like a delicious and hearty home-cooked meal. And what better way to satisfy that craving than with a vegan smothered cabbage recipe? With its perfect combination of flavors, this dish has quickly become one of my favorites.

First off, cabbage is an incredibly versatile vegetable, making it an ideal base for any number of recipes. When cooked properly, it has a beautiful, slightly sweet flavor that pairs well with a variety of seasonings and spices. In this recipe, we’re enhancing the natural sweetness of the cabbage by adding onion and garlic, creating a delicious and savory taste that’s hard to resist.

Furthermore, our vegan take on the classic southern fried cabbage recipe is free from any animal products. Instead of using ham or sausage like traditional recipes call for, we’re using ingredients such as red pepper flakes and mustard seeds to add some extra heat and depth to the dish. This makes it not only healthier but also more inclusive for our non-meat eating friends and family members.

Lastly, this vegan smothered cabbage recipe is easy to make! With simple instructions and minimal prep time, anyone can create this tasty dish in their own kitchen. It’s perfect for busy weeknights or lazy weekends when you want something comforting without having to put in too much effort.

Overall, whether you’re looking for a new side dish or just craving some good old-fashioned comfort food, this vegan smothered cabbage recipe is sure to please your taste buds. So what are you waiting for? Give it a try!

Ingredient List

 Savor the comfort of this vegan smothered cabbage recipe.
Savor the comfort of this vegan smothered cabbage recipe.

Let’s gather the necessary ingredients for this vegan smothered cabbage recipe, which serves 6-8 people:

  • 1 medium head green cabbage, shredded (about 4 pounds)
  • 1 large yellow onion, chopped
  • 4 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 cup water
  • 2 tsp mustard seeds
  • 1 tablespoon canola oil
  • Red pepper flakes and black pepper, to taste

Note: You can adjust the heat level to your liking by adding more or less red pepper flakes.

This recipe is simple but flavorful. The ingredients are easy to find, and some of them you might already have in your pantry.

The Recipe How-To

 The perfect way to enjoy a hearty meal that's both vegan and delicious.
The perfect way to enjoy a hearty meal that’s both vegan and delicious.

Now that you have gathered all of the ingredients, it is time to put them together and make that delicious vegan smothered cabbage recipe.

  1. Begin by removing the core of your 1 large head green cabbage and chopping it into 2-inch sized pieces. Rinse it thoroughly with cold water.

  2. Preheat your skillet or cast iron pan on medium heat with ¼ cup of canola oil. Add in 1 sliced medium onion and sauté for about 2 minutes until softened, then add in 3 cloves of minced garlic and cook for another minute until fragrant.

  3. Add in your chopped cabbage to the skillet and stir it around until it is coated with the oil and onions. Sprinkle in some black pepper to taste, 2 teaspoons of mustard seeds, and a pinch of red pepper flakes for a little kick.

  4. Pour in 1 cup of water to the pan and stir all ingredients together.

  5. Cover your skillet with a lid and let everything cook for about 10-15 minutes or until the cabbage has wilted down significantly.

  6. If you want to add some extra flavor or protein, you can also toss in some sliced vegan sausage or serve it alongside roasted potatoes.

  7. Once the smothered cabbage is cooked to perfection, garnish with fresh herbs like parsley, thyme or rosemary for added freshness and aroma.

Your vegan smothered cabbage is now ready to be served as a flavorful side dish or appetizer!

Substitutions and Variations

 Spiced to perfection, this smothered cabbage is a vegan feast for the senses.
Spiced to perfection, this smothered cabbage is a vegan feast for the senses.

The thing I love about cooking is that no recipe is set in stone. There is always room for creativity and experimentation, even with traditional southern dishes like smothered cabbage. For those who want to try something different or don’t have all the ingredients on hand, here are some substitutions and variations to consider.

– Cabbage: This recipe uses green cabbage, but you can also try it with red cabbage or napa cabbage for a different flavor and texture.

– Potatoes: Adding potatoes to this dish is entirely optional, but it does give an extra boost of nutrients and carbohydrates to make it more filling. If you prefer not to use potatoes, you can leave them out or substitute with other root vegetables like sweet potatoes or turnips.

– Sausage: If you want to make this recipe meat-free, skip the sausage altogether or substitute it with vegan sausage alternatives or tempeh. You can also replace it with ham, bacon, or even caramelized onions for added sweetness.

– Spice level: Red pepper flakes and black pepper give this dish a bit of heat, but you can adjust the spice level according to your preference. For those who like it really spicy, add more red pepper flakes or throw in some chopped jalapenos or serrano peppers. For those who prefer milder flavors, leave out the red pepper flakes altogether.

– Steaming vs frying: Traditionally, southern fried cabbage involves sauteing the cabbage in oil until crispy and tender. However, if you want a healthier version that’s just as delicious, try steaming the cabbage in a steamer basket for a few minutes before adding it to the skillet with onions and garlic.

Experimenting with substitutions and variations is part of the fun of cooking. So don’t be afraid to get creative with this vegan smothered cabbage recipe!

Serving and Pairing

 My vegan smothered cabbage recipe is a great way to add more vegetables to your diet.
My vegan smothered cabbage recipe is a great way to add more vegetables to your diet.

When it comes to serving vegan smothered cabbage, you have plenty of options. You can serve it as a stand-alone rich and satisfying side dish or pair it with other dishes that complement its flavors.

For a hearty lunch or dinner, serve the cabbage over a mound of steaming white rice. The nutty taste and fluffy texture of rice perfectly balances out the rich and mushy cabbage.

Alternatively, you can serve smothered cabbage with some garlic bread or your favorite vegan sausage. These delicious add-ons will amplify the flavors of the dish, creating a complete meal that will leave people clamoring for more.

If you’re looking to elevate the traditional southern fried cabbage recipe to new heights, try hitting it with some hot sauce or sprinkle some red pepper flakes on top. The extra heat will make the dish come alive in your mouth.

Another excellent way to enjoy this vegan smothered cabbage recipe is by adding caramelized onions or even bacon bits to it. These ingredients increase depth and complexity in flavor, resulting in a dish that is both savory and tantalizing to eat.

Lastly, why not try cooking up some potatoes on the side? The creaminess of potatoes will offer an alternative texture that contrasts with the soft sweetness of the cabbage. You might want to try braising cabbage wedges with potatoes for lower maintenance yet delightful variation.

Regardless of how you choose to serve vegan smothered cabbage, this recipe’s versatility ensures that you’ll come back to it time and time again.

Make-Ahead, Storing and Reheating

 Get ready for a vegan meal that's packed with flavor and nutrients.
Get ready for a vegan meal that’s packed with flavor and nutrients.

As with many hearty dishes, this vegan smothered cabbage recipe can be made ahead of time if you have a big day planned. Simply follow the directions as normal and refrigerate in an airtight container for up to 3 days.

When you’re ready to reheat, it’s important to add a splash of water to the container before you microwave or throw it into the oven. This will help prevent the cabbage from drying out so that it stays moist and flavorful.

If you plan on serving your cabbage recipe with potatoes, you can also store them in an airtight container alongside the cabbage for easy reheating later. You’ll want to avoid storing them together as they will likely release moisture that will result in soggy potatoes.

In terms of storing leftovers, allow the dish to cool before transferring it to an airtight container and storing it in the refrigerator for up to 4 days. When reheating, use the same method outlined above by adding water to ensure the dish stays moist and delicious.

With this vegan smothered cabbage recipe’s versatile flavor, meal prepping or storing leftovers are great options that won’t compromise taste or texture.

Tips for Perfect Results

 Nothing beats a warm and comforting bowl of smothered cabbage.
Nothing beats a warm and comforting bowl of smothered cabbage.

As a vegan chef, I know all the ins and outs of perfecting a recipe. Here are my top tips for making the best smothered cabbage recipe:

Firstly, ensure you get the perfect consistency of your cabbage. If you have it cut into long strips or chopped too small, it won’t take long to overcook or become mushy. Make sure to keep an eye on your cabbage texture as it cooks. You want it to be tender but not wilted.

Secondly, use high-quality ingredients to make your smothered cabbage recipe shine. The flavors really come through when using fresh vegetables like green cabbage, onions and potatoes, so try to avoid canned products if possible.

Another important factor is seasoning. Black pepper and red pepper flakes will enhance the flavors of the vegetables while mustard seeds will give a little bit of heat and tang in every bite. It’s all about balancing flavors while amplifying the taste of each ingredient.

To cook the potatoes perfectly with the smothered cabbage, add them in the middle of cooking or towards the end when you start simmering down the dish. This way, they won’t become too soft or soggy before serving. You can also adjust how much water is added to your cabbage by adding more or less according to your preference.

Finally — don’t forget to let your dish rest before serving! This allows time for those flavors from all those amazing ingredients you used to meld together that much more effectively — and ensures you get the maximum flavor out of each bite.

Follow these tips and get ready to serve up a perfect plate of vegan smothered cabbage that everyone at the table will love!


As with any recipe, it’s natural to have some questions or concerns before getting started. In this section, I’ll attempt to address some of the most commonly asked questions about this vegan smothered cabbage recipe, in order to enhance your cooking experience and ensure that you achieve the desired results. Whether you’re a seasoned cook or a relative newcomer to the kitchen, these tips and suggestions should help you prepare a delicious and satisfying meal that will delight your taste buds and please your guests. So let’s dive in and explore some of the most frequently asked questions about this recipe.

How do you make Patti Labelle cabbage?

To begin with, set your large pot on the burner and let it heat up for a bit over medium-high heat. Pour in the grapeseed oil and wait until it’s hot enough to cook the ingredients. Add the cabbage, onions, and bell peppers to the pot with the vegetable stock, sea salt, seasoning salt, black pepper, and cayenne pepper. Make sure to cover the pot to let the flavors blend together nicely. Cook and stir occasionally until the cabbage becomes tender, it should take around 10 minutes or so.

Why do you soak cabbage in vinegar?

To maintain the eye-catching and striking purple hue of red cabbage, opt for a stainless steel knife when cutting it. Also, stick to nonreactive pans such as ceramic or glass when cooking it, and add a splash of acidic liquid such as vinegar or lemon juice to retain its vivid color. When shredding red cabbage, soak it in cold water to keep it fresh and crisp.

Do you boil or simmer cabbage?

For preparing the cabbage, one can use the boiling or blanching method. To do this, put the cabbage leaves or shredded cabbage in a pan and add enough water to cover halfway up the greens. Place the pan on the stove and bring the water to a boil. Cook the cabbage for 3-5 minutes until it turns soft and tender. Alternatively, if one wants to sauté or fry the cabbage later, blanch the leaves by boiling them for 3 minutes. After that, transfer the cabbage to a bowl of cold water to prevent further cooking.

How do you cook cabbage without making it soggy?

To perfectly steam cabbage, first, grab a saucepan and a steamer basket. Insert the steamer basket inside the saucepan and pour water into the pan until the water is just below the bottom of the steamer basket. Bring the water to a boil and then carefully place the cabbage wedges onto the steamer basket. Remember to cover the pan with the lid before steaming the cabbage for approximately 10 to 12 minutes, or until the cabbage becomes tender but still retains its crispness.

Bottom Line

In conclusion, this vegan smothered cabbage recipe is a perfect addition to your meal plan. It’s filling, flavorful, and perfect for sharing with friends and family. With its versatility and simple ingredients, it’s a dish that can easily be adapted to suit any dietary preferences or variations.

Not only is this vegan smothered cabbage recipe delicious, but it also comes packed with health benefits. The fiber-rich cabbage provides plenty of nutrients while reducing inflammation in the body, and the spices like mustard seeds and red pepper flakes offer a satisfying kick of flavor.

So, the next time you’re looking for a healthy and flavorful side dish or main course, try making this easy vegan smothered cabbage recipe. You’ll love how easy it is to make, how customizable it is, and how much flavor it adds to any meal.

Vegan Smothered Cabbage

Vegan Smothered Cabbage Recipe

This came from Vegan Soul Kitchen by Bryant Terry. The recipes all look fantastic, but this is the only one I've actually made. It's ridiculously easy and delicious. I made it once from the cookbook and haven't looked at the recipe again in the multitude of times I've made it, so maybe I'm leaving out ingredients. Regardless, it's spicy, comforting, soulful, and oh-so-good-for-you.
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Prep Time 5 mins
Cook Time 15 mins
Course Main Course
Cuisine Vegan
Calories 54.8 kcal


  • 1 head green cabbage, shredded (sometimes I get lazy and use the bagged coleslaw mix)
  • 2 tablespoons mustard seeds
  • 1 teaspoon red pepper flakes
  • 1/2 cup water, more or less
  • salt and pepper, to taste


  • Put everything in a skillet or pot.
  • Put a lid on the skillet or pot.
  • Cook over medium heat until the cabbage is tender, stirring occasionally and adding more water as needed.
  • Eat.

Add Your Own Notes


Serving: 173gCalories: 54.8kcalCarbohydrates: 9.9gProtein: 3.1gFat: 1.3gSaturated Fat: 0.1gSodium: 27.9mgFiber: 4.1gSugar: 5.7g
Keyword < 30 Mins, Easy, Healthy, Inexpensive, Low Cholesterol, Low Protein, Vegan, Vegetable, Weeknight
Tried this recipe?Let us know how it was!

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