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This Cabbage Roll Soup is a wholesome and delicious choice for serving on a cold winter night. Lean ground beef, green cabbage, carrots, and rice cook together in a deliciously seasoned broth in one pot to create this hearty stew-like soup.
Happy New Year, friends! Are you ready for a warm and comforting start to the new year?
Listen, I’ve been at this food blogging thing now for 8 years and I know the drill. All through November and December we eat, and we eat, and then we eat some more. Then we wake up on New Year’s Day resolved to take a step back from the kitchen table and do some adjusting. I’ve heard it from readers every year since I’ve started this blog and I want you to know that I’m with you!
I’m also here to let you know that you do NOT have to skimp on flavor to lighten up your diet. This Cabbage Roll Soup is fabulous example of that. It is low in fat and calories and high in nutrients, fiber and flavor. It is a one-pot meal in itself and it is exceptionally easy to prepare.
I absolutely love this time of year. Creating wholesome, tasty recipes makes my heart sing. It makes me jump out of bed at 6am raring to go. I have some wonderful, healthy choices coming over the course of the next few weeks but let’s get this thing rolling with this yum-to-the-max soup.
We’ve been told we’re nuts (those crazy people from California) but we are anxiously awaiting our first snow here in Oregon. I’m stocking up now and this soup will happen as soon as I see even one snowflake hit the ground!
The Ingredient List
In addition to olive oil and a little salt and pepper, you’ll want to check your stock on the following ingredients.
- Lean ground beef (or substitute lean ground turkey if you’d like)
- White or yellow onion
- Minced garlic
- Green cabbage
- Low-sodium beef broth (I keep a jar of low-sodium Better Than Bouillon in both the chicken and beef flavors in my refrigerator at all times. Costco has a great price.)
- Diced tomatoes
- Tomato sauce
- Worcestershire sauce
- Brown sugar
- Dried thyme
- Uncooked long grain white rice
- Bay leaf
- Chopped parsley for garnish (optional but nice)
Adding rice (or barley like in my Slow Cooker Vegetable Beef Barley Soup) to soups is a sure-fire way to turn soup into a meal that will satisfy my guys here.
Why is it called Cabbage Roll Soup?
This soup consists of most everything you would find in a traditional stuffed cabbage roll recipe – it’s just not rolled inside the cabbage leaves. Instead, all of the ingredients simmer together in a deliciously seasoned broth until tender. It is basically deconstructed cabbage rolls in soup form. What this means to you is that you can get that same satisfying cabbage roll flavor in a no-sweat recipe that is ready in about 35 minutes, from start to finish.
There is a wonderful sweetness from the green cabbage, a very slightly sweet and tangy broth and the comforting flavors imparted by dried thyme and a bay leaf. Rice adds great texture and makes this Cabbage Roll Soup a hearty meal in itself.
There is no need to cook the rice separately and add it to the finished soup. Uncooked long grain rice is added along with the other ingredients and simmers until perfectly tender. This Cabbage Roll Soup cooks up in one pot so the cleanup is a breeze.
Although plenty hearty enough to make a meal, this soup is wonderful served with grilled cheese sandwiches. That is if you’re feeling like indulging just a little.
Can You Freeze Cabbage Roll Soup?
Definitely. The rice may be a bit soft when you reheat the soup. This is not a problem for me, but if you’re making this soup with the sole intention of freezing it, I would recommend cooking it without the rice. When you thaw and reheat it, you can add some cooked rice for a perfect result.
To freeze soups and stews, transfer the completely cooled recipe into freezer-safe zippered plastic storage bags. Push out the excess air and close the bags. Lay them flat in your freezer until frozen solid and then the bags can be stacked to save space. Be sure to label the bags with the contents and date.
Allow the frozen soup to thaw completely in your refrigerator overnight. The soup can thicken up quite a bit when refrigerated or frozen so be prepared to add liquid (either additional broth or water) to think it to the desired consistency when reheating. Or eat it like stew! Either way, it will be fabulous.
I want to wish you all a Happy New Year and thank you for your continued support of Valerie’s Kitchen. All of your emails, comments here on the blog and on social media mean so much to me. I look forward to working to bring you lots and lots of delicious ideas in 2020.
I hope the first month of this new decade is a cozy one for you all. Stay warm and eat soup!
Cabbage Roll Soup
- 1 teaspoon olive oil
- 1 pound lean ground beef
- 1/2 teaspoon salt or to taste
- freshly ground black pepper to taste
- 1 cup diced white or yellow onion
- 1 teaspoon minced garlic
- 5 cups coarsely chopped green cabbage
- 2 carrots peeled and diced
- 5 cups low-sodium beef broth
- 14 ounce can diced tomatoes
- 16 ounce can tomato sauce
- 2 tablespoons ketchup
- 1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
- 1 tablespoon brown sugar
- 1 teaspoon paprika
- 1/2 teaspoon dried thyme
- 1/2 cup uncooked long grain white rice
- 1 bay leaf
- 2 tablespoons chopped parsley for garnish optional
- In a large pot or Dutch oven heat the olive oil over MEDIUM-HIGH heat. Add the ground beef, onion and garlic. Season with salt and pepper, to taste. Cook, stirring to break up the ground beef, for about 4 to 5 minutes or until cooked through and no longer pink. Drain the grease from the pot and return it to the heat.
- Add the cabbage, carrots, beef broth, diced tomatoes, tomato sauce, ketchup, Worcestershire sauce, brown sugar, thyme, rice, and bay leaf and bring to a boil. Cover, reduce the heat to LOW and simmer for 30 minutes or until the carrot and rice are tender, stirring a couple of times during cooking.
- At the end of the cooking time, remove and discard the bay leaf. Stir in the parsley and taste and season with additional salt and pepper, if desired.