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stuffed cabbage roll cut in half and stacked on two cabbage rolls

Stuffed Cabbage Rolls

This golabki is a traditional Polish dish comprised of baked cabbages leaves filled with beef and rice and topped with tomato sauce.
Course Main Course
Cuisine Polish
Prep Time 30 minutes
Cook Time 1 hour 45 minutes
Total Time 2 hours 15 minutes
Servings 6
Calories 408kcal
Author Ryan Beck


Tomato Sauce

  • 2 tablespoon olive oil
  • ½ cup sweet onion, diced
  • 4 garlic cloves, minced
  • 2 tablespoon tomato paste
  • 1 (28 oz can) crushed tomatoes
  • 2 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon light brown sugar
  • 1 tablespoon Italian seasoning
  • salt and pepper to taste

Cabbage Rolls

  • 12 cabbage leaves
  • ½ lb ground beef
  • ½ lb ground pork
  • 1 cup cooked brown rice
  • ½ cup sweet onion, finely diced
  • 4 garlic cloves, minced
  • 2 tablespoon fresh parsley, chopped
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • ½ teaspoon black pepper


Tomato Sauce

  • In a large skillet or Dutch oven, heat olive oil over medium heat. Add the onion and cook for 5 minutes, or until translucent. Add the garlic and tomato paste and cook for another minute. Add the crushed tomatoes, balsamic vinegar, sugar and Italian seasoning.
  • Reduce heat and simmer for 20 minutes. Adjust for seasoning with salt and pepper.

Cabbage Rolls

  • Preheat oven to 350°F. Bring large pot of salted water to a boil. Immerse the cabbage head in the boiling water. Cook for 5 minutes or until cabbage leaves are pliable. Peel 12 large leaves off the cabbage.
  • In a large bowl, mix together the ground meats, rice, onion, garlic, parsley, egg, salt, pepper and ½ cup of the tomato sauce lightly with your hands until everything is just combined.
  • Coat a 9x13 glass baking dish with cooking spray. Place ½ cup of the tomato sauce in the bottom of the baking dish.
  • Lay a cabbage leaf on a flat surface. Use a knife to cut a V-shaped notch to remove the thick part of the cabbage rib. Spoon ⅓ cup of the filling in the middle. Roll up, tucking in the sides as you roll. Place rolls seam side-down on top of sauce in baking dish and repeat with remaining cabbage leaves.
  • Spoon remaining sauce over the cabbage rolls. Cover tightly with aluminum foil and for 75-90 minutes or until the cabbage is tender and meat is cooked through. Top with some parsley before serving.


  • You have to cut the thick part of the cabbage leaf before rolling it up. Use a pairing knife to cut out a v-shape of the bottom of each leave.
  • Place the cabbage rolls seam-side down when baking so the filling doesn't fall out.
  • If you have smaller leaves and still have filling leftover just overlap the leaves and they'll still cook perfectly.
  • You can use jarred marinara sauce if you want but the traditional sauce is a sweet and sour style which is why homemade is better.
  • You can assemble the cabbage rolls up to a day ahead of time and cover in the fridge before baking them.
  • Leftovers will last in the fridge for 2-3 days or in the freezer for 3 months.


Serving: 2rolls | Calories: 408kcal | Carbohydrates: 29g | Protein: 21g | Fat: 23g | Saturated Fat: 4g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g | Monounsaturated Fat: 7g | Trans Fat: 0g | Cholesterol: 64mg | Sodium: 708mg | Potassium: 1138mg | Fiber: 5g | Sugar: 12g