Savor the Flavor: Braised Cabbage with Onion Trio


Whether you eat it raw, toss it into a salad or simmer it in a pot with stew or corned beef, cabbage is a St. Patrick’s Day staple. It’s rich in vitamins A, K and C, calcium and fiber. It also has a distinctive flavor and crunch. A bonus: It’s almost always on sale come mid-March.

Braised Cabbage with Onion Trio


¼ pound bacon
1 head green cabbage-about 1 pound
1 medium white or yellow Spanish onion, sliced
1 medium red onion, sliced
1 medium sweet onion, sliced
2 sweet apples (Gala, Fuji), cored and diced
2 teaspoons dried thyme
crushed red pepper-to taste, optional
1 Tablespoon brown sugar
¼ cup apple cider vinegar, divided
fresh ground black pepper-to taste


  1. In a large skillet (not non-stick), cook bacon over medium to medium-high heat until crispy. Remove cooked bacon, crumble and set aside. Pour out bacon drippings into heat-proof container (glass measuring cup, small metal bowl).
  2. Cut cabbage into quarters. Cut out core and discard. Slice cabbage, using a large chef knife, into ¼ inch slices. Depending upon size of cabbage, quarters can be cut into smaller, more manageable sized pieces before slicing.
  3. When sautéing the vegetables, be sure to never overcrowd the pan otherwise the vegetables will steam and not sauté. The onions especially shouldn’t be more than one layer. The cabbage can start out a bit crowded provided it is stirred occasionally.
  4. Divide the onion and cabbage into batches as necessary, based on the size of your pan.
  5. Sauté Spanish and red onion in 2 teaspoons of reserved bacon drippings, until softened and browned. Remove to large bowl.
  6. Add another 2 teaspoons of reserved bacon drippings to pan and sauté sweet onion with diced apple pieces. Cook until onions are soft and browned. Remove from pan and set aside-this should garnish the top of the cabbage mixture.
  7. Stir together thyme, crushed red pepper (if using), brown sugar and vinegar with ½ cup water.
  8. In batches, using small amounts of bacon drippings, sauté cabbage until softened and slightly browned. Before removing each batch to the large bowl with onions, pour in some of the liquid (vinegar-water mixture) to deglaze the pan. Making sure to use the mixture evenly. The pan can also be covered after the liquid is added to further cook/steam the cabbage until desired level of doneness.
  9. Toss all cooked cabbage with Spanish and red onion. Top with sweet onion/apple mixture and serve warm.

Makes 10 servings, per serving: 95 calories, 5gm fat, 2gm saturated fat, 3gm protein, 11gm carb, 3gm fiber, 11mg cholesterol, 85mg sodium, 31% Vitamin C, 4% Calcium, 5% Iron

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Recipe provided by Julie Fromm, R.D., a community dietitian with Henry Ford Health System’s Generation With Promise program, which focuses on empowering youth and families in the community to increase their consumption of healthy foods and physical activity and balance caloric intake.

Categories: EatWell