many thanks + stuffed cabbage

by Kristen :) on August 12, 2011

Many thanks to all your wonderfully kind words and thoughts about Buster.  We really appreciate it.  We were pretty much a mess this past week, but with time it is getting easier.  I don’t think there can be anything that can replace our happy guy, but we have to just remember all the good times we had for sure.  I have gotten a little back logged on recipes, but I do have one of my favorite cabbage recipes for you!

When I was younger my nana would always make us large casserole dishes full of stuffed cabbage.  It was a frequent tradition in my family and boy did I enjoy it.  This dish always reminds me of her.  Since my grandparents moved to the east coast I haven’t had the chance to enjoy this dish for quite awhile until now.  I am very excited because they are in the works of moving back to Vegas and I am going to have to whip up a batch of stuffed cabbage with her once they get settled again.  Of course my version isn’t quite like my grandma’s, but it is pretty darn good.

When I saw the head of cabbage in our bountiful basket, I knew that I was definitely going to make stuffed cabbage!  My version uses quinoa instead of rice and I cook them in a slow cooker which makes it easy and doesn’t heat up the kitchen.

Stuffed Cabbage

Inspired by my nana

Serves: 6-7


  • 1 head cabbage
  • 4 turkey sausage links (I used pre-cooked sweet Italian version from TJ’s), chopped
  • 2 yellow squash, chopped
  • 1, 8-oz package crimini mushrooms, chopped
  • 1 cup quinoa
  • 2 cups water or vegetable broth
  • 3 cups tomato or marinara sauce (go for lower sodium)
Start by sauteing the turkey sausage, squash, and mushrooms in a little evoo until browned.  Add salt and pepper to taste.
Boil 2 cups of broth, add the quinoa and then simmer on low for about 10 minutes.  Combine this with the turkey sausage mixture which will go into the cabbage leaves.
While that’s cooking, get the cabbage ready by cutting off the bottom and peeling away the layers to get at least 15 leaves ready to stuff.
Some recipes call for steaming the cabbage a little bit beforehand to make it easier to bend, but this one was pretty flexible.
Place about 1/3 cup of filling into each leaf depending on the size.
Then fold up!
Place about 1/2-1 cup of tomato sauce in the bottom of a slow cooker and then top with the stuffed cabbage.
Top with the rest of the sauce and then cook on low for about 4 hours.  Serve with additional sauce if needed.
You can experiment with all kinds of fillings too.  My grandma would usually put in rice and ground beef or veggies.
My grandma would always make the best chocolate chip cookies too :)
Happy Friday!
What’s one of your favorite childhood food memories?

{ 9 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Sara @ Nourish and Flourish August 12, 2011 at 7:22 pm

I’m so sorry about Buster! He sounds like such a sweet companion, and was one stud of a pup. I know how hard losing a beloved pet can be; you’ll be in my thoughts and prayers.

Mmm your grandma’s stuffed cabbage looks delicious! Talk about comfort food. And it’s healthy too! Win-win! :)


2 The Candid RD August 13, 2011 at 4:38 am

This sounds so amazing! Too bad cabbage gives me the WORST gas ever. Seriously, it’s not good. I still eat it sometimes though :) I think Nick would eat this dish too, he loves cabbage. My favorite childhood food memory is my grandma’s lasagna. The smell was intoxicatingly delicious, even before taking the first bite!

I’m SO sorry to hear about your dog, Kristen. I’ve never had to go through the loss of a dog because my family never keeps one long enough. But I can only imagine the sadness. I’m glad it’s getting better, each day.


3 Nicole, RD August 15, 2011 at 8:35 am

Wow! I’m suprised the cabbage holds up so well in the crock – that’s great! Super healthy, too :)


4 Heather @ Get Healthy with Heather August 16, 2011 at 11:36 am

I’ve only has stuffed cabbage a few times before but fell I love with it right away. I’m adding this to next weeks meal plan… Can’t wait for it!


5 Roz@weightingfor50 August 17, 2011 at 9:28 pm

Hi Kristen, just catching up on your posts. My warm condolences on the loss of Buster. I know how hard it is when a four legged member of the family passes unexpectedly – you are in my thoughts!!!!


6 Emily August 21, 2011 at 9:32 am

I’ve been MIA lately, but so sorry to hear about Buster. :( Our dog is definitely part of the family, too, so it would be very sad to lose her. Hope you guys are hanging in there!

And I can’t say I’ve ever had stuffed cabbage, but it looks delicious. My fave childhood food memory is probably our traditional Swedish smorgasbord. We eat the same food every year at Christmas, and it wouldn’t be the same without. :)


7 rebecca August 25, 2011 at 2:23 pm

this looks amazing and so sorry to hear about your dog


8 Laural @ Being Healthier August 29, 2011 at 6:42 am

ohh great recipe! I made a quinoa based stuffing this weekend! I should have used cabbage leaves – put it on my recipe-to-try-list!

I don’t really have fav food memories- honestly- I used to eat steak constantly and belgian waffles with strawberries and whip cream.

perfect background for a nutrition educator.

congrats on the new job!!!! congrats on the bach party ( saw Swanky’s pics!) hope recovery went quickly!


9 sarah@spinach and spice September 2, 2011 at 12:34 pm

How ironic, I fixed stuffed cabbage in my slow cooker for the familiy last night! I had a bowl full of cooked quinoa in the fridge, and debated putting it in the rolls instead of the rice, but my family is still sorta freaked out about the whole idea of it ;) I wish I would have seen this recipe first! Mine was really good, but not too veggie friendly. Yours looks great!


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