Recipe courtesy of Mom Mom's Kitchen

Golabki (Stuffed Cabbage)

  • Level: Intermediate
  • Yield: 12 to 14 cabbage rolls
  • Total: 2 hr 40 min (includes cooling time)
  • Active: 1 hr



One 14 1/2-ounce can peeled tomatoes

4 tablespoons unsalted butter, cubed 

Kosher salt

Pinch cayenne pepper, optional


1 1/2 tablespoons kosher salt, plus more for the boiling water

1 large head green cabbage 

1 onion, diced 

Canola oil, for cooking

1 cup cooked white rice  

1 pound ground beef 

1/2 pound ground pork 

1/2 pound ground veal 

2 eggs 

1/2 tablespoon freshly ground black pepper 

1 cup vegetable stock 

Chopped fresh dill and sour cream, for serving


  1. For the sauce: Heat up tomatoes in a saucepan over medium-low heat until they begin to boil, then remove them from the heat. With an immersion blender, blend in cubed butter one piece at a time until the sauce is smooth and emulsified. Season with salt and a dash of cayenne if you like it a little spicy, but not enough to scare your Mom-Mom.
  2. For the cabbage: Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Slice off the bottom of the cabbage head and insert the knife around the core to make a square of insertions into the core of the cabbage. (Do not completely core the cabbage.)
  3. When the pot is boiling gently, drop the cabbage head in and boil it until outer leaves are softened, 4 to 5 minutes. Remove the cabbage head and wait a minute for it to cool, then begin to gently peel the outer leaves away. When the leaves are no longer soft and they become hard to peel, place the cabbage head back into the boiling water for another 4 to 5 minutes. Repeat removing the leaves and then boiling the cabbage until you get down to the core or the leaves become too small. (It's a good idea to boil extra cabbage leaves so you have the extras just in case the leaves rip.)
  4. Saute onions with a dash of canola oil in a saute pan over medium-low heat until onions are translucent. Combine sauteed onions with cooked white rice and allow to cool.
  5. Combine ground beef, pork, veal, eggs, onion and rice mixture and salt and pepper in a large stainless steel bowl. Mix until well combined, then set aside. (We'll call this the filling from here out.)
  6. Preheat the oven to 425 degrees F.
  7. Place 1/4 cup filling into the bottom of a cabbage leaf. Tuck the sides of the leaf in and roll the leaf up and over and make a small package. Place the finished roll seam-side down in a 12-by-10-inch baking pan that's at least 2 1/2 inches deep. Continue with the remaining leaves and filling and tuck them tightly into the baking pan. Pour 1 inch vegetable stock into the bottom of the baking pan. Cover the cabbage rolls with a sheet of parchment paper, then cover in foil. Bake for 25 minutes.
  8. Remove cabbage rolls from the oven and turn it down to 325 degrees F. Take off (but reserve) foil and parchment paper. Pour off the vegetable stock (no need to save it; it'll taste like cabbage water...yum). Top the drained cabbage leaves with just enough tomato sauce to coat the top of the cabbage and make a small pool under the rolls. Replace the parchment paper and foil and bake the cabbage rolls 45 minutes more.
  9. Serve the finished golabki by topping them with a ladle of the reserved sauce, a little fresh dill, and a dollop of sour cream.

Cook’s Note

If you don't have parchment paper, you can use your extra cabbage leaves to top your golabki rolls with; we like to call it "Polish Tin Foil."

Let's Get Cooking!

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5 Reviews


Awesome recipe. The wife and I loved it. My suggestion is to swap the 14.5 oz can of tomatoes for the sauce with the much bigger can (35 oz?) And up the butter to match. Sauce is amazing but this recipe doesn't make enough. 

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