Attention all dumpling lovers! I have a low-carb version for you that’s bursting with the flavors you know and love, but with fewer calories. Get your chopsticks ready, this cabbage roll recipe will blow your mind!
Choosing & Preparing Cabbage Wrappers
Not any type of cabbage will do when making this cabbage roll recipe, especially if you want to make life easier on yourself!
Green cabbage, commonly found at grocery stores, is tightly bound together. This makes it difficult to peel apart and you’ll find yourself with more broken leaves than not. Instead, reach for loose leaf cabbages, such as napa or savory!
Quickly blanch your cabbage leaves before adding your delicious filling. Don’t skip this step! It’s essential so you have super pliable leaves for easy rolling. Run them under cold water to keep them from overcooking, then give them a quick pat-down so they don’t dilute the juicy filling you put together!
If You Don’t Have a Steamer, Don’t Sweat It!
This recipe is so easy if you have a steamer, however, if you don’t have one (like me!), I found an easy workaround. For this hack, you’ll need 3 simple tools: a large pan, heat-proof plate, and aluminum foil.
Form a piece of foil into a ring and place it at the bottom of a large pan. Place a heat-proof plate on top with the cabbage rolls. Pour water into the pan until it’s just under the plate. Be careful not to spill on the food or plate. Cover with the lid and you have a makeshift steamer!
Adding Your Own Twist to This Easy Cabbage Rolls Recipe
For this recipe, I’m using ground chicken, however, you can swap it out for your favorite ground meat - turkey, beef, or pork. All will turn out absolutely delicious!
Don’t be afraid to add your flare on the veggies as well! I love shitake mushrooms because it adds an additional meaty flavor and texture, but it’s not a hard and fast rule. Other veggies that could be great are:
- Chopped water chestnuts
- Shredded carrots
- Garlic chives
- Chopped bok choy
- Or any other of your favorite dumpling fillings!
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Cabbage Roll Recipe
- 10 - 12 napa cabbage leaves
- In a large pot, bring water to a boil. Blanch the napa cabbage by submerging them in the boiling water for about 10 seconds or until the cabbage just begins to wilt. Don't let them turn soggy because they'll continue cooking in the steamer.
- Quickly remove the napa cabbage and run under cold water to stop the cooking process. The leaves should be vibrantly green.
- Cut the thick part of the stems at the base of each leaf (this will make it easier to roll later) and pat dry the leaves.
Make Filling & Wrap Cabbage Rolls
- In a large bowl, combine the filling ingredients until it becomes a sticky paste.
- Spoon about 1 ½ tablespoons of filling onto the base of the leaf and roll it up like a burrito - Bring the bottom of the leaf over the filling, gently tuck it so it’s tight, then bring the sides of the leaf toward the center, and roll upwards. Repeat for the remaining cabbage rolls.
Steam Cabbage Rolls
- Steam the cabbage rolls in a steamer for 10 minutes. If you don’t have a steamer, follow the directions below:
- Place a wire rack or aluminum foil in the shape of a ring at the bottom of a large pan or wok. Place a heat-proof plate on top, add cabbage rolls, and pour enough water to reach a little under the plate. Be careful not to spill any water on the plate or cabbage rolls. Cover with a lid and cook on medium heat for about 10 minutes.
- Meanwhile, in a small bowl, combine the sauce ingredients then set aside.
- Once the cabbage rolls are done steaming, remove them from the heat and serve immediately with the sauce. Enjoy!
- Protein: Feel free to swap out the chicken for ground turkey or ground pork.
- Mushrooms: I love shitake mushrooms because they add extra "meaty" flavor, however, feel free to swap it out for any of your favorite mushrooms.
- Adjusting Spice: The spice level of the dipping sauce will depend on how spicy your chili oil is. You can do a quick taste of your chili oil and adjust accordingly.
Nutrition information is calculated by software based on the ingredients in each recipe. It is an estimate only and provided for informational purposes. Nutrition may vary based on product availability, methods of preparation, origin, and freshness of ingredients, etc. For the most accurate nutritional information, use your preferred nutrition calculator, actual ingredients, and quantities used for the recipe. Please consult with your physician or registered dietitian if more precise nutrition calculations are needed for health reasons.