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Unstuffed Cabbage (Low Carb)

Unstuffed cabbage is a quicker variation on classic stuffed cabbage. It takes just 30 minutes and is super easy to make. It's a one-pan meal for those days when you don't have a lot of time or just don't want to fuss.
Course Main Course
Cuisine American
Keyword 30 minute meal, cabbage recipe ideas, serve with sour cream, unstuffed cabbage
Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 25 minutes
Servings 4
Calories 422kcal


  • 1 tablespoon of extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 pound of ground beef
  • 1 teaspoon of oregano
  • 1 teaspoon of parsley
  • 1/4 teaspoon paprika
  • 1 teaspoon of salt divided between meat and cabbage mixture
  • 1/2 cup of marinara sauce store bought or homemade
  • 1 pound of cabbage cut in strips
  • 1 large onion cut in strips
  • 8 tablespoons (one stick) of butter
  • 1/2 teaspoon of garlic powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon of pepper divided between meat and cabbage mixture
  • 1/4 cup of gluten free chicken broth


  • Add oil to a deep skillet. Cook & drain meat.
  • Add 1/2 teaspoon of salt, pepper, oregano, paprika, and parsley
  • Add sauce and stir.
  • Transfer to a bowl
  • Wipe skillet clean.
  • Caramelize onions in butter 10 minutes. Season with 1/2 teaspoon of salt, 1/2 teaspoon of garlic powder, and a dash of pepper.
  • Add cabbage and cook down 2 minutes
  • Add beef mixture and chicken broth.
  • Simmer 12 minutes more. Serve and enjoy!



  • If you’re making homemade sauce, I recommend starting it an hour before you begin and simmer it on the back burner.
  • How to core your cabbage: First, remove the thick outer leaves of your cabbage. Then, with a chef’s knife, cut your cabbage in half lengthwise, all the way through the core. Next, you’ll need to remove the triangular core. To do this, cut into the core at an angle where the stem meets the leaves of the cabbage and remove it. Now you’re ready to slice it.
  • Store the extra half: You can wrap the unused half tightly in plastic wrap or in a plastic bag, making sure to push all the air out. Store it in your fridge in the crisper drawer.
  • Don’t have a food processor or just don’t feel like taking it out? This mandoline also works for slicing thin strips. Or just slice your onion and cabbage by hand with a sharp chef’s knife into thin strips.
  • In this recipe, I like to keep the meat chunky. You can watch how to do that in the video right above the recipe card. It’s best to use room temperature meat so it will cook evenly. Pat your meat dry with a paper towel so that it browns rather than steams. Place it in your hot oiled pan and let it sit for about a minute. When you flip it over, it will be easy to break up into flavorful bite-size chunks.
  • Serve each dish with a dollop of sour cream on top and garnished with chopped fresh dill. When you mix in the sour cream, the result is a beautiful creamy sauce. Yum.
  • If beef isn’t your thing, you can substitute ground turkey, ground chicken, ground pork, ground sausage, or ground lamb.
  • You can store your unstuffed cabbage stir fry in the fridge for up to 4-5 days. Just heat it up in the microwave or a hot skillet.


Calories: 422kcal | Carbohydrates: 10.7g