What Are The Benefits Of Eating Cabbage? It’s tasty, versatile, low cost and has a longer shelf life than other veggies. Grab a head on your next shopping trip!
You may have noticed that I have a lot of recipes on this site that use cabbage and there’s a very good reason for that. I love cabbage.
The flavor of raw cabbage is strong and slightly bitter, which accounts for the tendency to serve it with dressing and accompaniments that are slightly sweet. When cabbage is cooked, it becomes much milder and tends to blend with whatever items it’s cooked with.
This brings us to its versatility. Cabbage can be eaten cooked or raw, hot or cold. Shred it, chop it, boil it, fry it, braise it, roast it. Cut it into steaks and throw it on the grill. Wrap it around some ground meat and rice to make cabbage rolls. The possibilities are endless. Seriously.
Then there’s the low cost. Cabbage is second only to potatoes in terms of price per edible cup. In today’s economy, we’re all looking to stretch a dollar as far as we can and cabbage can certainly help with that! Maybe this is why the term cabbage sometimes refers to money!
Wait…did I mention that cabbage can last up to 2 months in your refrigerator?
What Are The Health Benefits Of Cabbage?
Cabbage is a cruciferous vegetable. This type of vegetable has long been known for its health benefits, including cancer prevention, protection from radiation therapy, heart health as well as improving immunity and digestion.
It has powerful levels of vitamin K, magnesium, folate and beta-carotene, to just name a few.
At 17 calories and 4 carbohydrates per cooked half-cup (one cup raw), cabbage is a valuable part of a low calorie and low carb diet!
What About Fermented Cabbage?
Fermented cabbage, or sauerkraut as it is more commonly known, is a way to preserve cabbage by simply combining it with salt. It then ferments at room temperature for 2-4 weeks, resulting in a salty and sour treat that will keep for up to a year in your fridge.
Not only does it taste great, but it also has good bacteria and provides probiotics, which are great for gut health and digestion. Click here for step-by-step instructions to make your own sauerkraut right at home!
A similar method for preserving cabbage is to pickle it. While it doesn’t last as long as sauerkraut, you can store it in the fridge for 4-6 weeks.
To make pickled cabbage shed enough cabbage to pack tightly into a quart-sized canning jar. Mix 1 cup water, 1 cup vinegar and 1 tbsp sugar in a small saucepan. Bring it to a boil, stirring to melt the sugar. Pour liquid into the jar to cover the cabbage completely. Place in the refrigerator for 24 hours before using.
Feel free to mix up this pickled recipe however you want to by adding additional veggies (I add onions) and/or using a different kind of vinegar. You can also add more sugar if you prefer a “sweet and tart” version.
What’s The Difference Between Red And Green Cabbage?
While there are lots of different kinds of cabbage, the most common types are the cannonball cabbage, better known as green cabbage and red cabbage, also known as purple cabbage.
Some people feel that the red variety is sweeter and is more tender when cooked but I find the flavor and texture (cooked or uncooked) to be virtually interchangeable.
Both red and green cabbage are good for you but red cabbage packs a more powerful nutritional profile and more overall antioxidants.
I think the biggest difference between the two is the appearance, both raw and cooked. For example, I like the look of red cabbage in this colorful and creamy broccoli coleslaw, as it contrasts nicely with the green broccoli and brown raisins.
On the other hand, I prefer the green variety to make andouille sausage with fried cabbage. The cabbage, paired with multi-colored peppers and sausage results in a visually pleasing color palette.
What Are The Best Ways To Cook Cabbage?
I’m glad you asked! Cabbage is incredibly versatile, as I mentioned before. I’ve found that different types of cabbage can be used interchangeably in many recipes.
When I made homemade Chinese dumplings, it called for ½ of a head each of green and Napa cabbage. That left me with, you guessed it, ½ of a head each of green and Napa cabbage to use up after I was done.
I used the leftover Napa to make this Chinese chicken cabbage soup (no relation to the cabbage soup diet!) but I have also used regular green cabbage in the soup with good results.
I then made meatballs and cabbage using the remaining green cabbage and some meatballs I had in my freezer. I have also replaced the bean sprouts in fried vegetable spring rolls with green cabbage because that’s what I had on hand at the time.
This Is How The Cow Eats The Cabbage
So, here it is. All the reasons I love cabbage. If I could write a song about it, I would.
What’s your take? Do you like cabbage? What’s your favorite way to eat it? Let me know in the comments below!
All My Best,