These easy, tasty cabbage rolls are ground beef and rice stuffed cabbage leaves cooked with a tomato sauce in the slow cooker or on the stovetop.
The easiest way to prepare the cabbage leaves is to freeze the whole head in a food storage bag the night before. In the morning, take it out and let it thaw. Cut the leaves away at the core. They will be somewhat wilted and flexible enough to roll. No pre-boiling is required!
The sauce makes a flavorful "gravy" for potatoes, so I double all of the sauce ingredients except for the diced tomatoes.
- 1 large head of cabbage, frozen, thawed
- 1 large egg, beaten
- 3 tablespoons milk
- 1/4 cup finely chopped onion
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
- 1 to 1 1/4 pounds extra lean ground beef
- 1 cup cooked rice
- 1 can (8 ounces) tomato sauce
- 1 can (14.5 ounces) diced tomatoes, optional
- 1 tablespoon brown sugar
- 1 teaspoon lemon juice or cider vinegar
- 1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
Remove the leaves from the thawed head of cabbage. Alternatively, if you did not freeze the cabbage, bring a large pot of water to a boil. Carefully remove about 12 to 14 large leaves from a head of cabbage. Place the leaves in the water and boil for 2 to 4 minutes. Drain thoroughly.
In a large bowl combine the beaten egg, milk, finely chopped onion, salt, pepper, ground beef, and cooked rice.
Place about 1/4 to 1/3 cup of the beef and rice mixture in center of each cabbage leaf and form it into a cylinder shape. Fold in sides and roll ends over meat until completely rolled up. Secure with toothpicks, if desired.
Place the stuffed cabbage rolls in the slow cooker.
In another bowl combine the tomato sauce with the tomatoes, brown sugar, lemon juice or vinegar, and Worcestershire sauce. Pour over cabbage rolls.
Cover and cook on LOW for 7 to 9 hours.
Prepare the cabbage rolls following the directions above. Place the cabbage rolls in a large, heavy Dutch oven or stockpot.
Prepare the sauce and pour over the cabbage rolls.
Bring to a boil over medium heat. Cover the pan, reduce the heat to low, and simmer for about 2 to 3 hours.
Serves 4 to 6.
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