Recipe: Roasted Cabbage with Bacon (2024)

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Faith Durand

Faith DurandSVP of Content

Faith is the SVP of Content at Apartment Therapy Media and former Editor-in-Chief of The Kitchn. She is the author of three cookbooks, including the James Beard Award-winning The Kitchn Cookbook. She lives in Columbus, Ohio, with her husband and two daughters.


updated May 2, 2019

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Recipe: Roasted Cabbage with Bacon (1)

Roasted cabbage wedges are one of the easiest, most delicious ways to eat a hunk of vegetables for dinner, and the bacon just helps it along.

Serves4 to 6

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Recipe: Roasted Cabbage with Bacon (2)

I have cooked cabbage in many different ways. I’ve chopped, shredded, steamed, boiled, and stir-fried it, but until relatively recently, I had never roasted it. But once I tried I couldn’t believe I waited so long!

Roasted cabbage wedges are one of the easiest, most delicious ways to eat a hunk of vegetables for dinner, and the bacon just helps it along.

The first time I tried this I had a big head of cabbage that had been languishing in my kitchen for weeks, waiting to be used in soup or dumplings. The cabbage was turning progressively more dry and crunchy so I decided it was time to use it up. I wanted something quick and easy, and I had been craving roasted Brussels sprouts, so I wondered if there was a way to treat the cabbage as one giant sprout and roast it in the oven.

Sara Kate roasted baby cabbages whole with honey and vinegar last year, but I had never tried to roast an entire full-grown head of cabbage. Would it even work? Or taste good?

I removed the dry and crunchy outer leaves, sliced cabbage into eight chunky wedges, and added some bacon that was nearing its own use-by date. I laid the wedges down in a roasting pan, seasoned generously, and slid into a very hot oven.

I roasted for about 30 minutes total, flipping the wedges over halfway through. It looked like a hot mess, but a very promising one.

The final result?

Wow! The high-heat roasting gets rid of any cabbage funk and makes the cabbage sweet and flavorful — and all that bacon grease certainly adds to the irresistible aroma. The bacon pieces were crispy and chewy, and the bacon fat seeped all through the folds of the cabbage, making it tender and juicy in the middle and crispy and browned on the outside.

The combination of tastes and textures was just fantastic. The outer leaves and edges of the cabbage were browned and crispy — I let some blacken at the tips, and they gave that burnt-marshmallow smokiness to each bite. The insides of the leaves, though, were silky and plump with concentrated juices, and shiny from the olive oil and bacon.

I served the cabbage then, and have done so many times since, in wedges, topped with the crumbled bacon, on dishes of pasta. The cabbage was crunchy, chewy, soft, and juicy. The flavors of salt, olive oil, pepper and bacon married perfectly. You have to go at this cabbage with knife and fork, which for me just adds to the sense that I’m eating a full and satisfying dish. I had a leftover wedge for lunch — no pasta — and felt fully satisfied. It’s delicious, and such a mix of textures and tastes.

Have you ever roasted cabbage? If you do, how do you like to make it? I basically described the recipe above, but here it is in proper format in case you want to have it in a more organized flow.


Roasted cabbage wedges are one of the easiest, most delicious ways to eat a hunk of vegetables for dinner, and the bacon just helps it along.

Serves 4 to 6

Nutritional Info


  • 1

    head green or Savoy cabbage, outer leaves removed

  • Olive oil

  • Kosher salt

  • Freshly ground black pepper

  • 4 slices

    thick-cut bacon (6 to 8 ounces)


  1. Arrange a rack in the middle of the oven and heat to 450°F. Cut the cabbage into quarters through the core. Slice the bottom of each quarter at an angle to partially remove the core. Cut each quarter in half again so you have 8 wedges. Lay these down on a large roasting pan or rimmed baking sheet and drizzle very lightly with olive oil. Sprinkle generously with salt and pepper.

  2. Cut each slice of bacon into small strips and lay on top of the cabbage.

  3. Roast for 30 minutes, flipping the cabbage wedges halfway through. If the edges aren't browned enough for your taste after 30 minutes, put them back in for five-minute increments until they are. Serve immediately; the wedges cool down fast.

Recipe Notes

Roasting rack: Some cooks prefer to roast the cabbage on a rack, which helps the edges crisp up and brown more. But when you roast it flat in a pan more of the bacon and its drippings stay with the cabbage, which I prefer.

Types of cabbage: You can use any sort of cabbage with this recipe. I've never used red cabbage but I am sure it would work beautifully. I also like roasting Savoy cabbage; it tends to give you smaller, more manageable wedges.

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Recipe: Roasted Cabbage with Bacon (2024)


How do you keep cabbage crisp when cooking? ›

**Steaming**: Steaming cabbage preserves most of its nutrients and helps maintain its texture. Steam the cabbage until it is tender but still slightly crisp, usually for about 5-7 minutes. 2. **Sautéing**: Sautéing cabbage in a little oil over medium heat cooks it quickly while retaining its nutrients and flavor.

How do you cook cabbage without making it soggy? ›

Giving sliced wedges of cabbage a quick roasting session in the oven will help them to caramelize and get nice and crispy. Instead of getting soggy and overcooked, the cabbage will have a nice crisp texture and a more complex flavor than raw cabbage. You can also infuse cabbage with tons of flavor by braising it.

What is bacon and cabbage made of? ›

Bacon and cabbage (Irish: bagún agus cabáiste) is a dish traditionally associated with Ireland. The dish consists of sliced back bacon boiled with cabbage and potatoes. Smoked bacon is sometimes used. The dish is served with the bacon sliced, and with some of the boiling juices added.

Should cabbage be cooked over high heat? ›

As with other brassicas, high heat is what you're after here in order to get the most flavor out of cabbage. Cutting the head up into fat wedges helps build up a nice contrast between deeply browned exterior and tender, meaty interior.

Why do you put vinegar in cabbage? ›

Green is the heartiest variety; it takes well to all cooking methods. Red can turn a funny blue color when cooked, so it's best used raw. If you do want to cook it, add a touch of acid like lemon juice or vinegar to lessen the effect. Savoy can be used in any recipe that calls for green cabbage.

Why do you put baking soda in cabbage? ›

Adding baking soda to your boiling cabbage can help reduce the objectionable smell and maintain the green color long after when it typically turns grayish from cooking for too long. However, this may rid the cabbage of its nutritional value.

Why do you soak cabbage before cooking? ›

Crisp it up: Shredded cabbage stays perky if it's soaked in cold water.

How do you know when cooked cabbage is done? ›

Simmer, covered, until the cabbage begins to soften, 5 to 7 minutes. Turn the cabbage carefully, and continue to simmer until the cabbage is tender, an additional 5 minutes. The cabbage is ready when a small paring knife inserted into the thickest part of the cabbage near the core slides through easily.

How do you cut cabbage for bacon and cabbage? ›

Slice cabbage across the grain into thin shreds. If necessary, wash it quickly in cold water. About 20 minutes before the end of cooking the bacon, add shredded cabbage to the pot of simmering bacon.

What are the health benefits of cabbage and bacon? ›

What are the health benefits of Simply cook savoy cabbage and bacon? This simple side is packed with vitamin K for your blood, bones, arteries and cells. Try adding some finely chopped onions and a little garlic powder for a sweeter flavour.

Why is the dish corned beef and cabbage rather than bacon and cabbage? ›

Experts say the meal originated on American soil in the late 19th century as Irish immigrants substituted corned beef for bacon, which was meat of choice in the homeland.

Can you overcook cabbage? ›

The key to cooking cabbage: Don't overcook it.

Cabbage is sweet and aromatic when cooked correctly. But the same sulfuric compounds that provide many of its health benefits can turn saboteur when overcooked, creating a pungent, unpleasant smell.

How do you get the gas out of cabbage? ›

To reduce the likelihood of experiencing gas after eating cabbage, consider cooking it thoroughly. This can help break down the fibers and make it easier to digest. Additionally, try adding caraway seeds or fennel seeds to your cabbage dishes, as these spices are known to help reduce gas.

Why is my cabbage bitter after cooking? ›

Overcooking cabbage releases sulfur compounds that can give it a bitter taste. Another possible reason is that the cabbage was not fresh.

How do you keep shredded cabbage crispy? ›

How to store cabbage after it is cut
  1. Either wrap it tightly in plastic wrap, in a large plastic bag, or in an air-tight container in your crisper. This will help to lock in your cabbage's natural moisture and reduce oxidation.
  2. Cut cabbage should be used in 2-3 days.
Apr 7, 2022

How do you keep cooked vegetables crisp? ›

Your vegetables are about to get even crispier with this simple tip. The next time you roast vegetables, add some cornstarch. Yes, cornstarch—that box in your pantry is the secret to a super-crispy exterior on veggies, from potatoes to cauliflower.

How do you keep vegetables crisp when cooking? ›

What are some tips for cooking veggies so they aren't rubbery? I like to boil them for a few minutes, until they are ALMOST done, then take them out of the hot water, dump them into a big bowl of ice water, then return them to the boiling water for maybe one minute. Makes them crisp and not rubbery or floppy!

Why is my cabbage soggy? ›

You don't salt your cabbage appropriately

So, if you're making a slaw, experts advise that you salt the cabbage before combining it with other vegetables. Let the cabbage then sit for one hour at room temp before squeezing the excess moisture out. This will prevent the cabbages from getting soggy.

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