Vegan Sautéed Cabbage and Onions Recipe (2024)

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The best vegan sautéed cabbage recipe with onions, caraway and soy curls. A healthy protein loaded recipe cooked with olive oil but can be easily made oil-free and whole foods plant based compliant. Naturally plant-based, gluten free and insanely delicious.

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Sautéed Cabbage and Onions

Otherwise known as pan fried cabbage, this vegan European classic is the quintessential peasant meal. As my grandma used to call it “ Taitei cu Varza “ that actually translates as “Noodles and Cabbage” is the perfect embodiment of flavor, comfort and nostalgia, a must make recipe at least once a month.

About the Cabbage

Green cabbage roughly chopped by hand or thinly sliced with a mandolin are both perfect in this recipe. I feel that the irregular hand chopping really fits with the rustic vibe of the dish. It’s a matter of preference after all. The recipe calls for 7 cups more or less, usually that mean 1 small cabbage or half of a large head.

The Onions

It’s what gives the meal that deep caramelized flavor throughout. Start with an extra large yellow or white onion, it will all melt and shrink under your eyes so don’t think it will be too much. Don’t skimp on the onions! If preferred they can be replaced with one large leek that has been chopped and rinsed well.

Soy Curls

Whole food soy curls rehydrated for 10 minutes while you caramelize the onions really bump up the protein content and perfectly compliment all the flavors going on. Their meaty “chicken” like texture makes recipes both hearty and satisfying on every level. (You can buy them here)!


Toasted caraway seeds set the tone for that classic European cabbage flavor profile followed by either sweet or smoked paprika, a pinch of onion powder and nutritional yeast for extra layers of flavor. The dish is finished with tons of freshly cracked black pepper and brightened up by fresh dill.

Serving Suggestions

  • Traditionally sautéed cabbage is served with some type of homemade wide noodles or macaroni. It’s important that the ratio of cabbage to pasta is something like 3 to 1. You wantlots of cabbage and a little pasta not vice versa.
  • It goes really well spooned over a bed of these mashed potatoes, alongside cauliflower steaks, potatoes and mushrooms or served with grandma’s paprika potatoes. It’s also nice scooped up in these potato flatbreads, tacos or piled up hight on slices of vegan homemade bread.

How to Make Sautéed Cabbage with Onions

  1. Rehydrate your soy curls, slice the cabbage and chop the onion.
  2. Sautée the onion in a drizzle of olive oil until it starts to caramelize. Add the caraway seeds and spicy chili if using. (Using a cast iron skillet will really help with the caramelization process so use it if you have it).
  3. Add the sliced cabbage to the skillet and sautée until wilted then sprinkle in the spices.
  4. Stir in the soy curls and continue cooking until they start to caramelize together with the cabbage.
  5. Season to taste with sea salt and lots of freshly cracked black pepper and serve with fresh dill or chives.

Add ins:

  • 1/2 tbsp apple cider vinegar or a squeeze of lemon.
  • vegan chicken, Italian sausages or hot dogs.
  • sliced apples.
  • sautéed wild mushrooms & chopped kale.
  • smoky tempeh bits or your favorite vegan bacon.
  • your favorite vegetables: bell peppers, yellow squash, zucchini etc.

vegan cabbage recipes

  • Unstuffed Cabbage Roll Soup
  • Apple Coleslaw
  • Balsamic Brussels Sprouts
  • Corned Jackfruit and Cabbage
  • Unstuffed Cabbage Roll Casserole
  • Asian Peanut Slaw
  • Cabbage Potato Soup
  • European Cabbage Soup.

Vegan Sautéed Cabbage and Onions Recipe (10)

5 from 5 votes

Vegan Sautéed Cabbage and Onions

The best recipe for sautéed cabbage with onions, caraway and soy curls. A healthy protein loaded recipe cooked with olive oil but can be easily made oil-free and whole foods plant based compliant. Naturally vegan, gluten free and insanely delicious.

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  • Soak the soy curls in hot water for 10 minutes. Drain an ring out any excess water.

  • Preheat a large skillet or wok over medium high flame and sautee the onion in a drizzle of olive oil or water until translucent. (Omit oil and use water or veggie stock for WFPB + Plantricious compliance).

  • Add the caraway seeds and chili pepper and continue cooking until the onion begins to caramelize. (Add a little splash of water if needed to create some steam and scrape up any brown bits from the bottom of the pan).

  • Stir in the cabbage with a pinch of sea salt and continue cooking until the cabbage has wilted.

  • Sprinkle the paprika, onion powder and nutritional yeast over the top and toss to coat.

  • Add the rehydrated soy curls to the pan and toss to coat with the cabbage and onions in all the spices. Continue cooking until both the cabbage and the soy curls start to get some color and caramelize. You can add more oil or water if needed again to loosen up the brown bits from the bottom.

  • Taste and season with sea salt and freshly cracked black pepper. Serve with the fresh dill on top with your choice of noodles, or potatoes.


  • To make the recipe compliant you must sautee in a splash of water or veggie stock and completely on it the olive oil from the recipe.

    Vegan Sautéed Cabbage and Onions Recipe (11)



  • Some people like to add a little apple cider vinegar to the cabbage, again it is a personal preference so I suggest each person individually ads it to their own bowl when serving. If you’d like to add it to the entire dish start with 1/2 tablespoon or less and work your way up from there. Alternatively serve with wedges of lemon!
  • Feel free to swap the onion in the recipe for one large leek chopped and rinsed well.
  • If you have a large cast iron skillet make sure to use it here, it really helps get a beautiful caramelization going on both the onions and cabbage.


Calories: 214kcal | Carbohydrates: 27g | Protein: 26g | Fat: 1g | Saturated Fat: 1g | Sodium: 32mg | Potassium: 392mg | Fiber: 13g | Sugar: 11g | Vitamin A: 946IU | Vitamin C: 66mg | Calcium: 222mg | Iron: 6mg

Course: Main Course

Cuisine: Romanian

Keyword: plant based, sauteed cabbage, soy curls, vegan,

Servings: 4 people

Calories: 214kcal

Author: Florentina

Vegan Sautéed Cabbage and Onions Recipe (2024)


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