Behold the Lowly Cabbage: Your New Best Health and Culinary Friend
by Melissa Halsted

Cabbage“But always, to her, red and green cabbages were to be jade and burgundy, chrysoprase and porphyry. Life has no weapons against a woman like that.” ~ Edna Ferber

When I think of cabbage, my brain conjures an image of my “Old Country Gramma.” She is wearing her babushka, standing at the stove, stirring merrily away at a pot of cabbage and onion soup. The whole house smells like stinky love. I want to go back and hug that gramma and drink gallons of her pungent soup.

It’s not just the love that pours forth from cabbage that makes it so appealing. Besides being a super versatile vegetable to prepare, the health properties are so off the charts you might be wondering why grammas and rabbis alike aren’t singing from the rooftops about its charming qualities.

What makes cabbage so amazing, you ask? Sometimes it’s difficult to even fathom that cabbage has magical properties because it is often served up as some obscure overcooked piece of something in stew. Little did you know that squishy encounter was preventing diabetes and cancer all at the same time. Yep, cabbage contains compounds that battle both those biggies.

Un-Swell Yo-Self

Cabbage contains a vast amount and variety of amazing antioxidants called polyphenols. Red cabbage even makes special types of polyphenols called anthocyanins that are also anti-inflammatory so there is a double punch of goodness in the red stuff.

Even though red cabbage contains its own specific anti-inflammatory polyphenols, ALL cabbage contains a multitude of anti-inflammatory compounds called flavonoids. So not only will you be warding off your cells being broken down by free radicals, you will be un-swelling your innards. Pretty cool, eh?

Since you won’t be all inflamed inside after consuming cabbage, you may run less of a risk of cardiovascular events. Speaking of which, cabbage may also lower blood pressure and platelet build-up. Bam! Is your heart begging you to go boil cabbage right now?

Last but Not Least, you remember how we were kvetching about how cabbage is stank-y? Well, that very stuff which causes you to perhaps recoil is sulfur, which is known as a beauty mineral. Sulfur is needed in the production of collagen and keratin which are both essential for healthy skin, hair, teeth, nails, bones, muscles and connective tissue. So, cabbage rewards us with beauty for putting up with its sometimes-off-putting smell. 

On to the Good Stuff: Cabbage is Super-Ass Yummy

My mom use to make this buttered noodle with cabbage and bacon dish that was about as filled with love as you could get. These days I would (my mom gave explicit permission) use vegan bacon and Earth Balance, maybe add some poppy seeds and dried mustard… but the love-filled deliciousness and feeling would be the same.

My gramma would always give us cabbage soup that warmed us from the inside out. It was so good and simple: just cabbage, water, salt, and pepper. You can always add to that basic recipe to make it heartier or leave it as is and get on with life. I like adding some diced carrots, sometimes onions and garlic. Why complicate a simple dish like that?

Sautéed cabbage with other vegetables like mushrooms, peppers, onions, green herbs, and other cruciferous vegetables is one of the easiest to cook meals and actually quite fancy. You can even add in cooked beans or other protein at the end.

Sauerkraut and Kimchee are fermented cabbage that are healthy and delicious as a side dish or on sandwiches or layered in healthy rice bowl meals. They also smell like your Uncle Bill’s dirty socks that got left out in the rain for 5 days. These wonderful treats are filled with probiotics which are healthy bacteria that keep your gut healthy and moving smoothly.

Here are some cabbage recipes I think are super easy and delicious. I picked them just for you because I like you. When you cook cabbage, you are making a meal of pure love so be sure to share with your friends, family, children, grandparents, anyone you feel close to. Food is love. 

Cabbage Recipes

These recipes are purposefully simple and not too adventurous with spices because cabbage has so many gut healing properties and many people are suffering from GERD and other uncomfortable stomach ailments. These recipes are very gentle and will allow your gut to heal. Please look forward to more cabbage recipes in the future that will be a little more on the wild side but will most certainly feed your soul. Cabbage is magic!

Let’s Start Simple: Braised Cabbage

This is the easiest recipe in the world yet it is filling and delicious. The cabbage has a delicate flavor which is enhanced by the simple addition of salt and pepper.

Click HERE or on the picture below for the recipe for this delicious cabbage dish.

Cabbage Recipe

Simple, Wonderful Cabbage Soup

This is so healthy and did you notice that we didn’t use any added fat? Fat is NOT bad, but if you are looking to cut back, feel a little lighter, doing a detox, this soup is a super healthy way to have a meal that will give you energy, make you all warm and cozy, but leave you feeling light.

Click HERE or on the picture below for this wonderful cabbage recipe.

"Buttered" Noodles with Cabbage and "Bacon"

This is a non-vegan title of a vegan recipe. Vegan butter and vegan bacon are used. And it is Delicious!

Click HERE or on the picture below for this delicious cabbage recipe.

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