Beef and Rice Cabbage Rolls (Rewind Recipes)

My heart is on the verge on spontaneous combustion finally showing you these. (!!!)

Beef and Rice Cabbage Rolls / Bev Cooks

Coincidentally, they kind of look like hearts. So my sister and husband say. They’re little purple cabbage heart chambers cradling the most savory beefy and rice filling ya evah did see.

It’s another Rewind Recipe! Hooray! Have you missed them? I can tell you have.

This tried-and-true comfort meal hails from yet another find in my Grandmother’s loot. Of course what draws me to it is the horrific pun in a hilarious rice font on the bright red front cover. I want to punch it and smooch it at the same time.

Beef and Rice Cabbage Rolls / Bev Cooks

This 1963 publication boasts a sprinkling of blurry, black and white photography, and 154 pages of tiny fonted rice-a-licious recipes all devoted to our beloved little grain.

Even though the dish is somewhat common, this specific recipe is unexpectedly freak-your-face special. Let me tell you why.

First of all, the only other times I’ve stuffed cabbage, I’ve used green cabbage. Not purple. The book didn’t specify which kind of cabbage to use, and since I still had a ton of purple left over from my tostadas, I wanted to use it. But those enormous cabbage leaves are tough, man! So just dip them in some hot hot hot water for a few seconds and they’ll soften right up. Sweet little things, they are.

Beef and Rice Cabbage Rolls / Bev Cooks  Beef and Rice Cabbage Rolls / Bev Cooks

Okay, this is the thing. And I personally think this is what makes these rolls MAGICAL. And I don’t use that word lightly. Except I do. Anyway, the book said this would make twelve rolls. Uhhh, naw. Let’s make six huge ones!

But that’s not the magic. It sort of is, but it’s not the WHOLE magic.

The rice I used was jasmine. The book just said to use white rice, but not what kinddddd of white rice. You know how sweet and nutty jasmine rice is? Holy duders, use jasmine. You will NOT believe the sweetness it imparts in those rolls. You just will NOT believe it. You will NOT.

NOT NOT NOT.

Beef and Rice Cabbage Rolls / Bev Cooks

And lastly, the beef. I used grass fed, but if you have a favorite, flavorful beef that you love, use it!

And lastly lastly, the parmesan cheese. It calls for three tablespoons, but I just went completely nuts with it. I have no clue how much I put in. I just kept grating and grating and sobbing and sobbing.

And lastly lastly lastly, the book didn’t call for a garnish, which is straight silliness. I threw a bunch of chopped parsley and more grated parm on top and I’ll never look back.

And lastly lastly lastly lastly, just kidding I’m done.

Beef and Rice Cabbage Rolls / Bev Cooks

Wait! I’m not done. It bakes in a spicy tomato broth for over an hour. I just don’t think you could ever be prepared for what will happen to you during that first bite.

This is CRAZY AMAZING.

Slap-ya-mama-ridic.

Beefy, nutty, sweet, juicy, tomato-y, savory, cannot deal.

I can almost 294734253% guarantee that this will make it to your heavy rotation meal plan.

Make that 294734254%.

Beef and Rice Cabbage Rolls / Bev Cooks

The inside, because GAH.

Beef and Rice Cabbage Rolls:

* 1 pound ground beef (I used grass fed because I dig the flavor.)
* 3 Tbs. freshly grated parmesan cheese
* 1 tsp coarse salt
* 1 pinch freshly ground pepper
* 1 egg, lightly beaten
* 2 slices bread (I used whole wheat and it was just fine!)
* 1/2 cup uncooked rice (I used jasmine and I’ll never regret it)
* 6 large purple cabbage leaves
* 1/2 tsp chili powder (I probably used a little more)
* 1 cup tomato sauce (like, an 8 oz can)

Mix the meat, cheese, 1/2 tsp salt, pepper, egg and bread (which you’ll dip in a little water and squeeze it dry) in a big bowl. Add the rice and mix really well.

Take the cabbage leaves and dip them in boiling water for about 15 seconds, just to soften them and make them pliable.

Evenly divide the meat into six large meatballs and place them in the center of each cabbage leaf. Fold the leaf over the meat and place them in a casserole dish, seamside down. Sprinkle with the chili power.

Mix the tomato sauce with a cup of water and evenly pour over the stuffed cabbage.

Cover and bake in a 375 degree oven for an hour and 15 minutes.

Garnish with freshly chopped parsley and parmesan cheese and eat all of it immediately.

Beef and Rice Cabbage Rolls / Bev Cooks

If you need me I’ll be snuggled between these cabbage rolls for the rest of time.

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21 Responses to Beef and Rice Cabbage Rolls (Rewind Recipes)

  1. Sharana @ Living The Sweet Life Blog March 5, 2015 at 7:42 am #

    Mmmmmm – the purple cabbage makes it so pretty!! And it sounds delicious. I’ve actually never had cabbage rolls … I might as well start with the best — I think we have a winner!

  2. Lesley March 5, 2015 at 8:18 am #

    My face just exploded. I don’t know what nationality your gram is, but mine is Czech. This is her recipe: http://livingaloudallowed.com/2009/10/14/polished-polish/

    I never thought of using purple cabbage or jasmine, she might have put the hurt on me for “thinking outside the box”…that said, shh, I’m gonna try it, and those mega sized rolls, yes. WIN.

  3. Phi @ The Sweetphi Blog March 5, 2015 at 8:18 am #

    My husbands grandmother makes these amazing stuffed cabbage rolls that always taste so yummy and remind me of family gatherings, I love the purple cabbage, and can honestly say I’m totally going to make these and bring them to our next Sunday dinner 🙂

  4. Christin March 5, 2015 at 8:35 am #

    Can you use regular long grain white rice for these? they sound amazing!!!!!

  5. Julie March 5, 2015 at 9:35 am #

    Yay! I guessed correct from previous post. These are going to be delish.

  6. Laila March 5, 2015 at 10:56 am #

    This was so fun to read and actually makes me wanna try it really soon 🙂 I just want to ask why you have to use uncooked rice?

    • Bev Weidner March 5, 2015 at 11:09 am #

      You use uncooked because it cooks in the rolls! And it’s PERFECT. Saves you time, cooks all the way through, and is so easy you’ll want to scream at someone.

  7. Liz @ The Lemon Bowl March 5, 2015 at 3:57 pm #

    Dude. Your meat to cabbage ratio is spot on.

  8. Jessica March 5, 2015 at 6:11 pm #

    These are so pretty! Thank you for sharing, I have been wanting to make these for a while now 🙂

  9. Sheila March 6, 2015 at 8:19 am #

    Ha! not sure why but Liz’s comment made me giggle…spot on meat to cabbage ratio, something only a foodie would get excited about 😉 My mom used to make a recipe similar to this…forgot all about it, need to haul that baby out!

  10. Jessica March 7, 2015 at 1:17 pm #

    And then dye some Easter eggs with the cabbage water.

  11. Jenny Flake March 9, 2015 at 9:36 pm #

    These cabbage rolls look so yummy! Great dinner idea 😀

  12. Laura @ Laura's Culinary Adventures March 13, 2015 at 7:32 am #

    Delicious! That cookbook looks so cool!

  13. Miss Rebecca May 7, 2015 at 9:21 am #

    Hey Bev –

    These look amazing and I’m going to make them for my Irish mother. What have you served alongside these guys? Also, have you ever made them with brown rice or would that be sacrilege?

    Thanks!

    • Bev Weidner May 7, 2015 at 1:12 pm #

      Hello! I think I just made a simple salad alongside the rolls. And you know, I’ve not tried it with brown rice. I think it would take a bit longer, and would run the risk of the meat drying out, but I’m not totally sure! If you try it, let me know how it goes!

    • Kiley August 15, 2016 at 5:02 pm #

      Hi! I tried it tonight with brown jasmine rice and the rice needed way more than an hour fifteen, it was quite crunchy. I would suggest par cooking before rolling it with everything else. Very good flavor though!

      • Bev Weidner August 15, 2016 at 6:56 pm #

        Oh yes! Brown rice will take much longer. My recipe calls for white, so the amount of time works pawfectly. So glad you enjoyed!

  14. Tristan May 23, 2017 at 3:21 pm #

    Hi, how much should the liquid be covering the cabbage rolls? I’m afraid the rice won’t cook all the way, have you ever had that problem?

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