During the colder months of the year, it is always good to have a hearty and healthy soup recipe on hand, and this vegan cabbage soup is just that! The main ingredient, cabbage, is packed with nutrients, and a ton of flavor that is well-balanced with the additional vegetables. It is also an incredibly easy and simple recipe that can be whipped up in less than an hour.
Cabbage soup has always been a dish that you either love or hate, but today, we’re here to help sway you towards the love side of things. Old fashioned cabbage soup can be bland and boring; it sure was when we were younger.
Also check out >> Stuffed Cabbage Soup Recipe
But, over the years we’ve perfected the recipe and created an extremely flavorful soup with minimal ingredients and effort. It is low in calories, and very high in nutrients.
Today, we will have a look at this incredible cabbage soup recipe, and dive deep into how this soup is made, the best ingredients to use and how to use them, how to freeze cabbage soup, and much more!
Unlike many other soups, this cabbage soup recipe solely relies on the intense natural flavors and aromas of the vegetables it uses. It only uses 4 vegetables, along with a few additional seasoning ingredients, making it not only vegetarian but vegan as well.
Onions and carrots create a very neutral starting point for any soup. It helps add a surprising amount of flavor, especially when sauteed, while still not overpowering the hero ingredient, cabbage.
The other vegetable (or fruit – whichever you believe in), is tomatoes. The tomato paste adds depth to the recipe, while the crushed tomatoes adds freshness. Once cooked, it helps neutralize the sweet and savory flavors of the different ingredients. Tomatoes also have a ton of health benefits.
Our last vegetable is cabbage, which is also our hero ingredient. Cabbage is an extremely healthy ingredient that is known for its anti-inflammatory properties, low calorie count, and its high nutritional value.
Mixed together these ingredients produce an aromatic and extremely healthy and hearty vegan cabbage soup.
What makes cabbage so fantastic is its very prominent flavor. Any vegetable soup with cabbage basically becomes a cabbage soup. That doesn’t mean that adding additional vegetables won’t be noticed.
Potato is always a great option to add to a cabbage soup recipe. It is a starchy vegetable, meaning it will make the soup even heartier and more filling. It also has a very neutral flavor that will help balance out the strong cabbage one.
Another great option, especially for autumn and winter months, is turnips or sweet potatoes. Both these have amazing, yet neutral flavors that pair well with cabbage.
What Type of Cabbage?
The traditional type of cabbage that is most often used are plain red, green, or white cabbages. These are spherical in shape, and have a smooth surface on the leaves, with a few prominent veins.
You can also use savoy cabbage, which looks very similar to common cabbages, only they have a ton of veins and have a coarser texture.
Stay away from leafy cabbages like Chinese cabbage (or Napa cabbage), wild cabbage, Bok choy, or Choy Sum. These all have specific structures that aren't always interchangeable with common varietals.
How to Cut Cabbage
If you are ever unsure about how to prepare cabbage for vegan cabbage recipes, shredding it is always the best option. It helps the cabbage cook all the way through and at an even rate meaning, you won't have some pieces crunchy and others mushy.
To shred cabbage, cut the head in half from root to tip (lengthways). Then place it on its cut side, and starting from the top (not the stem part), finely slice the cabbage repeatedly.
How To Make
This is an incredibly simple and easy old fashioned cabbage soup recipe. With only a few vegetables, some herbs, and spices, you have a healthy and low calorie meal in less than an hour.
- First, heat the oil. Heat the olive oil in a large pot over medium heat.
- Second, add the onions and garlic. Once the olive oil has heated, add the chopped onions and garlic cloves and sauté for about 3 minutes, or until the onions have become translucent.
- Third, add the carrots. Once the carrots have been added, cook them for about 5 minutes, or until they start to sweat. The carrots won't be fully cooked after this time, however, it does allow them to release their delicious and sweet flavors before being mixed with the other ingredients.
- Fourth, add the tomato paste and tomatoes. When adding tomato paste, we like to mix it well with the other ingredients before adding the crushed tomatoes. This helps it coat all the ingredients and be evenly spread throughout the base. Add your crushed tomatoes and cook them until they are soft.
- Fifth, add the herbs, cabbage, and seasoning, and cook for 10 minutes. Once your tomatoes are soft, add the green onions, parsley, shredded cabbage, salt, and pepper. Give the soup a good stir and allow it to cook for 10 minutes, stirring occasionally.
- Sixth, add the lemon juice and water and continue cooking. Once the ingredients have been allowed to cook a while, add some freshly squeezed lemon juice and hot water. Bring the soup to a boil, then reduce the heat and allow it to simmer for 15 minutes. Once fully cooked, remove from the heat and serve with fresh parsley.
How To Freeze
This is an incredibly easy soup to freeze and if done properly, will last 2-3 months in the freezer before drastically changing.
Once you’ve made the soup, allow it to cool completely, then place it in a freezer-safe air-tight container. Freeze in a safe area away from any odors and at a stable freezer temperature, around 0°F.
Cabbage in general isn’t an ingredient that requires hours of cooking. The exact amount of cooking time depends on the thickness of the shredded cabbage. Properly shredded cabbage can cook inside a soup for under 10 minutes.
There are however a lot of people that prefer adding pre-cooked or wilted cabbage into a soup to prevent a crunchy texture.
We don't feel that this is necessary, as soups have to generally cook for about 30 minutes, and cabbage only requires 10 minutes to cook. You can also see from our method, that the cabbage in this cabbage carrot soup has about 25 minutes to cook, which will create a very soft end product.
You can definitely use red cabbage in this soup. You shred red cabbage in exactly the same way you would green or white, and the cooking times are also the same.
You might notice a slight difference in taste, but to many, it won't matter or be noticeable unless compared side-by-side.
Technically, cabbage is better raw than cooked, but only because once cooked, it releases some of its water, and with it, the nutrients and minerals.
However, both versions are still extremely healthy and have incredibly healing properties. Have a look at this article for all the amazing benefits consuming cabbage has: Cabbage Benefits.
As always: If you make this recipe–or any recipes on Give Recipe–let us know what you think by leaving a comment below. And post a pic on Instagram too—tag @give_recipe so we can see!
More Vegan Cabbage Recipes
More Cabbage Recipes
- Cabbage Casserole With Cheese
- Unstuffed Cabbage Roll Casserole
- Recipe For Cabbage Stew
- Beef Cabbage Soup Recipe
Vegan Cabbage Soup
Low calorie cabbage soup with tasty flavors.
- Prep Time: 15 minutes
- Cook Time: 20 minutes
- Total Time: 35 minutes
- Yield: 6 1x
- Category: Lunch
- Method: Cooking
- Cuisine: American
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1 small onion, chopped
- 2 cloves garlic
- ½ cup chopped carrot
- 1 tablespoon tomato paste
- ½ cup crushed tomatoes
- 2 tablespoon green onions
- 1 tablespoon fresh parsley, chopped
- 4 cups cabbage, shredded
- ½ teaspoon black pepper
- 1 teaspoon salt
- ½ tablespoon lemon juice
- 4 cups hot water
- Heat olive oil in a large pot over medium heat.
- Add onion and garlic, cook until translucent.
- Add in carrots, cook for about 5 minutes.
- Add in tomato paste and crushed tomatoes. Cook until soft.
- Add in green onions, parsley, cabbage, salt and pepper. Give it a good stir.
- Cook for 10 minutes, stirring occasionally.
- Squeeze lemon over it and pout hot water.
- Bring it to boil and then let it simmer for 15 minutes.
- Serve with fresh parsley.
Keywords: cabbage soup, vegan cabbage soup