Make an easy weeknight meal of this Cabbage Soup with Vegetables, a classic recipe that’s every bit as quick as it is comforting. Shredded green cabbage is simmered in a flavorful broth with white beans, potatoes, and loads of other vegetables. The deceptively simple ingredients in this dish make for a cozy and healthy meal that will suit any season!

Healthy and low carb soup is served in a white bowl with a spoon.

It wasn’t until last year that I truly fell in love with cabbage.

From Sautéed Cabbage, to Roasted Cabbage Steaks, to the more traditional Stuffed Cabbage Rolls (and even Unstuffed Cabbage Rolls!), we simply couldn’t get enough of this healthy cruciferous vegetable.

And when I discovered that you could use this highly underrated ingredient to bulk up an otherwise thin and brothy soup, I had to give it a try!

Going the more traditional route, I opted to load up this cabbage soup with plenty of vegetables, such as potatoes, carrots, and tomatoes. Left to simmer away with a little bit of seasoning and a few herbs tossed in, the final result was out-of-this-world delicious.

What’s more, the process for making it couldn’t be easier!

Cabbage, canned beans, celery, carrots, garlic, onion, potatoes, broth, seasonings, and canned tomatoes are the ingredients for this recipe.

Ingredients

The simple ingredients you need to make this Cabbage Soup recipe include:

  • Cabbage. One small head of green cabbage, or half of a large one is recommended, to yield about 8-10 cups once it is all chopped up into 1-inch pieces. For more information on choosing and preparing a cabbage, see How to Cut and Shred Cabbage.
  • Carrots. Any variety will work, but they should be peeled and cut into ½-inch slices to ensure cooking all the way through.
  • Celery. For a softer texture the celery should be finely chopped; for bigger bites with a bit of crunch to them, cut them larger.
  • Onion. Either a sweet variety (like Vidalia) or white onion is recommended, finely diced to avoid any raw pieces remaining. For more information on choosing and preparing an onion, see How to Cut an Onion
  • Garlic. Fresh garlic cloves, finely minced, are ideal. However, ⅛ teaspoon of garlic powder may be substituted for each clove. For more information on preparing garlic, see How to Mince Garlic.
  • Potatoes. Yukon Gold or red potatoes are recommended for their firm texture, which holds up well to use in soups and stews. These should be cut into ½-inch chunks, about the same size as the carrots. 
  • Tomatoes. Both the canned sauce and diced varieties are used. Plain, unseasoned tomato sauce should be used for full control over seasoning. Crushed tomatoes can be substituted for the sauce, but it will create a more chunky texture in the broth.
  • Beans. A variety of white beans like Great Northern, navy, or cannellini is ideal. Make sure to fully rinse and drain the beans before adding them to the soup.
  • Oil. An olive oil or other relatively neutral cooking oil is recommended.
  • Worcestershire sauce. Adding this in is imperative for developing a lovely depth of flavor.
  • Broth. Regular or reduced-sodium vegetable broth is recommended, but chicken broth may also be used for more flavor.
  • Seasonings. Dried oregano, dried thyme, and paprika are used here, but other herbs may be used or substituted, to taste.

How to Make Cabbage Soup

The basic steps for making Cabbage Soup are simple to follow. Please see the recipe card below for more detailed ingredient amounts.

Sauté Mirepoix

To a large pot or dutch oven, add 2 tablespoons of oil and warm it over medium heat. Chop the onion, carrots, and celery as directed, and sauté for 3-4 minutes or until slightly softened. 

Add the garlic and continue sautéeing the mix for an additional minute, or just until the garlic is fragrant. The finely minced garlic is added last and cooked the least because it will burn easier than the rest of the mirepoix.

Diced vegetables are sautéed until tender.

Pour and Season

To the mirepoix, add the diced tomatoes, tomato sauce, and broth of choice to make the base of the soup. Stir well, to ensure that any browned bits at the bottom of the pot get scraped up into the mix.

Add the Worcestershire sauce, thyme, oregano, paprika, salt, and pepper, and stir very well to combine. Taste the broth and adjust to taste – it’s alright if it’s slightly salty at this stage, because the addition of the beans and cabbage will even it back out.

Broth and canned vegetables are added to the pot.

Rinse and Add

Empty the can of beans into a small strainer, then rinse and thoroughly drain them. By doing this, the excess salt and starch in the canning liquid isn’t introduced to the soup, where it could weigh down the otherwise light and healthy broth. 

Set them aside to finish draining while preparing the rest of the vegetables.

Canned beans are drained and rinsed.

Cut and Core

Give the potatoes and cabbage a thorough washing, to ensure any surface dirt is removed. Cut the potatoes into ½-inch cubes, and the cabbage into quarters.

Holding the knife at a slight angle, carefully cut the tough inner cores out of the bottom of each cabbage wedge, and then cut the remaining sections into 1-inch pieces. This should yield about 8 cups of cut cabbage.

For more information on how to cut and core cabbage, see How to Cut and Shred Cabbage.

Cabbage is chopped into thin pieces.

Stir and Simmer

Add the beans, potatoes, and cabbage to the pot and stir until everything is well mixed and the cabbage is mostly submerged. Don’t worry if it looks like a lot of volume in the pot, as the cabbage will shrink significantly when it begins to soften and cook down.

Bring the soup up to a boil, stir well once more, and reduce the heat to medium. Cover the pot tightly with a lid, and simmer the soup for 20-25 minutes, or until the vegetables are tender.

Give the soup one last taste for seasoning, and to test the texture of the vegetables, and adjust if needed. Serve immediately, with a sprinkle of fresh parsley in each bowl. 

Meal Prep and Storage

  • To Prep-Ahead: Except for the garlic and potatoes, the vegetables can all be washed and chopped in advance, up to 2-3 days ahead. Garlic should be minced or pressed fresh, and potatoes should be cut at most 1 day ahead, and stored submerged in a bowl of cold water in the fridge.
  • To Store: This dish will keep in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 4-5 days.
  • To Freeze: Cabbage soup can be stored in an airtight container in the freezer for up to 3 months. However, be aware that the texture of the potatoes may change slightly during the process of freezing and reheating.
  • To Reheat: To avoid overcooking the vegetables during reheating, it is recommended to let the soup – if frozen – thaw in the fridge at least 1 day in advance. From the fridge, it can be reheated in the microwave, or in bulk over medium heat on the stovetop until warmed through.

Dietary Modifications

The recipe you’ll find below is already gluten-free, dairy-free, vegetarian, and vegan as written. Here are some adjustments and substitutions you can make to help it fit your other dietary requirements:

  • Low-Carb / Keto: Omit the beans and potatoes entirely.
  • Whole30: Get a tomato sauce without any added sugars, and omit the beans. 
  • Paleo: Omit the beans and potatoes entirely.
  • Low-Sodium: Use a homemade or low-sodium vegetable broth, and use only one teaspoon of salt.
  • Extra Nutrition: This recipe is already super healthy, but it can never contain too many vegetables, so long as they can still cook down in the broth.
A ladle full of cabbage soup is served for a healthy vegan dinner.

FAQs

What can I do with leftover raw cabbage?

Cabbage can be used in everything from slaws to salads to stir-fries, and so much more! Some delicious and versatile recipes for which leftover cabbage could be used include Homemade Southern Coleslaw, Fish Taco Slaw, Sautéed Cabbage, Roasted Cabbage Steaks, Unstuffed Cabbage Rolls, and Instant Pot Corned Beef and Cabbage. Served hot or cold, thick-sliced or finely shredded, there’s no shortage of recipes to create.

Does cabbage freeze well in soup?

On its own, cabbage can freeze perfectly well so long as it’s been blanched first. Cooked cabbage in soup will freeze even better, reheating to almost the exact same consistency as when it was cooked fresh so long as it isn’t over-boiled.

What are the health benefits and risks of a cabbage soup diet?

While the “cabbage soup diet” has been lauded as a common tactic for losing weight quickly, it is by no means a magical cure-all for weight loss issues. 

Like any healthy dish, it serves as an excellent alternative to much higher-calorie alternatives, and boasts a hearty dose of fiber and other nutrients. Cruciferous vegetables in particular, such as cabbage, are high in vitamins and antioxidants, and have been known to reduce inflammation.

However, when relied upon too heavily as a diet trend, it can lead to issues such as excess sodium intake, and inadequate intake of calories, protein, and other nutrients not covered by the soup’s ingredients. Instead, relying upon recipes like this as just one of many dishes in a well-rounded, nutritionally diverse diet is the best way to lose weight and stay healthy.

Expert Tips and Tricks

  • Add more veggies. While the ingredients recommended are a great base for a simple cabbage soup, everything from bell peppers to green beans to corn can also be added as variations, to suit your preferences. 
  • Spice it up. Adding some red pepper flakes, or a small dash of hot sauce or cayenne pepper to the soup can bring a delicious, spicy edge to this dish.
  • Skip the cans. While canned tomatoes and beans are extremely convenient, soaking and pre-cooking your own beans and making your own diced tomatoes and tomato sauce can make this dish even healthier.
  • Make it thick. For a thicker broth, add a little extra tomato sauce or tomato paste, and make a cornstarch slurry in a separate bowl to add to the soup in the last few minutes of cooking, to help it thicken up slightly.
  • Add some protein. Cabbage soup makes for an amazing vegetarian or vegan meal as-is, but adding chicken meat or stock serves as the perfect way to add even more flavor and protein while still keeping it super healthy!
A white bowl is filled with comforting cabbage soup for a vegetarian meal.

More Cabbage Recipes

Make the most of this nutritious, cruciferous powerhouse with even more cabbage recipes:

Tap stars to rate!

5 from 2 votes

Cabbage Soup with Vegetables Recipe

Make an easy weeknight meal of this Cabbage Soup with Vegetables, a classic recipe that’s every bit as quick as it is comforting. Green cabbage is simmered in a flavorful broth with white beans, potatoes, and loads of other vegetables, then finally served up with a sprinkle of fresh parsley.
Yield 6 servings
Prep 20 minutes
Cook 30 minutes
Total 50 minutes

Ingredients 

  • 2 Tbsp. oil
  • 1 small sweet onion diced
  • 3 medium carrots cut into ½-inch slices
  • 3 stalks celery finely chopped
  • 4 cloves garlic finely minced
  • 8 oz. can diced tomatoes canned
  • 8 oz. tomato sauce canned
  • 6 cups vegetable broth regular sodium
  • 1 Tbsp. Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 tsp. thyme dried
  • ½ tsp. oregano dried
  • ½ tsp. paprika
  • 2 tsp. salt
  • ½ tsp. black pepper
  • 15 oz. can white beans cannellini, Northern, or navy, rinsed and drained
  • ¾ lb. Yukon gold potatoes cut into ½-inch cubes
  • 1 small head cabbage cut into 1-inch pieces, about 8-10 cups

Instructions 

  • Add 2 tablespoons of oil to a dutch oven or large pot, over medium heat. Sauté onion, carrots, and celery for 3-4 minutes. Add garlic and continue sautéing for an additional minute.
  • Pour in the diced tomatoes, tomato sauce, broth, Worcestershire sauce, thyme, oregano, paprika, salt, and pepper. Stir until well combined.
  • Rinse and thoroughly drain the beans, rinse and cut the potatoes into ½-inch cubes, and prepare the cabbage by coring it and then cutting it into 1-inch pieces.
  • Add these ingredients to the pot and stir until everything is well incorporated. It’s OK if the cabbage is not completely submerged, it will shrink down once it starts cooking.
  • Bring the soup to a boil and then reduce heat to medium. Cover the pot with a lid and simmer for 20-25 minutes, or until the vegetables are tender.
  • Serve immediately with a sprinkle of fresh parsley and enjoy!

Tap stars to rate!

5 from 2 votes

Video

Notes

Meal Prep and Storage

  • To Prep-Ahead: Except for the garlic and potatoes, the vegetables can all be washed and chopped in advance, up to 2-3 days ahead. Garlic should be minced or pressed fresh, and potatoes should be cut at most 1 day ahead, and stored submerged in a bowl of cold water in the fridge.
  • To Store: This dish will keep in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 4-5 days.
  • To Freeze: Cabbage soup can be kept frozen in an airtight container for up to 3 months. However it is recommended to remove any chunks of potato in the soup prior to freezing, because their texture can turn unpleasant across the process of freezing and reheating.
  • To Reheat: To avoid overcooking the vegetables during reheating, it is recommended to let the soup – if frozen – thaw in the fridge at least 1 day in advance. From the fridge, it can be reheated by serving in the microwave, or in bulk over medium heat on the stovetop until warmed through.
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    1. Yay! So happy to hear you enjoyed the recipe, Marc! Thanks so much for taking the time to leave a comment!