My grandma used to make cabbage rolls with a Greek twist by adding tons of dill, thyme and onion. It reminded me of her Greek Thanksgiving stuffing traditionally made with rice rather than bread. Although I don’t know many children who beg for cabbage rolls, my sister and I did. Grandma’s cabbage rolls were filled with meat as well as rice and herbs; I just switched out the meat and added lentils for this delicious version of her cabbage rolls. I also skipped the oil for a healthier version.
Although preparing the cabbage may seem difficult, the process is easy. Just make sure your water is boiling when you place the cabbage in the water. And, of course, be careful not to splash yourself. The leaves come off easily. Just be sure to remove them slowly, so they don’t rip. Then, lay them out to drain an cool before filling them.
You can actually make the cabbage rolls the day before. Just place the ingredients in the base of the crock pot, and place in the refrigerator until the next day, plug them in, and go to work.
Sunday is a great day for cooking prep. Or, you can make the filling in advance, and stuff the leaves right before you place them in the base of the crock pot. Either way, it makes walking out the door in the morning mush easier. And, it makes coming home from work to a hot delicious meal even better.
I love my crock pot. In fact, I use my crock pot at least once a week, especially on late work days when I have meetings and other responsibilities that makes cooking complicated.
Remember, just 30 minutes on a Sunday can save you hours in the kitchen during the week. Try to make a plan for weeknight dinners on the weekend. It will help you save money, time, and allow you to enjoy wonderful plant-based food.Print
These little cabbage bundles stuffed with lentil goodness are quick and easy Greek Cabbage which cook while you are at work.
- 1 head Green Cabbage
- 2 cups Brown Lentils, cooked
- 1 large White Onion, diced
- 2 cups Long-Grain Brown Rice, cooked
- 1 Shallot, minced
- 1, 14.5 Organic Fire Roasted Tomatoes
- 1 cup Cremini Mushrooms, sliced
- 3 cloves Garlic, minced
- 1 teaspoon Paprika
- 2 teaspoon Thyme
- 1/4 cup Dill, chopped
- 1/2 teaspoon Salt
- 1 Jar Muir Glen Portabello Mushroom Marinara Sauce, or pasta sauce you prefer
Cooking the Cabbage
- Bring a large pot of water to a rolling boil.
- Carefully drop the whole cabbage into the pot and let it boil for about 5 minutes.
- Put the cabbage in a colander set over a large bowl to drain and cool slightly.
- Remove the outermost layers of leaves, until you reach leaves that aren’t pliable.
- Repeat the boiling and draining process until you have 8 cabbage leaves.
- Lay the leaves on paper towels and set aside, so they can drain and dry.
- Pay dry again with a second paper towel.
Prepare the Cabbage Filling
- Cook lentils and rice
- Sauté onions, garlic and mushrooms until translucent
- In a medium bowl, add the cooked lentils, cooked rice, onion, mushrooms, garlic, dill, and salt, pepper, thyme.
- Stir gently until well-combined.
Prepare the Cabbage Rolls
- Add half the jar of marinara sauce and 1/4 cup water to the bottom of a 3-quart or larger Crock Pot.
- Stir to combine.
- Set a cabbage leaf on a working surface, outer side down, and scoop about 1/2 cup of the mushroom-lentil mixture into the middle.Fold the stem end up about 1/3 of the way, then fold in the sides, like a tortilla.Continue rolling semi-tightly until completely rolled up.
- Lay roll seam-side down on top of the marinara sauce.
- Repeat with remaining cabbage leaves, piling each into the slow cooker in one or two layers, right on top of one another.
- Add the remaining marinara sauce and 1 can diced tomatoes; cover
- Cook on high for 4-5 hours or on low for 8-10 hours.
- To serve, scoop out a little marinara and spread it on a plate.
- Carefully remove cabbage rolls one at a time and transfer to the plate.
- Ladle an additional spoonful or two of the marinara sauce from the slow cooker over the top of each roll and top with a few sprigs of fresh dill or fresh basil leaves.