Vegan stuffed cabbage rolls with rice, mushrooms and vegetables, and an easy tomato sauce! This healthy recipe, which requires just wholesome plantbased ingredients, is great for a weeknight dinner and batch cooking. Gluten-free and oil-free. 

Vegan stuffed cabbage rolls recipe

My favourite type of recipes are the super simple ones, featuring basic ingredients; comforting, but also packed full of vegetables and healthy. I randomly remembered how much I used to love stuffed cabbage rolls, and when I recreated the recipe, the result definitely did not disappoint.

 

 

It’s been really cool to see lots of people eating more plant based recently. If you are too, or even looking to go 100% vegan, I would definitely recommend this vegan stuffed cabbage rolls recipe recipe.

About these vegan stuffed cabbage rolls

Closeup of vegan cabbage rolls in a baking dish with tomato sauce and vegan cheese

Different variations of cabbage rolls are prevalent across many cultures throughout the world. In Russia, where I grew up, stuffed cabbage leaves are called ‘golubtsi’. People often prepare them for special occasions, such as New Year’s Eve, or even inviting guests over for dinner. They sometimes contain meat and fish, but are often naturally vegan too. I used to eat them quite a lot when I was little, but didn’t actually like the meat version as much as I enjoyed them with just a simple plant based filling ingredients.

They definitely show that you do not need a lot of fancy ingredients to cook a vegan dish that’s healthy and doesn’t miss any flavour. What’s great about these cabbage rolls is just how simple and inexpensive the ingredients are. I like to serve mine with vegan cheese, but those are entirely optional because the stuffed cabbage rolls have a lot of flavour by themselves, let alone with a tomato sauce.

Plate with stuffed cabbage rolls in a tomato sauce; a rectangular baking dish stands in the background

The filling of these stuffed cabbage rolls is incredibly simple, requiring just rice and mushrooms as the main ingredients. Something I like doing is making a larger batch and saving some of it to eat during the week for lunch and dinner, typically with some beans or tofu.

Rectangular baking dish with stuffed cabbage rolls in a tomato sauce with vegan cheese on top

What’s to love about these stuffed cabbage leaves?

They are

  • Undetectably vegan and non-vegan approved.
  • Naturally gluten-free.
  • Oil-free.
  • Made with healthy, whole ingredients.
  • Budget friendly.
  • Easy and beginner-friendly.
  • Perfect for a family dinner.
  • Great for meal prep.

Plate with vegan cabbage rolls stuffed with rice and mushrooms

You can serve these either for dinner or lunch with any side of your choice, or by themselves. Oftentimes, they can taste even better the next day!

Storing and freezing cabbage rolls

These are so easy to make ahead, and can be enjoyed hot or cold! Simply transfer them to an airtight container and leave in the fridge for up to 3-4 days. You can also prepare the rolls ahead of time, but bake before you’re about to serve for the freshest taste.

Closeup of stuffed cabbage rolls on a white plate

This is a freezer-friendly recipe: stuffed cabbage leaves can be frozen for up to a month in a freezer-appropriate container.

Instructions

PREPARE THE RICE AND THE CABBAGE

Firstly, start boiling your rice according to packaging instructions. If using wholegrain rice, this is going to take 25-30 minutes, but white rice varieties such as white Basmati usually take 12-15.

While the rice is cooking, remove as much of the stem as possible from a large white cabbage, submerge it in boiling water (you can add a little bit of salt if you want) and boil for around 10 minutes. Drain, allow to cool, and when cool enough to handle, remove the larger leaves from the outside and set them aside. At the same time, preheat a conventional oven to 180 degrees C/350 F.

Alternatively, you can microwave the cabbage on full power for 5-7 minutes. Carefully remove the leaves, and submerge them in boiling water for 3-4 minutes.

MAKE THE FILLING

Add the finely-chopped onion and mushrooms to a non-stick frying pan. Sauté for 3-4 minutes, allowing them to soften and cook down. Next, add the cumin, apple cider vinegar, tamari, cooked rice and spring onion. Stir together for a few minutes before removing from the heat.

Wholegrain rice filling for cabbage rolls

MAKE THE TOMATO SAUCE

Add the minced garlic and tomato paste to a non-stick frying pan and cook for 2-3 minutes, stirring frequently, so that the garlic becomes super fragrant.

Homemade tomato sauce in a frying pan

Next, add salt, paprika, tinned tomatoes, and lime juice. Simmer over a medium heat for around 5 minutes, stirring frequently.

ASSEMBLE AND BAKE

Lay out each cabbage leaf on a flat surface and place 3 tbsp-1/4 cup of the filling near the stem. Roll the leaf carefully, making sure it doesn’t break and tucking in the sides as you go.

Transfer the leaves to a rectangular baking dish. Add a generous layer of the tomato sauce on top as well as optional vegan cheese. Cover with aluminium foil and bake in the preheated oven for 25-30 minutes.

Closeup of stuffed cabbage rolls in a baking dish

Other simple ingredient recipes

Let me know in the comments – what’s your favourite simple plantbased dish? If you give this vegan stuffed cabbage rolls recipe a go, be sure to tag me on Instagram (@earthofmariaa) so I can see your creations, and leave your feedback in the comments below!

Vegan stuffed cabbage rolls recipe

Get the Recipe: Vegan Stuffed Cabbage Rolls

Vegan stuffed cabbage rolls with rice, mushrooms and vegetables, and an easy tomato sauce! This healthy recipe, which requires just wholesome plantbased ingredients, is great for a weeknight dinner or as an appetizer or starter for special occasions. Gluten-free and oil-free. 
5 from 1 vote

Ingredients

  • 2/3 cup wholegrain rice, or any other rice of your choice
  • 1 medium green cabbage

For the filling

  • 1 medium onion, finely chopped
  • 2 cups mushrooms, finely chopped
  • 1 tsp cumin
  • 2 tsp apple cider vinegar
  • 1 1/2 tbsp tamari
  • 2 stems spring onion, chopped

For the tomato sauce

  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 tbsp tomato paste
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp paprika
  • 1 tin chopped tomatoes , (14oz)
  • 1 lime, juice of

To serve (optional)

  • 1/4 cup vegan cheese

Equipment

  • Saucepan x 2
  • Conventional oven
  • Non-stick frying pan
  • Rectangular baking dish

Instructions 

PREPARE THE RICE AND THE CABBAGE

  • Boil your rice according to packaging instructions. If using wholegrain rice, this is going to take 25-30 minutes, but white rice varieties such as white Basmati usually take 12-15.
  • While the rice is cooking, remove as much of the stem as possible from a large white cabbage, submerge it in boiling water (you can add a little bit of salt if you want) and boil for around 10 minutes.
  • Drain, allow to cool, and when cool enough to handle, remove the larger leaves from the outside and set them aside*.

MAKE THE FILLING

  • Add the onion and mushrooms to a non-stick frying pan. Sauté for 3-4 minutes, allowing them to soften and cook down.
  • Next, add the cumin, apple cider vinegar, tamari, cooked rice and spring onion. Stir together for a few minutes before removing from the heat.

MAKE THE TOMATO SAUCE

  • Add the minced garlic and tomato paste to a non-stick frying pan and cook for 2-3 minutes, stirring frequently, so that the garlic becomes super fragrant.
  • Next, add salt, paprika, tinned tomatoes, and lime juice. Simmer over a medium heat for around 5 minutes, stirring frequently.

ASSEMBLE AND BAKE

  • Lay out each cabbage leaf on a flat surface and place 3 tbsp-1/4 cup of the filling near the stem. Roll the leaf carefully, making sure it doesn't break and tucking in the sides as you go.
  • Transfer the leaves to a rectangular baking dish. Add a generous layer of the tomato sauce on top as well as optional vegan cheese. Cover with aluminium foil and bake in the preheated oven for 25-30 minutes.

Video

Notes

*Alternatively, you can microwave the cabbage on full power for 5-7 minutes. Carefully remove the leaves, and submerge them in boiling water for 3-4 minutes.
Calories: 79kcal, Carbohydrates: 16g, Protein: 3g, Fat: 1g, Saturated Fat: 1g, Sodium: 283mg, Potassium: 266mg, Fiber: 3g, Sugar: 4g, Vitamin A: 209IU, Vitamin C: 31mg, Calcium: 43mg, Iron: 1mg

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Rice and mushroom stuffed cabbage rolls