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This easy creamed cabbage recipe is full of savory flavor and it makes a delicious side dish for just about any main course!

creamed cabbage with bacon

Right before New Year’s, I shared a post with photos of a few recipes that I made but never blogged for various reasons.

In that post was a picture of creamed cabbage! The picture itself was not my favorite, but the dish was fantastic.

It’s one of those things you can eat every day for a week, and when it’s gone, still wish you had made a bigger batch.

I don’t blame you for bombarding me via email for the recipe.

I made it again and re-shot the pictures (I’m telling you, the last set really didn’t do the recipe justice).

And then I made it again so I could test out a grain-free version (which, I am thrilled to say, turned out delicious).

If you haven’t tried creamed cabbage, you are definitely in for a treat with this recipe. It’s a great way to sneak healthy cabbage into rich-tasting comfort food!

top view of healthy creamed cabbage in bowl

Why This Easy Creamed Cabbage Recipe Works

This dish is creamy and comforting, but is also fairly light with no cream. Instead, a touch of butter adds richness and a little bit of flour is used to thicken milk to make a velvety sauce.

The bulk of the dish is cabbage, which makes it hearty and healthy. Onion, garlic, and bacon add depth of flavor.

And this dish is easy to make gluten free, paleo, low carb, or keto!

Ingredients

Ingredients Explained

In this section I explain the ingredients and give substitution ideas where applicable. For the full recipe (including the ingredient amounts), see the recipe card below.

  • Unsalted butter – We brown the turkey bacon in a little bit of butter. If you use beef bacon or pork bacon, omit the butter.
  • Turkey bacon – Instead of turkey bacon, now my favorite type of bacon to use is beef bacon. However, you can use any kind of bacon you like.
  • Onion – Use a regular yellow onion here for depth of flavor.
  • Green cabbage – Regular run-of-the-mill green cabbage is what we’re going for. It cooks up to be anything but boring in this side dish!
  • Garlic – Garlic adds savory complexity.
  • Salt and black pepper – These basic seasonings help create a well-seasoned, balanced flavor profile.
  • Dried marjoram – This is optional, but takes the flavor of this humble cabbage recipe to the next level.
  • Water – We cook the cabbage down in a splash of water; to bump up the flavor even more, you can use chicken stock or vegetable stock.
  • Flour – We use a little all-purpose flour as the thickener.
  • Whole milk – Cabbage cooked in milk has a surprisingly sweet flavor and creamy texture. We balance the dish with savory components (like onion and garlic), and salty ingredients (like bacon).
  • Fresh parsley – This optional garnish adds a pop of green color and flavor. If you want to add a mild onion flavor, you can use chives instead of parsley.

Instructions

  1. Heat the butter in a large deep-sided skillet over medium heat. Once melted, add the bacon and cook until crispy, about 5 to 7 minutes, stirring occasionally. Use a slotted spoon to transfer the crisped bacon to a paper towel-lined plate to drain.
  2. To the same skillet, add the onion, cabbage, garlic, salt, marjoram, black pepper, and water. Cook (covered) until the cabbage is tender, about 15 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add a splash of water if the pan starts to get too dry.
  3. Add the flour and cook 1 minute, then add the milk and cook about 2 minutes more, stirring constantly. Turn off the heat and stir in the crisped bacon.
  4. Transfer to a serving dish and top with the parsley, if using.

Tips

  • There’s an economical way to add protein. Sometimes I’ll add a can of rinsed and drained white beans because they go really well with cabbage. If you do so, this recipe will serve 8 as a side dish or 4 as a main course.
  • Don’t worry if bacon isn’t your thing. Browned sausage is a nice switch-up for bacon. Or omit it if you prefer; it’s a pretty versatile dish!
creamed cabbage recipe without cream

Special Diet Friendly

This recipe is easy to make low carb/keto or paleo, and I give instructions for both. Note that both the keto and paleo variations are gluten free and grain free.

Low Carb and Keto Creamed Cabbage Recipe

The low carb and keto friendly version of creamed cabbage is very easy to make!

For the keto version of this recipe, omit the milk and flour. When the cabbage is tender, add 1 cup of heavy whipping cream and bring to a simmer. If you want it extra thick and creamy, you can also stir in 2 ounces of cream cheese (at room temperature). That’s it!

Paleo Version

Omit the flour and milk. Once the cabbage is tender, add 1 cup canned light coconut milk (or full-fat for a richer dish) and bring to a simmer. Transfer to a serving dish and top with the parsley.

More Must-Try Cabbage Recipes

bowl of healthy creamed cabbage side dish

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Creamed Cabbage Recipe

5 from 2 votes
Prep Time10 minutes
Cook Time25 minutes
Yields: 6 servings
This easy creamed cabbage recipe is full of savory flavor and it makes a delicious side dish for just about any main course!

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Ingredients
 

  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 4 slices turkey bacon chopped (or use beef bacon or pork bacon, and omit the butter)
  • 1 medium-large onion thinly sliced into half-moons
  • 1 1/2 pounds green cabbage sliced into thin shreds (about 1 small head)
  • 1 large clove garlic crushed
  • 3/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried crushed marjoram leaves optional
  • 1/4 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1/4 cup water plus more as needed
  • 2 tablespoons all-purpose-flour
  • 1 1/2 cups whole milk
  • 2 tablespoons fresh parsley leaves for garnish (optional)

Instructions
 

  • Heat the butter in a large deep-sided skillet over medium heat. Once melted, add the bacon and cook until crispy, about 5 to 7 minutes, stirring occasionally. Use a slotted spoon to transfer the crisped bacon to a paper towel-lined plate to drain.
  • To the same skillet, add the onion, cabbage, garlic, salt, marjoram, black pepper, and water. Cook (covered) until the cabbage is tender, about 15 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add a splash of water if the pan starts to get too dry.
  • Add the flour and cook 1 minute, then add the milk and cook about 2 minutes more, stirring constantly. Turn off the heat and stir in the crisped bacon.
  • Transfer to a serving dish and top with the parsley, if using.

Notes

  • Low Carb and Keto Version: Omit the milk and flour. When the cabbage is tender, add 1 cup heavy whipping cream and bring to a simmer. Transfer to a serving dish and top with the parsley.
  • Paleo Version: Omit the flour and milk. Once the cabbage is tender, add 1 cup canned light coconut milk (or full-fat for a richer dish) and bring to a simmer. Transfer to a serving dish and top with the parsley.
  • To Make This a Full Meal for 4 People: Add 1 (16 oz/450 g) can rinsed and drained white beans when you add the milk.

Nutrition

Calories: 152kcal | Carbohydrates: 14g | Protein: 7g | Fat: 9g | Saturated Fat: 4g | Cholesterol: 25mg | Sodium: 585mg | Potassium: 337mg | Fiber: 3g | Sugar: 8g | Vitamin A: 327IU | Vitamin C: 43mg | Calcium: 119mg | Iron: 1mg

Nutritional information is automatically calculated and should be used as an approximate.

Course: Side Dish
Cuisine: American
Keyword: Creamed Cabbage, Creamed Cabbage Recipe, Creamed Cabbage with Bacon, Healthy Creamed Cabbage

Share it with me on Instagram and leave a comment to let me know your thoughts!

creamed cabbage recipe pin

This post was first published on An Edible Mosaic on February 5, 2014 and updated on March 8, 2024.

Faith, author of An Edible Mosaic.
About Faith

I’m the writer, recipe developer, photographer, and food stylist behind this blog. I love finding the human connection through something we all do every day: eat! Food is a common ground that we can all relate to, and our tables tell a story. It’s my goal to inspire you to get in the kitchen, try something new, and find a favorite you didn’t know you had.

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Recipe Rating




11 Comments

  1. 5 stars
    Loved this recipe,and so did my husband.

    My husband said this is the best cabbage he ever had.

    Thanks for sharing you recipe.

    Cindy K

  2. Johnathan says:

    5 stars
    Thanks for sharing!

  3. Had this for dinner tonight- it was delicious! Used regular bacon and coconut milk instead of flour/milk to make it grain-free.

  4. kellie@foodtoglow says:

    We love cabbage and this really sounds terrific. I didn’t see the first piccies but these ones look lovely. I am a real fan of raw cabbage salads, cabbage soup (my one with freekeh and preserved lemon is a fave) but rarely do cooked cabbage except plain-ish, or red cabbage at Christmas. Tempted. Tempted.

  5. Nicole ~ Cooking for Keeps says:

    Cabbage is one of my favorite vegetables, and so underused! I could probably eat this whole batch and be totally and utterly satisfied.

  6. I have a head of cabbage from the CSA share this week that is just staring at me from the table. I am not a cabbage fan and just can’t bring myself to do something with it – it is so big, colorless, and intimidating. I took the plunge with the two smaller purple cabbages last night and made a surprisingly good slaw with carrots – just winged it! But the big cabbage, I don’t know. I think the chickens don’t even like it…

  7. Happy Valley Chow says:

    I absolutely LOVE cabbage and this recipe definitely sounds like a winner. Great job :)

    Happy Blogging!

  8. Dixya @ Food, Pleasure, and Health says:

    i like cabbage but run out of ideas to make them. I will def be thinking of this recipe next time.

  9. Scrumptious! Cabbage is one of my favorite vegetables.

    Cheers,

    Rosa

  10. yayyy! So glad you made it again. Cabbage is something I love….but the husband is just not sold on yet. Make the turkey bacon would win him over?!

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