Vegan Cabbage Rolls with Lentils & Brown Rice
This is my grandma's traditional cabbage roll recipe, but of course veganized! They are easy to make, relatively cheap, & will leave you with some leftovers great for lunches.
Well, you'll hopefully have leftovers. My boyfriend ate them like they were going out of style, so there weren't too many left. On the plus, that meant they turned out!
Fun Fact: There are actually hundreds of varieties of cabbage grown in different parts of the world.
Though, up until I used savoy cabbage in this recipe, I thought there were only two- red and green.
As you can see, I clearly wasn't the biggest fan of cabbage growing up. Now, knowing all the nutrients that these little suckers are packing, it's hard not to love them.
- low in calories
- rich in vitamins, minerals and antioxidants
- helps reduce inflammation
- has gut-friendly insoluble fiber
...to name a few.
The Grain and Veggie Filling
Start by cooking the rice and lentils according to the package, but make sure to leave them a little undercooked and tender.
Once you stuff the cabbage leaves they'll be going into the oven, so you don't want to have the rice or the lentils overcooked.
Next, add the diced tomatoes, sliced clery and mushrooms to a large mixing bowl
For the onions, heat the olive oil and garlic in a frying pan over low-medium heat. Then, add the onions and cook for about 10-15 minutes until they become transparent.
I like to cook the onions beforehand because I can't stand a crisp onion, it just throws off the dish for me.
Once the onions are softened, add them to the large mixing bowl with the other veggies, along with the cooked rice and lentils.
Getting those Cabbage Leaves
There are a couple different way to get soften the leaves and get them to break free. Although, I find boiling the cabbage works best.
Start by cutting about 1/4" off the bottom of the cabbage. Then, place the whole head of cabbage into boiling water for about 3 minutes. Next, peel the softened leaves off the cabbage. Repeat this until all the larger leaves easily come off.
At first you will probably only be able to get about 1 or 2 leaves off, but as you repeat this, and the cabbage gets smaller, this process will speed up.
You can also click on the link for a helpful video on how to boil the cabbage.
Making the Cabbage Rolls
First, Preheat oven to 350° F.
Then, add about 1 cup of the tomato sauce to the bottom of the casserole dish. This will just help them keep them moist while cooking.
Next, lay a cabbage leaf flat on a cutting board or other flat surface. Then, add about two large spoonfuls to the center of the cabbage. Fold in both sides over the filling and roll the cabbage up.
Place each seam side down in the casserole dish, then repeat with the remaining leaves.
If there is leftover filling, not to worry, just stuff it around the cabbage rolls
Now, spread the remaining tomato sauce over top of the cabbage rolls, cover with foil, then let cook for 70 minutes.