Unstuffed Cabbage Roll Soup

Nothing’s cozier — and easier — than a big bowl of comforting unstuffed cabbage roll soup — all the same ingredients as stuffed Polish cabbage rolls with a fraction of time and effort!

Bowl of unstuffed cabbage roll soup with hands around bowl

Fall is teasing us right now, appearing for a day or two and then leaving us again for 90-degree weather for another week. But it’s been here long enough to leave us dreaming of leggings, scarves, and cozy soups.

While it may be too hot still to comfortably do the leggings and scarves, I can definitely get behind some cozy soups right now.

A couple of my favorites are this Greek lemon chicken orzo soup with kale and three meat and okra gumbo. And a reader favorite is this creamy mushroom soup with Italian sausage. But sometimes I get stuck making my favorites and forget about other soups I love, like unstuffed cabbage roll soup.

Bowl of unstuffed cabbage roll soup in front of Dutch oven

Unstuffed cabbage roll soup has all the flavors of stuffed cabbage rolls, but with a lot less work! You just sauté some onions, brown some meat, and then throw in a bunch of good stuff like rice, cabbage, carrots, tomatoes, tomato sauce, and beef broth.

If you’re me, you throw in a LOT of the good stuff and end up with a Dutch oven that’s full to the brim with enough unstuffed cabbage roll soup to feed us for a week. Good thing it tastes so good! I’ve taken the liberty of halving the recipe so you have a normal quantity of soup with a reasonable amount of leftovers.

If you do, in fact, want an enormous quantity of this soup to feed a crowd or large family, just double it back. Just make sure you have a large enough pot to handle it! My Dutch oven is 6-3/4 quarts and was just large enough fit the double batch.

Overhead shot of bowl of unstuffed cabbage roll soup

Good thing it’s delicious, because we were eating this soup for DAYYYS. It got the thumbs-up from my work friend/taste-tester too, so you KNOW it’s good!

Anyway, if you love Polish cabbage rolls or are just looking for an easy, hearty soup for a cozy evening, definitely give this soup a try!

For a real treat, try serving this soup with Rosemary Thyme No-knead Dutch Oven Bread too!

Like this Unstuffed Cabbage Roll Soup? Try these other cozy main course soups!

Did you make this recipe?

Tag me in a photo on Instagram @pinchmeimeating and I may feature you in my IG stories! I’d love to see how yours came out!

Bowl of unstuffed cabbage roll soup with hands around bowl

Unstuffed Cabbage Roll Soup

Nothing’s cozier — and easier — than a big bowl of comforting unstuffed cabbage roll soup — all the same ingredients as stuffed cabbage rolls with a fraction of time and effort!
5 from 2 votes
Print Pin Rate
Course: Main Course, Soup
Cuisine: Polish
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 40 minutes
Total Time: 50 minutes
Servings: 4
Author: Caroline Lindsey

Ingredients

  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 1/2 yellow onion chopped, about 1/2 cup
  • 3 cloves garlic minced
  • 1/2 lb ground beef
  • 1/2 lb ground pork
  • 2 carrots diced
  • 1 14.5-oz can tomato sauce
  • 1 14.5-oz can diced tomatoes, drained
  • 2 14.5-oz cans beef broth
  • 1/2 cup uncooked white rice
  • 1/2 small head green cabbage chopped, about 4 cups
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1 tbsp Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 tsp paprika
  • fresh parsley to garnish

Instructions

  • Heat olive oil over medium heat in a Dutch oven. Add onion and sauté 4-5 minutes, until translucent. Add minced garlic and cook another 30 seconds, stirring constantly.
  • Add ground beef and pork and cook until browned.
  • Add carrots, tomato sauce, diced tomatoes, beef broth, rice, cabbage, bay leaf, Worcestershire sauce, and paprika. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat to a simmer. Simmer for 25 minutes or until rice and cabbage are tender.
  • Serve topped with fresh parsley, if desired.

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6 Comments

  • Reply
    Jessica
    October 19, 2019 at 7:01 pm


    Yum!! This was so perfect for the start of fall!

  • Reply
    mimi rippee
    October 21, 2019 at 10:45 am

    I absolute love cabbage in soups, but my husband won’t eat it. Gah!!! Since it’s only the two of us, I have to sadly comply…

  • Reply
    Ann
    October 23, 2019 at 3:45 pm


    This soup has such a nice combo of flavors. It’s so rich, hearty, and easy to make. Perfect for those who love cabbage rolls but hate doing all the work involved. The only problem is that my picky kids don’t like it at all. I can’t find a way to convince them to eat more than one tablespoon of this soup. Btw, sometimes I add 2 tablespoons of brown sugar to the dish. Can’t remember who I got the recipe with brown sugar added from, but it turns out pretty good. Have you ever added it to the dish?
    Thank you for sharing Caroline! I’m so happy to have discovered your lovely blog. Lucky me!

    • Reply
      Caroline Lindsey
      November 1, 2019 at 8:51 am

      I’m so glad you found my blog too, Ann!! I have added brown sugar to this dish and similar ones and I think it’s a great addition if you would like, especially if it makes your kids amenable to the soup. I didn’t personally feel like this recipe needed it, to my own taste, but it certainly can’t hurt and the flavors do go together well!

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