Hankering for cabbage rolls but don’t have the time or energy to make them? Try this easy and satisfying Whole30, paleo, and gluten-free unstuffed cabbage roll soup that’s packed with protein and vegetables in a tangy and savory tomato and chicken bone broth base!

A side view of a gray stockpot filled with paleo and Whole30 cabbage roll soup.

Cabbage roll flavors without the hassle!

Cabbage roll soup is a hearty and satisfying one-pot meal that has all the flavors of traditional stuffed cabbage rolls but none of the hassle. It’s loaded with ground beef, “rice,” tomatoes, and plenty of cabbage and carrots—all cooked in a rich and savory broth that’s seasoned to perfection with my Magic Mushroom Powder.

My spice blend adds a boost of umami and depth to the soup, making it even more delicious and satisfying! I even use cauliflower rice instead of white rice, so this cabbage soup is also entirely gluten-free, grain-free, and dairy-free. It’s the cozy all-in-one low carb meal you’ve been craving!

Can you make cabbage roll soup in an Instant Pot?

Of course! I have instructions for making Instant Pot Cabbage Roll Soup in the printable recipe card at the bottom of the post, but here’s the shortcut version: sauté the ground meat and onions first, dump everything else into the pot, cook the soup under high pressure for 3 to 5 minutes, and use quick release to de-pressurize the Instant Pot. With an Instant Pot, you won’t save a ton of time compared to cooking on the soup on the stovetop because it still takes time to sauté the meat and onions and bring the contents up to high pressure, but your hands-on time will be cut down dramatically!

Ingredients

An overhead shot of the prepped ingredients to make cabbage roll soup.
  • Ground meat: I like to use a combination of 1 pound lean ground beef and half a pound of ground pork, but feel free to use all beef, all pork, or substitute ground chicken thighs or ground turkey. If you want an even tastier soup, you can use bulk Italian sausage.
  • Yellow onion: I use yellow onion in this soup but that’s because I always have one in my pantry. Feel free to use leeks, shallots, or a different colored onion.
  • Garlic
  • Magic Mushroom Powder: My versatile seasoning salt adds so much umami to this dish! If you don’t have any, you can use Diamond Crystal kosher salt instead.
  • Tomato paste: I use three kinds of tomatoes to give this dish an extra-big boost of umami. Tomato paste is the most concentrated and umami-packed form, so it really is indispensable.
  • Chicken broth: I normally use chicken bone broth in this soup, but beef broth also works!
  • Canned crushed tomatoes: If you don’t have canned crushed tomatoes but you have an extra can of diced tomatoes, simply blend up the contents of that can and you’ve got crushed tomatoes. A can of tomato sauce will also work!
  • Canned diced tomatoes: If you want to add even more flavor, get yourself some fire-roasted diced tomatoes!
  • Chopped cabbage: I use about 1 pound of coarsely chopped green cabbage—about half of a medium/small cabbage. Feel free to substitute Napa cabbage, purple cabbage, or savoy cabbage.
  • Carrots
  • Dried thyme: Feel free to use dried oregano, dried basil, or Italian seasoning. All of them work great in this recipe!
  • Dried bay leaf
  • Riced cauliflower: In place of white rice, I use about 3 cups of riced cauliflower. You can make your own or buy pre-riced fresh or frozen cauliflower. I personally like the frozen stuff because it cooks quickly. (Besides, I always have a bag of the stuff in my freezer.)
  • Red wine vinegar: This adds a nice tang to the soup. You can also use apple cider vinegar for a touch of acid.
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  • Minced Italian parsley (optional garnish)

How to make cabbage roll soup

Heat a large soup pot or dutch oven over medium-high heat and add the beef, pork, and onions. (No need for oil because the ground meat will release some!)

Four sequential shots of an Asian woman in glasses adding raw ground beef, raw ground pork, and chopped onions to a gray stockpot to make cabbage roll soup.

Cook, stirring frequently, until the meat is no longer pink and the onions have softened. (If you‘re using lean ground meat, there’s no need to drain the grease.)

A close up shot of cooked ground beef and ground pork and diced onions in a gray stock pot.

Add the Magic Mushroom Powder or Diamond Crystal kosher salt, tomato paste, and minced garlic.

Four sequential photos that show someone adding Nom Nom Paleo Magic Mushroom Powder, tomato paste, and minced garlic to a gray stockpot filled with cooked ground meat and onions.

Stir well and cook until fragrant, about 30 seconds.

A closeup of seasoned ground meat and onions in a gray stock pot to make cabbage roll soup.

Pour in the broth, crushed tomatoes, and diced tomatoes.

Four sequential photos showing someone adding bone broth, a can of tomato puree, and a can of diced tomatoes into a pot of seasoned ground beef. The last shot is someone stirring it all together.

Then, add the chopped cabbage and carrots. Stir in the dried thyme and bay leaf.

Four sequential shots that show someone adding chopped cabbage, chopped carrot rounds, dried thyme, and a bay leaf into a large pot to make cabbage roll soup.

Cover the pot, increase the heat to high, and bring to a boil.

Placing a lid on top of a gray stockpot filled with cabbage roll soup.

When the soup comes to a boil, decrease the heat to maintain a simmer.

A close-up of a pot of cabbage roll soup simmering on a stove top.

Partly cover the pot with the lid and simmer the soup for about 25 minutes or until the cabbage and carrots are fork tender.

Removing the lid on a gray stockpot filled with cabbage roll soup.

Add the riced cauliflower and increase the heat as needed to bring the soup back to a simmer.

Adding a bowl of frozen riced cauliflower to a simmering pot of cabbage roll soup.

Continue simmering, uncovered, for another 5 or 10 minutes or until the cauliflower is tender.

A side view of a gray pot filled with paleo and Whole30 stuffed cabbage soup, or cabbage roll soup.

Stir in the red wine vinegar.

An Asian woman in glasses is adding some red wine vinegar to a gray stockpot filled with cabbage roll soup.

Taste for seasoning and add Magic Mushroom Powder, salt, and pepper as needed. 

Four shots that show an Asian woman tasting and seasoning a pot of cabbage roll soup with more Magic Mushroom Powder and freshly ground black pepper.

Remove and discard the bay leaf before serving.

A smiling Asian woman is picking a bay leaf out of a pot of cabbage roll soup.

Garnish with fresh parsley, if desired.

A smiling Asian woman is adding a sprinkle of minced Italian parsley to a big pot of cabbage roll soup.

Ladle up the soup into serving bowls and enjoy!

An overhead shot of a pot of cabbage roll soup topped with minced Italian parsley, next to some serving bowls and a ladle.

How to save leftovers

You can save leftover soup in a sealed airtight container in the fridge for up to 4 days or in the freezer for up to 3 months. It freezes and thaws beautifully, so it makes for a perfect meal prep dinner!


Looking for more recipe ideas? Head on over to my Recipe Index. You’ll also find exclusive recipes in my cookbooks, Nom Nom Paleo: Food for Humans (Andrews McMeel Publishing 2013), Ready or Not! (Andrews McMeel Publishing 2017), and Nom Nom Paleo: Let’s Go! (Andrews McMeel Publishing 2022).


Cabbage Roll Soup with Cauliflower Rice (Whole30, Low Carb)

4.61 from 23 votes
Prep Time10 minutes
Cook Time35 minutes
Total Time45 minutes
Servings 6
Hankering for cabbage rolls but don't have the time or energy to make them? Try this easy and satisfying Whole30, keto, and gluten-free unstuffed cabbage roll soup that's packed with protein and vegetables in a tangy and savory tomato and chicken bone broth base!

Ingredients  

  • 1 pound lean ground beef
  • ½ pound ground pork
  • 1 small onion diced
  • Magic Mushroom Powder or Diamond Crystal kosher salt
  • 2 tablespoons tomato paste
  • 3 large garlic cloves minced
  • 4 cups chicken bone broth or beef bone broth
  • 14 ounces canned crushed tomatoes
  • 14 ounces canned diced tomatoes
  • 6 cups chopped green cabbage
  • 2 large carrots, cut into coins
  • ½ teaspoon dried thyme
  • 1 dried bay leaf
  • 3 cups riced cauliflower, fresh or frozen
  • 1 tablespoon red wine vinegar
  • freshly ground black pepper
  • ¼ cup minced Italian parsley optional

Instructions 

Stovetop instructions

  • Heat a large soup pot or dutch oven over medium-high heat and add the beef, pork, and onions. (No need for oil because the ground meat will release some!)
  • Cook, stirring frequently, until the meat is no longer pink and the onions have softened. (If you‘re using lean ground meat, there's no need to drain the grease.)
  • Add 1 teaspoon of Magic Mushroom Powder or Diamond Crystal kosher salt, tomato paste, and minced garlic. Stir well and cook until fragrant, about 30 seconds.
  • Pour in the broth, crushed tomatoes, and diced tomatoes. Then, add the chopped cabbage and carrots. Stir in the dried thyme and bay leaf.
  • Cover the pot, increase the heat to high, and bring to a boil. When the soup comes to a boil, decrease the heat to maintain a simmer.
  • Partly cover the pot with the lid and simmer the soup for about 25 minutes or until the cabbage and carrots are fork tender.
  • Add the riced cauliflower and increase the heat as needed to bring the soup back to a simmer. Continue simmering, uncovered, for another 5 or 10 minutes or until the cauliflower is tender.
  • Stir in the red wine vinegar. Taste for seasoning and add Magic Mushroom Powder, salt, and pepper as needed.
  • Remove and discard the bay leaf before serving. Garnish with fresh parsley, if desired, and serve!

Instant Pot Instructions

  • Turn on the saute function and add the ground beef, pork, and onions. Add 1 teaspoon of Magic Mushroom Powder or Diamond Crystal kosher salt and cook, stirring frequently, until the beef is no longer pink and the onions are slightly softened.
  • Stir in the tomato paste and minced garlic and cook until fragrant, about 30 seconds.
  • Pour in the broth, crushed tomatoes, and diced tomatoes. Then, add the chopped cabbage, carrots, dried thyme, bay leaf, and riced cauliflower.
  • Lock on the lid and program the Instant Pot to cook for 3 minutes under high pressure. Release the pressure manually when the soup is finished cooking.
  • Add the red wine vinegar. Taste for seasoning and add Magic Mushroom Powder, salt, and pepper as needed.
  • Remove and discard the bay leaf before serving. Garnish with fresh parsley, if desired, and serve!

Video

Notes

You can save leftover soup in a sealed airtight container in the fridge for up to 4 days or in the freezer for up to 3 months. It freezes and thaws beautifully, so it makes for a perfect meal prep dinner!
Don’t want to make your own Magic Mushroom Powder? You can buy it online at Amazon, directly from The Spice Lab (use the one-time promo code LETSGO for 15% off), and at iHerb (worldwide shipping)!

Nutrition

Calories: 320kcal | Carbohydrates: 21g | Protein: 33g | Fat: 12g | Fiber: 7g | Sugar: 11g

Nutrition information is automatically calculated, so should only be used as an approximation.

Like this? Leave a comment below!

About Michelle Tam

Hello! My name is Michelle Tam, and I love to eat. I think about food all the time. It borders on obsession. I’ve always loved the sights and smells of the kitchen. My mother was (and is) an excellent cook, and as a kid, I was her little shadow as she prepared supper each night. From her, I gained a deep, abiding love for magically transforming pantry items into mouth-watering family meals.

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