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Simple Cabbage Salad Recipe That Produces Charred, Grill-like Results
Brown and charred.
That is going to be your new favorite way to eat cabbage.
This charred cabbage salad recipe will give you delicious blackened cabbage. But, you don’t need to use your grill. You can make this cabbage wedge recipe in a skillet on your stove.
Cabbage is a refrigerator staple. Sauté it, grill it, marinate it, bake it, or boil it. There is always an easy method for creating a healthy cabbage side dish.
A head of cabbage is cheap, keeps well, can be cooked a ton of different ways or left raw. This means more money, convenience, and time for you. So, make sure you pick up a head every time you go to the grocery store.
This beautifully charred cabbage salad is topped with a creamy garlic yogurt sauce. The sauce adds a blast of acid and creaminess that perfectly matches the blackened char.
I love this cabbage salad next to a rich piece of meat or BBQ. Keep reading so you can add this easy and healthy side dish to your next cookout meal!
Health Benefits of this Cabbage Salad
Cabbage is packed with nutrients like fiber, folate, potassium, magnesium, vitamins A and K according to WebMD. Just 1/2 a cup has about 1/3 of the vitamin C you need for your entire day!
It’s good for digestion, your heart, inflammation, and cancer prevention.
So, not only is cabbage versatile and delicious, it is also healthy.
How Long Does this Cabbage Salad Keep?
This dish will last 3-4 days covered in the refrigerator. It is best eaten immediately after cooking the cabbage. But, it can also be eaten at room temperature.
How to Store this Cabbage Salad
This salad should be stored, covered in the refrigerator.
I like storing the yogurt dressing separate from the cabbage if I am eating it the next day. You can easily do this with a salad container that has a separate compartment to store dressing. I write all about these types of containers in this list of the best salad containers.
This Rubbermaid Brilliance salad container was best overall.
Common Types of Cabbage
Here are some details on the common cabbage varieties you will find at your grocery store:
Red – The healthiest variety. Delicious eaten raw in salads and slaws. Gets nice and crispy after roasting or grilling.
Green – The cheapest and most basic type. Can be sauteed, roasted, grilled, boiled, braised or eaten raw as a slaw. The standard green coleslaw? That uses green cabbage. Looks just like red cabbage except green and typically a little bigger.
Savoy – More tender and loosely packed than some of the other cabbages. Savoy has more curly leaves and is easier to eat raw. So, it can be used in place of lettuce or other cabbage varieties.
Napa – You might mistake napa cabbage for romaine lettuce. It is longer than the three cabbages above. It has a mild, peppery flavor. Use this in kimchi or an Asian stir fry.
Bok Choy – Yes, bok choy is a cabbage. This is a common variety used in Asian cooking. Use this in stir fries or braised.
What Type of Cabbage Should I Use for This Dish?
You can use green, red, savoy, or napa cabbage for this recipe. Each of them would work great.
I used green cabbage because it is the most affordable and widely available. I like its density for charred or grilled cabbage. Red cabbage will cook similarly.
If you use savoy or napa cabbage, you can decrease the cooking time by about 1 minute on each side. These cabbages are less dense and will cook quicker.
I always have a head of green or red cabbage in my refrigerator. They’re both delicious, affordable, can be cooked many ways, and available at most grocery stores.
How to Char Cabbage
First off, you’re going to need a hot pan like a cast iron skillet. Once your oiled pan is nice and hot, add the cabbage wedges. Don’t move them until they are nice and blackened.
Don’t salt during the cooking process. I know it’s weird, but you want to get the cabbage nice and charred.
Salting it will release water and steam the cabbage. This is similar to how to get crispy mushrooms if you’ve ever cooked them before.
After you blacken both sides, you’ll salt the cabbage and enjoy!
How to Buy The Ingredients
Here how to buy the main ingredients:
Cabbage – Look for tightly packed heads that feel firm and dense. It is okay if the outer leaves are loose. Avoid heads with any discoloring or cracks in the leaves.
Herbs or Spring Shoots (optional) – Look for leafy herbs like parsley, dill, or mint that are bright and sturdy. Avoid any drooping leaves and discoloring. You can often find shoots (or young stems) of perennial plants like peas and sunflowers at your local farmer’s market in the spring.
Garlic – When picking garlic, choose a bulb that is heavy and firm with tight skin. It shouldn’t have any soft spots.
Lemon – Look for lemons that are fully yellow and are a little bit soft when gently squeezed. This little bit of softness means that the lemon is full of juice. This citrus squeezer is the only one you’ll need for the rest of your life.
Yogurt – I prefer whole milk plain yogurt. Fat free, low fat, or Greek yogurt will work as well. Check the ingredients to make sure there aren’t a bunch of preservatives or added sugar. It should just be milk, pectin, Vitamin D3 (maybe), and a bunch of probiotic strains likely ending in “lus” that you won’t be able to pronounce.
Black Pepper – Freshly cracked black pepper is always best.
Experimenting is one of the most fun parts of cooking! There are an infinite number of possibilities with this cabbage dish. Since cabbage has a fairly mild taste, it is a great ingredient for combining with different flavors.
Here are a few ideas to change up this dish:
Include raw apples or pears – A bit of crunch and sweetness would be a great addition to this dish. Apples, pears, or a stone fruit would pair nicely.
Add dried fruit – Dried apricots, dates, and raisins are perfect for adding a blast of sweetness to balance out a dish. Try adding some chopped up pieces of these dried fruits for more complex tasting dish.
Add some healthy fat – Sliced avocados or toasted nuts and/or seeds would add a nutty flavor and healthy fat to this dish. It would also help you feel full.
Top with roasted beets – Roasted beets are earthy, sweet, and packed with healthy benefits. They are also super versatile. Use this oven roasted beets recipe to cook a batch and add to this dish.
Don’t Have Any Yogurt? Try One of These Dressings Instead.
Here are a few other dressings that would be great for topping this cabbage:
Want More Veggie Recipes? Check These Out.
Sometimes, you just need a dish full of healthy vegetables. A light dish that resets your appetite.
Check these simple veggie recipes:
Charred Cabbage Salad with Garlic Yogurt Sauce
- 1/2 head green or red cabbage
- 2 Tbsp. olive oil
- 1/2 tsp kosher salt
- 1/4 cup packed parsley, mint, shoots, or a mix, chopped (optional)
- 1/4 cup Garlic Yogurt Sauce
- Heat oil in a cast iron skillet over medium heat.
- Cut a head of cabbage in half. Reserve one half for another recipe. For the other half, chop off any knobby end of the core, but keep the core intact. Cut into 4 wedges.
- When the oil is smoking, add the wedges to the skillet with each piece lying flat on one of its cut sides. Season with 1/2 tsp. salt. Saute undisturbed until the bottom side is blackened, 6-7 minutes. Flip the wedges and cook undisturbed until that side is blackened, 6-7 minutes.
- While the cabbage is cooking, make the yogurt sauce. Combine lemon juice, garlic, yogurt, salt, and pepper in a jar or bowl. Add 1 Tbsp. water at a time until you reach desired consistency, mixing after each addition.
- To serve, season cabbage with more salt if needed. Drizzle yogurt sauce over cabbage wedges and top with chopped herbs or shoots if using.
Fully Charred (Cabbage) or Bust
Don’t be scared to get the cabbage nice and blackened. The outside will be charred, but the interior will be soft and tender.
The first time I tried cooking this cabbage recipe, I got scared I was overcooking it and took it off the heat at about 5 minutes. I thought it was plenty charred enough. But, I was wrong. It really does need about 7 minutes.
I like to keep the yogurt dressing separate from the cabbage when eating this dish for lunch the next day. Redressing it just before eating gives the dish the same texture as it would fresh. The key is to have a container to keep your salad dressing separate from the salad components.