Braised Red Cabbage with Chestnuts

Sweet and sour red cabbage, cooked with bacon, apples, onions, and roasted chestnuts. Great holiday side!

Braised Red Cabbage with Chestnuts
Elise Bauer

Looking for a festive holiday side dish? One my favorite winter sides is my dad's sweet and sour red cabbage. The following recipe takes that Austrian standard up a notch with the addition of apples, onions, bacon, and roasted chestnuts. So good! Pretty too.

Braised red cabbage with chestnuts is a traditional accompaniment to roast goose, but if goose isn't on your menu it also works great alongside a pork roast or even prime rib. You can easily make ahead and reheat to serve.

Braised Red Cabbage with Chestnuts
Elise Bauer

Braised Red Cabbage with Chestnuts

Prep Time 10 mins
Cook Time 60 mins
Total Time 70 mins
Servings 8 servings

Ingredients

  • 2 strips thick-cut bacon (about 3 ounces) cut crosswise into 1/4-inch strips
  • 1 medium onion, thinly sliced
  • 1 red cabbage head, about 2 pounds, quartered, tough core removed, quarters sliced into 1/4-inch thick slices
  • 1 large green tart apple
  • 1/2 cup apple cider vinegar
  • 2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
  • 6 tablespoons sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt, more to taste
  • Freshly ground pepper
  • 8 ounces canned or jarred roasted chestnuts (NOT water chestnuts), roughly chopped

Method

  1. Cook the bacon:

    Cook the bacon batons slowly in a large sauté pan (with cover) on medium low heat until most of the fat has rendered out, and the bacon is lightly browned, not crisp.

    red-cabbage-chestnuts-method-1
    Elise Bauer
    red-cabbage-chestnuts-method-2
    Elise Bauer
  2. Add onions:

    Add the sliced onions, increase the heat of the pan to medium high and cook, stirring often, until the onions have softened and lightly browned.

  3. Add cabbage, apples, vinegars, sugar:

    While the onions are cooking, peel the apple and cut it into 1/2-inch thick pieces. Once the onions are ready, add the sliced cabbage, chopped apple, cider vinegar, balsamic vinegar, and sugar. Carefully toss to combine. Bring to a simmer, cover the pan, lower the heat, and simmer until the cabbage is cooked through and soft, about 40 minutes.

    red-cabbage-chestnuts-method-3
    Elise Bauer
    red-cabbage-chestnuts-method-4
    Elise Bauer
  4. Add chestnuts:

    Uncover the pan. Add the chopped roasted chestnuts. Add salt and pepper to taste. Increase the heat to boil off excess moisture for a few minutes.

    Serve hot.

Braised Red Cabbage with Chestnuts
Elise Bauer