Cabbage Soup

Here's an easy, nourishing cabbage soup for cold winter days. Made with just a handful of ingredients and ready in under an hour, the soup is simplicity at its best.

Best Cabbage Soup in a white bowl
Elise Bauer

Cabbage, the Rodney Dangerfield of vegetables. It just can't seem to "get no respect"!

While under-appreciated, cabbage really is a wonder vegetable. Not only is it relatively inexpensive, it can easily keep a month or two in the fridge, and it is endlessly versatile in recipes. Whether raw in a coleslaw, blanched with butter, stuffed and wrapped, or made into a simple and delicious cabbage soup as we do here, cabbage is a work horse.


Watch How to Make Cabbage Soup

Simple Ingredients for Simple Cabbage Soup

Have you ever looked in your fridge and the only vegetable in good shape looking back at you is a single head of cabbage? Cabbage is like that; it can outlast almost any other vegetable. Now even if all you have in your fridge is some cabbage, there are only a few more pantry ingredients you need to make this easy, nourishing, and light cabbage soup.

To make this simple cabbage soup you only need fresh cabbage, onions, canned tomatoes, chicken stock, and a few spices.

Of course with so few ingredients the quality of the soup relies on the quality of your ingredients. Homemade chicken stock is the best (we'll also use Better than Bouillon in a pinch), and a good quality canned tomatoes makes all the difference (we use Muir Glen).

Ways to Adapt This Recipe

Want a little more oomph with your soup? You can easily add other vegetables, like chopped carrots with the onions, or sliced kale with the cabbage, or even bacon or sausage (cook gently before adding the onions), if you want a meatier version.

A bowl of easy cabbage soup
Elise Bauer

What to Serve With Cabbage Soup

Serve this soup with some rye bread or garlic knots for sopping up all the broth. You can also serve this soup as a side dish with roast chicken, pork chops, or roast beef.

Storing and Freezing

This soup will keep in the fridge for about five days and can be reheated in the microwave or on the stovetop. You can also freeze the soup for up to three months.

Love Cabbage? Try These Recipes!

Cabbage Soup

Prep Time 15 mins
Cook Time 35 mins
Total Time 50 mins
Servings 4 servings


  • 1/2 teaspoon coriander seeds (or 1/4 teaspoon ground coriander)

  • 1/2 teaspoon fennel seeds (or 1/4 teaspoon ground fennel)

  • 1/4 teaspoon cumin seeds (or 1/8 teaspoon ground cumin)

  • 2 teaspoons extra virgin olive oil

  • 1 teaspoon butter

  • 1 medium onion, chopped (about 1 1/4 cups)

  • 1 small or 1/2 large green cabbage, sliced 1/4-inch (4 to 5 cups)

  • 1/2 to 1 teaspoon salt (more or less depending on the saltiness of your stock)

  • 1 (15-ounce) can whole peeled tomatoes

  • 4 cups chicken stock

  • Freshly ground black pepper


  1. Grind the spices (if using whole spices):

    If using whole spices (coriander, fennel, cumin), grind them in a mortar and pestle or in a spice grinder until well ground.

  2. Sauté the onions and spices:

    Heat olive oil and butter in a 4-quart, thick bottomed pot on medium heat. Add the chopped onion and stir in the ground spices. Cook until the onions have softened, about 5 minutes.

    Sautéing onions in stock pot for Cabbage Soup
    Elise Bauer
  3. Add the cabbage and tomatoes:

    Add the sliced cabbage to the pot and stir to mix the cabbage with the onions. If you are using unsalted stock, sprinkle the cabbage with 1/2 teaspoon of salt. Add the canned whole tomatoes, with their juices, to the pot. Stir to combine.

    Adding sliced cabbage to stock pot for cabbage soup
    Elise Bauer
    Making simple cabbage soup
    Elise Bauer
  4. Add the stock, simmer till done:

    Add the chicken stock to the pot. Bring to a simmer and taste for salt. Add more salt to taste. Lower the heat and cover the pot.

    Let simmer for 20 to 25 minutes or until the cabbage is thoroughly cooked, breaking up tomatoes that are still whole.

    Cabbage soup in stock pot ready to boil
    Elise Bauer
    Simmering cabbage soup on stovetop
    Elise Bauer
  5. Serve:

    Sprinkle with freshly ground black pepper to serve.

Nutrition Facts (per serving)
179 Calories
6g Fat
24g Carbs
9g Protein
Show Full Nutrition Label Hide Full Nutrition Label
Nutrition Facts
Servings: 4
Amount per serving
Calories 179
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 6g 8%
Saturated Fat 2g 9%
Cholesterol 10mg 3%
Sodium 567mg 25%
Total Carbohydrate 24g 9%
Dietary Fiber 5g 18%
Total Sugars 11g
Protein 9g
Vitamin C 78mg 391%
Calcium 127mg 10%
Iron 1mg 8%
Potassium 767mg 16%
*The % Daily Value (DV) tells you how much a nutrient in a food serving contributes to a daily diet. 2,000 calories a day is used for general nutrition advice.
Nutrition information is calculated using an ingredient database and should be considered an estimate. In cases where multiple ingredient alternatives are given, the first listed is calculated for nutrition. Garnishes and optional ingredients are not included.