Cozy & Comforting: Smoky Stuffed Cabbage Soup

With Thanksgiving and its legion of leftovers finally behind us - buh-bye turkey and stuffing - it's time to change it up and indulge in some deliciously different flavors!

And since it's officially sweater weather (and you have to say it like this!) it's prime time for some comforting, satisfying soups as well. So get cozy and comfy and prepare to enjoy our crazy delicious recipe for Smoky Stuffed Cabbage Soup.

"But I don't LIKE cabbage!" you might say.


Well, I used to think that too, but that's only because you haven't tried this soup yet. Only a few short years ago, my husband, a gent of Ukrainian descent, expressed a craving for classic Ukrainian dishes such as stuffed cabbage and pierogies. While I had sampled pierogies during the "high carb/no fat" diet trend of the 90's (yum!), I had never had cabbage before. To be honest, the smell of it never really appealed to me and it seemed rather, um, unglamorous.

But in the spirit of culinary adventure, I did some research and came up with this utterly delicious and comforting recipe for Smoky Stuffed Cabbage Soup that's guaranteed to win over even the staunchest anti-cabbage-ite.

This thick, rich soup features thin strips of Savoy cabbage braised in a delightful, savory broth featuring ground beef, pork, garlic, onions and tomatoes accentuated by dill, coriander, allspice and smoked paprika. The synergy of these ingredients is definitely greater than the sum of its parts, providing that 1 + 1 = 3 experience we all seek. For the anti-cabbage-ites you're going to have to trust me on this, but you WILL be thanking me later.


As for a wine pairing, Smoky Stuffed Cabbage Soup was a head-scratcher at first. But then I did what I usually do on the, ahem, rare occasion I'm stumped for a wine pairing: head to Italy! Italian wines are so incredibly food friendly, they can often help you out of a bind when you're not sure what to pour. Both Italian whites and reds have wonderful acidity and, with so many to choose from, you're bound to find a wine with a similar weight as your dish.

For this soup, I recommend light-bodied reds such as Barbera d'Asti or Chianti Classico which complement the ground beef, spices and tomato elements of this soup.

Whether you’re Ukrainian or not, I hope you enjoy this delicious recipe for Smoky Stuffed Cabbage Soup as much as we do. If you're anything like the Miskews, it might just find its way into regular rotation at your home during chilly sweater weather! Stay tuned for more seasonally-inspired, supremely satisfying recipes and also, do YOU have a favorite comfort food? If so, I'd love to hear about it in the Comments section below!

Print Recipe


Author: Stephanie Miskew | The Glamorous Gourmet

Serves: 6


  • 4 Tablespoons good olive oil

  • 1 cup uncooked, long grain white rice

  • 6 cups chicken stock

  • 2 lbs ground meatloaf mix (beef & pork)

  • 1 yellow onion, chopped

  • 2-3 garlic cloves minced

  • 1 carrot, peeled & chopped

  • Small head of Savoy cabbage, thinly sliced

  • 1 28-ounce can diced tomatoes

  • 1 cup tomato sauce

  • Handful of Italian parsley, roughly chopped

  • 3 Tablespoons fresh dill, roughly chopped

  • 1/2 teaspoon allspice

  • 1 1/2 teaspoons coriander

  • Bay leaf

  • 2 teaspoons smoked paprika

  • Kosher salt & freshly ground black pepper


  1. ) In a deep pot, heat 2 Tablespoons of olive oil over medium-high heat. Add the meat mixture and brown, about 5-7 minutes. While browning, season the meat with the coriander, allspice, smoked paprika, Kosher salt & black pepper.

  2. ) Once meat is browned, add bay leaf, carrot, onion & garlic and cook 3-4 minutes, until veggies begin to soften. Then add cabbage to the pot and begin to wilt.

  3. ) Add diced tomatoes, tomato sauce & 4 cups of chicken stock to the pot. Cover the pot and bring soup to a boil on high heat and then reduce to simmer and cook for 15-20 minutes to allow flavors to meld.

  4. ) Meanwhile, in a separate pot heat the remaining 2 Tablespoons of olive oil over medium-high heat. Add the uncooked rice to the pot and toss to coat in the oil, allowing it to slightly toast. Add remaining 2 cups of chicken stock to the pot and bring to a simmer. Cover and cook rice for 18-20 minutes or until rice is tender enough to eat.

  5. ) Back at the soup pot, add the chopped parsley and dill, stir to combine and season to taste with Kosher salt and black pepper.

  6. ) Ladle soup into a bowl and top with a scoop of the cooked rice (I use my ice cream scoop for this!). Garnish with any extra parsley and dill and serve immediately.

Stephanie Miskew
Stephanie Miskew