With just five ingredients and a little time, Sweet and Sour Cabbage is simple to make but completely addictive!
I know you don’t think of cabbage as a spring vegetable, but early spring in the tail end of the season for cabbage. So, technically it is a spring vegetable. Of course, not quite the green and fresh like asparagus and peas. But one, I don’t like asparagus, and two I can never find fresh peas!
I have not made sweet and sour cabbage for years. YEARS! And I don’t know why because this is such a delicious recipe. So much so that I’ve made it twice in the last three weeks. That’s how good this red cabbage recipe is.
There are only give ingredients in this sweet and sour cabbage recipe:
- Red cabbage
Yes, I’m counting water as an ingredient for those that don’t have drinkable tap water and need to purchase or use filtered water. That’s sort of an issue right about now as people hoard essentials.
That’s it. While it doesn’t seem like a lot of ingredients, it’s the way you cook the red cabbage that makes it oh so irresistible. It’s not the way I had it growing up. Oh no. This method sort of came about because I wanted to have the cabbage ready for the when the hubs got home from work. Except, I forgot that he’s usually not hungry right when he gets home from work. So, it had to simmer longer than anticipated.
This is a set it and sort of forget it recipe.
After you cook up the bacon and add the cabbage, you turn the heat down to a medium and let the cabbage sauté a little bit. Then you add the vinegar, sugar, and water mixture and let it simmer. How long? Until the vinegar mixture is nice and thick. Almost like a caramel sauce consistency. For me, that’s about 25 to 30 minutes.
That is what makes this sweet and sour cabbage recipe so delicious! The sauce it almost like a caramel sauce that coats every piece of cabbage with it’s sticky sweet and sour goodness. Then there’s the smoky from the back. Of course, you could make this sweet and sour cabbage with caraway seeds if you want. I would have, but the hubs isn’t a huge fan of them. But I love them and try to sneak them in when I can.
If you have never worked with purple cabbage before, beware! The purple will color your white cutting board. And your white kitchen towels. Just saying. After I cut the cabbage, I wiped down the cutting board and put the cabbage in a bowl to keep it from staining anything. And, well, the towel will be cleaned with bleach.
Did you know that red cabbage is a natural dye for eggs?
Yes! No. It does not turn them red. It actually turns them blue. You should try it because it’s cool and a really pretty shade of blue; almost a robin’s egg blue. I know that Easter is around the corner and thought I’d mention that. You can also dye eggs with beets, onion skins, spinach, turmeric, and chili powder.
Every Easter, my sister and I would sit down and dye a couple dozen eggs. Then the Easter morning we would get up and start trying to find the eggs our parents would hide throughout the house. Except, we’d always find these cool brown looking eggs. We didn’t make them and could only guess that the Easter Bunny left them.
Each year we would try to make that color by mixing different dyes together. Every year we always failed but would find at least 6 or so of those golden brown colored eggs. It was a great way for our parents to keep us believing in the Easter Bunny.
It wasn’t until my sister had a kid of her own that our parents came clean. They showed us that adding onion skins to the pan when you’re boiling the eggs will turn them this golden-brown color. I don’t have kids, but sometimes add some onion skin to the pan when I’m making my eggs. Just for nostalgia’s sake. It reminds me of those fun times with my sister finding eggs Easter morning.
And this sweet and sour cabbage recipe reminds me of dinner! Dad would put a pork roast in the slow cooker or the oven and cook up some of this cabbage to have with the pork. Pork and cabbage is a comfort food to me. And, well, it only makes sense that it’s a favorite of mine because I have German roots on both sides of the family tree.
I served this up with some smoked pork chops. I’ve been having a great time playing with the electric smoker that’s part of our massive new grill! I did a while chicken, poorly. It cooked faster than I thought. Today we’re doing a brisket. I hope it comes out well, but we’ll see. I’ve made a grill smoked brisket before, but this is a little different. I can control the temperature on this grill much easier than our old one. I’ll let you know how it turns out!
And you let me know how you enjoy this cabbage recipe! Because it will be on your regular menu rotation in no time. I know it’s on ours! We fight for the last spoonful and all but lick the pan clean. #noshame.
- 4 slices center cut bacon, chopped
- 4 cups shredded red cabbage
- 1/2 cup vinegar
- 1/2 cup sugar
- 1/4 cup water
- Brown the bacon in a large skillet on medium-high heat.
- Add the cabbage and saute 5 to 7 minutes or until lightly browned.
- Combine the sugar with the vinegar and water and stir until the sugar is dissolved.
- Pour the sugar mixture over the cabbage and simmer 35 to 40 minutes or until the liquid is thickened and reduced to about a 1/4 cup or less.
Nutrition InformationYield 4 Serving Size 1
Amount Per Serving Calories 199Total Fat 4gSaturated Fat 1gTrans Fat 0gUnsaturated Fat 3gCholesterol 11mgSodium 237mgCarbohydrates 36gFiber 4gSugar 30gProtein 6g
Fresh Spring Sides Dishes
- Blueberry Ginger Slaw by Cindy’s Recipes and Writings
- Creamed Beet Salad by Art of Natural Living
- Creamy Parmesan Asparagus Soup by Cheese Curd In Paradise
- Grilled Asparagus with Fresh Gremolata by That Recipe
- Honey Roasted Carrot Salad by A Day in the Life on the Farm
- Lemony Asparagus Pasta Salad by Making Miracles
- Orzo Pasta Salad by Blogghetti
- Roasted Balsamic Asparagus and Mushrooms by Hezzi D’s Books and Cooks
- Roasted Carrots, Potatoes, and Green Beans by Eat Move Make
- Sweet and Sour Cabbage by A Kitchen Hoor’s Adventures