No-Browning-Required Slow Cooker Cabbage ‘Roll’ Soup

slow cooker cabbage roll soup

Here is a beautifully lazy and delicious soup that consists of the ingredients one would use to make slave-away-all-day cabbage rolls. One could brown the meat before stuffing the slow cooker for the day, but it’s not necessary. The meat will fully cook when left in a slow cooker for the day. Plus, if one searches for ‘traditional cabbage roll’, one will see that the resulting recipes call for filling cabbage rolls with raw meat before baking. Therefore this recipe is… more… traditional?

I’m tired.


No-Browning-Required Slow Cooker Cabbage ‘Roll’ Soup

Adapted from Yummy Mummy Club and Mennonite Girls Can Cook

Serves: 8
Time: 10 min prep + 8 h slow cooking

  • 3 cloves garlic, chopped
  • 1 large onion, diced
  • 2 stalks celery, diced
  • 1/2 green or Savoy cabbage, sliced thinly
  • 1/2 cup uncooked brown rice, rinsed well
    (I learned the hard way that white rice doesn’t handle 8 h of slow cooking very well.)
  • 600 g lean ground pork, or extra lean ground beef
  • 1 Tbsp paprika
  • 1 Tbsp sugar or 2 Tbsp tomato ketchup
  • 1 tsp dried marjoram
  • 1/2 tsp dried red chili flakes
  • 1 dried bay leaf
  • 400 ml (1 can) tomato sauce
  • 796 ml (1 large can) diced tomatoes with liquid
  • Depending on the size of your slow cooker, 500-1000 ml water or chicken/beef broth to cover the solid ingredients
  • 2 Tbsp Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 Tbsp dried parsley (optional)
  • freshly cracked black pepper, to taste
  • salt, to taste


  1. Place all ingredients from garlic to water/broth, inclusive, into the slow cooker. Then add enough water/broth to cover the other ingredients, depending on the size of your slow cooker.  You may need to stir to ensure adequate coverage.
  1. Cover and cook at Low for 6-8 hours.

slow cooker cabbage roll soup
This is one of those ugly-but-tasty recipes.

  1. When you return, remove the bay leaf. Then use a wire masher to break up the meat and mix the soup. If your soup is thicker than you like, add more water/broth.

slow cooker cabbage roll soup
You can see how thick this is.  If you use brown rice, it will turn out much smoother than this, hahaha.

  1. Add Worcestershire, dried parsley, pepper, and salt to your liking. Stir the soup again.
  1. Serve the soup hot on its own, or with crackers/bread. This also goes nicely with a bit of sour cream, if that’s your thing.



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