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A close up of bowl of braised cabbage and kale ready to serve with a large spoon
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5 from 5 votes

Braised Cabbage and Kale

In this perfect Braised Cabbage dish, caramelized cabbage and onions are paired with kale and sweet-tart apples to create the perfect side full of delicious flavors. 
Prep Time10 mins
Cook Time35 mins
45 mins
Total Time1 hr 30 mins
Course: Side Dish
Cuisine: American, south, Southern
Servings: 6 servings
Calories: 241kcal


  • 3 tbsp olive oil if using bacon, use reserved bacon fat
  • 1 small head of cabbage cored and chopped
  • 1 bunch of kale stemmed and chopped
  • 1 small yellow onion sliced
  • 1 cup broth vegetable or chicken
  • 1 large apple cored and sliced/Honeycrisp, Braeburn or Granny Smith
  • 2 tbsp butter dairy or vegan
  • 1 tsp brown sugar light or dark is fine
  • 2 tbsp apple cider up to 3/ optional
  • 1/4 tsp red pepper flakes
  • 1/4 tsp celery seed
  • 1/2 tsp salt plus more to taste
  • black pepper to taste
  • 4 bacon slices optional: cooked, chopped with fat reserved/ up to 5


  • In a large cast iron skillet, Dutch oven or heavy bottom pot over medium high heat, add oil. Once oil is heated, add onion and cook 2-3 minute, until onions start to soften.
  • Add cabbage and season with pepper flakes, celery seed and ½ teaspoon of salt. Stir to combine onion and cabbage and add ½ cup of broth. Cover, reduce heat to medium and cook for 17 to 20 minutes. minutes. Cabbage and onion will start to caramelize. During this time check and stir to ensure cabbage and onion are not sticking. Add a little more broth to prevent sticking.
  • Add kale, remaining broth, and a pinch of salt and pepper. Stir, cover with lid and cook for another 10-15 minutes.
  • While kale and cabbage are cooking, start on apples.
  • In a small skillet melt butter, vinegar, sugar over medium high heat. Add apples. Give a good toss so apples are coated. Cook about 2-3 minutes, until apples are crisp-tender.
  • Gently combine apples with cabbage and kale. Season with more salt and pepper if needed.
  • Remove from heat and place cabbage and kale into a serving bowl. Top with chopped bacon if desired.


Grab a bag of pre-cut/shredded cabbage or kale in your produce aisle.  If cabbage or kale is shredded you may need to adjust your cooking time because shredded greens will cook faster.


Calories: 241kcal | Carbohydrates: 20g | Protein: 6g | Fat: 17g | Saturated Fat: 5g | Trans Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 20mg | Sodium: 524mg | Potassium: 518mg | Fiber: 5g | Sugar: 10g | Vitamin A: 3699IU | Vitamin C: 98mg | Calcium: 121mg | Iron: 1mg