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Healthy Braised Red Cabbage with Apples

Super easy healthy braised red cabbage with apples and red onions is the best side dish ever! It's savory, sweet, a little sour, tangy, and wonderfully complements every main dish. This recipe is vegan, gluten-free, refined sugar-free, keto – friendly and packed with flavorful herbs and spices. Look no further for a fabulous + tasty, healthy side you need for the holidays especially Thanksgiving and Christmas. Also, it comes together so quickly! #Cabbage #Braisedcabbage #healthysidedish #sidedish

Braised Red Cabbage with Apples and Red Onions.

Super easy healthy braised red cabbage with apples, red onions and bell pepper is literally the best side dish EVER!!! It’s savory, sweet, a little sour, tangy, and wonderfully complements every main dish. This recipe is vegan, gluten-free, refined sugar-free, keto – friendly and packed with flavorful herbs and spices. Red cabbage, also known as purple cabbage, is versatile and be cooked in different ways; however, braising it brings out the best in it! I find myself going back to this recipe over and over again; I only hope you like it as we have loved it over here! 😊

Look no further for a fabulous + healthy side you need for the holidays. Not only is this recipe delicious, but the color will also make you fall in love with it! You can serve healthy braised red cabbage as a Thanksgiving side or Christmas dinner side. On the other hand, I make this dish every month, and usually, I serve it with buttery honey-mustard salmon. Did I hear you say, yummy? Yes, indeed! Also, do not stop here; make sure to check out my red cabbage taco wrap recipe. It is another way to use this beautiful leafy vegetable!

Super easy healthy braised red cabbage with apples and red onions is the best side dish ever! It's savory, sweet, a little sour, tangy, and wonderfully complements every main dish. This recipe is vegan, gluten-free, refined sugar-free, keto – friendly and packed with flavorful herbs and spices.  Look no further for a fabulous + tasty, healthy side you need for the holidays especially Thanksgiving and Christmas. Also, it comes together so quickly! #Cabbage #Braisedcabbage #healthysidedish #side
Braised red cabbage with apples is savory, sweet, sour, and totally delicious! This healthy side is vegan, gluten-free, keto – friendly, and sugar-free! The best part is that it comes together so quickly! Click To Tweet

Why I Love Sweet & Sour Braised Red Cabbage

Please know that this is my version of the traditional braised red cabbage recipe, also known as Rotkohl or Blaukraut. Braised German red cabbage is very popular in Germany and across the world. It makes a fantastic side dish for almost anything; here are the reasons why I love this recipe:

  • It is easy to make
  • Braised red cabbage with apples requires a few ingredients
  • It complements any dish – fish, meat, grain, beans, etc.
  • This recipe is kid–friendly. My little ones love this recipe; definitely our family favorite!
  • My version of traditional braised red cabbage is sugar-free. Instead of white sugar, I used an apple and freshly squeezed orange juice. 
  • This recipe is vegan, not to mention that it is equally gluten-free. Yippie! 
  • Uniquely, red cabbage has several health benefits, and they are equally great for the digestive system.
  • Braised red or purple cabbage is beautiful. The beauty of this dish is enough to make you like it!
  • Finally, this is hands down the best healthy side dish (if you don’t already know)!
Super easy healthy braised red cabbage with apples and red onions is the best side dish ever! It's savory, sweet, a little sour, tangy, and wonderfully complements every main dish. This recipe is vegan, gluten-free, refined sugar-free, keto – friendly and packed with flavorful herbs and spices.  Look no further for a fabulous + tasty, healthy side you need for the holidays especially Thanksgiving and Christmas. Also, it comes together so quickly! #Cabbage #Braisedcabbage #healthysidedish #side

Best Healthy Holiday Side Dish is Here!

I love the holidays, am looking forward to Thanksgiving and Christmas! We all know how it goes during the holidays. First, it brings the family together. Second, a lot of food is involved. Third, those holiday foods come with a crazy amount of calories! On the other hand, this braised red cabbage with apples is healthy, light, and refreshing. It is perfect as a holiday side for any dish! This recipe would easily blend in and complement the main dish. 🙌🏾

Listen, you need this recipe during the holidays, after the holidays, and any other time you wish! I typically serve it alongside my stuffed turkey breast, roasted whole Turkey, or leg of lamb during Thanksgiving or Christmas. Ordinarily, I would serve it with salmon, tilapia, or chicken. Nevertheless, when you make this recipe, do it your way. Serve it with your choice of protein, grain, or carbohydrate!

Healthy braised red cabbage with apples makes a delicious side dish any time, any day. You can serve it with your choice of meat, fish, or just enjoy it as it is by itself. Thankfully, this recipe is very easy to make and requires… Click To Tweet

Ingredients for Healthy Braised Red Cabbage and Apples

  • A big head of red cabbage (purple cabbage)
  • 1 apple
  • A bulb of red/purple onion
  • 1 orange bell pepper (or any color)
  • ½ cup of orange juice
  • 2 teaspoons – 1 tablespoon of apple cider vinegar
  • ¼ cup of EVOO/Olive oil
  • 3 cloves of garlic 
  • Salt and pepper 
  • 1 Knorr Cube (or 1-2 teaspoons of bouillon seasoning powder); always season according your taste.
Sliced Cabbage, chopped apples, onions, bell peppers. Orange juice, olive oil, Knorr bouillon cube, salt and pepper.

HOW TO MAKE A HEALTHY BRAISED RED CABBAGE RECIPE:

  1. Wash and cut/slice all the vegetables (cabbage, apple, onions, bell pepper & garlic). Squeeze the orange juice if possible!
  2. Place a clean pot on the stove, heat up, and add the EVOO
  3. When the oil is hot, add the onions. Sauté until softened, and then add the bell peppers and garlic. Add salt and cook until tender. 
  4. Then add the cabbage; mix well to combine. Crush in the Knorr cube, add salt, pepper, and thyme. Stir in the apples and combine—cover and cook for 7 minutes.
  5. Add the orange juice and apple cider vinegar; stir to combine. Cover and cook for another 10 – 15 minutes or until your desired doneness. Taste and adjust flavors as necessary; serve alongside the main dish or with any protein of choice.
Super easy healthy braised red cabbage with apples and red onions is the best side dish ever! It's savory, sweet, a little sour, tangy, and wonderfully complements every main dish. This recipe is vegan, gluten-free, refined sugar-free, keto – friendly and packed with flavorful herbs and spices. Look no further for a fabulous + tasty, healthy side you need for the holidays especially Thanksgiving and Christmas. Also, it comes together so quickly! #Cabbage #Braisedcabbage #healthysidedish #side

How to Store the Leftover.

To be honest, we rarely have leftovers of my signature braised red cabbage! Having said that, the best way to store leftover braised cabbage (in my opinion) is in the fridge. It can stay up 3 days (72 hours) in the refrigerator, and I do not recommend storing this in the freezer. The last thing you want is an ice burnt vegetable that is stripped of all flavors.

Easy healthy braised red cabbage with apples and red onions is the best side dish ever! It's savory, sweet, a little sour, tangy, and wonderfully complements every main dish. This recipe is vegan, gluten-free, refined sugar-free, keto – friendly and packed with flavorful herbs and spices.  Look no further for a fabulous + tasty, healthy side you need for the holidays especially Thanksgiving and Christmas. Also, it comes together so quickly! #Cabbage #Braisedcabbage #healthysidedish #sidedish

Frequently Asked Questions:

Can I make braised cabbage without sugar?

Heck yes, you can absolutely make a healthy braised cabbage without sugar. For instance, I didn’t have to add sugar to this recipe; I used an apple and some orange juice. In reality, sweeteners such as fruits (almost) give the same vibe as sugar but are healthy!

Can I store the leftover braised red cabbage in the freezer?

No, please do not store leftover braised red cabbage in the freezer. This vegetable doesn’t need to be frozen; it will get freezer burn and lose taste! However, you can store the leftover in the fridge for up to 3 days.

What is the best fruit/vegetable to cook with braised cabbage?

The best fruit/vegetable to cook with any braised cabbage recipe is apple or carrots. Also, onions, bell peppers are equally fantastic. For this healthy braised red cabbage, I added apples, onions, and bell peppers. On the other hand, you can use any vegetable of choice granted you will enjoy how it turns out.

Can I make braised red cabbage without apple cider vinegar?

Although you can make this recipe without apple cider, I do not recommend it. Apple cider vinegar gives this recipe a hint of sour taste and a touch of color, and I don’t want you to miss out on both. Additionally, ACV equally has health benefits that are great for you!

What can I serve with healthy braised red cabbage?

You can serve this braised red cabbage with meat, fish, grains, and at the same time, you can eat like that! I love pairing this recipe with stuffed turkey breast, a roasted whole turkey, or a leg of lamb during the holidays.
When I make this for Sunday/weekly dinner, I generally serve it with buttery salmon + boiled rice (to fill me up 🤣🤣🤣) or tilapia. We really enjoy eating braised cabbage with fish!

This is an example of how you can serve this recipe with a plate of boiled rice and salmon. YMU
This is my plate and how I typically serve braised cabbage on a regular weekday/night! You can serve this recipe with only rice or any other grain to keep it vegan!
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Super easy healthy braised red cabbage with apples and red onions is the best side dish ever! It's savory, sweet, a little sour, tangy, and wonderfully complements every main dish. This recipe is vegan, gluten-free, refined sugar-free, keto – friendly and packed with flavorful herbs and spices. Look no further for a fabulous + tasty, healthy side you need for the holidays especially Thanksgiving and Christmas. Also, it comes together so quickly! #Cabbage #Braisedcabbage #healthysidedish #sidedish

Healthy Braised Red Cabbage with Apples


Description

Super easy healthy braised red cabbage with apples and red onions is literally the best side dish ever!!! It’s savory, sweet, a little sour, tangy, and wonderfully complements every main dish. This recipe is vegan, gluten-free, refined sugar-free, keto – friendly and packed with flavorful herbs and spices. Red cabbage, also known as purple cabbage, is versatile and be cooked in different ways; however, braising it brings out the best in it! Look no further for a fabulous + tasty, healthy side you need for the holidays. And the best part is that it comes together so quickly!


Ingredients

Scale
  • 1 big head of red cabbage (purple cabbage)
  • 1 apple
  • 1 bulb red/purple onions
    1 orange bell pepper (or any color)
  • ½ cup of orange juice
  • 2 teaspoons – 1 tablespoon of apple cider vinegar
  • ¼ cup of EVOO/Olive oil
  • 3 cloves of garlic 
  • Salt and pepper 
  • 1 Knorr Cube (or 12 teaspoons of bouillon seasoning powder); always season according your taste.

Instructions

  1. Wash and cut/slice all the vegetables (cabbage, apple, onions, bell pepper & garlic). Squeeze the orange juice if possible!
  2. Place a clean pot on the stove, heat up, and add the EVOO
  3. When the oil is hot, add the onions. Sauté until softened, and then add the bell peppers and garlic. Add salt and cook until tender. 
  4. Then add the cabbage; mix well to combine. Crush in the Knorr cube, add salt, pepper, and thyme. Stir in the apples and combine—cover and cook for 7 minutes.
  5. Add the orange juice and apple cider vinegar; stir to combine. Cover and cook for another 10 – 15 minutes or until your desired doneness. Taste and adjust flavors as necessary; serve alongside the main dish and with any protein of choice.

Notes

Usually, many people cook this recipe for a very long time, I simply choose not to. I believe it is perfect the way I make it!

I cooked this healthy braised cabbage with apples but you use carrots instead. 

Make this recipe as a Thanksgiving or Christmas side dish and you will not regret it!

  • Prep Time: 20 minutes
  • Cook Time: 30 minutes
  • Category: Side Dish
  • Method: Stovetop
  • Cuisine: German

Keywords: Healthy Braised Cabbage, Braised cabbage, Braised Red Cabbage, German Braised Cabbage, Cabbage recipe, Side dish, Healthy side dish, Thanksgiving side dish, Christmas side dish,

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MORE HOLIDAY SIDE DISHES TO TRY:

Easy Holiday Favorites:

While you are still here, grab my FREE (5) spinach salad recipe bundle. It would be a great addition to your dinner table (if you like salads) or you are looking to incorporate more veggies. Get the recipes here.

THIS POST CONTAINS AFFILIATE LINKS, you are not charged more for using these links, but I make little coins when you do.

Finally, let’s connect on social media, am on Pinterest, Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and YouTube. Share this recipe post, and SAVE/PIN THIS IMAGE ON PINTEREST! ⤵️

Easy healthy braised red cabbage with apples and red onions is the best side dish ever! It's savory, sweet, a little sour, tangy, and wonderfully complements every main dish. This recipe is vegan, gluten-free, refined sugar-free, keto – friendly and packed with flavorful herbs and spices.  Look no further for a fabulous + tasty, healthy side you need for the holidays especially Thanksgiving and Christmas. Also, it comes together so quickly! #Cabbage #Braisedcabbage #healthysidedish #sidedish

Stay well and safe, friends. HAPPY HOLIDAYS!

Nkechi Ajaeroh's blog nkechiajaeroh.com for healthy food recipes, and healthy living. tips.
Nkechi Ajaeroh, MPH

Hi, I'm Nkechi "Kechi" Ajaeroh, a Public Health professional turned Inspirational author slash exceptional home cook. A 2x International Best Selling Author of Elevate Your Life with the Power of Positive Perception and Gratefully Growing. African, (specifically, Nigerian) Food Enthusiast, watermelon connoisseur, on my to finessing my fitness. This blog is all about loving food, living life, practicing gratitude, and inspiring you to use your wings. Join the journey.

12 Comments
  1. Thanks for sharing a delicious and healthy recipe, Nkechi. I very much appreciate this.
    I’m looking forward to making this for myself and to take as a side to my daughters for Thanksgiving.

  2. This was the most delicious side dish for our dinner tonight! My cabbage turned out perfectly and I love the addition of citrus to brighten it up! Yum!

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