Ukrainian Cabbage Rolls Recipe: This Traditional Holubtsi Recipe Is Easy Ukrainian Comfort Food | Dinner

Holubtsi, or cabbage rolls, is a favorite comfort food in Ukraine. It’s one of the most popular dishes in Ukraine and throughout Central Europe.

There are many different recipes for cabbage rolls, and they vary from region to region and family to family. This easy cabbage roll recipe is a simple one often served in Ukraine. To make this a vegetarian recipe, simply leave out the meat and double the amount of rice.

As we enjoy this comforting cabbage roll recipe, let’s send positive energy and thoughts to the strong and brave people of Ukraine. If you want to help, here are some ways to support Ukraine.

Cuisine: Ukrainian
Prep Time: 30 minutes plus overnight to freeze cabbage
Cook Time: 1 hour
Total Time: 1 1/2 hours plus overnight to freeze cabbage

Servings: 6 to 8


Cabbage Rolls

  • 1 large head of cabbage
  • 1 – 2 cups cooked ground beef, ground lamb or your favorite ground meat
  • 2 1/2 cups cooked rice (cook it about three-fourths of the cooking time)
  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 1 onion, finely chopped


  • 1 can (10 ounces) tomato soup
  • 1/4 cup butter
  • 1/2 cup water

Here’s how to make it:

  1. Put the whole head of cabbage in the freezer overnight. Set it out to thaw the next morning. Once thawed, remove the core from the cabbage and separate all the whole leaves.
  2. Combine the cooked meat and rice in a bowl. Season with salt and pepper. Set aside.
  3. Melt the 2 tablespoons of butter in a saucepot. Add the onion and cook until soft, about 3 to 4 minutes. Add the onion to the rice mixture. Mix well.
  4. To the same saucepot, add all the sauce ingredients. Cook until butter has melted and incorporated into the sauce.
  5. To make the cabbage rolls, cut large leaves in half and remove any tough stems. Put about 1 to 2 tablespoons of the filling onto the bottom of the cabbage leaf and roll it up, making sure to push the ends in to seal the roll. Place it into a lightly oiled baking dish. Repeat with remaining filling and cabbage leaves.
  6. Pour the tomato sauce over the top of the cabbage rolls. Sprinkle with salt and pepper, if desired.
  7. Cover the baking dish and bake in a preheated 350-degree F oven for about 1 hour or until leaves are tender.

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