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This chicken and cabbage stir fry recipe is fast and easy. The chicken is soft and tender, and the onions and cabbage melt in your mouth. It’s ready in just over half an hour!

If you can’t get enough cabbage, try my Cabbage Soup with Bacon and Potatoes or Beef and Cabbage Stir Fry next.

close-up of sautéed cabbage and chicken in a white bowl

Why you’ll love it

I based this chicken and cabbage recipe on my popular Sautéed Cabbage and Kielbasa Recipe. It’s cooked in a similar fashion, and it’s just as delicious! Since I grew up with plenty of Czech and central European food, it’s no wonder that I love cabbage so much. Somehow I don’t manage to eat it that often, though. I’m always so surprised at just how flavorful fried cabbage is. It’s so good.

Making chicken sautéed with cabbage is easy. You really don’t need much in the way of seasoning to make this recipe taste totally delicious. I used your standard mild paprika, some fresh garlic, and an onion along with salt & pepper. That’s about it for a quick and inexpensive meal with pantry ingredients!

What you’ll need

  • Chicken – we’re using boneless, skinless chicken breasts cut into bite-sized pieces
  • Olive oil and butter – for sautéing
  • Onion – use whatever you’ve got on hand, but our kitchen likes sweet (Vidalia) onions best
  • Cabbage – we use green cabbage here
  • Garlic – if you’re a garlic lover, go ahead and use even more than I suggest. It’s effortless to mince with a garlic press since there is no chopping or peeling involved.
  • Paprika – you’ll find mild paprika in the spice aisle of any grocery store
white bowl with low-carb fried chicken, onions, and cabbage

Pro tips

  • You don’t have to be super precise with measurements here. I say a medium cabbage, but last time I made this, I bought half of a MASSIVE cabbage that I cut into half again, and that totaled about what you’d expect from a medium cabbage, so don’t worry about precisely measuring.
  • Keep in mind there’s a lot of cabbage in here, so it’s important to add enough salt to draw out the flavors!

How to make chicken and cabbage stir fry

This is an overview, and full ingredients & instructions are in the recipe card below.

  • In a skillet, add the chicken to the olive oil. Season with salt & pepper, and sauté until it’s just done, then set it aside. Sauté the onion in butter for a few minutes.
  • Add the cabbage and cook, tossing or stirring frequently, for about 10-15 minutes or until it starts to get nice and tender. Kitchen tongs make it easy.
  • Stir in the garlic and paprika, and finish by adding the chicken back it into the pan and heating it through to 165F. Give it a taste, add extra salt & pepper, and enjoy.

Substitutions and variations

  • I don’t feel like this recipe needs anything else, but you could always swap the mild paprika for hot paprika or smoked paprika if you wish. If you want to add more paprika or garlic or whatever, go ahead. I suggest tasting and adjusting until it’s perfect for you!
  • Want to make a vegetarian version of this dish? Try my Simple Sautéed Cabbage Recipe.
  • You can always use chicken thighs if you prefer, but I find chicken breast is fine since we don’t overcook it. It remains juicy and tender.
  • To make it next-level good, add in some crumbled Oven Cooked Bacon.

What to serve with chicken and cabbage

  • It’s totally optional, but a dollop of sour cream adds a nice contrast and a little creaminess.
  • As written, this is a low-carb chicken and cabbage recipe, but if that’s not your thing, pair it with something like rice to round out the meal.
  • A side salad makes a great accompaniment too. Try mixed greens with my Creamy Balsamic Dressing. Craving roasted veggies? Go for my Easy Roasted Green Beans.

Leftovers and storage

  • I actually quite enjoyed the leftovers too! The chicken was still tender, even after being microwaved the next day.
  • Store in a covered container in the fridge for 3-4 days.
  • I don’t really recommend freezing this one since the texture of the cabbage may change, but you’re welcome to experiment.
white bowl with simple chicken and sauteed cabbage

If you give this cabbage sautéed with chicken recipe a go, I’d love to hear from you in the comments below! Talk to me if the blog post didn’t answer your questions. You can also find me on Instagram.

Sautéed cabbage and chicken is a healthy and delicious stir fry. Tender chicken breast, onions, and cabbage sautéed with garlic and paprika make a comforting family dinner! Delicious served with a dollop of sour cream!
4.85 from 80 votes

Easy Chicken and Cabbage Stir Fry

This chicken and cabbage stir fry recipe is fast and easy. The chicken is soft and tender, and the onions and cabbage melt in your mouth. It's ready in just over half an hour!
Prep: 10 minutes
Cook: 25 minutes
Total: 35 minutes
Servings: 4


  • 2 large chicken breasts cut into bite-size pieces
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon butter
  • 1 medium onion chopped
  • 1 medium green cabbage cored & chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic minced
  • 1 teaspoon paprika
  • Salt & pepper to taste


  • Add the olive oil and chicken to a skillet. Sprinkle with salt & pepper. Turn the burner to medium-high heat and sauté for about 5-7 minutes (stirring fairly often), or until the chicken is just cooked through. 
  • Take the chicken out of the pan and set aside.
  • Add the butter and onion to the pan and sauté for 3 minutes. 
  • Add the cabbage to the pan and cook for about 10-15 minutes uncovered, stirring fairly often, until the cabbage is nice and soft (or cooked to desired tenderness). The cabbage at the bottom of the pan will start to wilt after a few minutes and it will become easier to stir. The onions will also start to lightly brown and become more flavorful.
  • Stir in the garlic and paprika.
  • Add the chicken back in, and cook until it’s heated through, stirring fairly often. This should only take a few minutes. 
  • Taste and season with salt & pepper as needed (there’s a lot of cabbage so I used a fair amount of salt). Serve immediately. 


  • You can use smoked paprika or hot paprika if you prefer. 


Calories: 256kcal, Carbohydrates: 17g, Protein: 27g, Fat: 10g, Saturated Fat: 3g, Cholesterol: 80mg, Sodium: 199mg, Potassium: 856mg, Fiber: 6g, Sugar: 9g, Vitamin A: 590IU, Vitamin C: 87mg, Calcium: 105mg, Iron: 2mg

Nutrition information is automatically calculated, so should only be used as an approximation.

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Hi! I’m Natasha.

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  1. 5 stars
    Thanks a lot for the quick and flavoursome dish! It was approved by my husband and daughter (and me, of course!). I added a sliced carrot to give some more colour the plate as I served it with brown rice. Yummie!
    Can I ask you what part of Europe is this dish from? My husband thinks Slovakia or Austria.

    1. You are very welcome! So glad you liked it. Well, I am half Czech and grew up with a lot of cabbage. So central/eastern European. 🙂

      1. Actually he also said Czech Rupublic, I guess he’s travelled more than I have. 😉
        Anyway, it was delicious. If you have any other great recipes with cabbage like this one, please share!

      1. 5 stars
        So good! I made this but made substitutions for our meatless Mondays. Subbed extra firm tofu, eggplant, mushrooms. I also used vegetable broth to help the cabbage cook down more and added a bit of soy sauce. At first glance, I thought it was going to be way too much cabbage but it ended up being perfect! I’m pretty big on having either rice or noodles with stir fry but this was filling! There was barely any left after me, my husband, and 1yo were done. Thank you!

    1. Hi Sue! Sorry – I don’t provide those. I’m not a trained nutritionist, so I don’t feel comfortable providing that info as it could end up pretty inaccurate.

      1. If you decide you want to, you can create recipe info using a nutrition calculator. I just googled ‘get nutrition info for recipe’ and found a few sites that do it. I’m really looking forward to trying this recipe!

        1. Hi Carla! Great – let me know if you do make it! 🙂 Yup, I’ve tried a bunch of the calculators out there (even paid ones), but unfortunately they usually aren’t totally accurate (sometimes they’re way off, in fact, and don’t even pull the correct ingredients). Even if you get the correct ingredients, the ingredients themselves can vary depending on what you use. In this particular recipe, something like calories is pretty easy since it doesn’t have a lot of ingredients, but since I am not a trained nutritionist, I don’t know how to properly calculate the other info. I also don’t want people relying on possibly inaccurate info if they’re depending on it for their health. Until I can find a more reliable calculator, I don’t plan on including nutrition info with my recipes. Even then, all nutrition info is a best guess. They’ve done studies on how inaccurate it can be on product packaging. But I will get off my soapbox now haha.

          1. I made it tonight with smoked paprika. I was looking for a recipe to make using ingredients I already had at home. It was delicious!. As another commenter also said, I was surprised by the flavor from such simple ingredients.Thank you for sharing the recipe!

  2. 5 stars
    This turned out so good. I came across this recipe just searching for cabbage recipes and had everything on hand so prepared and turned out quite good. Even my picky husband who I’ve been trying to get to eat healthy said “not bad”! That’s a positive review for him. And my husband does not typically like cabbage. I will make again!!

  3. This was Great, but i did change/add a few things….i used 4 chicken thighs cut small (i rarely cook with the breast, i find the thigh to have so much more flavor and it doesn’t dry out), half a head of cabbage, about 6 small cloves garlic, smoked paprika, 6 slices pickled jalapeno diced, quite a generous amount of ground sea salt and 2 tablespoons butter at the end to add some richness. Fabulous!!!

    1. I agree about the chicken thigh! I’m glad that you enjoyed the recipe and your additions sound delish!

  4. 5 stars
    I ended up with a cabbage by a accident (long story) but I figured I should use it instead of letting it go to waste. I’ve never really liked cabbage enough to buy it but I was happy to find this recipe and was thrilled when I actually made it. It’s delicious! Looks like I’ll be buying cabbage now.

    1. Haha that’s great! I’m happy it worked out in the end. I’ve totally bought cabbage instead of iceberg lettuce before when I’m not paying attention lol.

  5. 5 stars
    This dish is so simple that I had low expectations but it was great! I made a couple of small changes: I used ground veal instead of chicken chunks and I added ~1 cup of stock to the cabbage to give it some more flavor and help it cook down. I didn’t use paprika because I didn’t have any.

    I found the cooking times to be quite accurate.