All you need is a few simple ingredients to make this ridiculously tasty 30-minute cabbage and kielbasa skillet! It's easy, inexpensive comfort food at its very best.
Looking for just the cabbage? Try my Simple Sautéed Cabbage recipe.
Cabbage and sausage skillet
If you haven't tried the irresistible combo of cabbage and kielbasa yet, you're missing out! The kielbasa is rich and smoky and the perfect contrast to the tender, buttery fried cabbage in this no-fuss, affordable weeknight dinner.
Since I'm half Czech, I am no stranger to the goodness of cabbage. I definitely grew up eating a lot of it, so I learned early on how amazing this humble ingredient really can taste! If you're skeptical about cabbage, this one-pan recipe will change your mind. The simplicity lets all the individual components shine.
Just a handful of ingredients
- Kielbasa - slice the sausage into evenly sized rounds
- Olive oil - for pan frying the sausage until browned
- Butter - to sauté the onion
- Onion - I like sweet Vidalia onions, but you can choose your favorite variety
- Cabbage - we're using green cabbage here. You don't need to be super precise in measuring it out, but make sure to shred it into fairly thin ribbons, or your cooking time may be longer.
- Garlic - I suggest two cloves, but you're welcome to add as much as you like! It's very easy to mince with this garlic press since you don't need to peel the cloves beforehand.
- Paprika - mild paprika is the magic ingredient that totally transforms cabbage and brings out its wonderful flavor
What is kielbasa?
- It's a smoked pork sausage with garlic that originated in central and eastern Europe. Here in North America kielbasa is often sold in regular grocery stores labeled as "kielbasa" or "smoked Polish sausage". The word "kielbasa" actually means "sausage", so if you go to a Polish grocer and ask for it, you'll have to be more specific since they'll have many varieties. Here in Canada we often refer to "kielbasa" simply as "kubasa". Now you know!
How to make sautéed sausage and cabbage
This is an overview, and full ingredients & instructions are in the recipe card below.
- Pan fry the kielbasa with the olive oil in a skillet until it's crisp and nicely browned. Transfer to a plate and set aside.
- Sauté the onions in the butter for a few minutes, and then add in the cabbage. Cook for 10-15 minutes, stirring frequently, until the cabbage is tender-crisp.
- Add in the garlic and paprika and stir until combined. Put the sausage back in the skillet and cook until warmed through. Season generously with salt and pepper, and enjoy right away.
Substitutions and variations
- Smoked Ukrainian or Hungarian sausage or even Andouille would work in this dish too.
- Some crispy bacon would be a fantastic addition.
- Mild paprika is the standard preparation and has more than enough flavor, but you could try subbing it for hot or smoked paprika if you like.
- You could serve it with a little bit of sour cream on the side!
What to serve with it
- It's a complete meal in itself, but you're welcome to pair it with a side salad. Try a fresh green salad with my Creamy Balsamic Dressing.
- A slice of bread would be great. Rye bread is my go-to for this one, but a crusty bread like a baguette works too.
Leftovers and storage
- Any leftovers will keep for a few days in the fridge in an airtight container.
- Reheat in a saucepan or skillet over a low heat for best results.
- I wouldn't recommend freezing this recipe. The texture of the cooked cabbage won't come out the same.
Will you make this cabbage and sausage skillet? Tried it? Leave me a comment below! You can also find me on Instagram.
Sautéed Cabbage and Kielbasa
- 16 ounces kielbasa (smoked Polish sausage) sliced into 1/4" rounds
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1 tablespoon butter
- 1 medium onion chopped
- 1 medium green cabbage sliced thin, core removed
- 2 cloves garlic minced
- 1 teaspoon paprika
- Salt & pepper to taste
- Heat oil in a large skillet on medium-high heat. Add the sausage and cook, stirring occasionally, until it's nicely browned (7-10 minutes). Turn the heat down to medium once it gets going. Remove the kielbasa from the pan and set aside once it's nice and crisp.
- Add the butter and onion to the pan. Cook for 3 minutes, stirring occasionally.
- Add the cabbage to the pan and cook uncovered for 10-15 minutes, stirring fairly often. 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.
- Once the cabbage is tender-crisp and cooked to your liking, add the garlic and paprika. Stir until it's combined. Add in the sausage and cook for a couple more minutes until it's heated through. Season with salt & pepper to taste. Serve immediately.
- Smoked Ukrainian or Hungarian sausage would work as well.
- Nutritional information is provided as a courtesy only and should be construed as an estimate rather than a guarantee. Ingredients can vary and Salt & Lavender makes no guarantees to the accuracy of this information.
What size are the servings?
Whatever 1/4 of the recipe works out to. It's calculated automatically from a database of ingredients. You'd have to weigh your own ingredients and/or consult a nutritionist for information beyond that. Enjoy!
What kind of onion?
I usually cook with sweet (vidalia) onions, but yellow, Spanish, white... any of those will work, so that's why I don't list a particular kind. I typically don't like to cook with red onions unless they're raw since the color goes a bit wonky.
I LOVE cabbage and Kielbasa! I use Turkey Kielbasa and add in stoneground mustard and for sweetness I chop up an apple or add some applesauce. One of my favorite dishes. Adding 1/4 cup of beer is good as well.
This was the first recipe I tried of yours, it's so delicious and it introduced me to your website! I cook a recipe a week (at least) of yours now, and they are all delicious and easy. I'm just now learning/starting to cook and I'm so glad I found your recipes. They make me feel capable 😁
Aww I'm so pleased that you found me!! I love comments like this... makes this all worthwhile. 🙂 XO
Tricia B. says
OMG! My mother-in-law is Czech (she's since passed) and I remember the first time she made this... thought it a strange combo BUT since it smelled good while cooking I was thinking I just MIGHT give it a try once done. Boy was I ever so wrong in doubting that this "strange combo" might taste a bit weird!! It's very good & making it makes me think of my mother-in-law & the first time she made it for me! In fact, my husband & I just had some the other day; and this was the fist time I'd actually seen it on your blog! LOL Since we keep cabbage on hand (staple in our house)... I'm going to try your Cabbage Roll Soup & hopefully it taste like Cabbage Rolls - or close enough would do. And, I'm making the Kielbasa Soup again - SOON!! In fact, when I first made it & gave the recipe to a friend who also made it and LOVED it told me just yesterday she was going to make it again as the weather here in Texas is a bit chilly - not cold - so when we have some chilly days we take advantage of it!
Natasha, I'm so thankful I found your blog/site last year... am looking forward to making more of your recipes - and passing your site/recipes to others! I mean, since I gave it to one friend - who's Cajun by the way - loved your Kielbasa Soup I'm thinking she might like your Cajun Pasta recipe, too. Hmmm!?
Off to browsing into more recipes from your site! 😉
Hi Tricia! I love how food is so tied to memories... thanks for sharing this with me. 🙂 I really appreciate your support and I'm so glad you like the blog and the recipes. XO
Kim Breaux says
I am Cajun from southeast Louisiana. We also cook this but call it smothered cabbage. We add potatoes and carrots to our dish. We also add green peppers when frying the onion and sometimes substitute ham for the sausage. I LOVE this dish!!!!
Ooh that sounds amazing! I need to try those additions!
Pam Lizzio says
This is very good, but lacking in flavor. I added Apple cider vinegar, dash of sugar, seasoned salt, . Next time, I'll add Caraway seeds.
I love that I am seeing this recipe posted more. Its great! I grew up eating sauteed cabbage and kielbasa it is so delicious. My mom always added a dash of worcestershire sauce to ours and let it simmer. I am going to have to try yours too and see how they compare. Thanks for sharing!!!
Awesome! Yes, I am glad more people are seeing the joys of cabbage haha. 🙂
Thank you for sharing this recipe! It is so easy to make and was delicious! My husband and I are on the keto diet and this is a great option for us.
You are very welcome! So happy you both enjoyed it!
ok thanks for sharing this recipe
Kok aan huis says
This looks amazing! Thank you for sharing you’re creativity!
Christian Warren says
Thank you for publishing this traditional Eastern European recipe.
I followed the instructions closely but added a pinch of hot Hungarian paprika and took John Small's advice to add the garlic sooner.
The shredded cabbage makes for a low-carb "noodle" dish that should satisfy any Keto diet.
I would cheerfully make this again and recommend your site to anyone who has an interest in a rustic ethnic food recipe.
I am so happy it worked for you! And thanks so much for recommending my site. 🙂
Thank you Christian. I'm always on the look out for keto-friendly recipes!
Thanks for sharing your receipt. Very tasty I have made several times.
Wonderful! Thanks for letting me know, Peggy! 🙂
Just Googled cabbage dishes because U was searching for a different way to cook cabbage besides steaming. Thank you so much for this. It was a hit! I used jalapeno sausage, which is what I had and I'm eating it right now with some steak. Thanks for the recipe. I'll making this from now on.
Tobi, I'm Nigerian as well, though I live in the U.S. You can try using beef sausage. I'd die for a Satis beef sausage right now.
So happy you liked it!!
I never liked vegetables as a child. Now I'm 21 and actively trying to lose weight. Stumbled on this recipe and tried it. I used chicken franks tho, Kielbasa isn't as common in Nigeria. I've definitely found one vegetable meal I like for my diet. Thank you so much
I am so happy to hear that, Tobi!! 🙂
These was very good!! I was surprised how much flavor it had.l for how simple it was. I added a red pepper and jalapeños (we like spicy foods!). Very enjoyable!!! Husband loved it!
That’s great! Love how you spiced it up.
So a little vulgar, but I was introduced to this as a group camping dish, COCK (cabbage, onions, carrot, kielbasa). I tend to make a big batch and then throw some fried eggs on it and some sriracha or gochujang. Really enjoyed reading everyone else's additions; I'll definitely try mixing in some ramen.
Haha sounds good to me! I love your additions.
John Robert Small says
The comments vis a vis additions are not without merit. All sound thoughts. Up vote the peas idea especially. I've dined the world over, and will offer, this is a world class recipe, and at a budget price to boot. Made it just tonight, and, amigo mio, it is superb. Complements and chef's hat off to you, this from a Ritz Place Vendome patron (confess spent too much time in Henmingway's prior to meals, ahem). I will stretch to offer this critique : "do not dilly dally about for such an extended period of time before you introduce the garlic". Warm regards, and kudos. Bravo. Bravo.
Thanks for the kind words, John! So glad you enjoyed it!
Mahalo for sharing a bit of your culture in this comforting cabbage dish! My boyfriend loves cabbage, so we decided to make this for our dinner tonight. He liked that the cabbage was a co-star with the sausage, not just a filler vegetable. He also said liked that it fried, saying it was more flavorful, than the wilted and "stewy" cabbage you find in most soups or corned beef recipes. Of course he needed heat, so he added hot sauce to his plate, but I thought it was delicious without it. Thanks again!
Thanks for leaving such a nice comment! My husband is the same way re: hot sauce haha.
Would this be good served over rice? Also, with red cabbage?
Sure, red cabbage would work. I think it would be delicious with rice. Hope you enjoy this recipe!
Have made a couple times now and am surprised how much I love it, thanks for the recipe!
That's great!! So happy you like it!
Christine Lankford says
Just made this recipe tonight. It was fabulous, my husband and I loved it., i have been reading the other comments and would love to try some of the ideas too, very good
So happy you two loved it! Thanks for letting me know, Christine! 🙂
Sue Terrell says
I liked it ok but thought it was bland. I have leftovers so Friday night I'm going to add a can of tomatoes and green chiles and maybe some cayenne pepper...I love tomatoes with both cabbage and kielbasa and I need spice! 😊
Sounds like those will be good additions! Yeah, it's definitely not meant to be spicy as written, but it's easy to kick up the heat if need be.
I just made this tonight and it is SO GOOD! Hard to not to eat 2 servings haha I just recently started Keto. Do you have the nutritional info for this recipe, or know how I can calculate it?
Thanks for the delicious recipe!
Hi Missy! I am so glad you liked it! I'm slowly going through and calculating the calorie counts on some of my older recipes. I do a combination of things to get the calories - I do Google searches for basics (e.g. a tablespoon of olive oil) and often check the packages for the exact items I've used. Some of the online calculators aren't exactly reliable, so you have to take it with a grain of salt. I'm not a trained nutritionist, so I don't feel comfortable calculating anything besides the calories since I'll probably be way off or have no idea if the calculator I used is way off, and I don't want to accidentally provide false info. Hope that makes sense. Just did a quick calorie calculation and I got 382 calories/serving - I will update the recipe. Hope that helps!
Laurin B says
My husband and I enjoyed this tonight! I can’t wait to try it again with the different variations posted in the comments!! Thanks for the recipe!
You are very welcome! So glad you guys enjoyed it.
Made this for dinner and it's fantastic! Definitely a keeper!! Thank you for posting.
Yay! That's great. Thanks for letting me know, Ruth!!
I am 100% Slovak. I grew up enjoying this cabbage & kubasa dish. Sometimes, my Mom added either poppy seed or carraway seeds (love them both).
So glad you liked it! My mom cooks with caraway seeds too! 🙂
I've made this twice now and love it. Thought the paprika would make too spicy but not at all. Definitely a recipe I will return to anytime my garden overflows with cabbage.
So happy you liked it, Cathy! I used mild paprika, so it definitely isn't spicy (I am so bad with spice myself haha). Here's to more cabbage in your garden! 🙂
I used sweet Italian chicken sausage and sweet onion because they were what I had on hand When I googled ways to prepare cabbage. It was wonderful! Thank you.
So happy you enjoyed it, Jennifer!
Bonnie Hampsher says
I have been making a recipe like this for years and I love it. I have used different kinds of sausage tho. I used to get a turkey sausage , which I really liked, but can't find it anymore. The last time I used Kielbasa. The only thing different in the recipe is that I put in a can of whole potatoes, which I cut in half, and some green pepper and mushrooms. I fry that until the potatoes start to brown than I put in the onions. It is one of my favorite meals.
Your version sounds delicious!!
Just made this tonight! Fantastic!
This is quite tasty. My kids are not fond of cabbage, but they loved this. Thanks for sharing.
Glad to hear it! Thanks for letting me know!
Lori Chaplin says
Delicious and easy, husbNd and i loved it. No leftovers! Lol!
Haha excellent!! Glad to hear it, Lori!
Klobasa in Czech language 😀😉
This can go well with farm cumin bread !
U can fried ( toeasted) the bread and spread on it!
My mom is Czech. 🙂 And that sounds delicious!
Delish ! Reminded me of dinner with my grandmother and our Ukrainian cooking. Nice and quick too!
So happy to hear that, Cindy!!
Add in some cooked egg noodles & frozen peas for a filling, economical meal. I make this version of "Haluski" & family/friends love it.
That's great! Thanks for leaving a comment, Harriet!
Tried it, loved it!!! Can I make ahead & Freeze it.
So happy to hear that, Rosie! The cabbage can go a bit soggy when it's defrosted, but I imagine it would be ok to freeze. 🙂
Great food! 😉😋
Yay!! Thanks. 😊
Love fried cabbage! Love kielbasa too, will be great together!
Thanks!! Hope you love it!
Yuuuum! Love everything about this- and this is one of the very few cabbage dishes that my kids will eat! Totally trying this recipe soon!
Thanks, Karly! Hope you all love it!
This looks fantastic, Natasha! I think cabbage is one of those vegetables that under appreciated - and then toss it with kielbasa? Yes, please!
Thanks, Marissa! I totally agree. Poor old cabbage!
Add perogies and you'll be in heaven!
Yes!! And sour cream! 😀
Catering Wassenaar says
Wow! That dish looks so tasty! delicious. Thanks for sharing.
Add 2 packages of ramen noodles to that and it is even better.
Rae clay says
Do you cook the rame noodles first ?