Roasting vegetables brings out their best flavors, and when you add a little garlic, you have the perfect side dish. This crispy roasted cabbage dish is a perfect example.
With millions of recipes literally at our fingertips, it’s tempting to think you need to complicate things with at least 15 ingredients to get a great tasting dish. And I’ve done it. If you search through this site, you’ll find oodles of recipes with lots of ingredients. But seriously, it’s not really necessary. And roasted cabbage is a perfect example.
Favorite Cabbage Recipes
I’m a cabbage fan, I should acknowledge right up front. I like it shredded on a tostada, like this Black Bean and Avocado Tostada topped with Cabbage Salad. It’s an easy lunch or dinner that comes together quickly. This Best Ever Braised Cabbage is also a big favorite. Shredded cabbage is sautéed in vegetable stock with a little white wine, cream, mustard and caraway seeds. And I make my own sauerkraut. But this recipe for roasted cabbage with garlic is by far my favorite. It’s also the easiest of the bunch.
Is Cabbage Healthy?
I always associate the healthiest vegetable by the depth of their color. For example, dark green leafy vegetables like kale has more nutrients than iceberg lettuce. Carrots and winter squash are full of valuable nutrients. So I assumed cabbage wasn’t all that powerful. But I was wrong.
First of all, it belongs to the same family as broccoli, cauliflower and kale. These vegetables are among the healthiest with their strong mix of nutrients. Like its cousins, cabbage is rich in B6 and folate, is high in fiber, and boasts some powerful antioxidants. Additionally it’s packed with Vitamin C. This brew of fabulousness leads to the health benefits listed below.
Second, it may help keep inflammation in check.
Third, it may improve digestion.
Fourth, it may lower blood pressure.
Fifth, it could help lower cholesterol levels.
Tips for Making Roasted Cabbage
Make sure the cabbage slices are thick enough to flip. They should be between 1 inch and 1 1/2 inches. If they’re too thin, they fall apart more easily.
I purchase Gourmet Garden Garlic Paste to make this dish easier to make. It’s available in many grocery stores in the section where you find fresh herbs. It comes in a tube, and lasts a long time in the refrigerator. If you don’t find it, you can purchase it by using this link: Gourmet Garden Garlic. It’s the only garlic paste I’ve used that I can recommend, and I’ve tried quite a few through the years.
Fennel seeds add a great additional taste punch to the cabbage, but if you don’t care for it, no worries. Cabbage is compatible with many different flavors. I recommend trying caraway seeds, thyme, or tarragon for something more traditional. Ginger powder, curry powder or a little mustard are other good choices that I like with cabbage. For something very creative, although I confess I haven’t tried it, I’ve read that juniper berries go very well with cabbage.
How to Get Them Crispy
First of all, I should be clear that only the edges of the cabbage crisp up – the part that’s in contact with the baking sheet. The remaining cabbage “meat” will be tender.
The secret to getting a crisp outer surface is to not move them at all while they roast, except to flip them. If your cabbage has a high water content, and you live in a humid area, it will be more difficult. (I live at a very dry 7100 ft in the mountains.) Pre-salting the cabbage slices may help. Arrange them on the parchment paper, lightly salt, and let sit for 30 minutes. Use a paper towel to dab up any moisture on the cabbage, and then make the recipe as directed.
What To Do With Any Leftovers
These roasted cabbage steaks are best fresh from the oven, toasty warm. The flavors are fine the next day, but the crispy texture is completely wilted. If you have leftovers, and the texture is important to you, I recommend sprinkling some grated Parmesan cheese on the top and reheat in the oven. Alternatively, you can save them to add to casseroles.
Kitchen Equipment For Roasting Cabbage
Having the right equipment makes a big difference to any recipe. For this one, I used a Nordic Ware Aluminum 1/2 sheet baking sheet. Click on the below link to check it out. BestReviews rated this baking sheet as the Best Bang for the Buck of all the baking sheets they tested.
Garlicky Roasted Cabbage Steaks
- baking sheet
- 1 head cabbage
- 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
- 1 tablespoon garlic paste
- 2 teaspoons fennel seeds, or caraway seeds
- 1 teaspoons kosher salt, to taste
- 1/2 teaspoon black ground pepper, to taste
- Parsley, for optional garnish
- Preheat oven to 400˚F and line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
- Slice the cabbage head into 1" slices and arrange on the prepared baking sheet. Brush with half of the oil, garlic paste, fennel, salt, and pepper. Carefully flip and apply the remaining oil, garlic, and spices.
- Roast for 20 minutes, and flip back over. Roast for another 20 minutes, or until crispy around the edges.
- Serve warm, and garnished with coarsely chopped parsley.
- As a note, these 'steaks' aren't quite as good warmed up, as they lose their crispiness, but leftovers are great sliced and added to casseroles.
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Want more roasted veggies? Check these out…
Or go check out my post on Parade’s online magazine for a roundup of over 20 Best Roasted Veggies for an Easy Dinner!