Chicken & Rice Stuffed Cabbage (Golumpki!)

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Stuffed Cabbage Rolls on a plate.  They're a great make-ahead family dish!  This recipe uses ground chicken, paprika,  parmesan, tomato paste, garlic, and onion for tons of flavor!

Growing up, my Mom made Golumpki, or Stuffed Cabbage, every so often.  My brother and I thought the name was so funny – we mispronounced it, thinking it was called gwumpky.  Golumpki is a traditional Polish dish, but was also popular in Slavic culture.  My Mom’s family having Czechoslovakian ancestry, made this dish from time to time.  It is basically meat filled cabbage rolls cooked in tomato sauce.  The traditional recipe is made with ground beef.  But I’ve created a lower calorie version with this white meat ground chicken recipe.

Stuffed Cabbage Rolls on a plate with one cut open. They're a great make-ahead family dish! This recipe uses ground chicken, paprika, parmesan, tomato paste, garlic, and onion for tons of flavor!

Benefits of Cabbage

Cabbage can be and IS soooo delicious in this recipe and it is incredibly healthy with so many benefits. Cabbage is a cruciferous vegetable, like kale and broccoli.  We all know the health benefits of kale and broccoli, but cabbage is often overlooked.  Cabbage packs quite a punch in the health benefit department.  Also, you can get a large 3lb head of cabbage that can contribute to several meals for not a lot of money, so it’s a win, win, win!

In terms of the health benefits…first, cabbage has antioxidants, which help stop or delay damage to cells.  It is an excellent source of vitamin C and a good source of manganese, both of which act as antioxidants.  Cabbage also provides anti-inflammatory benefits and is a great source of fiber, providing digestive tract support.

Stuffed Cabbage is Easy Prep

It may seem like a lot, but trust me, this is an easy one to prep!  The first thing we start with is the cabbage.  Steam or boil the entire cabbage head so that the leaves are easily peeled off.

For the Filling, I cook the rice a day before and cool it in the fridge.

I also cook the chicken filling BEFORE stuffing the cabbage.  You could stuff the cabbage with raw filling, but I find that with lean ground chicken, it turns into a unappealing solid mass vs. textured browned ground meat.  I can also give the chicken a lot more flavor by browning it in a pan first.

So, preheat a large frying pan on HIGH heat and add the olive oil and then the ground chicken. Bread up the ground chicken with a spatula and then let it sit and get browned without touching. After 6-8 minutes, break up the chicken again and stir it around to cook all pieces so no pink is left. Add diced onion, minced garlic, tomato paste, water, paprika, salt and pepper. Stir to combine and scrape up any brown bits from the pan. Cook for 10 minutes on MEDIUM heat.

To a large bowl, add the cool rice and the chicken mixture. Mix to combine, which will cool the chicken. Add the egg and parmesan cheese and mix to thoroughly combine.

Assemble and Bake!

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F
Remove about 12-14 outer leaves. The final number of rolls depends on how much meat you fill them with, but I generally get around 12 rolls.

Roll the filling in the cabbage leaves like you would roll and wrap a burrito.  The leaves are very pliable after being steamed.  Continue to fill and roll until you use all of the filling, squeezing every last golumpki stuffed cabbage into the pan!

These Stuffed Cabbage Rolls (Golumpki!) are a great make-ahead family dish! This recipe uses ground chicken, paprika, parmesan, tomato paste, garlic, and onion for tons of flavor!

Cover with tomato sauce and bake in oven.

These Stuffed Cabbage Rolls (Golumpki!) are a great make-ahead family dish! This recipe uses ground chicken, paprika, parmesan, tomato paste, garlic, and onion for tons of flavor!

Sink your fork in and enjoy the simple, but tasty flavors from the parmesan, chicken, and tomato, as well as the soft and hearty texture.  It’s a meal that the entire family will love, just as mine did growing up.

Enjoy!

Stuffed Cabbage Rolls on a plate. They're a great make-ahead family dish! This recipe uses ground chicken, paprika, parmesan, tomato paste, garlic, and onion for tons of flavor!

 

Ground Chicken and Rice Stuffed Cabbage - Golumpki!

This is a great make-ahead family dish!  Stuffed Cabbage Rolls, or Golumpki are a traditional Polish and Slavic culture. This recipe uses ground chicken, paprika, parmesan, tomato paste, garlic, and onion for tons of flavor! It's topped with a delicious and tangy tomato sauce so the kiddos just love this too! This is not only delicious and hearty, but it's also lean and healthy!! #familydinnerideas #stuffedcabbagerolls #golumpki #groundchicken #chickendinnerideas

Course Main Course
Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 1 hour 30 minutes
Total Time 1 hour 45 minutes
Servings 4 people
Calories 486 kcal
Author Carrie Tyler

Ingredients

Cabbage Rolls

  • 1 head Green Cabbage
  • 1 Tbls Extra Virgin Olive Oil or spray
  • 1 lb Ground Chicken Breast
  • 1 tsp Garlic, minced (1 clove)
  • 1 Yellow onion, medium
  • 2 Tbls Tomato paste
  • 1/2 cup Water
  • 2 tsp Salt
  • 1 tsp Ground Black Pepper
  • 1 Egg, large
  • 1/4 cup Parmesan cheese grated
  • 1 Tbsp Paprika
  • 1 cup Rice, Cooked

Tomato Sauce

  • 1 15oz can Tomato sauce
  • 1 tsp Paprika
  • 1 Tbls Garlic powder
  • 1 tsp Salt
  • 2 tsp Ground Pepper

Instructions

Prep Ahead Steps (note: the rice should already be cooked and cooled)

  1. Remove the core from the cabbage head and place in a steamer. Add an inch of water to a large pot with a fitted lid and add the cabbage. Cover the pot and steam the cabbage on Medium heat for 10 minutes. Turn off the heat, but keep covered while you prepare the other ingredients.

    These Stuffed Cabbage Rolls (Golumpki!) are a great make-ahead family dish! This recipe uses ground chicken, paprika, parmesan, tomato paste, garlic, and onion for tons of flavor!
  2. While the cabbage is steaming, finely dice the onion and if needed, mince the garlic.

  3. Preheat a large frying pan on HIGH heat and add the olive oil and then the ground chicken. Bread up the ground chicken with a spatula and then let it sit and get browned without touching. After 6-8 minutes, break up the chicken again and stir it around to cook all pieces so no pink is left. Add diced onion, minced garlic, tomato paste, water, paprika, salt and pepper. (NOTE: it seems like a lot of salt, but it gets combined with rice, so really is needed). Stir to combine and scrape up any brown bits from the pan. Cook for 10 minutes on MEDIUM heat.

  4. To a large bowl, add the cool rice and the chicken mixture. Mix to combine, which will cool the chicken. Add the egg and parmesan cheese and mix to thoroughly combine.

Assemble & Bake

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F
  2. Remove about 12-14 outer leaves. The final number of rolls depends on how much meat you fill them with, but I generally get around 12 rolls.

    These Stuffed Cabbage Rolls (Golumpki!) are a great make-ahead family dish! This recipe uses ground chicken, paprika, parmesan, tomato paste, garlic, and onion for tons of flavor!
  3. Lay a cabbage leaf down on a flat surface with the core end closest to you. Take some of the meat filling and put it in the center of the leaf.  Roll the bottom (core end) of the leaf up over the filling. Fold in the sides, then continue to roll up so you have a burrito-like roll. 

    These Stuffed Cabbage Rolls (Golumpki!) are a great make-ahead family dish! This recipe uses ground chicken, paprika, parmesan, tomato paste, garlic, and onion for tons of flavor!
  4. Place with Roll end side down to hold in place in a 9x13 (or similar size) casserole or baking dish. Continue to fill, roll, and line the dish with all of the Cabbage Rolls.

    These Stuffed Cabbage Rolls (Golumpki!) are a great make-ahead family dish! This recipe uses ground chicken, paprika, parmesan, tomato paste, garlic, and onion for tons of flavor!
  5. Mix the sauce (I use the pan from the chicken to save on bowls). Mix tomato sauce, paprika, garlic powder, salt, pepper. Pour the sauce all over the top of the Stuffed Cabbage Rolls. Then cover and bake for 1.5 hours.

    These Stuffed Cabbage Rolls (Golumpki!) are a great make-ahead family dish! This recipe uses ground chicken, paprika, parmesan, tomato paste, garlic, and onion for tons of flavor!
  6. Serve 2-3 Rolls to each person and Enjoy!

    Stuffed Cabbage Rolls on a plate. They're a great make-ahead family dish! This recipe uses ground chicken, paprika, parmesan, tomato paste, garlic, and onion for tons of flavor!

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