Braised Red Cabbage

Braised Red (Purple) Cabbage, has that classic sweet-sour flavor that is a German favorite. Make something different for the holidays this year and serve this side dish for your Thanksgiving Dinner. This dish is supper delicious. Topping your braised cabbage with crispy bacon adds just the right amount of  smoky, salty flavor. The fall is the best time to make Braised Red Cabbage when you can pick up fresh ‘head’ at your local farm market.


braised red

Family Traditions

This is a very old German recipe. It was passed down to my father-in-law, from his mother and his mom’s mom. For this reason, my mother-in-law made braised red cabbage, each and every year for Thanksgiving dinner. After all, isn’t that what Thanksgiving is all about? Giving thanks for all we are thankful for and preparing favorite family recipes. Recipes that have been passed down from one generation to the next.

braised red
braised red

Cabbage Facts

The word cabbage is a derivation of the French word caboche, meaning head. The cabbage family, of which Brussels sprouts, broccoli, cauliflower and kale are all members, is wide and varied. Cabbage itself comes in many forms, the shapes can be flat, round, the heads compact or loose and the leaves curly or plain. Savoy cabbage and Chinese cabbage are considered culinary superior but is less readily available.

In the United States, the most widely used cabbage comes in compact heads of waxy, tightly wrapped leaves that range in color from almost white to green to red. Choose a cabbage with fresh, crisp-looking leaves that are firmly packed; the head should be heavy for its size. Cabbage may be refrigerated, tightly wrapped, for about a week. It can be prepared in a variety of ways or eaten raw, as in slaw.

braised red

Braised Red (Purple) Cabbage

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  • 1 medium onion, chopped
  • 1/4 cup butter
  • 1 medium head red cabbage, shredded
  • 2 medium tart apples, peeled and chopped
  • 1 cup apple cider or apple juice
  • 1/4 cup brown sugar
  • 2 tablespoons cider vinegar
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon pepper
  • 2 strips bacon, cooked and crumbled


  • In a large skillet, saute onion in butter until golden and tender. Add the cabbage, apples, cider, sugar, vinegar, salt and pepper. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat; cover and simmer for 1 hour or until cabbage and apples are tender and the liquid is reduced. Sprinkle with bacon.
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