Braised Cabbage Pasta

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Every now and then, I come across a cooking term like “braise” and realize I’m not really sure what it means.  Thank goodness for Google!


I am a huge fan of drier pasta dishes like this Braised Cabbage Pasta; this was a little too dry for the Husband’s taste.  I’d be more than willing to hear some saucey suggestions in the comments section!


Braised Cabbage Pasta


Ingredients (for two servings):


  • 1 block extra firm tofu, pressed and drained
  • 2 servings Brussel sprouts, trimmed and halved
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 3 cups green cabbage, sliced
  • 1 cup white mushrooms, sliced
  • 3/4 cup red wine (I used zinfandel)
  • 2 cups whole wheat spaghetti
  • Chili powder
  • Salt and pepper to taste




  • Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
  • After trimming and halving Brussel sprouts, drizzle with olive oil and roast for 30 minutes.



  • While Brussel sprouts roast, slice tofu into thin pieces.  Preheat George Foreman and place slices on the grill.


  • While tofu cooks (for about 5 minutes) and the Brussel sprouts continue to roast, bring a pot of water to boil and heat up a wok to high.
  • Toss cabbage in a bit of oil olive and add to the hot wok.  Cook until the cabbage begins to brown.


  • After 5 minutes, add a generous amount of salt, pepper, and a dash of chili powder to cabbage.  Add red wine and mushrooms.


Drink a glass of red wine, if you feel necessary.  🙂


  • Add pasta to boiling water.
  • Cook cabbage for 15 minutes total and pasta for 10 minutes.
  • Combine Brussel sprouts, tofu, pasta, cabbage, and mushrooms.  Plate and enjoy!


I really loved this dish!  Although, I do think it might work well with a sauce.  Any suggestions?


After taking an extremely long nap this afternoon, I woke up and had some healthy snacks while I wrote some freelance articles,


Cereal, raspberries, and Greek yogurt:


And a big bowl of salty edamame:


Currently lounging on the couch, eating a handful of mini Resee’s cups and finishing off my glass of wine.  Perfection!


Have a great Sunday evening.  🙂



  • Kelly August 29, 2010, 8:57 pm

    Yum. I actually don’t need a lot of sauce on my foods and that sounds like it would be fine with me, there would be enough flavor. However my husband is the same way. I like most chinese style sauces with cabbage myself, but I’ll be interested to see what others say.

  • Tina August 29, 2010, 9:03 pm

    I’m so odd. I either like things really saucy or barely to no sauce. In between annoys me. This looks great to me. Although usually anything with Brussels sprouts looks good to me.

  • Gabriela @ Une Vie Saine August 29, 2010, 9:05 pm

    What about a pesto sauce? I feel like it works on any pasta-based dish 🙂

    • Caitlin August 30, 2010, 1:16 pm

      Oh pesto would’ve been good!

  • Ellen August 29, 2010, 9:10 pm

    Undercook the pasta slightly, and then reserve 1/2ish cup of the pasta cooking water and add it to the saute pan as necessary. The starches will create a “sauce” with the stuff on the bottom of the pan.

  • Allie (Live Laugh Eat) August 29, 2010, 9:15 pm

    I don’t think I’ve ever ‘braised’ anything before…at least not knowing it. Off to Google it!! This is random but I really love that photo of the oil being poured…it glimmers 🙂

  • Brittany (A Healthy Slice of Life) August 29, 2010, 9:15 pm

    mmm… I could make a whole meal out of edamame- YUM.

    Hope you had fun at the dog bar!

  • Meghan August 29, 2010, 9:20 pm

    I usually add some of the starchy cooking water from the pasta into my sauces, that may help! Looking at your day of eats; can you be my personal chef? All your meals, snacks and treats look delicious:)

  • NC August 29, 2010, 9:31 pm

    Looks great !! , a couple of things I would add.. to make it better …

    1) sriracha (thai hot chilli sauce), honey and peanut butter .. and some crunchy roasted peanuts .

    I have done something similar for which I used this combination…
    2) Trader’s joes satay sauces should work well too…

    Congratulations on finishing 15 miles…. 🙂

  • Erin August 29, 2010, 9:33 pm

    You could do a simple marinara, which might compliment the flavors without overpowering it. Or a little olive oil and spices?

  • Holly B August 29, 2010, 9:40 pm

    I think I would just simply sautee everything in the wok with a bit of soy sauce and call it a day. Maybe sprinkle with a bit of sesame seeds if you have them?

  • Lizz @ Leading the Good Life August 29, 2010, 9:43 pm

    Looks good! I think I have 2 ideas for sauces…

    1. a ‘brown sauce’ similar to Chinese dishes – thicken vegetable stock with corn starch and flavor with soy sauce, garlic, & ginger

    2. a ‘sweet & sour’ sauce – thin out apricot preserves & honey with a little vinegar and water

    Of course neither of these are exact recipes. Season to taste with salt & pepper, hot pepper flakes, garlic, ginger, soy sauce, dijon mustard, vinegar, honey, etc. Good luck!

  • Candice August 29, 2010, 9:47 pm

    I’ve been wondering about the word “braised” lately too. Definitely gonna have to look that one up!

  • Allison August 29, 2010, 9:47 pm

    Braising simply means to cook a protein or vegetable slowly in liquid. The liquid shouldn’t cover it (that would be stew’ing), but should come up about 1/2-3/4 of the way. In this recipe, you might want to add some veg stock, soy sauce, or any other liquid to make the sauce. As your meal cooks the liquids will reduce and become more flavorful! Hope this helps! Love your blog 🙂

  • Laurie August 29, 2010, 9:53 pm

    There is a blog award waiting for you on today’s post. I feel funny giving it to you, you are so, well, big and beautiful in the blog world, but hey, if it walks like a duck, may as well call it one. Your blog is awesome and I go to it every day.

    • Caitlin August 30, 2010, 1:28 pm

      Thank you!! What’s your blog? You just linked to!

  • Laurie August 29, 2010, 9:54 pm

    AND, I totally gave you the WRONG link. Ahh…..I’m back at blogger, I hope you catch it there.

  • emily August 29, 2010, 10:07 pm

    I think a peanut sauce would go pretty wonderfully with that meal.

  • eatmovelove August 29, 2010, 10:13 pm

    These cooking terms…just fancy words really no? I mean – can somebody tell me – what is the difference between “frying” and “sauteeing”? – I mean, really? Both are in a pan, over heat, with some type of oil, right? ;)…seriously, I want to know!

    You’ve been showing more cooking posts lately. Funny, I haven’t been reading long, but I haven’t associated you with running or the food thing…guess because of the book – but yeah, that is what your about I guess.

    Amazing run today. God. Amazing.

    • Caitlin August 30, 2010, 1:28 pm

      Oh check out my recipes! They are to die for. Recipes kind of fell to the wayside because I have been so busy but I’m trying to bring a few back!

  • eatmovelove August 29, 2010, 10:13 pm

    Oh – and spaghetti sauce. Just spaghetti sauce and anything – anything – can be eaten. Anything. ;).

  • Loraine August 29, 2010, 10:16 pm

    adding some veggie stock would give it more body without really taking away from the original flavors of the dish or of course the old stand by pasta water.

  • holly @ couchpotatoathlete August 29, 2010, 10:30 pm

    I have the same issue — there are so many cooking terms that I really don’t know what they mean. Google is an often used source in our house 🙂

    I have no idea about sauces, honestly, so good luck to you on that one!

  • Shanna, like Banana August 29, 2010, 10:36 pm

    I love all those ingredients: brussel sprouts, tofu, cabbage and red vino. This is an awesome recipe 🙂

  • Penny August 29, 2010, 11:08 pm

    Sorry I don’t have any sauce recommendations. I LOVE dry pasta mixed with veggies. It’s combo I make often. For example….

    However, pasta smothered with some alfredo sauce is quite the masterpiece too. 🙂

    Love your recipe. I’m definitely gonna try it. 🙂

  • Laura (Starloz) August 29, 2010, 11:13 pm

    What a yummy dinner. I love brussels

  • Melissa August 29, 2010, 11:15 pm

    Just add some olive oil to the wine mixture along with some of the pasta water. It will thicken up the wine and olive oil a bit to create a sauce. And as for braising, you can braise cabbage by adding water to cover it about half way up, salt and pepper to taste. Cover, cook it on low and slow until the veggies are tender. I serve braised cabbage over brown rice, though I do add lean pork slices for additional flavor, but that’s out for you. Braising is a quick way to cook meat and veggies on the stovetop.

  • Wei-Wei August 29, 2010, 11:41 pm

    Is one cup of pasta one serving? I thought it was half a cup?! But then again, half a cup seems waaaaay too little… oh and I LOVE edamame so very very much. So delicious.

    • Caitlin August 30, 2010, 1:29 pm

      That should say servings 🙂 Fixing now.

  • Jessica @ The Process of Healing August 29, 2010, 11:52 pm

    Sounds like the perfect evening!!!!

  • Sana August 30, 2010, 12:13 am

    I would help, buttt I don’t really cook. I hope you had a lovely evening 🙂

  • Mama Pea August 30, 2010, 12:41 am

    Not trying to be a link whore…but the hubs would love this vegan “cream” sauce:

    • Caitlin August 30, 2010, 1:29 pm

      Ohhhh! That looks good.

  • KMattrn August 30, 2010, 12:56 am

    I can’t offer a sauce suggestion, but your recipe directions did remind me of a sign I’ve seen that you could maybe use to decorate your kitchen:
    “I love cooking with wine! Sometimes I even put it in the food.”
    LOL Love it!

  • hippierunner August 30, 2010, 1:10 am

    I want in on the Reese’s PB cups!

  • Caitlin August 30, 2010, 1:49 am

    Peanut sauce? Doesn’t that go well on everything?

  • stephanie@Avocado Nation August 30, 2010, 1:54 am

    I wouldn’t have thought to use cabbage in pasta but sounds good. Maybe you could have made an Asian style noodle dish with soba noodles and soy sauce, sesame and ginger.

  • Marina August 30, 2010, 3:02 am

    What a great recipe!
    In my country, there’s a traditional pasta dish with cabbage.
    It’s really simple, we just caramelize some sugar with chopped cabbage, and then we threw in pasta shaped like little squares. It’s really amazing

  • Freya (Brit Chick Runs) August 30, 2010, 3:23 am

    That sounds delicious! I like dry pasta dishes too – too much sauce annoys me :/

  • JL Goes Vegan August 30, 2010, 5:50 am

    I think the recipe looks great as is. Brussels and cabbage– what a great idea to serve with pasta. Will definitely have to try it.

  • Sarena (The Non Dairy Queen) August 30, 2010, 7:25 am

    Caitlin, everything looks delicious. We had brussels sprouts too last night. You might want to try to add some tomato in when you braise the cabbage. Grape or cherry tomatoes would add some sweetness to it too. It looks good though!

  • Nicki August 30, 2010, 7:30 am

    If the suggestions above do not make it more “saucy,” try using only two cups of cabbage. Three cups is a lot of cabbage.

  • Heather (heather's dish) August 30, 2010, 8:19 am

    i love cabbage so much…i need to get my hubby on board!

  • Lauren @ August 30, 2010, 8:23 am

    I am so impressed that you ran 15 miles today! Your dinner looks great! I am always SO hungry after long runs.

  • Tracey @ I'm Not Superhuman August 30, 2010, 8:29 am

    That sounds so good and I don’t even like tofu.

  • Veggielady4life August 30, 2010, 8:49 am

    Mmm…mmm love brussel sprouts. Congrats again on your run. You must feel so good!

  • Laine @ Beets, Butter & Moutaintops August 30, 2010, 9:32 am

    You might like seared cabbage too. You cut red cabbage into wedges and then sear each side in some olive oil and butter, with salt and pepper. The searing caramelizes the sugars in the cabbage so that it tastes like candy. It is a wonderfully easy and very pretty dish.

  • Kayla August 30, 2010, 9:59 am

    My suggestion for a sauce might be to just increase the wine and olive oil a bit; the pasta will soak up a lot of that 3/4 cup of wine the recipe calls for, so you would want a little extra for it to swim in! I also would add some more herbs, maybe…

  • Megan (Braise The Roof) August 30, 2010, 11:42 am

    Boy, you must not have known what to make of my blog! 😉 I do love me some braisin’.

  • Amber K August 30, 2010, 12:17 pm

    I’m always looking for good sauce ideas; I am so picky with ingredients that it is hard to find good ones! Especially stir fry sauces. I HATE worcestshire and soy sauce, and it seems to be in every single stir fry sauce recipe!

  • Chelsea @ One Healthy Munchkin August 30, 2010, 12:21 pm

    I never knew the exact meaning of “braise” either. There are so many cooking terms to know! I think I need to invest in a cooking dictionary or something. 😛

  • Charise August 30, 2010, 1:00 pm

    I agree with the other commenters who’ve suggested either saving 1/2 cup of the pasta water to give a starchy sauce that will help coat the pasta, or add more to the braising liquids (more wine, more water, some sort of stock) and then reduce it down afterwards to create a concentrated flavor and more of the “sauce” you already have from the cabbage.

    This looks like a great meal for fall weather! : )

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