Grandma Netta's Red Cabbage

November 17, 2010

Author Notes: My maternal step-grandmother was actually Italian but married my German/Swedish grandfather, whom she met while working in a German restaurant. She had to learn to cook good German and Swedish meals because that was all my grandfather would eat. When I stayed over, she always made me Italian food and him, calves liver and onions.....oh yuck! (Hey, I was 10 at the time.) The 2 things I wish I had begged her to show me how to make were her wonderfully light potato dumplings (which I can still taste today) and her great sauerbraten. I did manage to squirrel away the red cabbage recipe from my Uncle, who still makes it every fall holiday meal. I know there are no onion or apples in this recipe. It is just a simple, light sweet-sour sauced cabbage dish. Here's to you, Grandma Annette, and to whoever gets the bay leaf.....the dishes are all yours. Stockout

Food52 Review: This delicious red cabbage was so simple to prepare—just dump the ingredients in a large pot, cover, and simmer for an hour. The glazing that occurs during the next uncovered phase (about 1/2 hour) not only concentrates the delicate sweet-and-sour flavor, but also creates a nice shine, which prevents the tender cabbage from looking dull on your plate. I didn’t miss the typical additions of apple and onion at all, as there was just the right amount of sweetness from the brown sugar. It’s a set-it-and-forget-it dish, which makes it an ideal holiday side. The Editors

Serves: 6 to 8


  • 1 large head red cabbage (about 2 pounds)
  • 1/2 stick unsalted butter (4 tablespoons)
  • 1/2 cup apple cider vinegar
  • 1/2 cup dark brown sugar
  • 1 1/2 cups vegetable stock (or chicken)
  • 1/2 cup good stout beer
  • 2 bay leaves
  • Salt & pepper to taste
In This Recipe


  1. Quarter, core, and chop cabbage into 1/4-inch slices. Place all ingredients into a large 5-quart stockpot and simmer, covered, for 1 hour.
  2. After 1 hour, uncover, and simmer until liquid is almost all gone and the cabbage is glazed.

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