Cabbage rarely gets the attention it deserves. Many people overlook cabbage because they often associate it as a vegetable that they just really don’t know what to do with.
Of course, there are traditional things to do with cabbage, like make a corned beef brisket or prepare cabbage soup but cabbage is actually pretty versatile. It’s easy to use, it can taste great if you’re willing to work with it, and it’s incredibly affordable.
Cabbage is quite versatile. There are a lot of things you can do with your cabbage. We will cover those in more detail later. But what you should know is that cabbage has a lot of options. Don’t mark it off your list of delicious foods just yet.
A little bit of cabbage goes a long way. It seems like if you buy a head of cabbage, you never use it all before it goes bad. How do you fix this?
Can you freeze cabbage? Yes, you can freeze raw cabbage or blanched cabbage. Blanched cabbage will last in the freezer for up to 9 months, while raw cabbage will only last in the freezer for 8 weeks. We recommend washing the cabbage before freezing it.
Throughout this guide, we will walk you through everything you need to know about how to freeze cabbage. We will also share with you some delightful tips and tricks for using your cabbage as well as how to use it after you’ve frozen it.
Stay tuned to learn how to freeze cabbage and then some.
The Complete Guide to Freezing Cabbage
Cabbage is incredibly easy to work with. There is also really no right or wrong way to use it. There are many traditional dishes that use cabbage in them but you can also incorporate cabbage into any number of home-cooked dishes.
Cabbage doesn’t have an intense flavor which makes it easy to work with and easy for you to cook and flavor as you like it.
Proper Storage and Care of Cabbage
Cabbage is relatively easy to work with, as we’ve already discussed. It’s also relatively easy to properly care for and store. Cabbage lasts well when stored properly. It freezes well and it typically also has a good refrigerator life cycle as well.
Whether you are storing sliced cabbage, whole cabbage, or shredded cabbage, the processes are pretty simple. The biggest thing to keep in mind is that you will want to store your cabbage in an airtight method.
Wrapping, sealing, and storing your cabbage properly will help prevent bacteria growth that could lead to things like listeria salmonella. If you handle your cabbage properly, this should not be a huge problem for you to worry about.
One of the ways I like to store cabbage is to use reusable beeswax food wraps, like these organic ones from Etee. Or, you want to go a more traditional storage route, I’m obsessed with this set from Amazon.
You can begin by storing cabbage in the fridge and this works well for up to 5 days. If you don’t plan to use it within 5 days, we recommend just freezing your cabbage. If you bought cabbage in bulk, freezing it is a great option as well.
You can freeze your cabbage without blanching it, but the shelf life is much better if you blanch it first.
Let’s talk about proper refrigerator storage and then we will cover freezing both blanched and non-blanched cabbage.
Storing Cabbage in the Refrigerator
- Wrap cabbage tightly. Wrap in plastic wrap and then seal into an airtight container or a storage bag (like this set from Amazon). My favorite thing to use for this is reusable food wraps; I use these ones from Etee.
- Store cabbage in the crisper drawer or area of your fridge for the best results.
- If sealed properly and in the crisper area of your fridge, you should be able to store your cabbage for about 5-7 days.
- When you are ready to use the cabbage, it is best to discard the outermost layer of leaves (if you are working with sliced or whole cabbage).
How To Freeze Cabbage: The Best Way
There are two ways to freeze cabbage. In our opinion, blanching cabbage before freezing it is the best way to do it because it will ensure better quality for longer.
How to Freeze Cabbage After Blanching It (Recommended)
If you are going to freeze cabbage, we recommend blanching it first. We will also share how to freeze without blanching in case that is your preference.
- Wash and rinse the cabbage. If you are able, store your head of cabbage whole with the bulb attached. To rinse, it is best to use a soaking process. Add a small amount of salt to the water and let cabbage soak 1-3 hours.
- If you are freezing shredded or sliced cabbage, you can skip the soaking process as you most likely have already done some form of cleaning for your cabbage.
- Slice, dice, or shred the cabbage and portion it out. You can also freeze it whole with the bulb intact for the best results.
- Blanch the cabbage by cooking it in a pot of boiling water for 2-3 minutes. Immediately move the cabbage to ice water to stop the cooking process. This small step does a lot to preserve your cabbage in the freezer.
- Pre-freeze the cabbage on a baking sheet. The pre-freeze is not necessary if your cabbage is whole. Spread out on a baking sheet and freeze for about 6-8 hours.
- Wrap the cabbage in plastic wrap. Place cabbage into an airtight container or a heavy-duty freezer bag. Or, use organic reusable food wraps from Etee.
- Label, date, and seal all packaging on the cabbage.
- Freeze the cabbage for up to 9 months.
How To Freeze Cabbage Without Blanching It
You can freeze cabbage without blanching it. The biggest downside to freezing it without blanching it is that it won’t preserve nearly as long in the freezer.
Here is the process for freezing cabbage without blanching.
- Rinse and soak the cabbage.
- Determine whether you will freeze your cabbage whole, diced, sliced, or shredded and prepare it accordingly.
- Pre-freeze cabbage if you are not freezing it whole. Do this by spreading out on a baking sheet and freezing for about 6-8 hours uncovered.
- Wrap portions of cabbage into plastic wrap and place into an airtight container or a heavy-duty freezer bag.
- Label, date, and seal packaging for cabbage.
- Freeze cabbage that has not been blanched for up to about 8 weeks for the best results.
The processes are simple and straightforward. Which process you use is solely up to you. Your decision may also be affected by how long you intend to store your cabbage in the freezer.
How To Use Frozen Cabbage: Do You Have To Thaw It?
One of the best things about using cabbage after it has been frozen is the process is quite simple.
You don’t have to thaw the cabbage. When you are ready to use it, you can go directly from the fridge to your cooking source.
If you intend to use the cabbage raw after freezing, it may be worthwhile to allow it to thaw a few hours in the fridge or up to 1 hour at room temperature.
However, if it is not too frozen to work with you can simply proceed to prepare your cabbage as desired.
Cooking with Frozen Cabbage
There are a lot of delicious things you can do with cabbage. For starters, you can rinse it and use it raw in a number of ways. You can also cook it up in a variety of ways and add it to numerous dishes.
Ultimately, how you prepare and eat your cabbage could vary based on your personal preferences and cooking styles.
Here are a few ideas for using cabbage. These ideas contain both fresh cabbage and cooked cabbage. Some of them may seem familiar while some may be new ideas for you.
- Cabbage wraps (fill with meat, cheese veggies, etc.)
- Sauté and season cabbage
- Fried sausage and cabbage
- Cabbage soup
- Oven-roasted cabbage slices with seasoning
- Corned beef brisket and cabbage
- Cabbage rolls
- Use in salads
- Use in stir fry
- Use shredded cabbage for fish or shrimp tacos
- Add to various casserole dishes
- Mix in tuna salad
These are just a few examples of things you can do with cabbage. Don’t limit yourself to a select few cabbage dishes. Keep in mind that you can do just about anything you want with cabbage.
If you’re not using fresh cabbage, cooking cabbage is quite simple. The beauty of cabbage is there are many things you can make with fresh cabbage but also many things you can make with cooked cabbage.
There are multiple ways to cook cabbage for certain meals. The most common ways to cook cabbage are boiling cabbage and sautéing cabbage.
As a quick reference, we want to share with you a quick guide to sautéing cabbage. Keep in mind there are numerous ways to cook cabbage, this is just a simple example of one common way for cooking cabbage.
Here are your instructions for sautéing cabbage:
- You will need sliced or shredded cabbage, oil, seasoning to taste, and meat if you wish to add any.
- Heat oil in a pan over medium heat.
- Add cabbage to the heat pan and oil.
- From this point, you can season to your personal tastes. You can add additional vegetables or even meat if you wish.
- Sauté the cabbage, stirring continuously, for about 5 minutes.
- The cabbage may begin to brown slightly and will be soft as well.
- Serve and enjoy.
Again let us remind you, this is just one simple way to prepare your cabbage if you want it cooked. Don’t forget there are a number of things you can do with raw or fresh cabbage, which is where our freezing processes come into play.
You can freeze your cooked cabbage but ultimately, this guide is primarily focused on the process for freezing fresh or raw cabbage.
When it comes to cooking with cabbage, we recommend separating only what you will need for the specific meal you are making and then storing and/or freezing the remaining uncooked portion until you are ready to use it as well.
We hope that you find this guide to freezing cabbage to be helpful and informative. We are quite sure you will find the processes shared here both simple and effective for enjoying your cabbage for some time to come!
We invite you to take a look at the following question and answer section. You might find some additional information that could be useful to you in the process.
What Are Some Health Benefits of Cabbage?
Cabbage is healthy both cooked and uncooked. It is low in calories but full of nutrition. Cabbage has a lot of antioxidants as well as vitamins and nutrients.
Cabbage can help with weight loss, inflammation, digestion, heart health, blood pressure, and cholesterol.
What is the Difference Between Red and Green Cabbage?
While they are quite similar, red cabbage is actually higher in antioxidants, potassium, iron, and Vitamin C. Green cabbage tends to be higher in Vitamin K and folate.
How Can You Tell if Cabbage is Bad?
The most common sign that your cabbage is going bad is it tends to become soft and to start discoloring. You might also notice it turning slightly slimy. If you see any of these signs, it’s best to discard your cabbage.