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Braised Red Cabbage Recipe

Braised Red Cabbage with Port 

Slow cooked red cabbage is a traditional Christmas side dish and also at Thanksgiving.

Adding a splash of port will make it extra special, or add slices of apple and you have braised red cabbage with apple.

Braised red cabbage with port - Christmas side dish.
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Although this is not exactly a quick recipe, it is delicious and every bit worth the time.

Perfect holiday recipe but this is good at any time

What is braised red cabbage?

The cabbage is cooked down slowly so the sweetness of the honey and the tartness of the red wine vinegar soak into the cabbage to create a vibrant and fragrant side dish.

What to serve with braised red cabbage

Serve as a side to a traditional Christmas dinner or Thanksgiving. It goes perfectly with dishes such as Lancashire hotpot or Lamb boulangere.

Can you freeze red cabbage?

Let the cooked cabbage cool completely, then if you don't already have one you might need to buy a freezer storage box, which you can then keep in the freezer for up to 3 months. Defrost in the microwave or overnight in the fridge.

But, with that said I've never actually tried to freeze it, that's just what I read when searching the net. To be honest I think it would turn mushy when defrosted.

How do you make braised red cabbage with apples?

It's easy, just add slices of apple along with the rest of the ingredients. You want to use a cooking apple such as Bramley, rather than a dessert apple as they would turn to mush.

Although the addition of apples would be good at Christmas, personally I don't think it would go well with Lancashire Hotpot.

What can I do with leftovers?

Heat it up and serve with bangers (sausages) and mash!

Recipes you'll love

Red cabbage chutney recipes plus, red cabbage can also be pickled

Red cabbage coleslaw - just replace the white cabbage with red cabbage

Braised red cabbage ingredients 

  • red cabbage
  • red onion 
  • unsalted butter 
  • red wine vinegar
  • clear runny honey
  • demerara sugar
  • cinnamon
  • hot chicken stock - trust me, chicken stock works well, but you can of course use vegetable stock
  • port
  • bay leaf
  • sprig of fresh thyme
  • black pepper to season - I don't think you'll need salt depending on which brand of the stock cube you use
Ingredients for braised red cabbage.

Put the ingredients into a foil tray.

Red cabbage ingrdients in a foil tray.

Add the stock and give it a good mix together.

Braised red cabbage ready to cook.

Cover tightly with foil and put it into the oven to cook - see the recipe card for full details.

Braised red cabbage.

Have you tried this recipe? Please leave a ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ star rating in the recipe card below!

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Yield: 4-6
Author: Jan Bennett
Braised Red Cabbage with Port

Braised Red Cabbage with Port

Perfect side dish at Christmas dinner. You can add a sliced apple to the ingredients if you want to.
Prep time: 10 MinCook time: 1 H & 30 MTotal time: 1 H & 40 M


  • 1 medium red cabbage - cored and thinly sliced
  • 1 red onion - finely sliced
  • 40g unsalted butter - cut into small cubes
  • 200ml hot chicken stock (made from 1 Knorr stock cube)
  • 80ml port
  • 1 tablespoon of red wine vinegar
  • 2 heaped tablespoons clear runny honey
  • 2 tablespoons demerara sugar
  • 1 teaspoon of cinnamon
  • 2 heaped tablespoons of red currant jelly
  • 1 x bay leaf
  • a sprig of fresh thyme
  • Black pepper to season - I don't think you'll need any salt depending on which brand of the stock cube you use


Preheat your oven to 170°C/325°F or Gas 3
  1. Put all the ingredients along with 100ml of stock into a shallow disposable foil tray and add the port.
  2. Keep the rest of the stock in case you need it later - although you will need to use 180ml if you're not adding the port.) Give it all a good mix.
  3. Cover the tray with foil and pop it into the oven on the bottom shelf - if you don't cover it with foil the cabbage will burn.
  4. Cook for about 1½ hours - check on it and give it a stir every 30 minutes. Add a little more of the chicken stock if you think it's getting too dry, but it should be fine.
  5. When it's nearly done, taste it to check the seasoning add pepper and stir. You probably wont need salt.
  6. Drain any excess liquid and remove the bay leaf and sprig of thyme and discard and serve hot, as a side dish.
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