This sweet & tangy Picked Red Cabbage recipe is the perfect side dish and condiment! It is tangy, crunchy, sweet, and simply addicting. It's easy to make - and there's no canning required. Ready to make it?
🎥 Recipe Video
Why You'll ❤️ It
"If you like pickled red onion, you'll love this red cabbage just as much! It adds this great crunch, flavor, and color to so many things, such as on top of a brat, salads, or eat it on its own!"
Pickling things is actually much easier than you think! Simple ingredients and a simple process (no water bath canning).
Super Quick and Easy!
This recipe is super easy to make! You just add salt to your cabbage and let it sit. Then add your boiled water with apple cider vinegar and sugar. Pour over the top and then cool in the fridge. That's it!
This recipe is vegan, gluten-free, low-carb, and low-calorie! Pickled and fermented foods are also so good for your gut health as well!
🥘 What You'll Need
Here are the ingredients you will need to make pickled red cabbage:
Red Cabbage (Purple Cabbage) - If you can't find red cabbage, green cabbage will work too.
Kosher Salt - is used to draw out moisture from the cabbage before pickling.
Raw Apple Cider Vinegar - this is used as the primary pickling liquid. Red wine vinegar may also be used.
Granulated Sugar - balances out the bitterness from the vinegar and makes for that classic pickle flavor. A sugar substitute can be used as well.
Optional: red pepper flakes or dried red chile pepper(mild to hot) to make it spicy.
For exact ingredient quantities, please see the recipe card below!
🔪 How To Make It
Here are the step-by-step instructions for making this pickled cabbage recipe:
In a large bowl, add shredded cabbage and toss with salt. Let sit for 30 minutes.
(Note: salt softens the cabbage, so 6 to 7 cups will reduce to about 4 cups approximately.)
In a small saucepan, add vinegar, water, sugar, and salt. Bring to a boil over medium heat. Stir to dissolve the sugar.
When the sugar is fully dissolved, remove it from the heat.
Pack the cabbage into clean glass jars (mason jars work great) and pour the hot pickling liquid over the top. Wipe off any spills, affix the lid, and let sit on the counter until cool.
Place in the refrigerator to store.
To serve, drain the pickling liquid, and bring it to room temperature.
🥗 How To Serve It
Here are a few ways to serve pickled red cabbage:
This dish is best served at room temperature. Make sure you drain the liquid first before adding to your dish.
Add in some chopped or sliced granny smith apples and toasted walnuts or pecans.
Serve with fresh herbs such as dill, thyme, or a little rosemary.
Serve over burgers, sandwiches, bratwurst, hot dogs, tacos, or your favorite smoked sausage!
Makes the perfect side dish to compliment your Christmas roast goose or prime rib roast.
Meal idea! The perfect topping with Birria Tacos or these Chicken Tinga Tostadas! Serve with a side dish of Authentic Refried Beans or this Mexican Street Corn Salad.
Here are a few ways you can customize this dish:
- Add 2 very thinly sliced red onions with the cabbage.
- Add fresh herbs like dill or rosemary.
- Add a dried red pepper (mild to hot) in each jar or red pepper flakes.
- Use red wine vinegar instead of apple cider vinegar.
- Substitute the granulated sugar with a sugar substitute. Make sure to choose one with a 1:1 ratio for the best result. Adjust to flavor if needed.
- Use green cabbage in place of red cabbage if preferred.
💭 Top Tips
- Be sure your cabbage is 100% submerged with brining liquid. This will help you achieve a much longer shelf life with your pickled cabbage.
- You're welcome to use another type of vinegar if there is no cider vinegar around. The flavor of your red cabbage will change depending on the type of vinegar used.
For sure, yes it's healthy. Red cabbage contains Vitamins C and K and is high in fiber and iron. This recipe uses raw apple cider vinegar making it a great source of healthy bacteria known as probiotics, which is great for gut healthy.
Pickled cabbage can be eaten immediately, but it is recommended to be eaten several hours after the pickling process has started.
For best results, store your pickled cabbage for 2 to 3 weeks.
✔️ More Cabbage Recipes
Be sure to try these delicious cabbage recipes!
- Italian Roasted Cabbage Slices
- Red Cabbage Soup with Apples and Bratwurst
- Air Fryer Cabbage
- Roasted Red Cabbage Recipe
- Red Cabbage Salad with Apples and Walnuts
Sweet & Tangy Pickled Red Cabbage
- 6 to 7 cups red cabbage (approx 1 small cabbage, quartered, cored, and very finely shredded 1/16th)
- 2 teaspoons kosher salt
- 16 ounces raw apple cider vinegar
- 1 cups granulated sugar
- 24 ounces water
- optional: ½ teaspoon red pepper flakes or a dried red chile pepper (mild to hot).
- In a large bowl, add shredded cabbage and toss with salt. Let sit for 30 minutes. (Note: salt softens the cabbage so 6 to 7 cups will reduce to about 4 cups, approximately)
- In a small saucepan, add vinegar, water, sugar, and salt. Bring to a boil over medium heat. Stir to dissolve the sugar. When the sugar is fully dissolved remove from the heat.
- Pack the cabbage into clean jar(s) and pour the hot pickling liquid over the top. Wipe off any spills, affix the lid, and let sit on the counter until cool. Place in the refrigerator to store.
- To serve, drain the pickling liquid, bring to room temperature.
- Don't miss all of our helpful hints, substitution ideas, cooking tips, and other delicious recipes that can be found in our post. Check it out!
- VARIATIONS: Add 1 teaspoon red pepper flakes to the pickling liquid for spice, or a dried red chili pepper (mild or hot). Add thinly sliced red onions to the cabbage and pickle together. Use red wine vinegar instead of apple cider vinegar.
- TOP TIPS: use a mandolin to shred the cabbage 1/16 of an inch thick if possible.
- SERVING SUGGESTIONS: Drain before serving and bring to room temperature. Serve on its own, or mix in chopped granny smith apple and toasted walnuts. Also great served with chopped fresh herbs such as dill, thyme, or a little rosemary. Serve over bratwurst or hotdogs, great with tacos (especially if you added the pepper).
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