Fried Cabbage

Fried cabbage is one hearty and flavorful side dish. Cabbage is sautéed until buttery tender, then mixed with bacon, stone ground mustard, and smoked paprika for an irresistible sweet, savory, and smoky flavor.

Fried cabbage in a pan with a serving spoon on a table.

Let me forewarn you, this recipe is highly addictive! Fried cabbage is a twist on my sautéed cabbage recipe — but 10x better (in my opinion) thanks to crispy bacon, savory mustard, and a dash of smoked paprika!

Fried cabbage is a much-loved Southern recipe, and for good reason. A few simple, budget-friendly ingredients create one wow-worthy side dish. Serve it up alongside my creamy Cajun chicken or really any comfort food main. It’s also a welcome addition to any St. Patrick’s Day menu, where cabbage recipes take centerstage!

Ingredients for fried cabbage on a table

Fried Cabbage Ingredients

You won’t believe how flavorful this recipe is with just a few simple pantry staples.

  • Cabbage: You can use any colored cabbage, but I always opt for green.
  • Bacon: A few strips of bacon make everything taste better.
  • Aromatics: All you need are onion and garlic to lend a savory aroma.
  • Seasoning: I’m using stone ground mustard for a full-bodied flavor, but you can also use Dijon mustard. Then a hint of smoked paprika adds a bit of a kick!

Find the printable recipe with measurements below.

How To Make Fried Cabbage

This fried cabbage with bacon comes together in under 30 minutes! Here’s how to make it:

Cook the bacon. Heat a large pan over medium heat and cook the bacon until it’s perfectly crisp, then remove with a slotted spoon and set aside. Remove some bacon grease from the pan, leaving about two tablespoons.

Cooking bacon in pan for fried cabbage

Sauté onion. Add the onion and sauté in the bacon grease for 2 to 3 minutes.

Cooking onions in pan for fried cabbage

Add the good stuff. Toss in the garlic, mustard, smoked paprika, salt, and pepper, and give it a good stir.

Stirring in seasoning in pan for fried cabbage

In goes the cabbage. Add the sliced cabbage and sauté everything together. Cook for 12 to 15 minutes until the cabbage becomes caramelized. Then toss the bacon bits back in!

Tossing bacon into fried cabbage in a pan

Fried Cabbage Variations

  • Switch up the seasonings: use chili powder or Cajun seasoning for a slightly different spice.
  • Add a hint of sweetness: with a teaspoon of coconut sugar or a drizzle of honey.
  • Add some meat: feel free to add any type of smoked sausage. Just slice or dice it up into pieces.

What To Eat With Southern Fried Cabbage

I’ve been known to eat fried cabbage on its own (and more than one serving) – because it’s that good. But it tastes even better when paired with a hearty protein. Here are a few options.

A closeup of a spoonful of fried cabbage.

Storage Tips

Just like most sautéed or roasted vegetables, they make for a great meal prep option. Simply prep on a Sunday and store away in containers.

  • To store: Place the fried cabbage in an airtight container for up to 5 days in the fridge. When you’re ready to eat, microwave it until it’s warmed through or give it a quick sauté in the pan.

Fried Cabbage Video

Want to see how easy it is to make this recipe? Watch the video below!

More Easy Side Dishes

You can never have too many side dish options ready for quick and easy dinners. Give the below ones a try! And if you love cabbage….don’t forget my classic coleslaw and vinegar coleslaw recipes.

I’m pretty confident you’re going to love this fried cabbage recipe! If you make it, let me know how it turns out in the comment box below.

Fried cabbage in a stainless steel pan.

Easy Fried Cabbage

5 from 37 votes
Prep Time: 10 mins
Cook Time: 15 mins
Total Time: 25 mins
Servings: 6 servings
Author: Lisa Bryan
This easy fried cabbage recipe is one flavorful side dish loaded with bacon, onion, and stone ground mustard.


  • 6 pieces bacon, cut into 1-inch pieces
  • 1 small onion, diced
  • 3 garlic cloves, minced
  • 2 tablespoons stone ground mustard (or Dijon mustard)
  • ¼ teaspoon smoked paprika
  • 1 head cabbage, sliced and chopped
  • kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste


  • Heat a large pan on medium heat and add the sliced bacon. Cook until crispy, then removed to a paper towel-lined plate. Remove some bacon grease, leaving about 2 tablespoons in the pan.
    Cooked bacon bits in a pan for fried cabbage
  • Add the onion and saute for 2 to 3 minutes, or until it's translucent.
    Cooking onion and garlic in a pan for fried cabbage
  • Add the garlic, mustard, smoked paprika, salt and pepper and give it a stir to combine.
    Stirring onions in pan for fried cabbage
  • Place the sliced cabbage on top and use a large spoon or tongs to stir and saute together for another 12 to 15 minutes. When the cabbage is done it should be buttery soft and slightly caramelized.
    Sauteed cabbage in a pan for fried cabbage
  • Toss the bacon back in, and stir it all together before serving.
    Cooking bacon and cabbage in a pan for fried cabbage


Calories: 142kcal, Carbohydrates: 12g, Protein: 5g, Fat: 9g, Saturated Fat: 3g, Polyunsaturated Fat: 2g, Monounsaturated Fat: 4g, Trans Fat: 0.03g, Cholesterol: 15mg, Sodium: 229mg, Potassium: 343mg, Fiber: 4g, Sugar: 6g, Vitamin A: 202IU, Vitamin C: 57mg, Calcium: 72mg, Iron: 1mg
Course: Side Dish
Cuisine: American, Irish
Keyword: Cabbage Recipe, Fried Cabbage, Sauteed cabbage
©Downshiftology. Content and photographs are copyright protected. Sharing of this recipe is both encouraged and appreciated. Copying and/or pasting full recipes to any social media is strictly prohibited.
DID YOU MAKE THIS RECIPE?Leave a comment below and share a photo on Instagram. Tag @downshiftology and hashtag it #downshiftology.

Recipe originally published October 2020, but updated to include new information.

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80 comments on “Fried Cabbage”

  1. As soon as I saw this recipe I knew I had to make it. I substituted locally sourced beef sausage since our family cannot eat pork. And I added a splash of red wine vinegar. It was beyond amazing. The next morning I added an over easy egg. I highly recommend.5 stars

  2. I made this for St. Patricks day and we loved it!! I had the pre-cooked Costco bacon on hand and it worked perfectly! I just cut it up and threw it in when the recipe called to add the bacon back in. Because I didn’t have bacon grease, I used butter to sauté the onions. Very quick and easy dish to make!! 5 stars

  3. YUM! Halved the recipe since I had a 1/2 head of cabbage leftover from your cabbage soup recipe. Made it for breakfast, drizzled with a little raw honey and served with two fried eggs on top. Like diner food…only BETTER!5 stars

  4. Yes I made this March 17 2023, it was so good. So much better than boiled cabbage, Debbie5 stars

  5. Something that smells this good while cooking has to taste amazing! I love cabbage in any form, but never thought to cook it this way. Thank you so much for giving us your time and recipes. I love meal prep because I cook for 1. So instead of cooking a different meal everyday I prep and mix it up. I cooked this recipe today and can’t wait to sit down for dinner.5 stars

  6. This was absolutely delish as I knew it would be when I saw carmelized onions, cabbage and bacon! If you like cabbage you have to give this recipe a try. You won’t regret it. 

  7. The Fried Cabbage looks YUM, going to make it, I’m not wrong!!!

    Thank you Lisa!5 stars

  8. Hi. First time here. Usually just do my own thing but decided to try your fried cabbage. Looks and tastes good. Normally do use garlic and mustard. Thanks for sharing. Will make again.

  9. This has become a staple in my house. We all absolutely love it! 5 stars

  10. I just made this afternoon.  It’s becoming Fall here in the PNW and this seemed a perfect dish for the weather.  It’s so delicious!  5 stars

  11. Every time I make this recipe, there is even a fight for leftovers if there are any.

  12. Deliciousness 😋 Dijon mustard and sweet paprika was definitely a good idea!5 stars

  13. This was really quite good and simple to make!  (added a splash of coconut aminos) Will definitely be making again! 5 stars

  14. I made this for dinner tonight and my husband gobbled it up–I usually finish my meal before he does, but not tonight…Thank you–this recipe will be made in our household over and over again!5 stars

  15. The secret is the Dijon mustard and I love it!! The very best, my kids eat it up, fried cabbage recipe out there<}5 stars

  16. My husband and had the I made this Fried Cabbage recipe and it is wonderful !
    We will made this dish again.

  17. Delicious!  Especially after staying in fridge overnight. I was out of smoked paprika so I substituted chili powder and liked the spicy flavor. Will definitely make it again. 5 stars

  18. Yummy and I like it because its low carb. I used it as a side dish with chicken thighs, also some rice because not everyone likes cabbage. Would make again !!5 stars

  19. I made the fried cabbage, bacon and onion  tonight .  It was outstanding. I had it with a piece of cornbread. I could eat this every week!

  20. I read this recipe and thought this sounds interesting, not sure how these flavors are going to work. Read the reviews and decided to try it.. To my surprise it was delicious! Definitely keeping this recipe.5 stars

  21. This is so delicious! I switched bacon for German sausage. Love your recipes and that I can get creative with ingredients using your recipes. 5 stars

  22. A new way for me to cook cabbage, and the result was delicious !5 stars

  23. So good. Now I am dreaming of growing cabbage in my garden too. Thanks for sharing this the mustard and paprika was a nice touch.5 stars

  24. Wonderful smokey flavor5 stars

  25. Looking forward to making this Lisa. Can Napa cabbage be used?

  26. Left the bacon out and still delicious!5 stars

  27. Looks like a great recipe. I had a friend from China who taught me to cook cabbage with equal parts cumin, coriander, and Turmeric. Whether i wanted 1 tsp or tablespoons, etc just to taste but equal parts. Saute took it’s the texture you like.5 stars

  28. I used smoke sausage intead of bacon and the mustard made it over the top good! And so easy and low carb! This one will be added to my meal rotation.5 stars

  29. I added a teaspoon of brown sugar during the garlic, paprika and dijon. My children fought over eating it! Just delicious!!5 stars

  30. Just delicious!!5 stars

  31. Made this today! I cut the recipe in half and it was just perfect! So delicious that I had it for breakfast and topped it with a fried egg :) this will be a whole30 staple for me I can already tell!5 stars

  32. I’ve made this several times already, because it is SO good! Today I didn’t have any cabbage. What I did have was a HUGE amount of Brussels sprouts. I thought, “Why not?” It was not a mistake. Thanks for the yummy veggie recipe, Lisa!5 stars

  33. I had these ingredients that I needed to use up in my refrigerator and wow did this hit the spot! Quick and easy! I used coleslaw in a bag. Will put this on a regular rotation.5 stars

  34. This dish is so simple and delicious. I meal prepped it as a side for my lunches and I can’t wait to do it again.5 stars

  35. Added andouille sausage to make it a meal and it was delicious! 5 stars

  36. We enjoyed this recipe very much! “Planned-over” ham pieces worked equally well as bacon (since it was pre-cooked in some bacon fat), but everything else was made per your recipe. We found it to be a very satisfying dish with a nice balance of flavors, textures and colors. Economical to make as well. We’ll be making it frequently. Thanks for creating/posting this recipe.5 stars

  37. Loved this recipe!  The whole family gobbled it down. A great veggie with any Sunday night dinner!5 stars

  38. This recipe arrive at the perfect time. I was left with a whole cabbage and didn’t know what to do with it, then BAM! Love this recipe its easy, simple, and tasty. We had it for breakfast so we topped it off with poached eggs. Thanks for the cabbage rescue!5 stars

  39. This cabbage was absolutely delicious (as all of Lisa’s recipes are)!  Make it, you will love it.  The bacon puts it over the top.5 stars

  40. Thank you Lisa! Can’t wait to try this! Do you think it would work with red cabbage?

  41. At what point to I add the bacon back?

  42. My husband loves cabbage especially my picky son! They are going to love this recipe! I can’t wait to make this tonight!5 stars

  43. I have made this and I have to say it is DELICIOUS. So tasty and it cooks so quickly.5 stars

  44. Cabbage can be so under-rated. I love them in stir-fry or as cabbage steaks. This recipe sounds so delicious and easy. I have to try it.5 stars