Pork Stuffed Cabbage Rolls on a Cherry Tomato and Garlic Sauce

I have wanted to make these for a few of years and I have finally got round to doing it. I first tried mine in Germany they had rice and a mix of beef and pork mince. I thought they were a little heavy so I made mine without the rice and just pork. I did add some cumin to mine as its my favourite spice. I thought it was going to be really tricky to roll them but I was pleasantly surprised as it wasn’t too bad at all. I don’t mean to blow my own trumpet but these were much nicer than the ones I had in Berlin they were much more moist and a lot more herby which I love. The sauce worked perfectly, I love using cherry tomatoes as they are much sweeter and the skins kind of pop.

Ingredients (serves 4)

For the Cabbage Rolls
  • 12 cabbage outer leaves peeled off, I used savoy cabbage
  • 500g lean pork mince
  • 1 egg
  • 1 cup of panko breadcrumbs
  • 1 tsp ground cumin
  • 1 tsp smoked sweet paprika
  • 1 tsp dried oregano
  • ½ tsp onion powder
  • ½ tsp garlic granules
  • 1 sprig rosemary, leaves only finely chopped
  • 1 tsp sea salt
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
For the Sauce
  • 16 cherry tomatoes, halved
  • 3 garlic cloves, peeled and finely chopped
  • 1 shallot, peeled and finely diced
  • ½ tsp sweet smoked paprika
  • 1 tbsp tomato puree
  • 250ml vegetable stock
  • 2 anchovy fillets, chopped finely
  • ½ tsp red pepper flakes
  • ½ tsp black pepper
  • Salt if needed, I didn’t need any in mine due to the stock and anchovies


  1. Make the cabbage filling by adding all of the ingredients apart from the cabbage leaves into a bowl and give it a really good mix with your hands to combine. Set aside.
  2. Boil some water in a saucepan. Add the cabbage leaves 2-3 at a time. Blanche for 1 min then drain them on a tea towel or some kitchen roll. Dry them off then set aside and repeat with the other leaves.
  3. Place the first leaf flat in front of you, inner side upwards. Cut the thick part of the stem out, it will leave you with a triangle gap (see picture). Add about 3 tbsp of the filling about 1cm from the edge of the triangle and shape into a sausage shape. Roll up the leaf and fold the edges underneath. Repeat with rest of the filling and leaves. Set aside.
  4. Preheat oven to a 180 degrees fan
  5. In an oven proof lidded frying pan or casserole dish, heat the olive oil. Add the shallots and cook for 2 minutes or until they are translucent. Add the garlic and cook for a further minute. 
  6. Add the paprika give it a quick stir. Stir in the tomato puree and cook for about 30 seconds.
  7. Pour in the stock and tomatoes, bring to the boil, add the anchovies and chili flakes then reduce heat to a medium simmer. Simmer for around 5 minutes or until the tomatoes are soft. Crush the tomatoes with a fork or wooden spoon so they release all their juices.
  8. Nestle the filled rolls into the pan with the tomato sauce in it. Add the lid and cook in the oven for 30 minutes or until bubbling. Enjoy 😊

2 Comments Add yours

  1. Kevin says:

    I really like this idea of using cabbage leaves – a bit like a burrito!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. They were worth the effort, haha yes an Eastern European version of burritos 😀

      Liked by 1 person

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