Cabbage Roll Casserole

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Embark on a culinary adventure that redefines the familiar with our modernized take on a cherished classic—Stuffed Cabbage Casserole. As we usher in the New Year with a whirlwind of activities, the demands of daily life call for meals that are both convenient and soul-soothing. Say farewell to the meticulous preparation of cabbage rolls without sacrificing the comforting essence of this timeless dish.

In the spirit of embracing efficiency without compromising flavor, our Stuffed Cabbage Casserole emerges as a beacon of simplicity and taste. Designed to feed a family or provide multiple satisfying servings, this reimagined recipe promises not only ease in preparation but a symphony of flavors that mirror the nostalgic aroma of Grandma’s kitchen.

As the Christmas decorations find their way back into storage, let this modern casserole be your savory companion, offering a delectable alternative to the traditional cabbage rolls of yesteryear. Picture it as an unstuffed cabbage roll casserole, wholly homemade, free from the shortcuts of canned soups. Join us on this culinary journey where tradition meets modernity, and each bite tells a story of convenience without compromise.

Get ready to savor the essence of stuffed cabbage rolls with a contemporary twist—a dish that not only respects the heritage it hails from but also celebrates the evolving tastes of today’s palate. Welcome to the reinvented world of Stuffed Cabbage Casserole, where the kitchen clock ticks to the beat of both tradition and innovation.

  1. Begin by sautéing ground beef until it’s partially cooked. Add onions and continue cooking until the meat is fully browned. Add garlic towards the end, ensuring it doesn’t burn. Drain off any excess fat.
  2. Introduce paprika, onion powder, cayenne, and brown sugar to the beef mixture. Follow with tomato sauce, beef broth, and rice. Let the mixture simmer until the rice achieves a tender consistency. Season with salt and pepper to taste.
  3. In another pan, wilt half of the cabbage with a touch of olive oil. Transfer it to a greased casserole dish. Layer half of the beef mixture over the cabbage, followed by a sprinkle of cheddar and Monterey Jack cheese. Repeat the cabbage and beef layers and finish off with the remaining cheese.
  4. Bake the assembled casserole, covered, for about twenty minutes. Uncover and continue baking until the cheese takes on a golden hue.

Alternative Cooking Methods:

  • Stovetop Method: After preparing the cabbage, layer the ingredients in the same pan. Cover and simmer until the cheese melts and the cabbage is tender.
  • Skillet-to-Oven Method: Use an oven-safe skillet. Layer the ingredients in the skillet and bake as instructed.

Variations to Explore: For those craving a touch of heat or a unique twist, consider:

  • Incorporating 1-2 tablespoons of Cajun seasoning during the cooking process.
  • Introducing crushed red pepper to the tomato sauce for a spicy kick.
  • Opting for fire-roasted tomatoes or adding minced jalapenos for an extra flavor burst.

Nutritional Info: (per serving)

  • Prep Time: 25 minutes
  • Cook Time: 40 minutes
  • Total Time: 1 hour 5 minutes
  • Yield: 8 servings
  • Category: Main Meal Casserole

Ingredients:

  • Ground beef (1 lb)
  • Chopped onion (1 medium)
  • Minced garlic (3 cloves)
  • Spices: paprika, onion powder, cayenne pepper
  • Brown sugar (2 tbsp)
  • Tomato sauce (1 can, 15 oz)
  • Low sodium beef broth (1 can, 14.5 oz)
  • Long grain white rice (1 cup, uncooked)
  • Olive oil (2 tbsp)
  • Green cabbage (1 medium head, chopped)
  • Cheeses: sharp cheddar (1 ½ cups) and Monterey Jack (1 ½ cups)

Cooking Instructions:

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Spray 9×13 inch casserole dish with nonstick cooking spray or olive oil spray.
  2. Brown ground beef.  When the ground beef is about halfway browned, add the onion; cook until the beef is fully browned. Reduce the heat to low.  Add the garlic and cook for 1 minute, stirring continuously. Drain any excess fat from the skillet.
  3.  Add paprika, onion powder, cayenne, brown sugar, tomato sauce, beef broth, and rice.  Bring the mixture to a low boil. Turn to a simmer and cover with a lid.  Simmer for 20 minutes until rice is tender. Season with salt and fresh ground black pepper to taste. 
  4. Heat 1 tablespoon olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add 1/2 of the chopped cabbage and cook until slightly tender; 5-7 minutes.  Spread cabbage over the bottom of the casserole dish.  Top with 1/2 of the ground beef mixture.  Sprinkle with 1/2 of the cheeses, blending them.  Heat 1 tablespoon olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add the other 1/2 of the chopped cabbage and cook until slightly tender, 5-7 minutes. Spread the cabbage over the cheese in the casserole dish.  Top with the other 1/2 of the beef mixture and then with the remaining cheese.
  5. Cover the casserole with aluminum foil and bake for 20 minutes.  Remove the foil and bake for another 20 minutes or until the cheese is lightly browned.

Serving Suggestions: Pair this Stuffed Cabbage Casserole with a crisp salad or crusty bread for a complete meal experience. Enjoy!

image source : small town woman