Make-Ahead Freezer Cabbage Rolls

Did you know you can freeze cabbage? You should never freeze the entire head of cabbage, but remove the leaves and freeze them whole, or cut into coarse shreds. And there’s no need to blanch the cabbage first!

Serves: 6Hands-on: 30 minutesTotal: 8 hours 30 minutesDifficulty: Medium

Serves: 6


  • 1 medium head cabbage
  • 1 cup cooked rice
  • 1 lb. extra-lean ground beef
  • 1 large egg
  • 1⁄4 cup whole milk
  • 1⁄2 cup minced onion
  • 1 tsp. paprika
  • 2 cloves garlic, peeled and minced
  • 1⁄4 tsp. ground black pepper
  • 1 tsp. salt
  • 2 cups tomato sauce


  • Remove core of cabbage. Separate about 12 to 15 large leaves and put in boiling water for 2 minutes to soften the leaves. Drain leaves. In a bowl, combine rice, ground beef, egg, milk, onion, paprika, garlic, and pepper. Put 3–4 tablespoons of mixture in the center of each leaf. Fold in sides of leaf, then roll from the bottom. Use a toothpick to fasten bottom if necessary. Freeze individually.
  • To reheat the defrosted cabbage, lightly salt the top of each roll. Put half of the tomato sauce on the bottom of the slow cooker. Place cabbage rolls seam side down and pour the remaining sauce over the top of everything. Cover the slow cooker and cook on low for 8 hours.