Brown Rice Cabbage Rolls with Veracruz Sauce

Prep Time

60 minutes

Prep Notes

This is a lovely vegetarian meal- full of healthy plant-based protein and fiber!  Makes great leftovers so you can cook once, and eat several times!  There is some prep time invested, but you will have a night off the next day.

Cooking Time

20 minutes




Ingredients for filling:

10-12 Savoy cabbage leaves. 

2 cups cooked short-grainbrown rice

1 T. olive oil

2 minced garlic cloves

½ medium onion, diced

1 carrot, minced

½ cup minced celery

½ package firm tofu, drained, mashed

½ tsp sea salt

1 egg

Ingredients for sauce:

1-28oz can crushed tomatoes

¼ cup evoo

¼ cup finely chopped white onion

2 large cloves garlic, finely chopped

2T. Fresh Italian parsley, chopped

½ tsp dried oregano

1 T chopped pitted green olives

1T-drained capers

Salt and Pepper

 Optional:  1T.  grated Asiago Cheese or Parmigianino Reggiano cheese



Mix all the sauce ingredients together in a medium saucepan and let simmer while you assemble the cabbage rolls. 

Steam the cabbage leaves fora few minutes in a steaming basket to soften them.  Sauté the onion, carrot, celery, and garlic in the evoo for several minutes.  Combine the cooked rice, sautéed vegetables, egg, and tofu in a large bowl. Divide the mixture between the 10-12 cabbage leaves, and roll them into a cabbage roll shape. (I like to start with a spoonful of the mixture at one end of the cabbage leaf,start rolling, fold in the sides, then continue rolling.   You may need to trim out the hard core piece of the cabbage to make rolling easier).   Put roll seamside down in a lightly oiled 9x13” casserole dish.  Cover with the sauce and sprinkle with the Asiago or Parmigianino Reggiano cheese.  Bake at 350, covered, for about 20 minutes. 

Enjoy !!


This meal keeps well for a few days in the refrigerator.  


Jeff Woodward-Chef from the Wedge Co-op in Minneapolis, MN