Lemon Garlic Sauteed Cabbage

This is one of my favorite cabbage recipes! This sautéed cabbage recipe with fresh lemon and garlic is simple, quick, and delicious!

Sauteed Cabbage Recipe Video

This is an easy and healthy recipe for cooking cabbage. If you have never sautéed cabbage before, you need to start. As the cabbage cooks in the pan, it wilts, turns tender, and becomes sweet.

Cabbage may sound like a boring side, but this is one of our favorite cabbage recipes to make. We also love roasting cabbage, making fried cabbage, and turning it into sauerkraut.

The Best Way to Cook Cabbage - Sautéed Cabbage

Key Ingredients

  • Cabbage: Cabbage is underrated and is a nutrient powerhouse. It’s good for you with high levels of vitamin C, is antioxidant-rich, and has been shown to have anti-inflammatory benefits. You can sauté most cabbage varieties, but my favorite is white cabbage (or green).
  • Olive oil: We’ll sauté our cabbage in olive oil. Try butter, coconut oil or nut oils like walnut. You can even cook a few pieces of bacon before the cabbage and use the rendered bacon fat for extra flavor (we do this for our bacon fried cabbage recipe).
  • Garlic: I use a tablespoon of minced garlic in this recipe and love it.
  • Salt and red pepper flakes: Salt seasons the cabbage, and red pepper flakes add a hint of spice. If you are sensitive to spices, substitute for black pepper.
  • Lemon: Just as the cabbage finishes cooking, I squeeze fresh lemon juice over it. I love how it brightens everything up!

How to Sauté Cabbage

I love shredded cabbage in this recipe. Here’s how I do it: Remove any tattered or bruised outer leaves. Then, cut the cabbage into quarters, and then cut out the core.

How to Cut Cabbage

Finally, slice the cabbage quarters into thin shreds. You can hand shred with a knife (like in the photos below), use a mandoline or use your food processor shredding attachment.

How to Cut Cabbage into Shreds

Making this sautéed cabbage recipe is easy! Heat some fat in a skillet, add shredded cabbage (I’ve shared my tips for shredding cabbage below), minced garlic, a bit of salt and pepper flakes, and then cook until wilted and sweet. It takes 10 to 15 minutes. (I use the same method for this sautéed zucchini and sautéed Brussels sprouts.)

Simply sautéed cabbage cooked with olive oil, garlic, salt and a bit of pepper is quite delicious, but when we have them in the kitchen, we love to finish with fresh lemon juice. If you don’t have a lemon, apple cider vinegar is an excellent substitute.

What to Serve with Sautéed Cabbage

This really is one of my go-to vegetable sides so I make it a lot. I especially love it with baked pork chops, pan-roasted chicken breasts, and sausages like bratwurst. It’s also lovely with lighter dishes like poached salmon and simple baked tofu.

It’s also excellent served next to other easy veggie dishes like our roasted carrots and mashed potatoes. Or try with buttered noodles!

More Easy Cabbage Recipes

Easy Lemon Garlic Sauteed Cabbage

Lemon Garlic Sauteed Cabbage

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This easy recipe for sautéed cabbage is delicious. As the cabbage cooks in the pan, it wilts, turns tender, and becomes sweet. Cabbage may sound like a boring side, but this is one of our favorite vegetable recipes. White cabbage is our favorite for this, but other cabbage varieties will work. Keep in mind that Napa cabbage will release more moisture and won’t brown as nicely in the pan.

Makes 4 servings

Watch Us Make the Recipe

You Will Need

2 pounds white cabbage, core removed and shredded (10 cups)

1 ½ tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil

1 tablespoon garlic, minced

Pinch crushed red pepper flakes

1/2 teaspoon fine sea salt or more to taste

Half of a lemon, cut into wedges


    1Heat the olive oil in a large skillet or Dutch oven over medium-high heat. Add the cabbage, garlic, red pepper flakes, and the salt. It might seem like too much cabbage for the pan, but as it cooks, the cabbage will wilt down.

    2Cook, stirring occasionally until the cabbage is tender and some of the cabbage begins to turn a light brown, 10 to 15 minutes.

    3Squeeze the juice from 2 lemon wedges over the cabbage. Taste then adjust with more salt, pepper, and lemon juice as needed.

Adam and Joanne's Tips

  • To shred the cabbage, quarter the cabbage through the core, and then cut out the core. Cut each quarter crosswise in half and finely shred. Rinse and spin or pat very dry.
  • This cabbage recipe is excellent with onions, add them to the pan at the same time as the cabbage.
  • The nutrition facts provided below are estimates.
Nutrition Per Serving Serving Size 1/4 of the recipe / Calories 105 / Total Fat 5.6g / Saturated Fat 0.8g / Cholesterol 0mg / Sodium 338.5mg / Carbohydrate 14.3g / Dietary Fiber 3.9g / Total Sugars 6.9g / Protein 2.7g
AUTHOR:  Adam and Joanne Gallagher
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76 comments… Leave a Review
  • Barbara April 5, 2024, 6:18 pm

    My husband loved it! He usually likes to just steam his cabbage but the lemon addition really elevated this dish. Will definitely make this again.

    • Joanne April 7, 2024, 5:05 pm

      That’s amazing, Barbara! I love steamed cabbage, as well, but sautéing definitely adds more flavor.


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