Easy Red Cabbage, Apple and Mustard

Red cabbage with mustard and apple
Think Vegetables
  • Total: 25 mins
  • Prep: 10 mins
  • Cook: 15 mins
  • Servings: 4 servings

The flavor of cabbage and apple complement one another beautifully, it is a classic combination. Add in a few a mustard seeds and you will add a surprisingly delicious of bite to this easy to prepare the dish. Just those few seeds add zing and a real depth of flavor to an otherwise fairly bland dish.

Serve this cabbage recipe with roast pork for the full effect. The soft (ish) flavor of pork often needs a little jazzing up, so what better than the texture and flavor of mustard, another classic combo. Bangers and Mash is another great combination.​

If you want to increase the peppery taste of the mustard, you can add another 1/2 tsp. mustard seeds towards the end of the cooking time, but beware, this does raise the heat somewhat and may not be liked by children. If you don’t have any mustard seeds to hand, then proceed with the recipe minus the seeds, but stir in 1 to 2 tbsp. wholegrain mustard instead which is a different flavor, but good nonetheless.


  • 8 fl oz./250 mL unsweetened apple juice
  • 8 oz./ 250 g. red cabbage (washed and thinly sliced)
  • 2 tsp. mustard seeds (lightly crushed or extra for more zing, see the introduction)
  • Salt and ground black pepper (to taste)

Steps to Make It

  1. Pour the apple juice and water into a pan large enough to take all the cabbage. Bring the apple juice to a gentle boil.

  2. Add the red cabbage to the pan, followed by the lightly crushed mustard seeds, give everything a good stir. Season with salt and pepper, stir again then bring back to the boil. Cover with a tight-fitting lid (use a sheet of aluminum foil if you do not have a lid) and simmer over a low heat for 10 to 12 minutes, stirring occasionally. 

  3. When ready, the cabbage should be tender but not soggy, you need to retain a little bite (no one likes soggy cabbage as it loses a lot of flavor and nutrition when overcooked). 

  4. Drain the cabbage through a colander. Place into a warmed serving dish. Check for seasoning to taste and add a little more salt or pepper if required.

  5. If you feel you would like a little more heat, then now is the time to add a few more mustard seeds, but be cautious, once in there they are hard, if not impossible, to remove.


  • If you find the cabbage is a little too hot for you, add a small knob of butter and stir through the warm cabbage, it will not remove all the heat but will soften it down.

This recipe is adapted from Think Vegetables, a British reference site for all things vegetable.