Red Cabbage With Bacon and Apples Recipe

red cabbage and apple

The Spruce / Diana Rattray

Prep: 15 mins
Cook: 30 mins
Total: 45 mins
Servings: 6 to 8 servings
Nutrition Facts (per serving)
166 Calories
7g Fat
18g Carbs
6g Protein
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Nutrition Facts
Servings: 6 to 8
Amount per serving
Calories 166
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 7g 9%
Saturated Fat 2g 8%
Cholesterol 10mg 3%
Sodium 304mg 13%
Total Carbohydrate 18g 7%
Dietary Fiber 5g 17%
Total Sugars 11g
Protein 6g
Vitamin C 40mg 200%
Calcium 57mg 4%
Iron 1mg 6%
Potassium 447mg 10%
*The % Daily Value (DV) tells you how much a nutrient in a food serving contributes to a daily diet. 2,000 calories a day is used for general nutrition advice.
(Nutrition information is calculated using an ingredient database and should be considered an estimate.)

Red cabbage is a versatile ingredient that is packed with nutrients and flavor. This cruciferous vegetable has a beautiful red-purple color and can be eaten raw or cooked, two very delicious ways to enjoy something different. Our recipe for cooked red cabbage with apples and bacon makes a great substitute for good old coleslaw, bringing to your table a nourishing and belly-warming dish that can beautifully accompany any protein you're serving. When you buy a whole head of cabbage and don't know what to do with it, this hot vegetable recipe is great to have at hand. Onions and garlic add pungency and flavor to a mixture of cabbage, apples, and bacon. Red wine infuses it with earthiness and the cider vinegar brings acidity and tang. This flavorful cooking liquid enhanced by beef broth softens and flavors the cabbage. You need just 45 minutes to make and serve this dish, beautiful for a weeknight, but also special enough for a celebratory meal.

For this recipe, you need to use Granny Smith apples because they have the tartness needed to balance the fatty bacon, but also because their texture endures the heat better without turning into mush. If you find it difficult to find Granny Smith, your second best would be a Cortland, followed by a Braeburn apple. We recommend using a mandoline when preparing the cabbage, as it makes slicing tasks very easy. Alternatively, use a food processor set with a slicing disk.

Be mindful this recipe has wine and that the cooking process doesn't get rid of the alcohol content. If you want to keep it wine free, simply use the same amount of beef broth to replace it. The nutty, licorice flavor of the caraway seeds adds a beautiful note to the dish, but if you're not a fan of them you can skip them altogether.


  • 2 tablespoons olive oil

  • 1 large red onion, coarsely chopped

  • 1 clove garlic, minced

  • 2 pounds red cabbage, shredded

  • 3 tablespoons cider vinegar

  • 2 teaspoons granulated sugar

  • 1/8 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

  • 2 large Granny Smith apples, peeled, cored, and coarsely chopped

  • 3 to 4 slices bacon, cooked and diced

  • 1/2 cup pinot noir, or cabernet

  • 1/2 cup low-sodium beef stock

  • 2 teaspoons caraway seeds, optional

  • Kosher salt, to taste

Steps to Make It

  1. Gather the ingredients.

  2. In a large saucepan or Dutch oven, heat the oil over medium heat.

  3. Add the onions and sauté until softened, about 3 minutes.

  4. Add the garlic, cabbage, vinegar, sugar, pepper, chopped apples, bacon, wine, and beef broth. Bring to a simmer, reduce heat, and cover.

  5. Continue cooking for 30 to 45 minutes until the cabbage is tender.

  6. Taste and add caraway seeds and salt, as desired.

  7. Serve and enjoy!

Recipe Variations

  • Red wine can be replaced with more beef stock.