Stuffed Cabbage Pockets

Dinners | September 12, 2016 | By

So I caved in and decided it was time for a Whole30 and September seemed like the best time, just before the holiday madness begins. The first question I’m often asked is, WHY? Why the torture? I know it sounds dramatic but to some people it is. So yes, its hard to eat out (or even get drinks) which makes socializing difficult but the end result is so so worth it.

I’m on Day 11 and after the initial slump is behind me, there’s an irrepressible amount of energy, I really feel like I’m on a caffeine high without a lot of caffeine actually in my system. That also explains a new post on the blog after a while, I know I’ve been slacking but there’s a lot coming up in this space.

Well, I’ll save the details of my 3rd Whole30 for a separate post. For now I’m excited to share this lovely recipe I tried few weeks ago. It’s a bit more involved and requires some patience but the results are excellent. This is an effort towards experimenting with light but flavorful meals and had been on my mind for a while until I finally tried it and realized how versatile it is. These cabbage pockets are stuffed with spiced chicken and beets-coconut. There are several other options variations you could try, such as:

  • Spiced ground beef
  • Garlic shrimp
  • Sautéed scallions and carrots
  • Spiced sweet potatoes and onions
  • Buttered sweet corn and cheese 

The options are endless!


The chicken is cooked in turmeric ghee with ginger, garlic, green chili and cilantro paste. I also added some red chili and coriander powder.


I boiled some water in wok and balanced whole cabbage leaves in boiling hot water for 2-3 minutes. It’s important to make sure the cabbage is not overcooked as this stage as these pockets will be steamed after being stuffed.


Now comes the fun part! 


This step requires some patience, especially for someone like me. It’s totally normal for the cabbage leaves to tear a little from the edges. Put a spoonful of the cooked spiced chicken on that blanched cabbage leaf.


Then wrap the leaves and hold the leaves together with a clove.


I also tried a different filling which is a good vegetarian option, beets and coconut go very well together and curry leaves add a punch of flavor to the mix.


I grated the beets and sautéed them in coconut ghee with ground green chilies, cilantro and coconut.


I then steamed these pockets in a steamer for about 5-6 minutes.


And the end result is absolutely delicious…


You can experiment with different fillings but these look so colorful! I’m definitely going to make these more often during the Whole30 when I get bored of eating cauliflower rice (although that rarely happens).


Stuffed Cabbage Pockets
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  1. 8 Cabbage Leaves
  2. 8 Cloves
Spicy Chicken Filling (makes 4 pockets)
  1. 1/2 Pound ground chicken
  2. 3 Green chilies
  3. 1/4 Cup chopped cilantro
  4. 1 Lobe of garlic
  5. 1 Inch fresh ginger
  6. 1 Tsp Red chili powder
  7. 1 Tsp Coriander Powder
  8. 1 Tsp Turmeric Ghee
  9. Salt to Taste
Coconut Beet Filling (makes 4 pockets)
  1. 1 Medium sized beet (grated)
  2. 1/4 Cup chopped cilantro
  3. 1/4 Cup fresh coconut
  4. 3 Green chilies
  5. 5-6 Curry leaves
  6. 1 Tsp Coconut ghee
  7. Salt to taste
For the Cabbage
  1. Blanch whole cabbage leaves in boiling water for 2-3 minutes and set aside.
For the Chicken
  1. Put turmeric ghee in a pan on medium heat.
  2. Add the chicken and cook for 3-5 minutes.
  3. Make a paste using ginger, garlic, cilantro and green chilies.
  4. Add red chili powder, coriander powder, salt and this paste to the chicken.
  5. Cook till the water dries up and let it cool for few minutes.
For the Beets
  1. Add coconut ghee to a pan on medium heat.
  2. Then add the curry leaves, after a few minutes grated beets.
  3. Cook for 2-3 minutes.
  4. Make a paste using cilantro, coconut and green chillies.
  5. Add salt and the paste to the beets and cook for 5 minutes.
For the Pockets
  1. Lay the cabbage on a flat surface, add the chicken filling by the spoonful.
  2. Wrap the cabbage leaf and secure it with a clove.
  3. Repeat the same for the beet filling.
  4. Steam the pockets in a steamer for 5-6 minutes.
Bake, Brew and Stew


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