Stuffed Cabbage Rolls Recipe (Halupki)

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There are dozens upon dozens of recipes for Stuffed Cabbage Rolls on the Internet, but this one happens to be the one my grandmother made for us growing up. It was always my favorite and I am thankful to still have her original handwritten recipe card (as vague as it is). It is simple, yet delicious. We have always enjoyed ours with mashed potatoes and of course, some type of roll or bread to mop up the sauce.

The original recipe for Stuffed Cabbage Rolls (Halupki)

Like most of my grandmother’s recipes, we really aren’t sure where she got it and as mentioned, it’s pretty vague – there’s no cabbage listed 🙂

How to make Stuffed Cabbage Rolls Recipe (Halupki)

The first thing you’ll need is a large head of green cabbage. The larger the cabbage, the more likely you are to find appropriately sized leaves. As you get closer to the core, the cabbage grows tighter and we just cannot use those for rolling.

I trim around the core as shown. If you can get it out prior to cooking without cutting too deep, great! Otherwise, just proceed with the next step.

Place the cabbage into boiling water and keep a close eye on this. Just as the water begins to get under those leaves and soften them slightly, using tongs, remove them – one at a time – to a towel to drain.

I save all of them, even if they are ripped. You can chop the unusable ones and put them into your filling.

Speaking of filling…

How to make the ground beef filling for Stuffed Cabbage Rolls

You’ll need the following:

How to make the sauce for Stuffed Cabbage Rolls

Around here, we keep it simple – just like grandma used to make! It’s tomato soup, water, salt and pepper.

Place the cabbage leaves flat on your cutting board and place a small amount of the filling. Do not overfill or they will burst when the liquid begins to boil.

Roll like an egg roll.

Add half of your tomato soup mixture to the bottom of the pan.

I place the largest ones in the center and work may way out and around the pan as they get smaller. This recipe consistently fills a 9″ x 13″ pan as shown. We used to use a heavy bottomed stock pot and layered them, but in my opinion, this method works better. Boiling them on the stovetop creates bubbles that push the cabbage away from the filling. Baking creates a gentler boil.

Chef’s Note: Don’t worry or stress if some of them tear. They’ll be just fine.

Add the remainder of the tomato soup mixture and attempt to cover all of the cabbage rolls.

Bake for 60 minutes covered and 30 minutes uncovered. Spoon the sauce over the cabbage rolls before serving.

We love mashed potatoes and rolls or bread along with ours.

How to freeze cooked Stuffed Cabbage Rolls

We definitely freeze these after cooking and cooling. Portion them into glass freezer safe containers and spoon over the sauce. I have never had any issue freezing like this, nor do the rolls absorb the sauce. Simply thaw completely and reheat.


A little casual video of the finished product 🙂

Did you make my recipe for Stuffed Cabbage Rolls Recipe (Halupki)? Leave me a comment below and let me know what you thought. You can also tag me with your photos on Instagram @aimee_stock I love seeing your creations. I’d love to hear your variations on this recipe!

Stuffed Cabbage Rolls Recipe (Halupki) hero shot

Stuffed Cabbage Rolls Recipe (Halupki)

Stuffed Cabbage Rolls Recipe (Halupki)
Course Main Course
Cuisine American
Prep Time 30 minutes
Cook Time 1 hour 30 minutes
Total Time 2 hours
Servings 6 servings (2 rolls per person)


  • 1 Large Pasta or Stock Pot for boiling the cabbage
  • 1 9×13 Baking Dish



  • 1 lb Ground Beef I use 80/20
  • 1 small Onion finely diced
  • 1/2 c White Rice UNCOOKED
  • 1 large Egg lightly beaten
  • 1 tsp Salt
  • 1 tsp Sugar
  • dash Pepper
  • dash Garlic Powder or more to taste
  • Any Leftover Cabbage finely chopped
  • 1 tbsp Parsley chopped


  • 2 cans Campbell's Condensed Tomato Soup
  • 1/2 can Water
  • Salt & Pepper to taste


  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees and bring water to a boil in a large pasta or stock pot.
  • Whisk together the tomato soup, water, salt and pepper. Add 1/2 to the bottom of a 9×13 pan and set aside.
  • Trim around the core of the cabbage, peel off any loose leaves and place into boiling water. As each leaf begins to loosen, remove with tongs to a towel to drain. Continue until all viable leaves are removed. Reserve the tighter center leaves. Allow all to cool.
  • Combine the ground beef and all filling ingredients. Take the reserve tighter leaves, discard the core and finely chop, adding to the ground beef mixture. Stir well to combine.
  • Place each cabbage leaf on your work surface and add the filling. Do not overfill or they will explode as the liquid begins to boil. Assemble like an egg roll and place into sauce lined pan. Continue until all viable leaves are used and/or you run out of filling.
  • Top with the remaining sauce. Cover with foil and bake for one hour.
  • Remove the foil and bake for an additional 30 minutes. Serve with mashed potatoes, rolls or bread and enjoy!
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