Bison Cabbage Rolls


While Travis and I were in San Diego for our wedding last month we went to Cafe 21 in the Gaslamp District. I was wowed by the Beef Cabbage Rolls and have been wanting to try a version at home ever since. While the restaurant makes their rolls with cous cous, I tend to limit mixing starches with animal protein at home as much as possible for easier digestion and food combining purposes. I had some shredded purple cabbage on hand that I sautéed to take the place of the starch and to give the rolls more texture and an additional punch of veggie love.

Bison Cabbage Rolls

  • 1 c. cooked bison*
  • 2 c. sauteed shredded purple cabbage *
  • 3 c. sauteed kale
  • 2 oz. goat cheese (I used Applewood smoked-on sale at Whole Foods)
  • Cabbage Leaves, I used green cabbage but I also really like savoy cabbage for wrapping
  • 365 Organic Tomato Basil Pasta Sauce (or your favorite marinara sauce)

For the filling, *sautee 1/2 chopped onion and 2 minced garlic cloves, adding a tablespoon or two of water as needed. Add bison along with 1/4 teaspoon of Herbamare and cook until done, turning and stirring as needed. For the shredded cabbage (*I had some on hand already that I had shredded in the food processor and needed to use) and kale, add about 1/2 tablespoon of Kerrygold butter to a skillet then add cabbage and chopped kale (you can also tear kale apart with hands). Add about 1/2 tablespoon of Braggs Liquid Aminos and sauté on medium heat until the veggies are cooked through, slightly wilted. Once the bison has finished cooking, add the veggies along with the cheese and mix thoroughly to combine.

For the wraps, bring a large pot of water to boil (I used the electric kettle to speed up the process). Remove the core of the cabbage with a paring knife. Place the cabbage in the boiling water for several minutes, peeling off each layer with tongs when the leaves are flexible. After ten or so minutes, remove the leaves and set aside. You will need about ten leaves. Pat dry with a towel. (Note: as an alternative, you might be able to skip this step and make the rolls using raw cabbage, it just might be more difficult to roll and you will have to cook the rolls longer).

Preheat the oven to 350F. To make the cabbage rolls, place 1/2 cup of sauce + 1/4 cup water in the bottom of a glass pan, roughly 9X12 glass pan. Add extra cabbage leaves around the outside of the pan.

Remove the hard triangluar rib from the base of each cabbage leave with a paring knife. Add filling to a cabbage leaf and roll. Place cabbage roll in the pan. Continue until all your leaves are filled and wrapped. Once the pan is completely filled, add 1 more cup of pasta sauce to the top, sprinkle with chopped basil. You can also add a sprinkle of cheese if you’d like. Cover the pan and cook for about 15-20 minutes. Serve hot and savor!


I prefer beef or bison as I like the flavor but bison is also said to be lower in calories, fat and cholesterol. It is also said to be high in beta-carotene and conjugated linoleum acid (CLA). Beta carotene is used in the body to make Vitamin A, a powerful antioxidant and CLA, a fatty acid, has been associated with reducing the risk of cancer, diabetes and obesity; these benefits are only in with free-range animals fed fresh green grass, not hay or grain (source).

These rolls are perfect for a quick lunch or dinner. You can quickly pop them in the oven (I use the convection oven) and prepare a quick salad or chop some fresh veggies and voila…a super satisfying comfort-type food that packs a lot of flavor and nutritional punch!

I hope you enjoy these rolls! Interested in learning more about my services as a health coach or wondering if a Detox is right for you, let’s chat! Sign up for your FREE Jumpstart Session and let’s get started!! Make sure to sign up for my newsletter too (at top of page) as I will be doing a couple of upcoming events this summer and by signing up, you’ll be in the loop!

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