Sauteed cabbage is a cheap, satisfying side dish that goes with just about any main course. The secret to making it great is a squeeze of fresh lemon juice.

A black bowl filled with sauteed cabbage on a light background.

Sauteed Cabbage Recipe

If your family is like mine, and you feel like you cycle through the same three vegetable side dishes (carrots/broccoli/green beans, anyone?), let me sing the praises of this sauteed cabbage recipe.

Available at any store, a head of cabbage is usually cheap as heck compared to most other vegetables. There’s not a lot of waste to it, other than a core and a few outer leaves that you might want to remove if they look sad.

Best of all, it’s super quick to slice up and get cooking in a big skillet. If you have olive oil, butter, and a lemon on hand, you’re well on your way to making a delicious side dish that goes with just about anything.

Why You’ll Love this Sauteed Cabbage

  • It uses just a handful of simple ingredients that you probably already have in your kitchen.
  • Super versatile – use it as a side dish for just about any entree, or put it on top of a burger!
  • Making a half batch is a great way to use up half a head of cabbage after making coleslaw or another recipe.
Ingredients on a light rustic surface, including a head of cabbage, stick of butter, half of lemon, oil and spices.

Best Sauteed Cabbage Ingredients

  • green cabbage – the star of the show: just a head of humble, classic green cabbage.
  • butter – adds richness and flavor and helps the cabbage cook to a deep golden brown color.
  • olive oil – while you can’t beat cabbage sauteed in butter, olive oil adds healthy fat and enhances the flavor as well.
  • lemon juice – adds acidity that balances the richness of the butter and oil.
  • salt and pepper – enhances the natural flavors of the cabbage.
  • chopped parsley – this is optional, only if you want to add a little sprinkle at the end for color.
Closeup shot of sauteed cabbage sprinkled with parsley.

How to Saute Cabbage

A wooden cutting board with a head of cabbage that has been cut and half, with the core removed.

1. CORE. Cut the head of cabbage in half through the stem, and remove and discard the core.

A wooden cutting board with a head of cabbage being cut into slices.

2. SLICE. Thinly slice the cabbage.

A stainless steel skillet filled with sliced cabbage.

3. SAUTE. Heat the butter and oil in a large skillet, then add the cabbage. Cook until the cabbage is very soft and browned, stirring occasionally.

A stainless steel skillet filled with cabbage sauteed.

4. SEASON. Stir in the lemon juice, salt and pepper, sprinkle with parsley if you want, and it’s time to serve!

Home Chef Tips for Sauteed Green Cabbage

  • For added flavor, feel free to add diced onions to the skillet when sauteeing the cabbage.
  • To speed up the cooking process, you can cover the skillet with a lid, which will allow the cabbage to steam and soften more quickly.
The best sauteed cabbage in a stainless steel skillet.

What to serve with Cabbage (Sauteed)

This sauteed cabbage recipe pairs well with a variety of main courses, including honey mustard pork chops, air fryer popcorn shrimp, fried fish, and my grilled chicken recipe.

And – hear me out – it’s really good as a burger topping! I like it on both beef burgers and my best turkey burger. It adds a different texture and flavor than you’re used to with burgers, and it’s delicious.

Cooked green leafy vegetables in a stainless steel skillet with a wooden spoon.

How to store this recipe for Sauteed Cabbage

Leftover sauteed cabbage should be cooled to room temperature, and then stored in an airtight container in the fridge.

How long does sauteed cabbed last?

When stored properly, this best sauteed cabbage recipe can last up to 3 to 4 days in the refrigerator.

A black plate filled with cooked green leafy vegetables on a light background.

Sauteed Green Cabbage FAQs

How long to saute cabbage?

Depending on the size of your skillet, how much cabbage you have and how it is sliced, and the heat you use, it can take anywhere from 10 to 30 minutes to saute cabbage.

Is sauteed cabbage good for you?

Yes, sauteed cabbage is high in fiber, vitamins, and minerals, making it a healthy addition to any meal.

Can you overcook cabbage?

Yes, it is possible to overcook cabbage, which can result in a mushy, flavorless end result. Be sure to cook the cabbage until it is tender but not totally mushy for best results.

Why is my cabbage bitter after cooking?

Bitterness in sauteed cabbage can be caused by overcooking or cooking at too high of a temperature. Be sure to cook the cabbage until it is tender but not overcooked, and avoid cooking it at very high heat.

Tongs lifting cooked leafy vegetables from a black plate.
A black bowl filled with sauteed cabbage on a light background.

Best Sauteed Cabbage Recipe

Yield: 4 servings
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: 20 minutes
Total Time: 25 minutes

Sauteed cabbage is a cheap, satisfying side dish that goes with just about any main course. The secret to making it great is a squeeze of fresh lemon juice.


  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 1 head green cabbage, cored and thinly sliced (about 10 cups sliced)
  • Juice of 1/2 lemon (about 2 tablespoons)
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • Chopped fresh parsley, for garnish (optional)


  1. Heat oil and butter in large skillet over medium heat. 
  2. Add cabbage and cook 20 to 25 minutes or until very soft and lightly browned, stirring occasionally.
  3. Stir in lemon juice, salt and pepper. Sprinkle with parsley, if desired, and serve immediately. 

Recommended Products

Foxes Love Lemons, LLC is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and links to There is no additional cost to you.

Nutrition Information:
Yield: 4 Serving Size: 1
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 185Total Fat: 13gSaturated Fat: 5gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 8gCholesterol: 15mgSodium: 343mgCarbohydrates: 18gFiber: 6gSugar: 9gProtein: 4g

This website provides estimated nutrition information as a courtesy only. Nutrition information does not include any optional ingredients or toppings. You should calculate the nutrition information with the actual ingredients used in your recipe using your preferred nutrition calculator.

Did you make this recipe?

Please let me know what you think! Rate the recipe above, leave a comment below, and/or share a photo to Instagram using the tag #foxeslovelemons.