Polish Food – The Homemade Version

It’s been a while since I shared some Polish food with you.  I haven’t made it back up to Longwood to have another meal at Polonia but I’ve gotten better at making some of my favorite dishes at home.  Before my grandmother passed away she showed me how to make Golabkis, Polish stuffed cabbage.  I always loved the fact that my French grandmother made some of the most delicious Polish food.

Making Golabkis takes a lot of prep time, but once everything is in the pot and cooking, you can sit back and relax.  If you’re like me and you are only cooking for two, you will also have a left overs to last for a few meals.  I’m still having leftovers for lunch today and even threw a few servings in the freezer.


1 head of green cabbage
2 lbs ground beef (or 1 lb ground beef and 1 lb ground pork)
1.5 cups cooked white rice
1 egg
3-4 can tomato soup and some additional water to dilute it
garlic powder
onion powder

1. Stick entire head of cabbage in a large pot and cover with water.  Set on stove and turn heat to high.  Allow water to boil.  As the leaves soften and loosen, remove the leave and set aside on large platter.  Once all useable leaves are removed, set platter aside to cool.
* This is the most time consuming part and will take approximately 20 minutes to get all of the useable leaves off the head of lettuce.
2. While leaves are cooling, mix rice, ground meat, egg, salt, pepper, garlic powder, and onion powder together.  The amount of seasoning you use depends on you personal tastes.  I usually put in less than I would if I was making Italian meatballs.
3. Take smaller leaves from cabbage and layer on bottom of large pot.
4. Cut the rib out of the larger cabbage leaves.  The amount of leaf remaining should look like a heart.
5. Place a small amount of the meat mixture (slightly bigger than your average meatball, but not so much that you can’t wrap the meat in the cabbage) in the center of a leaf. Wrap the meat like you would a burrito and place in pot.  Be sure to put it so that the opening is on the bottom!  Continue until you have used up all your meat/cabbage.
6.  Pour tomato soup over cabbage rolls.  Add water as needed to make sure that they are covered.  Season with additional pepper and top with a few pats of butter.
7.  Bring pot to boil and then reduce heat to low and simmer for approximately 2 hours.


I like to serve this with a side of mashed potatoes or roasted potatoes.

My mom told me that may grandmother had started using V8 juice instead of tomato soup, so the next time I make this I may try it with that.  I will update this in the future with additional pictures for the step-by-step process.  I need to get my in-house photographer to stand by my side one of these days to take pictures while I make these!

I’m sure I’ll be making some other Polish dishes in the future.  I hope to find a recipe for some homemade pierogies in the near future.  I’ll be sure to share it with you when I do!

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