Middle-Eastern Meatless Cabbage Rolls

READY IN: 1hr 10mins
Recipe by Somogirl

Very simple ingredients combine for wonderful flavor. Delicious warm or cold. I love these and don't find it labor intensive, rather rolling the cabbage for me is relaxing! I use brown rice and I do use toothpicks to keep rolls closed. I also mash the chickpeas first as it makes the filling easier to stuff. I also did not peel tomatoes and it was fine. I tweaked this recipe after I tried it, adding easy tips. Make sure to choose a very large cabbage head--better leaves. Make sure you are gentle with removing leaves from hot water as they tear easily. This is from Tess Mallos Complete Middle East Cookbook.

Top Review by Meatless

These were fantastic! I used basmati rice and tried mashing the chickpeas a little before adding to filling. It held together very well. Mine needed a tad more salt but were still great.

I'm not used to cutting out the vein from the cabbage but did anyway. I now need to practice how to roll them properly without everything falling out. :)

We are trying to not eat meat and these tasted very similar to malfoof with meat.

Thank you for sharing this recipe!

Ingredients Nutrition


  1. Gently saute spring onions in 1/4 cup olive oil for 2-3 minutes. Place in large bowl add remaining stuffing ingredients, adding salt and pepper to taste.
  2. Remove leaves from cabbage carefully so as not to tear them. Parboil leaves in boiling water until limp enough to handle, cooking leaves in 2 to 3 batches. Drain in colander, rinse with cold water.
  3. Cut out larger center rib of each leaf, any large leaves in half. Line base of a deep pan with the ribs and any leftover torn leaves.
  4. Place a generous tablespoon of stuffing on base of each leaf, roll once and tuck in sides to contain filling. Roll to end of leaf. Repeat with remaining ingredients.
  5. Crush and mince garlic add salt, mint and lemon juice; mix with olive oil. Pack rolls flap side down in lined pan, sprinkling garlic-lemon mixture between layers of rolls. Invert a plate on top of rolls to keep them intact during cooking. Add enough cold water to just cover rolls, put lid on firmly.
  6. Bring to boil, reduce to low and simmer 45 minutes. Remove from heat and leave aside 30 minutes. Serve lukewarm or cold.

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