Lemongrass and Cabbage Soup

I’m a big fan of cabbage. 

At this time of the year it is always on my Saturday shopping list and regularly turns up on weeknight dinner plates sautéd with bacon, braised and topped with seared rosemary lamb or shredded for a light coleslaw.  But having lived for two years with a fan of the infamous, stinky cabbage soup diet, never ever did I consider letting my own Saturday Savoy work its way into a pot of simmering stock.  The thought alone made me wrinkle my nose in disgust.

 Just recently, though, everything thing has changed.  Just recently I started making this wonderfully fragrant, creamy soup.  It looks pretty and it tastes fresh and healthy.  I adore it.  So much so, in fact, that the cabbages in my kitchen don’t often make it through the weekend.  🙂

Lemongrass and Cabbage Soup

(Based on the wonderful Sarah Raven’s Cabbage and Coriander Soup)

Serves 2

1 onion, sliced

1/2 a small leafy cabbage (preferably Savoy), shredded

1 chilli, chopped

1 lemongrass stalk, hard outer leaves remove then chopped finely

1 garlic clove, finely chopped

1 tspn fresh ginger, finely chopped

150ml coconut milk

350ml stock, chicken or vegetable

1 lime

Fresh coriander


  • Heat a little olive oil in a pan over a medium heat.  Add the onions and cook for a couple of minutes until just beginning to soften.  Add the shredded cabbage and continue cooking for a few more minutes.
  • Add the lemongrass, garlic, ginger and chilli to the pan and continue cooking for another 5 minutes.
  • In a seperate pan bring the stock and coconut milk almost to the boil then immediately add to the cabbage.  Simmer very gently for between 3 and 8 minutes depending on how soft or crunchy you like your cabbage
  • Turn off the heat.  Add the lime juice and seasoning to taste.  Serve scattered with coriander leaves.

This is my entry to this month’s No Crouton’s Required event.


22 thoughts on “Lemongrass and Cabbage Soup

  1. That just sounds so different, I can imagine how good it tastes with th spices and coconut milk. I thus far have avoided cabbage in soup too. I can see I am going to have to reconsider.

  2. Thanks for this recipe Wendy. It is just right for me as a beginner because it looks strightforward yet very tasty. Will let you know how i get on. Can i freeze it if i make double quanity?

  3. This looks so good! I’m having a newfound love affair with cabbage (wonder what took me so long) and am always on the lookout for new and different recipes. I love the idea of cabbage and coconut milk as I try to avoid dairy most of the time. And this is naturally gluten-free — yippee!

    Thank you!

    P.S. I’m writing from Colorado, USA, but my daughter is getting married on the Isle of Mull next summer. Sounds like that might be in “your neck of the woods.”

  4. Holler – You won’t be disappointed!

    Mandy – It is really straightforward but it’s not really suitable for freezing as the cabbage would get quite soggy. This lentil and carrot soup freezes really well: https://teach77.wordpress.com/2008/02/05/carrot-and-red-lentil-soup/

    Melissa – It’s not a million miles away! I’m in Inverness in the north east – Mull (very beautiful) is about 3 hours from here. Lovely place to get married!

    Susan – Me too. 🙂

    Little Miss Moi – The original recipe used coriander seeds. Figured if they worked then lemongrass would too. Tried it and prefered it. 🙂

    Antonia – I was unsure too but this is really lovely.

    Lucy – This will have you loving them! Promise! 🙂

  5. Sarah Raven is very clever and so are you Wendy! I love the colors of this soup – I really wasn’t expecting a coconut milk based soup when I clicked through

  6. Brilliant Wendy. I’m a long, long term cabbage fan, but I’ve never made anything like this. Delicious looking.

    Also like the little crinkles of your savoy cabbage in the picture. Savoys over here just don’t have the same amount of crinkle in them – so different texture, but also makes them a slightly different flavour.

  7. I’d never think to combine lemongrass and cabbage in a soup – this is a beautiful recipe.

    I thought that was Wombok (Chinese cabbage) when I first saw the pic. I guess that could work well too? It would match the Oriental flavours.

  8. Hello Wendy.

    Kathryn Elliott (through her blog & Twitter updates) led me to you. (Thanks, Kathryn.) I’m also a fan of cabbage, and now, a new fan of your lovely blog.

    Thank you for this lovely recipe which I plan to try soon. Since the New Year, I’ve always had at least one head (of the plain green variety of cabbage) in my fridge. I will have to pick up Savoy the next time I’m at the market.

    Most recently I tried this New York Times recipe.
    (I did make a substitution in seasoning though, and used a mild curry blend instead of the chili and bay leaf.)

    Very simple, very easy, very economical and very satisfying on a cold winter’s night when the snow is falling — which is when I made and ate it.

    I’m looking forward to exploring your past stories and recipes (where I confess I may get stuck for a while) as Keeping up with your latest posts.

    (PS. I’m not Scottish but I do have a Westie.)

  9. I wonder if, if you ate it every day for weeks on end, you’d give it up? I mean, that’s the whole cabbage diet thing, right?

    This one does sound yummy, though!

  10. Sophie – Think Sarah Raven got the idea from Dennis Potter so he’s clever too! 🙂

    Mandy – Let me know!

    Kathryn – Nor had I. It’s divine though. Feels like a real treat.

    Christie – You’re so right. Chinese cabbage would be lovely too. Suspect it would need less cooking time though.

    Elaine – Hello and welcome! Will be trying that recipe out. Perhaps tomorrow actually. Adore westies. My aunt has one called Mac and he’s such a character. Watching him hunt flies is hillarious!

    DaviMac – Very true but it’d take me a wee while to get fed up of it. Couldn’t manage more than a bowl of the diet cabbage soup!

  11. Thanks for delurking — and your cabbage soup looks amazing. I recently cooked red cabbage and bacon for the first time – I am a bit of a cabbage novice after not liking it much for years.

  12. My mum used to always cook cabbage in a little milk with garlic, salt, pepper and a dob of butter. Have to say, it’s still my favourite way… and LOVE your Loch Ness shot!

  13. i’m really impressed with this combination of flavours. how can you go wrong with lemongrass, chilli and cabbage. and i love the texture of cabbage in soup.
    if you’re a big cabbage fan, and one day feel like an incredibly rich and unhealthy italian soup, try
    seupa vapellenentse: wow!
    made from savoy, bread and fontina.
    i do have a recipe for it on my blog, but didn’t want to spam your posts with links. besides, there’s heaps of recipes out there.

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