Skip to Content

Southern Fried Cabbage Recipe

Leave it to Southerners to fry even the vegetables! This Southern fried cabbage recipe is a side dish that is simple to fix, inexpensive, and of course, tastes wonderful. How could it not with all that bacon? Just a spoonful of its tasty goodness helps the cabbage go down. 😉 

A bowl of southern fried cabbage with bacon in a white bowl resting on a kitchen towel.

I can remember both sets of my grandparents enjoying this simple recipe which they passed down to my parents and then to me. As a kid, I didn’t care for it (not surprising really) but now I love me some Southern-fried cabbage! It must just be in the genes. 

Ingredients

To make Southern-style fried cabbage you only need a few simple ingredients.

  • cabbage
  • bacon
  • onion
  • Salt and pepper

How to Cut Cabbage for Frying

Coarsely chop a head of cabbage. You can cut it into squares or strips, you just don’t want to finely chop it like you’re making coleslaw. It needs to be a little chunkier than that. Strips are easiest honestly.

Roughly chopped cabbage placed into two different bowls with a whole head of cabbage in the background.
Rough chop.

Finely chop a small onion as shown below. You want the cabbage to be coarse but the onion to be fine. The onion is more about flavoring the cabbage than biting into onion pieces as a separate ingredient in the final dish. Make sense?

A small onion being finely chopped with a knife on a wooden cutting board.

How to Make Fried Cabbage

Cook the bacon in a large iron skillet until crispy. I like mine extra well done so that there’s still a nice crunch to it once it’s mixed back in with the cabbage.

Five strips of bacon cooking in a large iron skillet.

Remove the bacon and allow it to cool enough to handle. Crumble it by hand (or with a knife if you prefer) and set it aside.

Close up shot of cooked bacon, drained and crumbled by hand.

Leave the bacon grease in the skillet and scrape the bottom of the skillet to loosen any bits of bacon.

Hot bacon drippings in an iron skillet.

Add the chopped cabbage and onions to skillet and pan-fry over medium-high heat in the bacon grease, stirring occasionally about 7 minutes.

Return the bacon crumbles to the skillet and continue to pan-fry until the cabbage is al dente.

Sprinkle with sea salt and pepper to taste.

Serve warm.

FAQ

Can I use precooked bacon or real bacon bits instead of raw bacon?

I love this shortcut for a lot of my recipes, but it doesn’t work well with this fried cabbage recipe. You really need those bacon drippings to flavor the cabbage.

Do I have to cook fried cabbage in an iron skillet?

Fried cabbage will still be tasty even if you use a more modern pan, but for the most authentic taste, be sure to cook it in a well-seasoned iron skillet.

Do I need to boil cabbage before frying?

No. The bacon grease will soften the cabbage perfectly as it cooks.

Other Southern Recipes

Now that you know how to fry cabbage, what will you serve with it? May I recommend this chuck eye steak recipe? I don’t think you’ll be disappointed. Plus you’ll learn just how versatile your iron skillet can be. Once you’ve mastered how to make Southern fried cabbage and enjoyed your chuck steak, you can use your skillet or Dutch oven for stewed tomatoes too.

A bowl of southern fried cabbage with bacon in a white bowl resting on a kitchen towel.

Southern Style Fried Cabbage Recipe

[email protected] T Makes Three
This authentic, Southern fried cabbage recipe has been passed down in my family for years.
4.75 from 4 votes
Prep Time 5 mins
Cook Time 10 mins
Course Recipes, Side Dish
Cuisine Southern
Servings 6
Calories 122 kcal

Ingredients
  

  • 1 small head of cabbage cored and coarsely chopped
  • 5 strips of bacon
  • 1 small onion chopped
  • Salt and pepper to taste

Instructions
 

  • Cook bacon in a large skillet until crispy.
  • Remove bacon, crumble, and set aside.
  • Leave bacon grease in the skillet and scrape the bottom of the skillet to loosen bacon bits.
  • Add chopped cabbage and onions to skillet and pan-fry over medium-high heat in the bacon grease, stirring occasionally, about 5 minutes.
  • Return bacon to the skillet and continue to fry until cabbage is al dente.
  • Sprinkle with sea salt and pepper to taste.

Notes

Be sure to taste the fried cabbage before adding any additional salt. Depending on what kind of bacon you use, it may not need any.
Keyword fried cabbage, how to make fried cabbage, southern fried cabbage
Nutrition Facts
Southern Style Fried Cabbage Recipe
Amount Per Serving (1 serving)
Calories 122 Calories from Fat 63
% Daily Value*
Fat 7g11%
Saturated Fat 2g13%
Trans Fat 1g
Polyunsaturated Fat 1g
Monounsaturated Fat 3g
Cholesterol 12mg4%
Sodium 149mg6%
Potassium 320mg9%
Carbohydrates 11g4%
Fiber 4g17%
Sugar 6g7%
Protein 4g8%
Vitamin A 155IU3%
Vitamin C 57mg69%
Calcium 66mg7%
Iron 1mg6%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.
Did You Make This Recipe?Please leave a comment below or share on Pinterest
Recipe Rating