Instant Pot Unstuffed Cabbage Soup–This soup has the flavors of a cabbage roll with its ground beef, plenty of seasonings and lots of cabbage. It is a low-cal, high protein soup that satisfies!
Note: the SLOW COOKER instructions are listed in the recipe card below
Instant Pot Unstuffed Cabbage Soup
Cabbage rolls are so tasty but if you’ve ever tried to make them, then you know they can be quite tedious. They are rolled up cabbage leaves stuffed with beef, rice, tomato sauce and seasonings. Why not take the delicious flavors from cabbage rolls and put them into a soup form?
This soup is super easy to make and takes only about 15 minutes for prep time and 10 minutes of pressure cooking time (or you can make it in your slow cooker and let it simmer all day!). This “unstuffed” cabbage soup is a little different from my Instant Pot cabbage roll soup because it doesn’t have white rice in it. So if you’re not a fan of rice or don’t want the carbs try this recipe! You’re going to love it. Greg is going crazy over it and keeps commenting how good it tastes.
What’s In Unstuffed Cabbage Soup
- 1 pound lean ground beef–you can also use ground turkey or ground pork
- 1 1/2 tsp kosher salt–for flavor
- 3 cups beef broth–to bring the pot to pressure
- 2 Tbsp dried onions–or you can use 1 cup diced onions and saute along with the beef
- 1 bay leaf–for flavor
- 1 small cabbage, chopped–if you’re trying to hide veggies from kids then chop smaller
- 1 (14.5 oz) diced tomatoes–I like petite diced tomatoes best. Fire roasted tomatoes are amazing!
- 1 (14.5 oz) crushed tomatoes–for a different texture
- 1 (8 oz) can tomato sauce–for the tomato flavor
- 1 Tbsp minced garlic cloves–for flavor
- 1 Tbsp red wine vinegar–to add some brightness
- 2 Tbsp Worcestershire sauce–adds a savory and sweet distinct tang
- 1/4 tsp allspice–to add a warm spice flavor with a tiny bit of bite
- 1/2 tsp black pepper–for flavor
- 1 1/2 tsp onion powder–for flavor
- 1 1/2 tsp garlic powder–for flavor
- 1 1/2 tsp Italian seasoning–for flavor
- 1 tsp smoked paprika–for a bit of smoky heat
How to make unstuffed cabbage roll soup in the Instant Pot
- Brown the beef: Turn Instant Pot to saute setting. When display says HOT add in the beef and break it up. Brown for about 5 minutes. Drain off any excess grease. Stir in ½ teaspoon of the salt.
- Deglaze the pot: Pour in the broth and scrape bottom of pot so that nothing is sticking (to prevent burn error message). Turn off Instant Pot.
- Add ingredients: Add in the onions and the bay leaf. Add all the cabbage on top. And then add the remaining ingredients and remaining 1 teaspoon of salt on top of the cabbage. (Don’t stir)
- Pressure cook: Cover Instant Pot and secure the lid. Make sure valve is set to sealing. Set the SOUP button to 10 minutes (if you don’t have a soup button use the manual/pressure cook button). When cooking time is up let the pot sit for 5-10 minutes and then move valve to venting. Remove the lid.
- Serve: Stir well and serve topped with a little shredded parmesan cheese.
Questions About Unstuffed Cabbage Soup
Will This Cabbage Soup Fill Me Up?
This soup only has 287 calories per serving but it will fill you up! To me, it seemed hearty with the ground beef and the large amount of cabbage. You won’t miss that this soup doesn’t have rice in it! If you want to beef it up a bit stir in some cooked cauliflower rice after it has pressure cooked.
What to Serve with Cabbage Roll Soup
Try serving the soup with breadsticks, French bread or rolls. Nothing beats fresh bread (especially this time of year!).
Can I Use Chicken Broth Instead of Beef Broth?
Yes you can! Or you can try using any Better Than Bouillon flavor that you like. Use 3 cups water and 1 Tbsp of Better Than Bouillon.
Can I Use Purple Cabbage?
I used green cabbage but purple cabbage would also work. The color of your soup might be different and darker with a slightly different flavor.
How to Make Cabbage Roll Soup in a Slow Cooker
You can make this recipe in the crockpot too! Some slow cookers* have a setting that allows you to brown beef and then add in the rest of the ingredients and slow cook. If you don’t have that setting you will need to brown the ground beef on the stove in a frying pan before adding it into the slow cooker. You can also use the slow cooker setting on your Instant Pot. I would use the highest setting (“more”) because I have heard that the less and normal settings don’t work as well.
How Do You Store Leftovers?
Store the leftovers in an airtight container* for up to 5 days. Leftovers are better than the first day!
How to Freeze Cabbage Roll Soup
This recipe freezes well. Freeze in an airtight container or a zipper freezer bag for up to 3 months. To reheat place the container in the refrigerator the night before and let thaw. Then reheat on the stove or in the Instant Pot on saute setting, stirring often.
Can I double this recipe?
You can double this recipe in the 8 quart pot or 1.5 times the recipe in the 6 quart pot. Keep the same cooking time.
Can I halve this recipe?
Yes, halve all the ingredients and keep the same cooking time.
Other Recipes You’ll Love
Instant Pot Cabbage Roll Casserole
Instant Pot Tortellini Meatball Soup Recipe
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Instant Pot Unstuffed Cabbage Soup
- Prep Time: 15 minutes
- Cook Time: 10 minutes (plus 5 minute NPR)
- Total Time: 25 minutes
- Yield: 4–6 servings 1x
This soup has the flavors of a cabbage roll with its ground beef, plenty of seasonings and lots of cabbage. It is a low-cal, high protein soup that satisfies!
- 1 pound ground beef
- 1 1/2 tsp kosher salt, divided
- 3 cups beef broth
- 2 Tbsp dried onions
- 1 bay leaf
- 1 small cabbage, chopped
- 1 (14.5 oz) diced tomatoes
- 1 (14.5 oz) crushed tomatoes
- 1 (8 oz) can tomato sauce
- 1 Tbsp minced garlic
- 1 Tbsp red wine vinegar
- 2 Tbsp Worcestershire sauce
- 1/4 tsp allspice
- 1/2 tsp black pepper
- 1 1/2 tsp onion powder
- 1 1/2 tsp garlic powder
- 1 1/2 tsp Italian seasoning
- 1 tsp smoked paprika
Instant Pot Instructions:
- Turn Instant Pot to saute setting. When display says HOT add in the beef and break it up. Brown for about 5 minutes. Drain off any excess grease. Stir in ½ teaspoon of the salt.
- Pour in the broth and scrape bottom of pot so that nothing is sticking. Turn off Instant Pot.
- Add in the onions and the bay leaf.
- Add all the cabbage on top. And then add the remaining ingredients and remaining 1 teaspoon of salt on top of the cabbage.
- Cover Instant Pot and secure the lid. Make sure valve is set to sealing. Set the SOUP button to 10 minutes. When cooking time is up let the pot sit for 5-10 minutes and then move valve to venting. Remove the lid.
- Stir well and serve topped with a little shredded parmesan cheese.
Slow Cooker Instructions:
- Brown beef on stove and drain excess grease. Stir in ½ teaspoon of the salt. Add to the slow cooker.
- Stir the rest of the ingredients and salt into the slow cooker.
- Cover and cook on low for 6-8 hours.
- Stir, ladle into bowls and top with a little shredded parmesan cheese.
- Category: Soup
- Method: Instant Pot or Slow Cooker
*Karen Petersen 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 linking to amazon.com.
Simply mixed together hamburger meat, onions, Worcestershire sauce and rice with an egg or two. Form into little meatballs of what every sized you prefer, I make them about half inch . Place them into pot with all the other ingredients you have.
But when pressed for time or ease, 2 cans condensed tomato soup, amd add 1 quart of tomato juice, or V8 juice. Add half cabbage diced finger width, or cut Julianne strips. Sprinkle with salt and pepper to taste. Do not forget quarter cup of Worcestershire sauce. After comes to a boil, gentle stir and The meatballs. Reduce heat, cover cook about 20-25 mins. If using instapot. Make sure to use natural release, or the meatballs will bowl them selves apart and loose much of their own juices and flavors.
Sounds awesome! Thanks for the tips Kelley
I haven’t made it yet but I would like to, I have the small 3qt instapot would a 1/2 recipe work in that? Thank you
Yes that would work well.
I am new to Instant Pot cooking. This is one of the first recipes I’ve tried. What a hit! Delicious. We couldn’t stop raving about it. I’ve made it twice already for a hearty supper. Thank you.
Awesome! So glad you’re having a good experience using your new IP! Thanks for being here.
Janet Rice says
This was delicious and also simple to make. I can think of nothing that would make it any better. Thanks,
Ahhh! Thanks so much Janet!
Ken Henshaw says
This recipe would be more meaningful if I had some idea of HOW MUCH is a “serving”? A cup, quart, tablespoon? Confusing!!
Sorry! A serving would be 1/4 of the pot.
Sherri Robinson says
This soup is excellent. Made it the first time today. I followed the recipe exactly, except I added 2/3 cup sauerkraut. After it was done, I added 2/3 cup of brown rice I had cooked in my fridge. I will make this on a regular basis. It’s that good
LOVE the idea of flavorful sauerkraut!
Shadai L Richardson says
I just made this soup last night needing to make use of a head of cabbage. I used ground turkey and it was absolutely amazing! One of the best soups I have ever had! Family liked it, but I think I ate most of the pot. Hahaha. While writing this, my 3year old just brought me her empty soup bowl! She finally got into it! I can’t wait to make again and share with my family!
Oh I love hearing this! Thanks so much for sharing!
Thank you, Karen, for another great recipe! This soup is delicious, and I love that the cabbage, cooked so thoroughly, gives a kind of pasta texture without all the refined carbs!
I know! It’s so great right?!?
I made a vegetarian version with beyond meat and veggie broth. This was very tasty. Definitely will make again.
And I am too lazy to make cabbage rolls!
I know right? I am lazy too! they are a lot of work. This soup is so good I’m glad you liked it too!
Dave S. says
I have some questions. I shared this recipe with an older brother and he reminded me of the sauerkraut soup our mom made… which was somewhat similar to this with the tomato sauce, but she used sauerkraut and cut up hot dogs. She added some sugar to balance the soup if it was way too sour.
I started wondering what this would be like by adding sauerkraut to this. I guess I’d have to experiment.
Then I thought rather than the crumbled ground beef, if I might make small meatballs instead. Do you think they would cook OK just using the soup button?
I also have had this Instant Pot for a few years…The slow cook on this machine set at HIGH seems to actually cook at what my crockpot cooks at LOW setting. Have you noticed this at all? Each time I’ve tried to use the slow cooker setting on the IP, the foods are never cooked if I use a slow setting for the amount of time mentioned in the recipes. I’ve never known whether my IP just doesn’t slow cook as well as a standard Crock Pot.
Yes try that with the meatballs and sauerkraut. I think it sounds really good!
And you’re right about the slow cooker function. Use the high setting for slow cooking to cook properly.
My husband loves this soup. I used ground turkey and chicken broth. The cauliflower rice was a great addition at the end. I was afraid it would be tomatoey but it was perfect. It will be our go to soup all the time. Thanks for all the great stuff. 👍😊
Nice! I’m so glad to hear you enjoyed it Melody!
Could you add cauliflower rice (the shelf-stable kind, not frozen or fresh) to IP when cooking or would it need to be added after cooking?
I have never seen or used that before! Sounds cool. What is the normal cooking time for it?
It comes in a box of 6 pouches – I had never heard of it but saw someone say they got it from Costco – I couldn’t find online but ordered elsewhere. The person said was less watery than the frozen kind and saved room in her freezer. The directions say 60 minutes in microwave. Probably have to add this after cooking the soup?
60 minutes in the microwave?? or did you mean 60 seconds?
yes – sorry! 60 seconds
Yes I would stir it in after the pressure cooking time for sure
Kimberly Shoemaker says
Can this be made in a pressure cooker/air fryer
What is causing so many carbs and sugar. I’m diabetic and I was shocked at the sugar but would love to cut those down
I bet it’s all the tomatoes
Where are all the carbs coming from? 33g is a lot.
Is there a difference between the “Soup” button and the “pressure cook or manual” button?
Love your recipes!!
Yes, the soup button helps broths remain clear because it comes to a more gentle boil. But if you don’t have the soup button just use pressure cook button.
I love cabbage rolls and of course, I use rice. Can I add rice to this soup, and would it cook ok within this time frame? This just looks delicious!
You could add some rice to this soup. You may want to increase broth. Another choice is to make this other version: https://www.365daysofcrockpot.com/instant-pot-cabbage-roll-soup/