Red cabbage with balsamic vinegar & cranberries

Red cabbage with balsamic vinegar & cranberries

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(15 ratings)

Prep: 30 mins Cook: 40 mins


Serves 8
This vibrant veggie Christmas side dish beautifully contrasts sweet and savoury, make it up to four days in advance or freeze it

Nutrition and extra info

  • Freezable
  • Vegetarian
  • Vegan

Nutrition: per serving

  • kcal139
  • fat5g
  • saturates1g
  • carbs22g
  • sugars20g
  • fibre4g
  • protein3g
  • salt0.1g


  • 3 tbsp olive oil
    olive oil

    Olive oil

    ol-iv oyl

    Probably the most widely-used oil in cooking, olive oil is pressed from fresh olives. It's…

  • 2 large onions, halved and thinly sliced



    Onions are endlessly versatile and an essential ingredient in countless recipes. Native to Asia…

  • 1 tsp ground cloves
  • 1 medium red cabbage, quartered, cored and thinly sliced
    Red cabbage on a plate

    Red cabbage

    red cab-idge

    A favourite winter vegetable served hot with roasted game birds but equally good as a colourful…

  • 200ml vegetable stock
  • 3 tbsp balsamic vinegar
    Balsamic vinegar

    Balsamic vinegar

    bal-sam-ick vin-ee-gah

    True Balsamic vinegar is an artisan product from Modena, in Emilia Romagna, Italy, and is made…

  • 100g brown sugar
  • 200g fresh or frozen cranberry


    A tart, ruby-red coloured berry which grows wild on shrubs throughout northern Europe and North…


  1. Heat the oil in a large pan. Add the onions and fry, stirring every now and then, for about 10 mins, until they start to caramelise. Stir in the cloves, then add the cabbage and continue cooking, stirring more frequently this time, until the cabbage starts to soften.

  2. Pour in the stock, add the vinegar and sugar, then cover and cook for 10 mins.

  3. Stir in the cranberries and cook for 10 mins more. Cool and keep in the fridge for up to 4 days, or freeze for 1 month. Thaw in the fridge overnight. Reheat until very hot before serving.

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Comments, questions and tips

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Jessica Sey
29th Nov, 2019
Used some frozen redcurrants and added a cooking apple. I omitted the was liquidy enough with just the vinegar and veg/friuit and I think the stock would have ruined the lovely stickyness of it. Also added black pepper. I added a lot more allspice than the recipe as my neglected bottle was a little tasteless as it had a use by date of 2011....only 8 years out of date!! All-in-all a good base recipe to adjust to personal taste.
18th Jan, 2014
Used up the last of my fresh cranberries from Christmas (they've been happily sitting in the fridge for weeks!). The red cabbage was transformed, even though I didn't put the sugar in.
howzy64's picture
15th Feb, 2013
I used frozen whole cranberries because I already had them. They are slightly sharp in flavour and I'll try raisins or sultanas next time. Also used 2 whole cloves whilst halving all other ingredients as I feared too much clove would spoil the flavour. Seemed about right. Will probably cook this and variations of this again. Great recipe!
Mary Miller's picture
Mary Miller
5th Jan, 2013
Absolutely wonderful, easy to make and freezes well too. Like others I used whole cloves instaed of ground cloves and flavour was great.
3rd Jan, 2013
By Jove this is lovely. Had it Xmas day with leftovers to freeze. Ace
27th Dec, 2012
I agree with Beagle - cloves were much too strong and for me, and spoilt the flavour completely. Usually, Red cabbage is one of my favourite parts of the meal, but this time, I binned it. I've given it 1 star, just so that the rating is there, but frankly, it was zero stars for me. Sorry
4th Nov, 2012
I left out the cloves and substituted redcurrants for the cranberries (I have bags of them in the freezer). They worked very well -a nice sharp contrast to the sugar.
25th Sep, 2012
I was disappointed with this recipe. Not used cloves in cooking before and I won't be again. For me the cloves taste was too strong and overpowered all the other lovely flavours (and I even used less than the recipe stated). Will be looking for another red cabbage recipe.
kasiakoczwara's picture
28th Apr, 2012
used dried cranberries as well, soaked in hot water - love it! oh, and it freezes really well, so can make in advance.
10th Mar, 2012
This is lovely way to have red cabbage, not keen on the cloves so didn't put in, but still wonderful.


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28th Dec, 2013
I suggest that you add all 100g of sugar suggested in this recipe. I thought it seemed too much, and added about 1/3rd less. I was wrong, and my cabbage was slightly sour (in the vinegar sense of sweet and sour). I would do this again, as red cabbage brightens up the plate with a roast dinner. I used frozen (defrosted) cranberries, and used the rest to make my own cranberry sauce. Hope this helps.
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