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    1. You can. I mention it in the tips section 😊 You bake it for 1 hour instead of cooking on the stove. Make sure to add more liquid to the oven-safe pot and place cabbage leaves on the top to prevent the dish from burning and keep the moisture in. I haven’t tried this method personally, but I’ve seen others do it with great success. Hope that helps!

  1. All I have is smoked paprika – would that work in place of sweet paprika? If not what would be a good substitute to avoid going to the store!

    1. Smoked paprika will work fine. You’ll just have a slightly different flavour (smokey) but still delicious 🙂 Let me know how you go!

  2. So the rice goes in raw, and cooks inside the dish? Is that correct? My Mom used to make a non vegan version of this dish, and I think she lightly cooked the rice, and it finished inside the dish.

    1. Yes, that’s right. As it cooks for 1.5 hours and you have liquid that will help cook it. If you prefer, you can do it using your mother’s method, but in this recipe, it’s a step you can skip.

  3. Made this last night for the second time in a week – BIG hit! Thank you for this amazing healthy recipe, it’ll be part of regular rotation for sure. for our second time, we doubled the sauce ingredients (used a 28 oz can of tomatoes)….. the tomato sauce is so delicious that everyone wanted more!

  4. It would be helpful to know what can sizes are used in this recipe?
    For example, canned tomatoes come in different sizes, i.e. 14 oz, 28 oz, etc.

  5. I tried a dish with chickpeas and bulgur which I am keen to recreate and I was so happy to see that you use whole cabbage leaves instead of boiling a whole cabbage and peeling leaves off as and when which I find quite daunting! I think this is also a better idea -because it means you can still use the rest of the cabbage in any way you want – kimchi, coleslaw, steak etc..so works for me!! Also might just be me on this one but peeling the leaves off the cabbage made me realise what a beautiful vegetable it is!

    1. Do you have any nutritional information for this? Sorry if I missed it… I just couldn’t find any. Thanks!

  6. Hi – this recipe looks great! It is a savory version, and my grandmother always made hers sweet and sour, with golden raisins. What would you add to the sauce for that? Any ideas? Thanks so much, Michele

    1. So sorry Michele! I only saw this comment now. I’m not sure I understand the question. To make it sweet and sour? I’ve never had it like that before. I would imagine adding some form of sugar for the sweet part and then something acidic like lemon or apple cider vinegar for the sour part would do the trick? As I said, I haven’t made it like this before, but this is what I would instinctively try for those flavours. Good luck!

  7. I realize I’m late to the party BUT i made these tonight and it’s the first time I’ve made cabbage rolls that didn’t fall apart! I changed the recipe slightly- along with rice and lentils I added TVP re-hydrated with the cabbage water. I spiced my mixture with thyme, red pepper, and black pepper. I also used purple cabbage, but only because I think it’s beautiful.
    Thank you for such a lovely recipe!

  8. It’s important to note that lentils are kitniyot, which are legumes and are not permitted to Ashkenazim–Jews from Europe. Sephardic and Middle East Jews are allowed to eat kiyniyot.

    1. i believe what you are referring to is at passover time. the rest of the year kitniyot are permitted for ashkenazim. for a kitniyot free version, perhaps one could sub quinoa for the rice and sauted mushrooms for the lentils.

  9. I tried it with a can of green lentils added basil and marjoram. Started the sauce and then put the cabbage rolls and sauce into the crock pot for the day. It tasted great. Thanks for a great recipe

  10. Thank you for this recipe, it was delicious! I added garam masala as my seasoning and LOVED it! I will be adding more tomatoes/sauce next time just because I really liked it.

    1. It won’t be overly similar as I normally use red lentils for more dishes like soups and curries. It won’t mess with the rolls themselves but won’t have the same texture. French lentils would work better. Let me know how you go!

  11. Made these for dinner tonight. Next time, I’ll double the sauce and use a 28 oz can of tomatoes.

    I put the sauce in a skillet, and then put the stuffed cabbage on top. Would have been nice to put more sauce on top of the stuffed cabbage.

    Thank you very much for the recipe. I’ll have to check out more of your recipes!

  12. Hi! Thank you so much for posting this recipe! My husband is from Croatia and we eat mostly European foods. I have recently started a plant based food diet with no meat, dairy, or eggs and have been searching for recipes like sarma and pita that are dairy free and meatless. I really appreciate being able to make one of our staple foods minus the meat! I can’t wait to make it for my husband!

    1. Hi Alison, thanks so much for reaching out! Yes, they are sometimes tricky foods to make plant based but there is always a way! If you wanted to make them more like sarma, I would use fermented cabbage leaves (sauerkraut)and maybe even soy mince (organic) to give it a more authentic flavour. This will be nice but if you’re trying to transition, this version may be the closest to the traditional one 🙂 I have to get more recipes and inspiration from my parents 🙂 Hope you both enjoy it and good luck on your plant based journey! Masa x

  13. Hi, I was wondering if these can be frozen? (trying to get ahead on my Christmas cooking) If they can be frozen, would you cook them first, freeze and take them out of the freezer a day ahead and warm in the oven or????

  14. Where I’m from (well, not me per se, but my Polish anscestors) these are called golabki (say guh-whoomp-key) and they are made with meat, usually ground beef and pork. I don’t like meat but never thought to make them with something like lentils (or I am now thinking minced mushrooms actually). I love the sauce and cabbage, though I also embellish with bay leaf, summer savory or thyme, and usually add some shredded carrot for moisture and color. If anyone is looking for a good brand of diced tomatoes and/or pureed for sauce, I like Pomi. It comes in a box, no BPA or anything artificial, 100% Italian tomatoes. Good stuff. Thanks for this post!

    1. Hi Faith 🙂 I’ve heard that a few times now, people with a Polish background seem to eat them very frequently! Sounds very similar to sarma. Minced mushrooms sounds amazing! Mmmm….drool. Your version sounds delicious also. Thanks for sharing the tip! I always buy BPA free canned foods but a tetra pack is even better. I can get them at one health food store here – Ceres Organics is the brand.

    1. Hi Lisa, I like to get the whole ones and them dice them myself. I prefer to know that I am getting. Either whole or diced would be best 🙂 If tomatoes are in season where you are, beautiful fresh ones are also great!

        1. Made them with quite a few embellishments. Used fire roasted tomatoes, quinoa, safflower oil. Added basil, oregano, a little garlic, Field Roast (vegetarian) sausage, vegetable stock instead of water to the sauce and then I baked them! in the oven now. Cannot wait to taste them; they smell and look delicious!