Today I’m going to show you how to grill cabbage. As a kid growing up, my dad would make grilled cabbage, it always turned out so good. He would core it, add in some butter and spices, wrap it in tin foil and throw it on the grill. I also have a neighbor who makes it often by quartering it and putting it in an aluminum pan with butter and spices.
Both those methods will make for some good grilled cabbage, but I’m going to show you how to make it with a bit of a twist. We aren’t going to quarter it, or wrap it in foil; we are going to fill it with some bacon, onions, BBQ sauce and butter. Believe me, it turns out amazing.
Typically I use a green cabbage for grilling, but if you want go ahead and use a red cabbage. Get one that is about medium size, I grow them in the garden, so I grab them from there. You can find them easy at farmers markets or your grocery store. You’re going to need a few other things to stuff this bad boy. You’ll need a half a stick of butter, 4 slices of bacon cut into ¼ inch slivers, a small onion finely chopped, and a ¼ cup of your favorite barbecue sauce.
Preparing the cabbage is pretty quick and easy. First clean up your cabbage, and then cut out the core. You are going to want to cut about a 3 inch diameter circle when you cut out the core. The piece you cut out should look like a cone. This spot is where we are going to put in our stuffing.
The cabbage will not stand upright on its own when we fill it and grill it, so we are going to create a little stand to hold it upright. Using some crumpled up aluminum foil create a 3 inch diameter ring to set the cabbage on. Now we can stuff the cabbage without it falling over. First though we need to cook up our onions and bacon.
Melt a tablespoon of butter in a skillet over medium heat. Add in the bacon and onion. Cook it for about 3 to 5 minutes; at this point it should be starting to get brown. Drain the dripping from the bacon and onion, and be sure to reserve the dripping as we will be using them. Stir the barbecue sauce into the bacon onion mixture, and then spoon it into the cabbage cavity. Cut the remaining butter into chunks and put it on top of the bacon onion mixture. Baste the outside of the cabbage with the bacon drippings you reserved using a silicon basting brush like this. Season with a bit of salt and pepper.
We are going to add a bit of smoke to this cabbage, so you are going to need about 2 cups of wood chips that are soaked in water for about 1 hour. You can use whatever wood you would like. I use apple, hickory, and mesquite often. Here is a nice variety pack if you need some.
Once everything is prepared set up your gas your charcoal grill for indirect grilling with medium heat. If you are using a charcoal grill put an aluminum drip pan in the center and place the coals on the sides. If you are using a gas grill, not to worry, you can smoke with it too. You just need to get one of these. Add the wood chips to the coals or into the smoker box, and place the cabbage on the grill away from the heat. Make sure you place it on the aluminum foil ring you created to keep it upright.
You are going to grill the cabbage until it is really tender. You should be able to easily pierce it with a skewer it will take around 1 to 1 ½ hours. Once it is done, take it off the grill using a pair of long tongs like these and peel off any charred or dried out outside leaves. Slice it into wedges and serve.
That is how to grill cabbage that turns out really good. It looks as amazing as it tastes. If you want you can also barbecue cabbage on a smoker. It will just take longer. At 225F you would cook it for around 2 ½ to 3 hours. Also feel free to experiment with the fillings. Diced sausages or chorizo is also really good in the cabbage.