This cabbage and ground beef casserole is a family favorite – a recipe we’ve been making for decades. You’ll be shocked at how simple it is to make! Just 5 main ingredients + seasonings.

Cabbage and ground beef casserole: Affordable. Make delicious use out of cheap and versatile cabbage!

I am always thrilled to share a recipe that meets the following criteria:

  • It’s super easy to make
  • It has a short and simple ingredient list
  • It’s incredibly cheap

This cabbage and ground beef possible meets all of these criteria. And it happens to be incredibly delicious. There’s something about the mix of seasoned ground beef, soft and buttery cabbage, and a creamy tomato sauce that just works.

Maybe that’s why we ate this hotdish about once a week growing up!

The end result is delicious: a savory, sloppy joe-like bottom, a layer of tender cabbage, and a creamy tomato sauce on top.

Ingredient List

Cabbage and ground beef casserole: Only 5 main ingredients + seasonings make up this affordable casserole recipe.

The ingredient list for this cabbage casserole recipe is short and affordable – only 5 main ingredients + a few basic seasonings and spices that most people have stocked in their kitchen:

  • Cabbage: The namesake of this recipe is cabbage – basic green cabbage. To save money, purchase a head of cabbage and chop it up yourself instead of buying a package of coleslaw mix. This way, you’ll be able to cut the cabbage into the recommended postage stamp-sized pieces, which is optimal for this recipe.
  • Ground beef: Lean ground beef – 85% or 90% – is ideal for this recipe. The ground beef is browned with onions before placing in the casserole dish.
  • Onion: Use one large onion or 2 small onions for this casserole.
  • Tomato soup: We’ve always used Campbell’s Tomato Soup for this recipe. While you could potentially substitute tomato sauce if that’s what you have on hand, I do recommend sticking with the classic tomato soup for best results.
  • Half-and-half: The tomato soup is mixed with half-and-half to make it creamier and richer. This mixture is poured over the ground beef and cabbage layers.
  • Spices and flavorings: Brown sugar is added to the creamy tomato topping – if you’re not a fan of sweeter sauces (think standard ketchup or BBQ sauce) you can leave it out. Additionally, this casserole is seasoned with Worcestershire sauce, onion powder, garlic powder, salt and black pepper.

Cabbage and ground beef casserole: Just 5 main ingredients + seasonings.

Variations To Try

Adaptable recipes can help you save money. How? By making recipes that are adaptable, you can use ingredients you already have on hand instead of going to the grocery store and spending more money.

Or, you can use up odds-and-ends in your fridge or freezer that can be tossed into the dish. Here are a few variations to try:

  • Add some extra veggies above the ground beef layer (sweet corn, green bell peppers, cauliflower rice)
  • Add a small can of green chilis to the ground beef-onion mixture for a hint of spice
  • Add some white rice or brown rice to the ground beef mixture
  • Mix some sour cream into the ground beef mixture to make a creamier casserole
  • Use lean ground turkey instead of ground beef
  • Add some shredded mozzarella cheese or cheddar cheese on the top layer
  • Use different spices that those recommended (Add some parsley, use Italian seasoning – or maybe even Cajun seasoning!)

If possible, try this recipe as written the first time – and once you find out if you like it (don’t worry, you will), start experimenting with variations.

How To Make This Ground Beef Casserole

Scroll down for detailed recipe for cabbage and ground beef casserole. But here’s the method, in a nutshell:

  • Brown ground beef and onions over medium heat in a large skillet or frying pan. The ground beef is seasoned at this point. Place browned ground beef in the bottom of a large casserole dish or Dutch oven.

Brown the ground beef and onion.

  • Remove outer cabbage leaves. Chop cabbage into postage stamp-sized pieces. You’ll want about 9 to 10 cups of loosely packed cabbage pieces. Place cabbage over ground beef.
  • Combine tomato soup, half-and-half, and spices. Pour over cabbage.
  • Cover and bake at 375F for about 50 to 55 minutes.

Cabbage and ground beef casserole, ready to bake. Click through for detailed recipe.

All in all, this recipe takes about 15 to 20 minutes of prep time. You can prep this recipe ahead of time – up to a day in advance: Assemble the ground beef and cabbage in a casserole dish and cover. Right before baking, top with the tomato sauce.

Cabbage and ground beef casserole, ready to eat. Click through for recipe.

More Great Cabbage Recipes

If you’re a cabbage fan, I have a lot of great inspiration for you. You can buy a large green cabbage and use it to make 2 or 3 cabbage-based recipes! One average-sized cabbage yields about 20 cups of chopped cabbage.

Cabbage is such an affordable food and can be prepared in a million different delicious ways. In addition to this cabbage and ground beef casserole, here are some other great recipes to try:

Grocery prices are soaring. If you’re looking to save money on food, you have to know my all-time favorite tip: Incorporating more budget-friendly foods into your meal planning.

Take, for example, cabbage. Cabbage is extreme affordable and versatile. You can find cabbage for 85 cents per pound at ALDI. One cabbage can be used as the base of many meals for you or your family. That’s one humble cabbage that costs about $3.00.

Then, start experimenting beyond cabbage. Find new recipes the whole family will love that call for affordable ingredients like frozen vegetables, carrots, potatoes, rice, ground turkey, ground beef, eggs, beans, and lentils.

Without trying too hard, you’ll start saving money naturally on food. It’s really that simple. Take a look around Cheap Recipe Blog to find more affordable recipes you like – or browse the millions of cheap recipes out there on the internet.

Sign up for email alerts to find out when new cheap recipes go live. And good luck on your money-saving journey!

Cabbage and ground beef casserole: Just 5 main ingredients + seasonings.

Cabbage and Ground Beef Casserole

Yield: 4 to 5 servings
Prep Time: 20 minutes
Cook Time: 50 minutes
Total Time: 1 hour 10 minutes

Prep-ahead instructions: Prepare ground beef and cabbage layers. Cover and refrigerate. Right before baking, pour on the tomato soup sauce.


  • 1 lb. ground beef (85% or 90% lean)
  • 1 yellow onion, chopped
  •  1 teaspoon garlic powder, divided
  • 1 teaspoon onion powder, divided
  • Salt and pepper
  • 2 teaspoons Worcestershire sauce
  • 8 to 9 cups coarsely chopped cabbage
  • 1 can tomato soup (10.75 oz)
  • 1/2 cup half-and-half (or whole milk)
  • 2 teaspoons brown sugar


  1. Preheat oven to 375F. In a large sklilet over medium-high heat, brown ground beef and onions. Chop the meat up as you cook it, adding 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder, 1/2 teaspoon onion powder, salt and pepper, and Worcestershire sauce, until browned.
  2. Place ground beef mixture at the bottom of a 9 x 13-inch casserole dish or Dutch oven. Top with cabbage.
  3. In a medium mixing bowl, combine tomato soup, half-and-half-, 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder, 1/2 teaspoon onion powder, brown sugar, salt and pepper. Pour over the cabbage mixture.
  4. Cover loosely with tin foil and bake for 50 to 55 minutes.

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