Canning Pickled Red Cabbage Recipe – Step-by-step How To Can Red Cabbage

Greetings from the acidic, crispy, and wonderfully pickled red cabbage! You’ve arrived at the correct spot if you’ve ever wanted to preserve this beautiful vegetable’s bright taste all year. This step-by-step tutorial will walk you through the canning pickled red cabbage process, allowing you to enjoy its delicious flavor and nutrient-dense benefits long after its prime season. So let’s get ready to roll up our sleeves and start this delicious voyage of preserving red cabbage!

Preparing red cabbage for canning process

One of my favorite culinary endeavors is canning red cabbage, and I can’t wait to share my viewpoint and experiences with you. So let’s explore the fascinating world of pickling!

For the best pickle jar, I suggest choosing red cabbage with vivid, deep crimson or purple leaves
For the best pickle jar, I suggest choosing red cabbage with vivid, deep crimson or purple leaves

I’ve discovered it’s better to follow my gut feelings and depend on my senses when selecting red cabbage for preservation. Like choosing the ideal fruit, feeling the texture of the cabbage is important; it should be solid and thick, with a pleasing crunch when you bite into it. I avoid spongy or squishy cabbage since it won’t provide the same amazing pickled results.

Let’s also discuss colors! It’s like love at first sight when I see a fresh red cabbage with vivid, deep crimson or purple leaves. The cabbage’s vibrant color speaks words about its freshness and potential for superb pickling. We want the nicest cabbage for our pickling trip. Thus, I always avoid any cabbage with wilting or browning leaves.

Now, I’ll tell you a little secret: removing those outer leaves isn’t simply for aesthetic reasons. It’s similar to removing old layers to expose hidden beauty. Additionally, environmental exposure might require those outer leaves to be in better condition. Therefore it’s best to leave them out of our picking process.

Every cooking venture must adhere to strict hygiene standards, and pickled red cabbage is no different. No matter where the cabbage comes from, I always take the time to wash and scrub it carefully. First and foremost, no? Our pickled cabbage is safe to eat and delicious thanks to clean cabbage.

Chopping those crunchy leaves into thin slices
Chopping those crunchy leaves into thin slices

Let’s discuss slicing the cabbage now. It is fun to chop and cut those colorful leaves into lovely ribbons! Although slicing the cabbage into thin or bite-sized pieces is optional, I strongly advise it. In this manner, the pickling brine can perform its magic and impart delicious tastes to every crevice.

It’s like laying a flavor foundation for our pickling journey by layering salt on top of the cabbage. It’s like adding love and attention to every layer of our trip. Each mouthful of our pickled red cabbage will be filled with the ideal harmony of tastes thanks to the salt.

The waiting game is one thing I’ve discovered to be essential. The secret is to be patient! Like marinating meat, letting the cabbage sit in the refrigerator for 24 hours allows the flavors to meld and increase, creating a savory side dish.

When it comes time to rinse the pickled red cabbage, it’s as though rinsing away any extra salt to reveal the taste’s actual essence. The six hours of waiting will put your resolve to the test, but trust me – it will be worthwhile!

Mixing the brine for pickled red cabbage 

Like any other pickling recipes, brine is the soul of canning pickled red cabbage
Like any other pickling recipes, brine is the soul of canning pickled red cabbage

Returning to the realm of pickled red cabbage, let’s enthusiastically and creatively investigate this brine concoction.

Imagine yourself in your kitchen, about to go on a culinary journey that will take your pickled red cabbage to a new level of deliciousness. Like me when I first tried this brine concoction, you have your ingredients ready and feel daring.

You might be asking, “Why use red wine vinegar?” now. I observed that red wine vinegar has a softer acidity, making it the ideal option for individuals who want a tang that isn’t as strong. I’ve tried various kinds of vinegar, so believe me when I say that red wine vinegar is the best.

Finally, let’s discuss those mustard seeds! Oh, I love it when people add them to the brine. They add a somewhat smoky and earthy scent, elevating your pickled red cabbage to a whole new level. Who doesn’t enjoy a little spice in their food, after all? Although it is entirely optional, I strongly advise trying it!

Now, I’m all in favor of finding the ideal balance regarding sweetness. We are adding brown sugar to the mixture as a result. The tanginess of the vinegar, the warmth of the mustard seeds, and the hint of sweetness from the brown sugar combine to create a delicate ballet of tastes. Simply delicious, that is!

Pay attention to the bouquet garni, the show’s star! I enjoy experimenting with various spices and herbs to make my distinctive aroma. Thyme, bay leaves, peppercorns, and other herbs can be added. You have an opportunity to unleash your creativity in the kitchen!

It’s time to let the magic unfold after all the ingredients are in the pot. I typically simmer the mixture for 5 minutes at a low boil. This step is essential because it allows the flavors to blend and the bouquet garni’s lovely scents to permeate the brine. You can count on the kitchen to smell like a gourmet haven.

After my testing, I can confidently tell that this brine mixture raises the bar for pickled red cabbage. Each bite is a delicious burst of flavor in your mouth because the tastes are so well-balanced and harmonious. You’ll become the town’s pickling hero, and your friends and family will be pleading for you for your secret recipe!

Water bath canning pickled red cabbage

From my experience, pickling is not just a method of preserving vegetables; it’s an opportunity to infuse them with amazing flavors that can elevate any dish. The combination of tanginess, crunch, and spice is simply irresistible when it comes to pickled red cabbage.

I’m a huge fan of using Ball Mason jars for canning. They have proven to be reliable and top-notch in quality. When investing time and effort into making something as delightful as pickled red cabbage, you want to ensure you’re using the best jars to preserve your creation for as long as possible.

Pack cabbage into jars

Done with your delicious brine already, let's pack your sliced red cabbage into jar for canning process
Done with your delicious brine already, let’s pack your sliced red cabbage into jar for canning process

Let’s now discuss how to fill the jars with cabbage. The optimum filling of each jar is crucial for the canning process. You may make the most of the space in the jar by gently pushing the cabbage down, leaving just enough room for the brine. In each jar, you’ll achieve the ideal ratio of veggies to brine in this way.

Although it might seem minor, eliminating air bubbles is essential for optimum preservation. Those annoying bubbles can produce air pockets, which might cause food to deteriorate. Your pickled red cabbage will remain tasty and fresh for longer if you gently tap the jars to release the trapped air.

Pour slow boiled pickle brine into jars

Pouring tasty brine mixture into jars
Pouring tasty brine mixture into jars

Keep in mind that there are no limits to inventiveness when it comes to pickling. Be bold and try out new herbs and spices. Add a little garlic for added flavor or a cinnamon stick for a cozy and fragrant touch. Your canvas is the world of pickles, and you are the artist!

Please have fun and follow your palate as you embark on your pickling journey, armed with your wide-mouth Ball Mason jars and the ideal brine. When you serve your homemade pickled red cabbage to friends and family, you’ll see their cheeks light up with excitement.

The brine is where the magic happens when it comes to food! The proper proportion of the components may make a difference. I suggest mixing white vinegar with sugar to obtain the ideal balance of sweet and sour flavors. However, because pickling is about adjusting tastes to suit your palate, feel free to change the sweetness to your satisfaction.

My go-to secret ingredient when it comes to spices is mustard seeds. They not only give the jar a taste boost, but they also make a lovely aesthetic contrast. It looks like little golden particles of delectableness scattered among the vivid red cabbage. It’s a pleasure for the taste senses and the sight!

Water bath

Final stuff and your canning pickled red cabbage is about ready to serve
Final stuff and your canning pickled red cabbage is about ready to serve

Let’s dive deeper into the wonderful world of water bath canning pickled red cabbage and explore the joys and benefits of this preservation technique. As a pickling enthusiast, I can’t help but share my passion and experiences with you!

Picture this: it’s a crisp autumn day, and the farmers’ market is brimming with beautiful, vibrant red cabbages. You know that these seasonal gems won’t be around forever, but fear not! With water bath canning, you can capture the essence of this moment and enjoy your pickled red cabbage all year long.

When I first began water bath canning, I had excitement and minor trepidation. The procedure has the air of an enigmatic culinary ritual. But after my first successful batch, I was satisfied like any other. It’s like saving a portion of my favorite season for upcoming cravings.

My experiences with canning have taught me the value of accuracy and close attention to detail. For a secure seal, ensure the jars are completely immersed at least an inch below water level throughout the boiling procedure. I usually check the water level twice and change the pot size as necessary. Safety precautions are essential, but don’t worry; with experience, they become second nature.

Proceed boiling can process for at least 20 minutes and remember to modify the boiling time if you are living at higher altitude, take a look at this chart which may helps you during boiling water bath process.

Feet Above Sea LevelIncrease in Processing Time
1,001-3,0005 minutes
3,001-6,00010 minutes
6,001-8,00015 minutes
8,001-10,00020 minutes
Source: Altitude Adjustments for Home Canning

Remember the magic that occurs while boiling, too. Observing the bubbles emerging from under the lids is like seeing nature’s endorsement. You know your pickled cabbage is being safely preserved for months when this happens.

Once pickled red cabbage jars have been boiled for the required time, DO NOT lift them from the canner right away, a sudden change in temperature may leave cracks on jar, and this is not good at all, spoilage may happen! Let them cool for 5-10 minutes before lifting out.

And woala, your homemade canned pickled red cabbage is ready to stock on your pantry now!

I learned a little-known fact: red cabbage pickles make wonderful presents! A great approach to promoting happiness and building relationships via food is to share your handmade delights with friends and family. I promise that everyone will be amazed at your canning skills!

You’ll find yourself excitedly anticipating the day you can open a jar of homemade pickled red cabbage as your pickling abilities advance. The explosion of acidic, crispy, and savory delight will return pleasant memories of the farmers’ market.

More pickling canning recipes to discover

The red cabbage dish perfectly balances sweet and tangy flavors, making it a delicious side for meaty meals. It’s a versatile option to fight culinary boredom. Leftovers stay fresh, making them great for meal prep. Here are some delicious recipes to try:

Canning Pickled Red Cabbage Recipe – Step-by-step How To Can Red Cabbage

Canning Pickled Red Cabbage Recipe

Dani García
Fresh, crunchy canning pickled red cabbage to savour, share with friends and diversify your pantry
Prep Time 1 day 6 hours 10 minutes
Cook Time 10 minutes
Canning Time 20 minutes
Total Time 1 day 6 hours 40 minutes


  • 1 Water Bath Canner
  • Mason Jars
  • Canning Lids
  • Jar Lifter


  • Red cabbage
  • Salt
  • Red wine vinegar
  • Mustard seeds optional
  • Brown sugar
  • Bouquet garni combination of various spices and herbs like thyme, bay leaves, peppercorns, etc.
  • Water


Preparing Red Cabbage

  • Choose a solid and thick cabbage with a pleasing crunch when bitten into
  • Remove any outer leaves that are not in good condition
  • Wash and scrub the cabbage carefully to ensure it’s clean and safe to eat
  • Slicing the Cabbage
  • Chop the colorful leaves into lovely ribbons, preferably thin or bite-sized pieces
  • Layer salt on the cabbage to enhance flavor and allow the brine to work its magic
  • Let the cabbage sit in the refrigerator for 24 hours to allow the flavors to meld and develop
  • Rinse the pickled cabbage after waiting for about 6 hours to remove excess salt and reveal the true essence of the taste

Preparing The Brine

  • Use red wine vinegar for a softer acidity and a milder tang
  • Consider adding mustard seeds for a smoky and earthy scent
  • Add brown sugar to achieve a delicate balance of tanginess, warmth, and sweetness
  • Experiment with different spices and herbs to create a unique aroma in the bouquet garni
  • Mix all the ingredients in a pot and simmer for 5 minutes at a low boil to blend the flavors and release the bouquet garni’s lovely scents

Water Bath Canning

  • Carefully transfer the pickled cabbage and the brine into clean, sterilized canning jars
  • Ensure there is enough headspace, and seal the jars with lids and bands
  • Process the jars in a water bath canner according to safe canning guidelines for 20 minutes (modify based on altitute chart)
  • Once the canning process is complete, let the jars cool and check for proper seals
  • Label the sealed jars with the date and store them in a cool, dark place for long-term preservation


  • Always follow proper canning procedures and use reliable recipes.
  • Adjust processing times for your altitude to ensure safe canning.
  • Discard any jars with signs of spoilage or unsealed lids.
  • Ensure all canning equipment is thoroughly cleaned and sanitized before use.
  • Cut the cabbage into uniform, thin slices to ensure even pickling.
  • Experiment with spices and herbs to customize the flavor of your pickled red cabbage.
  • Add garlic, ginger, or chili peppers for extra kick and complexity.
  • Let the pickled red cabbage sit for at least two weeks before opening to allow flavors to develop.

© Manzanillanyc

Dani García


Welcome to Manzanilla

Thanks for spending time and following along Dani García’s sharings. You will find blowing cuisine, traditional Spanish tapas or variety of dishes with professional techniques used by renowned chef Garcia.

Join us on discovering spanish culinary and canning experience

Dani García
Dani García

Andalusian, Michelin three-starred chief Dani García is the owner of Manzanilla Spanish Brasserie located in the heart of New York City. Chef Garcia's modernist expertise and innovative techniques promise a thrilling culinary experience.

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