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Golubtsy recipe

Golubtsy recipe

3 ratings

Comforting beef parcels wrapped in fresh cabbage leaves and smothered in a fragrant tomato sauce. Golubtsy is a traditional homemade dish popular with families across Eastern Europe and Russia. See method

  • Serves 4
  • 20 mins to prepare and 40 mins to cook
  • 556 calories / serving


For the stuffing

  • 1 large head of cabbage or 2 small cabbages
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 onion, finely chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic, crushed
  • 2 medium carrots, peeled and grated
  • 125g (4 oz) long grain rice, cooked
  • 2tsp sweet paprika
  • 2 tbsp parsley, chopped
  • 500g (1lb) minced beef (or veal or pork)

For the sauce

  • 500g (1lb) passata
  • 500ml chicken stock
  • 1 bay leaf
  • Juice of 1 lemon

To serve

  • 100ml (3½ fl oz) sour cream
  • 2 tbsp dill, roughly chopped
White rice can always be swapped for brown (check cooking instructions for timings)

Each serving contains

  • Energy

  • Fat

    33g 47%
  • Saturates

    13g 65%
  • Sugars

    21g 24%
  • Salt

    2.4g 39%

of the reference intake
Carbohydrate 34.2g Protein 31.8g Fibre 9.4g


  1. Preheat the oven to gas 3, 160°C fan 140°C.
  2. Remove the core from the cabbage and put into a large pot of boiling water for 10 minutes or until softened. Remove from the pot and run under cold water to cool.
  3. Separate the leaves and remove the stalks. Cut each of the larger leaves in half. Trim the smaller leaves into small rounds. You will need around 16 pieces.
  4. Heat the olive oil over a medium heat, add the onion and garlic and cook until translucent. Remove from the heat and allow to cool slightly.
  5. Mix with the grated carrots, rice, paprika, parsley, and the meat and season well. 
  6. Place the passata, chicken stock and bay leaf in a saucepan and bring to the boil. Simmer for 2-3 minutes, remove from the heat and stir in the lemon juice.
  7. Place heaped tablespoons of the minced beef and pork mixture onto the base of each piece of cabbage. Roll the leaf over its stuffing and tuck the sides in to contain the mixture.
  8. Roll each one firmly to the end of each leaf. Put them in a casserole dish, pour over the sauce, cover and cook for 40 minutes.
  9. Remove from the oven and serve with sour cream and chopped dill.

See more Eastern European recipes.

For top tips on protecting you and your family when preparing raw meat and poultry, visit Food Safety in the Home.

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