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Golubtsi Recipe; A classic Ukrainian food

Our family loves these stuffed cabbage rolls. This step-by-step recipe makes it so easy! Absolutely delicious recipe for these cabbage rolls (golubtsi)

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Its pronounced “golubtsy”or “goloobsti.” It’s also known as stuffed cabbage, but not like any stuffed cabbage you’ve ever had. This is something every Russian and Ukrainian family makes. This is my Mama-in-law’s recipe. It tastes just like my moms; PERFECT!!

Golubtsi take a lot of time if you are making the full recipe (2 hours to prep and stuff the cabbage, then 1 to 2 hours to cook). By “family size,” I mean; Mom, Dad and 12 kids (That many kids is not uncommon in the land of Ukraine – in fact, I can name off several families that have 10 or more kids). My point is, it makes a full pot.

I will say this: Golubtsi are worth the trouble! You can make the whole batch and then freeze it in portions using freezer safe tupperware. That’s what I did and you honestly can’t tell the difference in taste whether you saute up the fresh or thawed golubtsi.

Ingredients for Golubtsi:

6 cups medium grain cooked white rice (from 2 cups uncooked rice – instructions below)
2 Medium Cabbages
1 pound ground pork
1 pound ground turkey
2 large eggs
6 medium carrots, grated (4 for meat mix, 2 for “Podliva” sauce)
2 cups of your favorite mushroom marinara sauce
1/4 cup white vinegar
Olive oil
1 Tbsp butter
1 Tbsp sour cream
1 tsp Mrs. Dash, or your favorite salt-free seasoning
Salt

Our family loves these stuffed cabbage rolls. This step-by-step recipe makes it so easy! Absolutely delicious recipe for these cabbage rolls (golubtsi)

Watch How to make Golubtsy:

Cooking Rice and Cabbage

1. Rinse 2 cups white rice and cook in 3 1/2 cups water with 2 Tbsp olive oil and 1 tsp salt. Cover and simmer for about 20 minutes, or until all the water is absorbed. Or do the same thing in a rice maker.

2. Fill 2/3 of  large soup pot with water. Bring to a boil. Add 1/2 Tbsp salt and 4 Tbsp vinegar.

Our family loves these stuffed cabbage rolls. This step-by-step recipe makes it so easy! Absolutely delicious recipe for these cabbage rolls (golubtsi)

3. Peal and discard the top two leaves from each cabbage. Use a knife to cut out the core of each cabbage (see picture). Put first cabbage in water, cork down, for about 5 minutes, then rotate and continue cooking another 5-6 min. You will pull off leaves as they begin to soften.

The leaves will cook faster if they are pulled apart. Remove the leaves to a platter to cool when they are done. You know they are done when they are soft and yellowish and larger leaves will turn a dull green. Repeat with the second cabbage, adding more water if needed.

Our family loves these stuffed cabbage rolls. This step-by-step recipe makes it so easy! Absolutely delicious recipe for these cabbage rolls (golubtsi)

Our family loves these stuffed cabbage rolls. This step-by-step recipe makes it so easy! Absolutely delicious recipe for these cabbage rolls (golubtsi)

Our family loves these stuffed cabbage rolls. This step-by-step recipe makes it so easy! Absolutely delicious recipe for these cabbage rolls (golubtsi)
Reserve about 3-4 cups of water from the pot!

Stuffing/ Meat Mixture Prep

1. Mix ground meats and rice together in a large bowl.

Our family loves these stuffed cabbage rolls. This step-by-step recipe makes it so easy! Absolutely delicious recipe for these cabbage rolls (golubtsi)

2. Grate and saute 4 carrots in approximately 3 Tbsp oil and 1 Tbsp butter over med/high heat. Once they are soft, add 1 cup of mushroom marinara sauce and saute another minute.

Our family loves these stuffed cabbage rolls. This step-by-step recipe makes it so easy! Absolutely delicious recipe for these cabbage rolls (golubtsi)

Our family loves these stuffed cabbage rolls. This step-by-step recipe makes it so easy! Absolutely delicious recipe for these cabbage rolls (golubtsi)

3. Add carrot mixture to rice and meat. Add 2 eggs and 1 Tbsp salt. Mix well (it’s easy to mix with a KitchenAid with a paddle attachment.

Our family loves these stuffed cabbage rolls. This step-by-step recipe makes it so easy! Absolutely delicious recipe for these cabbage rolls (golubtsi)

Cutting & Stuffing Cooked Leaves:

1. Small Leaves: slice off the raised surface of the tough center stem just to flatten the leaf and make it easier to roll. Fill each cabbage leaf with about 2 Tbsp meat mixture. Place the filling over the stem/ bottom portion. Roll like a burrito and stuff both ends in with fingers.

2. Large leaves: cut the leaves in half down the center removing the tough stem portion- you will end up with 2 leaves. Place 2 Tbsp meat mixture at the top of each leaf (or as much as you can fit – leaf sizes vary). Roll the leaf into a cone shape with the thicker part of the leaf at the base and stuff the wide part into the top. As you stuff your cabbage, arrange them either in the same pot you used to cook the cabbage or in a cast iron dutch oven.

Our family loves these stuffed cabbage rolls. This step-by-step recipe makes it so easy! Absolutely delicious recipe for these cabbage rolls (golubtsi)

Our family loves these stuffed cabbage rolls. This step-by-step recipe makes it so easy! Absolutely delicious recipe for these cabbage rolls (golubtsi)

How to make Podliva (Sauce)

1. Heat 2 Tbsp of olive oil. Saute remaining 2 grated carrots with 1 tsp of Mrs. Dash. Stir until soft. Add 1 Tbsp sour cream and 1 cup of mushroom marinara sauce. Saute another minute and remove from heat.

Our family loves these stuffed cabbage rolls. This step-by-step recipe makes it so easy! Absolutely delicious recipe for these cabbage rolls (golubtsi)

2. Pour Podliva over the Golubtsy and add enough reserved water to almost cover goloobtsi (2 1/2 to 3 cups).

Our family loves these stuffed cabbage rolls. This step-by-step recipe makes it so easy! Absolutely delicious recipe for these cabbage rolls (golubtsi)

Our family loves these stuffed cabbage rolls. This step-by-step recipe makes it so easy! Absolutely delicious recipe for these cabbage rolls (golubtsi)

There are 2 ways to Cook these:

1. If using the pot, bring to a light boil, then cover and simmer 40 minutes over medium heat.

2. If using a dutch oven (recommended method), pre-heat the oven to 450˚ F, cover and bake for 20-25 minutes on the bottom third (one step below the center rack). When it bubbles, reduce heat to 350°F and bake 1 hour.

(Click Here to watch our video tutorial)

Golubtsi Recipe; A classic Ukrainian food - Голубцы

4.93 from 52 votes
Prep Time: 2 hours
Cook Time: 1 hour 30 minutes
Total Time: 3 hours 30 minutes
Our family loves these stuffed cabbage rolls. This step-by-step recipe makes it so easy! Absolutely delicious recipe for these cabbage rolls (golubtsi)
These stuffed cabbage rolls are the best I've tried! Cabbage rolls (golubtsi) are made with simple, inexpensive ingredients but are super delicious (and a freezer friendly meal!) My family loves these with sour cream and soft French bread.
Author: Natasha of NatashasKitchen.com
Skill Level: Medium
Cost to Make: $16-$20
Keyword: Golubtsi
Cuisine: Russian, Ukrainian
Course: Main Course
Servings: 12 -16

Ingredients

  • 6 cups medium grain cooked white rice from 2 cups uncooked rice - instructions below
  • 2 Medium Cabbages
  • 1 pound ground pork
  • 1 pound ground turkey
  • 2 large eggs
  • 6 medium carrots grated (4 for meat mix, 2 for "Podliva" sauce)
  • 2 cups of your favorite mushroom marinara sauce
  • 1/4 cup white vinegar
  • Olive oil
  • 1 Tbsp butter
  • 1 Tbsp sour cream
  • 1 tsp Mrs. Dash or your favorite salt-free seasoning
  • Salt

Instructions

How to prep the Rice and Cabbage

  1. Rinse 2 cups white rice and cook in 3 1/2 cups water with 2 Tbsp olive oil and 1 tsp salt. Cover and simmer for about 20 minutes, or until all the water is absorbed. Or do the same thing in a rice maker.
  2. Fill 2/3 of large soup pot with water. Bring to a boil. Add 1/2 Tbsp salt and 4 Tbsp vinegar.
  3. Peal and discard the top two leaves from each cabbage. Use a knife to cut out the core of each cabbage (see picture). Put first cabbage in water, cork down, for about 5 minutes, then rotate and continue cooking another 5-6 min. You will pull off leaves as they begin to soften. The leaves will cook faster if they are pulled apart. Remove the leaves to a platter to cool when they are done. You know they are done when they are soft and yellowish and larger leaves will turn a dull green. Repeat with the second cabbage, adding more water if needed. Reserve about 3-4 cups of water from the pot!

Stuffing/ Meat Mixture Prep

  1. Mix ground meats and rice together in a large bowl.
  2. Grate and saute 4 carrots in approximately 3 Tbsp oil and 1 Tbsp butter over med/high heat. Once they are soft, add 1 cup of mushroom marinara sauce and saute another minute.
  3. Add carrot mixture to rice and meat. Add 2 eggs and 1 Tbsp salt. Mix well.

Cutting & Stuffing Cooked Leaves:

  1. Large leaves: cut the leaves in half down the center removing the tough stem portion- you will end up with 2 leaves. Place 2 Tbsp meat mixture at the top of each leaf (or as much as you can fit - leaf sizes vary). Roll the leaf into a cone shape with the thicker part of the leaf at the base and stuff the wide part into the top. As you stuff your cabbage, arrange them either in the same pot you used to cook the cabbage or in a cast iron dutch oven.
  2. Small Leaves: slice off the raised surface of the tough center stem just to flatten the leaf and make it easier to roll. Fill each cabbage leaf with about 2 Tbsp meat mixture. Place the filling over the stem/ bottom portion. Roll like a burrito and stuff both ends in with fingers.

How to make Podliva (Sauce)

  1. Heat approx. 2 Tbsp of olive oil. Saute remanding 2 grated carrots with 1 tsp of Mrs. Dash. Stir until soft. Add 1 Tbsp sour cream and 1 cup of mushroom marinara sauce. Saute another minute and remove from heat.
  2. Pour Podliva over the Golubtsy and add enough reserved water to almost cover goloobtsi (2 1/2 to 3 cups).

There are 2 ways to Cook these:

  1. If using the pot, bring to a light boil, then cover and simmer 40 minutes over medium heat.
  2. If using a dutch oven (recommended method), cover and bake at 450 ° F for 20-25 minutes on the bottom third (one step below the center rack). When it bubbles, reduce heat to 350°F and bake 1 hour.

 

Our family loves these stuffed cabbage rolls. This step-by-step recipe makes it so easy! Absolutely delicious recipe for these cabbage rolls (golubtsi)

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Natasha Kravchuk

Welcome to my kitchen! I am Natasha, the blogger behind Natasha's Kitchen (since 2009). My husband and I run this blog together and share only our best, family approved and tested recipes with YOU. Thanks for stopping by! We are so happy you're here.

Read more posts by Natasha

Read comments/reviewsAdd comment/review

  • Cmay
    July 15, 2021

    These turned out great!! Had watched my friend from Ukraine make years ago but had never made them myself. Thank you so much!!!

    Reply

    • Natasha's Kitchen
      July 15, 2021

      Hello there, thanks for your great review, glad you finally tried and loved this recipe!

      Reply

  • Rachel
    July 5, 2021

    Apparently I can’t read – I see the instructions for freezing now!
    Thank you!

    Reply

    • Natasha
      July 5, 2021

      I’m glad you found the instructions. I hope you love the stuffed cabbage recipe!

      Reply

  • Rachel
    July 5, 2021

    Thank you for this recipe, I’m excited to try it out!
    Can you share how you go about freezing these? (Before or after cooking them?)

    Reply

  • Tetyana
    March 31, 2021

    Just made them and turned out excellent!!!! Just like my mama’s!!! Natasha, thank you so much for the perfect recepie!

    Reply

    • Natasha's Kitchen
      March 31, 2021

      You are very welcome! I’m so happy to know that you enjoyed the recipe, thank you so much for your good comments and feedback.

      Reply

  • Linde
    February 28, 2021

    This looks delicious! Using marinara sauce does it have an Italian food taste to it?
    Thanks!

    Reply

    • Natasha's Kitchen
      February 28, 2021

      I don’t believe so but you can give this recipe a try and share with us how it goes.

      Reply

  • Tatiana
    January 27, 2021

    Hi Natasha, I want to make those tomorrow, I have a question though. Can I put the cabbage rolls in a baking pan and just cover it with foil? Or does it have to be the pot that you used?

    Reply

    • Natasha
      January 27, 2021

      Hi, yes you can bake this in a casserole dish and cover tightly with foil.

      Reply

  • Barbara
    January 11, 2021

    Thank you for all your wonderful recipes. Look forward to seeing what you post next.

    Reply

    • Natashas Kitchen
      January 11, 2021

      You’re so nice! Thank you, Barbara! I’m happy you’re enjoying our recipes.

      Reply

  • Maryana
    December 12, 2020

    I still didn’t read whole recepie.It looks nice with photos.Just also want to tell that it is truth that every Ukrainian family makes holubchi.But- not every ” Russian family”- because holubchi is Ukrainian dish. And its name in Ukrainian language- Голубці. (This dish also always was popular in Poland).

    Reply

  • Chrystyna Wowk
    December 3, 2020

    Natasha, love your recipes, especially the (Ukrainian origin ones like the holubchi, borsht etc. ) I have always had problems with the rolling of the holubchi (cabbage rolls) and yet you make it look so simple. Will try soon but as I prefer the vegetarian version(for svyat vechir) and some of my daughters/granddaughters are vegetarin) would appreciate a vegetarian filling idea.
    BTW, everyone loves my kutia (but if you have any tips please post)..

    Reply

  • Raisa Alstodt
    October 22, 2020

    My friends and family favorite dish to eat from Ukraine. For a family of 3 I half the recipe and it makes plenty.

    Reply

    • Natashas Kitchen
      October 22, 2020

      That’s just awesome! Thank you so much for sharing that with me Raisa!

      Reply

    • Chrystyna Wowk
      December 3, 2020

      Love your comment. We are so blessed to have our little wonder Ukrainian cook Natasha. She makes every dish looks so amazing, but seems to love her origin (borsht, varenyky, holubchi, pampushky,) so I congratulate her and her family for bringing Ukrainian traditional food and also amazing every cultural real food to our table. Thank you Raisa (BTW a beautiful name) and thank you Natasha. If you have a cookbook please print. I’ll be the first buyer.

      Reply

  • joe
    September 6, 2020

    I have tried many different recipes for halupki of the Slovak, polish variety. I’ve liked them all. But this recipe i love. Second to none in my opinion. Made them twice. Freeze well. The podliva sauce made with the marinara was awesome. Hands down it’s a winner! Thanks

    Reply

    • Natasha's Kitchen
      September 7, 2020

      Super wonderful feedback. Thank you so much for your good comments, Joe!

      Reply

  • Brittany
    August 23, 2020

    I’ve made them 3 times. First 2 times they came out amazing. 3rd time i only wanted to do a half batch. I used the converter provided. BEWARE it doesn’t adjust all the numbers. Figured it out too late.

    Reply

    • Natasha
      August 24, 2020

      Hi Brittany, it converts the ingredient list but not in the directions. You would have to convert that separately. I wish it did but it doesn’t have that capability currently.

      Reply

  • Olya Dekhtyarova
    June 13, 2020

    Absolutely fabulous. I have often cooked holybtsi, but my method with the cabbage leaves was always awkward. I followed your recipe, added extra grated veggies as I am close to being a vegan AND…excellent results…the best ever.

    Reply

    • Natashas Kitchen
      June 13, 2020

      I’m so glad you enjoyed that Olya! Thank you for that wonderful feedback!

      Reply

  • jack
    April 28, 2020

    Great! So much to say. I enjoyed making these although it took me over four hours. First, congratulations for the website – good and useful fotos and video and the format for printing excellent – just the useful info.
    Now the super would not grind turkey,I had to use ground prepared chicken. I had more filling than cabbage so I filled some bell peppers like baba used to do. Annd I found smetana to complete the meal. Wonderful I subscribed.

    Reply

    • Natashas Kitchen
      April 28, 2020

      I’m so happy you enjoyed that. Thank you for sharing that with us!

      Reply

  • Nathalie
    December 29, 2019

    I love these!! Made them a few times and it’s true they are as good after being frozen.. I grew up eating cabbage rolls but in Canada the recipes are different… I much prefer the UkrainianRussian way. Tried it for the first time over a year ago in Kyiv… I was wondering I saw a few recipes that add lingonberry jam to either the meat filing or the sauce to get a bit of a sour taste… Have you ever tried it? I think it could be good but maybe not traditional…

    Reply

    • Natashas Kitchen
      December 30, 2019

      Hi Nathalie, I have not tried or tested to advise. Sounds interesting!

      Reply

  • Olga
    October 14, 2019

    Mushroom marinara??? No no no. I love all your recipes but this is not traditional.

    Reply

  • Tatiana
    October 12, 2019

    What’s the best way to freeze these? Before or after cooking and how to reheat?

    Reply

    • Natashas Kitchen
      October 12, 2019

      Hi Tatiana, I freeze them cooked – they thaw and reheat on a skillet really well, just freeze them with the juices that are in the pot while baking.

      Reply

  • Wendy
    October 10, 2019

    Please forgive me if you’ve answered this but do you think its best to bake in the sauce and then freeze as a casserole, or freeze them separately without sauce before baking?

    Reply

    • Natashas Kitchen
      October 10, 2019

      Hi Wendy, I freeze them cooked – they thaw and reheat on a skillet really well, just freeze them with the juices that are in the pot while baking.

      Reply

  • Natalie
    September 25, 2019

    No onions in the sauted mixture with carrots?

    Reply

    • Natasha
      September 25, 2019

      Hi Natalie, not this time. 🙂 You can add them if you like, but we didn’t with these.

      Reply

  • Inna
    August 28, 2019

    I had a question. I don’t have a Dutch oven. And was wondering if I could simply cook it on the stove instead of the oven. If I can please let me know on what heat and how long.

    Reply

    • Natasha
      August 28, 2019

      Hi Inna, yes that will work. Please see the section titled “There are 2 ways to Cook these:” just above the recipe card for instructions.

      Reply

  • B
    August 17, 2019

    Am I able to halve this recipe? And if so do I half the cooking time?

    Reply

    • Natashas Kitchen
      August 17, 2019

      Hi Renz, halving the recipe should work, I don’t believe you need to reduce the cooking time by much since the meat needs to cook through. Once the internal temperature of the Golubtsi reaches a safe point, I would let it simmer a little while longer.

      Reply

  • Renee L Tatusko
    July 21, 2019

    I made this Keto friendly by substituting the starchy white rice with cauliflower “rice.” Excellent! I also added some sauteed onions to the meat mixture.

    Reply

    • Natashas Kitchen
      July 21, 2019

      I’m so happy to hear that! Thank you for sharing your great review!

      Reply

  • Sveta
    February 16, 2019

    Hi, do you think i can substitute marinara for regular tomatoe sauce?

    Reply

    • Natasha
      February 16, 2019

      Hi Sveta, you might add some more seasonings to taste – we prefer marinara because it has more flavor than plain tomato sauce, but yes it could work 🙂

      Reply

  • Susan
    December 25, 2018

    I would like to try to make these. I remember a friend of my mother’s making something like this when I was a child. She also made wonderful borscht. My husband won’t eat anything with vinegar or sour cream in it. What do you think about using lemon juice and or wine instead? I can add sour cream just to my plate. Thank you!

    Reply

    • Natashas Kitchen
      December 26, 2018

      I think that could work Susan although I haven’t tried it with wine myself. If you experiment I would love to know how you like that.

      Reply

  • Natasha
    September 19, 2018

    Hi, do you think I could bake these in a casserole dish?

    Reply

    • Natashas Kitchen
      September 20, 2018

      Hi Natasha! I think that would work out fine. Be sure it is tall enough however so the juices don’t run out. I hope this helps 🙂

      Reply

  • Kay
    September 19, 2018

    What size Dutch Oven did you use please?

    Reply

  • Nat
    September 19, 2018

    Amazing recipe! The only one I use:)

    Reply

    • Natashas Kitchen
      September 19, 2018

      I’m so glad you enjoyed it, Nat!

      Reply

  • Catherine Pigula
    September 3, 2018

    To all you galumpki lovers,Natasha’s recipe is the best (how to) recipe) and the most delishes and best flavor Being a Ukrainian myself.I’m not bragging but I know a tasty galumpki when i taste one.Can’t go wrong with this recipe Smachno..

    Reply

    • Natashas Kitchen
      September 3, 2018

      Thank you so much Catherine! We love this recipe also. Thank you for the amazing feedback.

      Reply

  • Neringa
    April 24, 2018

    In my family (Lithuania) we fry them on the pan from both sides first and only then add to boil in sauce 🙂

    Reply

    • Natasha's Kitchen
      April 24, 2018

      Great suggestion, thanks for sharing!

      Reply

  • Lily
    March 29, 2018

    Hi! Love this recipe and have made it multiple times! I plan to make it for Easter but want to make ahead. Today is Thursday and Easter is on Sunday, can i make them and cook them and keep them in fridge until sunday or do I prepare them and keep them raw and bake on sunday? Thanks in advance!

    Reply

    • Natasha
      natashaskitchen
      March 29, 2018

      HI Lily, you could do either way but they reheat really well so if I were doing it, I would probably precook and store in the refrigerator then reheat on a skillet.

      Reply

      • Tanika Golota
        November 20, 2018

        How would you reheat on the skillet?

        Reply

        • Natashas Kitchen
          November 20, 2018

          I would add some oil and cook on low heat, rotating occasionally until heated through.

          Reply

  • Snizhana
    March 27, 2018

    I made these today and they turned out SO delicious! Hubby was impressed for a first timer on holuptsi 😉 thanks to Natasha once again! Also, spot on on the rice cooking. Everything came out perfect and juicy!

    Reply

    • Natasha's Kitchen
      March 28, 2018

      You’re welcome! I’m glad to hear you both enjoy the recipe. Thanks so much for sharing your great review!

      Reply

      • Snizhana
        March 28, 2018

        How long will these be safe to freeze for? I put a portion in the freezer and just wondering what’s the time frame for them to be eaten and not go bad?

        Reply

        • Natasha
          natashaskitchen
          March 29, 2018

          Hi Snizhana, a general rule of thumb is 3 months in a standard freezer and longer in a deep freezer. It will keep better if you make sure to get as much air as possible out of the packaging before freezing.

          Reply

  • Dawn
    March 27, 2018

    Interesting and unusual recipe, carrots aren’t typical and certainly not the high proportion of meat but of course would be delicious and unique. Not sure what part of Ukraine, but everyone I know and all references I’ve seen calls it Holopcis/holopchi. Again interesting recipe and spelling/pronunciation.

    Reply

    • Natasha
      natashaskitchen
      March 27, 2018

      Hi Dawn! It’s interesting how various regions have different naming for dishes and even just different families in the same region. 🙂

      Reply

  • Snizhana
    March 23, 2018

    I plan to make these after I buy the ingredients. Just have questions, did you use 6 whole cups of uncooked rice to cook? Won’t the rice expand and double in size? Or is it 2 whole cups of uncooked rice which when once cooked makes it 6 cups? Since rice expands when cooks. I’ve never cooked rice before so I want to check! Lol

    Reply

    • Natasha
      natashaskitchen
      March 24, 2018

      Hi Snizhana, the recipe calls for 6 cups medium grain cooked white rice. Two cups of uncooked rice will yield 6 cups of cooked 😀

      Reply

      • Snizhana
        March 24, 2018

        I thought so! Just nervous when I cook so need to be sure everytime lol. Thanks! 🙂

        Reply

  • Natalie
    March 14, 2018

    Hi Natasha, Would just ground beef work this for recipe?

    Reply

    • Natasha
      natashaskitchen
      March 14, 2018

      Hi Natalie, yes that would work. 🙂

      Reply

  • Katie
    February 22, 2018

    Just made these on Wednesday for my boyfriend and his family who are Russian 🙂 with 8 kids in the family the food was devoured. His parents LOVED them and even said I make them better then some Russians that they know!

    It’s so nice to be able to make foods for my boyfriend he grew up loving, and also experimenting with foods I never grew up having. Thanks so much for the great recipe. Definitely be making them again.

    Reply

    • Natasha's Kitchen
      February 23, 2018

      I’m glad to hear the recipe is a big hit! Thanks for following and sharing your fantastic review Katie!

      Reply

  • Kristina
    February 16, 2018

    Hi Natasha! How big of a Dutch oven do you use for this recipe? Thank you!

    Reply

    • Natasha
      natashaskitchen
      February 16, 2018

      Hi Kristina, this is a 5 1/2 QT – the size I use for all of my recipes 🙂

      Reply

  • Lana
    February 13, 2018

    hey Natasha, have u tried freezing the cabbage instead of boiling for the leaves to get soft in the beginning of process?

    Reply

    • Natasha
      natashaskitchen
      February 13, 2018

      Hi Lana, I haven’t tried that but it was mentioned by a couple of readers. Is that your usual method?

      Reply

      • Lana
        February 14, 2018

        No, actually i never tried doing that so thats why I was wondering if you know if it works.. Also, with ground chicken meat only would be ok?

        Reply

        • Natasha
          natashaskitchen
          February 14, 2018

          Hi Lana, ground chicken would work also.

          Reply

          • Lana
            February 14, 2018

            Ok, thanks !

          • Natasha's Kitchen
            February 14, 2018

            You’re welcome Lana!

  • Gail Norton
    January 25, 2018

    Hi Natasha
    Can I leave out the carrots cause I am not a carrot fan.For cabbage rolls.

    thanks

    Gail

    Reply

    • Natasha
      natashaskitchen
      January 25, 2018

      Hi Gail, I think that would still work without carrots 🙂

      Reply

  • Tanya
    December 26, 2017

    Natasha what is the best way to freeze golubtsi cooked or uncooked?

    Reply

    • Natasha
      natashaskitchen
      December 26, 2017

      Hi Tanya, I freeze them cooked – they thaw and reheat on a skillet really well, just freeze them with the juices that are in the pot while baking.

      Reply

  • Patti Karpik
    December 21, 2017

    I love making these for my family. I learned a little trick with the cabbage which makes making them much easier. Freeze the cabbage heads. Take out a couple days before you plan to make and cut out the core. No boiling the cabbage and the vein is soft as can be. Saves lots of time not having to work with hot leaves. Patti Karpik

    Reply

    • Natasha's Kitchen
      December 21, 2017

      Thanks for sharing your helpful tips with other readers Patti!

      Reply

  • Judith Rice
    December 20, 2017

    I added a little garlic powder once and my husband loved it.

    Reply

    • Natasha's Kitchen
      December 21, 2017

      Great suggestion Judith! Thanks for sharing!

      Reply

  • Judith Rice
    December 20, 2017

    I have made these for yrs,but planning to try your recipe tomorrow. We love cabbage rolls.mmm Thanks for sharing the recipe. Love your dishes.!

    Reply

    • Natasha's Kitchen
      December 21, 2017

      My pleasure Judith! I hope you enjoy the recipe. Please let me know what you think!

      Reply

  • Eva
    December 5, 2017

    I just made these for my book club (tie-in to Russians in book), but a friend told me a short cut: put the cored cabbages in the freezer, whole, 24-48 hours. When the filling is cooked and cooled enough to handle, take out the cabbages, and plunk them in a pot of hot water from the tap (or just heated, if you’re concerned about minerals). The leaves peel off, soft and ready to fill. No scalded hands!

    Reply

    • Natasha's Kitchen
      December 5, 2017

      Great suggestion Eva! Thanks for sharing your tip with other readers!

      Reply

  • Ruslana
    November 24, 2017

    Hi Natasha i was wondering if i can out them in slow cooker and cook them?

    Reply

    • Natasha
      natashaskitchen
      November 24, 2017

      Hi Ruslana, I have not tried that myself but one reader wrote this review: “I did it in the slow cooker followed the recipe and cooked on low for 6 hours. It was really good.” Let me know how you like it in the slow cooker!

      Reply

  • Natalia
    November 21, 2017

    Hello, and here the onion is not needed ?

    Reply

    • Natasha
      natashaskitchen
      November 21, 2017

      Hi Natalia, I have made them with and without onion and it tastes great both ways 🙂

      Reply

  • Anna
    November 16, 2017

    Hello Natasha! Love all your recipes! I am from Belarus and remember mom making golubci all the time. So, I wanted to make it here. My husband is vegetarian 😱 do you have any ideas what supplement meat with? Thank you!

    Reply

    • Natasha
      natashaskitchen
      November 17, 2017

      Hi Anna, I haven’t really tried making these without meat but I’m thinking the next best thing might be diced mushrooms or even eggplant.

      Reply

      • Leshya
        December 20, 2017

        My mom made them with bulgur wheat especially during fasting seasons like Lent and Advent.

        Reply

  • Pav
    November 12, 2017

    Natasha these are great. After rolling out the golubtsi, I took the leftover stems and torn up leaves, a little bit of meat mixture and some sauce, and heated it all up in a skillet in a sort of leniviye golubtsi style while the main golubtsi were cooking in the oven and treated myself to a chefs snack. Keep up the great posts, you are much appreciated.

    Reply

    • Natasha's Kitchen
      November 13, 2017

      I’m happy to hear you enjoy the recipe Pav! Thanks for following and sharing your great review with other readers!

      Reply

    • Holly
      January 31, 2021

      That’s exactly what I did!! The rice went slightly crispy and was delicious!!!

      Reply

  • Denise
    November 12, 2017

    Hi, I have a daughter-in-law who is from Russia. She is also Muslim. She does not eat Pork Products. Neither do we, being 7th Day Adventist. Is there any other kind of meat, that can be substituted for the PORK? I want to surprise her with this dish, and see what she says.

    Reply

    • Natasha
      natashaskitchen
      November 13, 2017

      Hi Denise, ground turkey or even ground beef would work 🙂

      Reply

  • Mariana Dzus
    October 16, 2017

    Hiya, thanks for the grand recipe, but they’re called “holubtsi”, not ‘golubtsi’. Thanks.

    Reply

    • Inna
      December 19, 2017

      Since it is a russian name not English,I guess either spelling in English will work))) However,if you use translit,it will spell голубцы with g.

      Reply

      • Luba Petrusha
        May 7, 2020

        This is supposed to be a Ukrainian recipe. Голубці in Ukrainian transliterates to “holubtsi.”

        Reply

  • Marisa d'Escoto
    September 12, 2017

    I’m planning on making this recipe next week! And was wondering, how many quarts is your Dutch oven you used?

    Reply

    • Natasha
      natashaskitchen
      September 12, 2017

      Hi Marisa, it is a 5 1/2 Qt Dutch oven.

      Reply

  • vince
    September 11, 2017

    Love the site! I was wondering what the difference was between Goubsti and Halupki? (if any!)

    Reply

    • Natasha
      natashaskitchen
      September 11, 2017

      Hi Vince, I think it is just a difference in how they are named – some Slavic people call them golubtsi and others call them halupki.

      Reply

  • Linka
    August 7, 2017

    In Poland we also make these 🙂 They are called ‘gołąbki” – it means ‘little pigeons’. Does the Ukrainian name mean the same?

    Reply

    • Natasha
      natashaskitchen
      August 7, 2017

      Hi Linka, you know, I’ve never thought of it that way but golub means pigeon! What a funny name for food – I just love how creative and strange it is 😉

      Reply

      • peter charak
        April 24, 2021

        in ukrainian, at least in western ukraine ¨holub¨, not golub means pigeon. holubci means lilltle pigeons. russians tend to change ukrainian ¨h¨ to ¨g¨. i´ve never heard it pronounced with a beginning g. i was born in the ukraine, and am 81 years old. now that my mother is dead i have not had her wonderful holubci and that of our ukrainian friends for a few years. they were always wonderfully delicious. my wife, a truly wonderful cook was born in canada and has never been outside north america. yesterday i craved holubci. i knew that all the large grocery stores carried them, and she said she´d pick up some. she did. they were five times the weight of what i was used to, but worst of all, the rice/meat mix was mushy overcooked. very disappointing. aside from the bizarre russian spelling, your recipe is appealing. i´ll make it myself, but exclude beef as my wife cannot stand it. i might include some bacon and fried onion however. i´d also freeze the cabbage head rather than cook it and save time – i understand the physics of either process. the marinara sauce? my wife would be scandalised. she makes our own.

        ´

        Reply

  • Madera Roja de la Secoya
    July 27, 2017

    It is so disappointing to try to watch your videos on Youtube because of the adverts that you cannot see the process very well.

    Reply

    • Natasha
      natashaskitchen
      July 27, 2017

      Hi Madera, we don’t really control the specific types of ads that YouTube puts up – we definitely have more control of what shows on our site though. I hope your experience was better here 🙂

      Reply

  • Ari
    July 18, 2017

    I’ve been dying to try to making these and researching recipes. I’m a Puerto rican American and my husband is from Lviv, Ukraine. Obviously I have like zero experience with making Ukrainian or Russian foods. You made my biggest fear of separating the leaves and the “fancy” folding part so simple! GREAT VIDEO! I did make some small changes to the filling [ I added fresh parsley and sautéed onions]. But it’s a tasty recipe either way, my husband devoured them, and I froze a bunch for later. Sorry this is so long …I just wanted to say …really appreciate your Ukrainian and Russian recipes [ as does my husband 🙂 ]. THANKS!! [dia-koo-you!!!]

    Reply

    • Natasha's Kitchen
      July 18, 2017

      You’re welcome Ari! I’m happy to hear you both are enjoying the recipes! Thanks for sharing your wonderful review! 🙂

      Reply

  • Marina
    July 16, 2017

    Hi Natash,
    Just made these and they turned out delicious, just like grandma and mom make. Love the flavor and simplicity of this récipe and how it captures the authentic flavor!

    Reply

    • Natasha's Kitchen
      July 17, 2017

      Hello Marina! I’m so glad to hear you love the recipe! Thanks for sharing your excellent review!

      Reply

      • Sasha Brightman
        August 1, 2020

        This golubtsi recipe is fantastic — my parents are Russian and Ukrainian, so I really wanted to get a good recipe. I’ve gone through what seems like hundreds of recipes, and yours is the only one where the cabbage leaves come out soft and with no chewiness or stringiness. Thank you! I also had a quick question about the sour cream. I haven’t had any issues with it, but has curdling ever occurred for you? I want to try making them in a pressure cooker (which I have read in the comments works well), but I know dairy products aren’t always the best to go in them. Would you recommend adding the sour cream after pressure cooking is done, or is it adding flavor to the golubtsi while they are cooking?

        Reply

        • Natashas Kitchen
          August 1, 2020

          Hi Sasha, I’m so happy you enjoyed this recipe! Without testing the sour cream in the cooker myself it is hard to say! If you do experiment please let me know how you like that.

          Reply

  • Maria
    June 28, 2017

    Have you ever made this in a crockpot?

    Reply

    • Natasha
      natashaskitchen
      June 29, 2017

      Hi Maria, I have not tried that myself but one reader wrote this review: “I did it in the slow cooker followed the recipe and cooked on low for 6 hours. It was really good.” Let me know how you like it in the slow cooker!

      Reply

  • Natasha
    June 21, 2017

    Hi Natasha!
    Just to let you know, your site is awesome! Just finished rolling up the golubtsi and thinking of the side dishes that might go well with them for the meal. Can you suggest any side dishes?

    Reply

  • Lidiya
    June 13, 2017

    Did you ever try making them in a pressure cooker ?

    Reply

    • Natasha
      natashaskitchen
      June 13, 2017

      Hi Lidiya, I haven’t tried that personally but one of my readers, Rebecca, writes: “instead of using a dutch oven, I use a pressure cooker. They cook so quickly and are amazing! Even my Russian speaking friends love them! Just an idea for those that are pressed for time.”

      Reply

  • Katie
    June 5, 2017

    Hi Natasha, I have a quick question for you. I plan to make this as a meal this weekend. When I was at the store looking for the mushroom marinara sauce I wasn’t having any luck.. Or I just have bad eyes and didn’t see any. I instead bought a mushroom spaghetti sauce. Do you think this would still work or will it make the taste noticeably different?

    Reply

    • Natasha
      natashaskitchen
      June 5, 2017

      Hi Katie, that should work great. Mushroom marinara and mushroom spaghetti sauce are interchangeable in this recipe. Almost any kind of spaghetti sauce will work here 🙂

      Reply

  • Marimar
    May 10, 2017

    So delicious hmm. I just made it, I made my own tomato sauce

    Reply

    • Natasha's Kitchen
      May 10, 2017

      I’m glad you enjoy the recipe! Thanks for sharing 🙂

      Reply

  • Roseann Fillman Thomas
    May 8, 2017

    Freeze your cabbage. Take out and thaw or run warm water over it. Ready to roll NO boiling!!!!👍☝️❤️

    Reply

    • Natasha
      natashaskitchen
      May 8, 2017

      Hi Roseann, Thank you so much for sharing that great tip!! 🙂

      Reply

    • Jenny
      May 8, 2017

      How does the cabbage taste afterwards? Is it real soft or crunchy when you’re eating the Golubtsi?

      Reply

  • Victoria
    May 4, 2017

    Do you have to pre-heat the oven to 450°F?

    Reply

    • Natasha
      natashaskitchen
      May 4, 2017

      Yes, the oven needs to be preheated. I made a clarification in the post.

      Reply

  • Natasha
    April 27, 2017

    Hi cooking them only 40min on stovetop will they be ready?
    What kind of Dutch oven would you recommend to get? Thank you love your Blog!

    Reply

    • Natasha
      natashaskitchen
      April 27, 2017

      Hi Natasha, 40 minutes covered and simmering the entire time is correct. A standard size Dutch oven should do the job, about a 5 1/2 quart. They have a huge range in price. It really depends on what your budget is. I would encourage you to check out the shop section of our blog where you will see the one I use. I’m so happy you enjoy our recipes and website! Thank you for sharing that with me!

      Reply

  • Shannon
    April 25, 2017

    This is definitely a time-consuming recipe, but SO worth the time! I made these on a Sunday afternoon while my husband napped and they turned out so well! I love recipes that make a lot of food that can then be saved for later meals or lunches to take to work. Thank you so much for sharing this recipe. I will certainly be looking for more.

    Reply

    • Natasha's Kitchen
      April 25, 2017

      My pleasure Shannon! Thanks for sharing you wonderful review!

      Reply

  • Lana
    April 23, 2017

    This recipe is just like my mom’s – love it! Thank you so much, Natasha. Your website and Ukrainian recipes rock!

    Reply

    • Natasha's Kitchen
      April 24, 2017

      You’re welcome Lana! Thanks for following and for sharing your awesome review!! 😀

      Reply

  • Sonia Griffin
    April 13, 2017

    Hate to be Picky—- but they are Holuptsi if you are Ukrainian..
    How ever if you are Russian – as you Must know they become Goluptsi– maybe. I never heard of Goluptsi in Ukraine… Just for accuracy sake.

    Reply

    • Natasha
      natashaskitchen
      April 13, 2017

      Hi Sonia, sometimes I spell it the way people search for it on Google. So if there are 100 searches for Golubtsi and 5 for Holuptsi, I will choose the first spelling so more people can discover the recipe. 🙂

      Reply

      • Fred
        April 29, 2017

        Hi Natasha…

        I agree with Sonia. My Mum and my Grandparents were Ukie. My Grandparents left The Ukraine to Canada the Bolshevik Revolution unfolded. I ALWAYS knew “cabbage rolls” as HOLUPCHY…I know the spelling is not as per but the point is that I never heard of Golubtsi. The same as perogies..which is Polish.. I knew them as PETAHA.

        NONETHELESS….BY ANY NAME THEY ARE FANTASTIC

        Reply

    • Tatyana
      August 9, 2019

      I’m Ukrainian and we called it Golobtsi.

      Reply

  • Irene
    April 5, 2017

    Hi, quick question. Can you make these with brown rice and just turkey without the pork? Thanks

    Reply

    • Natasha
      natashaskitchen
      April 5, 2017

      Hi Irene, I think you could make that work. You might add a little extra butter to the rice to compensate for the leaner turkey so it doesn’t end up on the dry side. I hope you love it!

      Reply

  • Angela Welch
    March 27, 2017

    Can I use apple cider vinegar instead of white? I realized that’s all I have!

    Reply

    • Natasha
      natashaskitchen
      March 27, 2017

      I haven’t tried that but I think it would work. You might add slightly more since white vinegar is a little stronger.

      Reply

  • Valerie
    March 15, 2017

    I just finished making this. I am brushing up on Russian cooking for an event I’m having. This turned out fabulous. Of course, I made it my own with some personal tweaks, as people tend to do. Thank you so much for sharing this. It is a delight to eat! I’m glad to see they freeze well as it made a LOT. 🙂 1st world problem.

    Reply

    • Natasha's Kitchen
      March 15, 2017

      LOL! I’m happy to hear you enjoy the recipe Valerie! 🙂

      Reply

  • Monika
    February 8, 2017

    Rice can be substituted with buckwheat kasha, other kinds of kasha or even potatoes, but I like the classic rice version best. I would like also like to recommend the freezer treatment for cabbage an earlier commentator mentioned – my Polish mother does it, it works like a dream and saves you the hassle of blanching these cabbage leaves.

    Reply

    • Natasha's Kitchen
      February 8, 2017

      Thanks for the tip Monika! 🙂

      Reply

  • Olga
    January 5, 2017

    What is the best way to thaw golubtsi?

    In a microwave? By simmering in a pot?

    Reply

    • Natasha
      natashaskitchen
      January 5, 2017

      Hi Olga, I always thaw them in the refrigerator overnight if they are frozen, otherwise, I would probably put them in the microwave on low heat (the thaw setting).

      Reply

  • Lily
    November 13, 2016

    Can you use texmati rice?

    Reply

    • Natasha
      natashaskitchen
      November 14, 2016

      Texmati rice should work fine, just cook it according the instructions 😀.

      Reply

  • Diana Aleshchenko
    October 23, 2016

    This was so good!!!!!!l! I made them with ground chicken breasts..and put some oil in the meat…. I didn’t have marinara sauce so I added salsa and homemade tomatoe puree instead.. and my little terrier mix loved them too! We ate them with salsa and sour cream on top..and I added 4 more carrots, browned onion plus extra salsa for the layering..I had to cook them about an hour..thank you for your help!!!!!

    Reply

    • Natasha
      natashaskitchen
      October 24, 2016

      You are welcome Diana and nice job utilizing what you had on hand 😁.

      Reply

  • Angelina
    September 30, 2016

    Natasha, I am planing on making these this weekend but was wondering, can I make them in a slow cooker? That would help me out a ton!!! I’m really pressed for time.

    Reply

    • Natasha
      natashaskitchen
      September 30, 2016

      Hi Angelina, I haven’t tried that myself but one of my readers wrote this review: ” I did it in the slow cooker followed the recipe and cooked on low for 6 hours. It was really good.” Let me know how you like it in the slow cooker!

      Reply

  • Katya
    August 31, 2016

    Nashka – You’re taking me back to Odessa to my grandma’s cooking, been here for almost 40 years. I love to cook and all of your recipes that I have tried so far came out great. The stuffed cabbage are in the dutch oven now, cant wait to try them for dinner tonight. SPASEEBA for all your great work and tips. Please keep them coming.

    Reply

    • Natasha
      natashaskitchen
      August 31, 2016

      Katya, Na Zdorovya 😀. That is the best when food brings back some good memories. That’s so great!

      Reply

  • Gayle
    July 27, 2016

    Awesome! I made these for our Russian themed lunch. They were a huge hit with everyone. Very taste and easy to make. Thanks for the fantastic recipe Natasha.

    Reply

    • Natasha
      natashaskitchen
      July 27, 2016

      I’m so happy you enjoyed it! I love that you did a Russian themed lunch. How fun!! Thank you for the wonderful review 🙂

      Reply

  • Marina
    May 24, 2016

    These look so delicious. I will be making them tomorrow. I was really surprised that there is no onion in the recipe though.. (Us onion loving Russian/Ukrainians) 😄

    Reply

    • Natasha
      natashaskitchen
      May 25, 2016

      Thank you Marina 😄. These taste really good even without onion, you must give them a try.

      Reply

      • Marina
        May 25, 2016

        I had to come back and let you know these are so good!! My family loved them. The marinara really gives it that depth in flavor and the Dutch oven is a must! Thank you for an awesome recipe.

        Reply

        • Natasha
          natashaskitchen
          May 26, 2016

          I’m so happy your family loved the recipe :). Thank you so much for reporting back and sharing your great review! 🙂

          Reply

  • Simon
    May 21, 2016

    Which Mrs Dash do you personally use

    Reply

  • Lily
    April 29, 2016

    What if I’m using a slow cooker? How long should I cook them for?

    Reply

    • Natasha
      natashaskitchen
      April 29, 2016

      Hi Lily, I haven’t tried that myself but one of my readers wrote this review: ” I did it in the slow cooker followed the recipe and cooked on low for 6 hours. It was really good.” Let me know how you like it in the slow cooker! 🙂

      Reply

  • Yelena
    April 28, 2016

    Hi Natasha, could I substitute the mushroom marinara with any other tomato product I have on hand such as stewed canned tomatoes? 😞

    Reply

    • Natasha
      natashaskitchen
      April 29, 2016

      Hi Yelena, you could try to blend them and make your own marinara but that would require more ingredients to get the same depth of flavor that a seasoned marinara will provide.

      Reply

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