Slow-cooker Red Cabbage

Red cabbage is one of those items on a Christmas dinner that brings things alive and is a great contrast to the richness of goose fat potatoes and thick gravy. This version was shared by Saoirse (writer of our newsletter and email champion) in our Christmas recipe book last year. It is really festive & easy to make.

If you don’t have a slow cooker, use a casserole dish or heavy-bottomed saucepan and simmer away for 2-3 hours. You may need to add a little water if it starts looking dry. This recipe is based on one by Cassie Best, originally published on BBC Good Food.


Approx. 1kg red cabbage

2 onions

4 apples, peeled, cored and chopped

zest of 2 clementines

2 tsp ground mixed spice (or your choice of spices- cinnamon, coriander, ginger…)

2-3 star anise

100g brown sugar

3 tbsp apple cider vinegar

200 ml dry cider or apple juice (if using apple juice reduce sugar to about 60g)

25 butter or vegan alternative


Remove the tough outer leaves of the cabbage, cut it into quarters, and slice thinly.

Arrange a layer of the cabbage on the bottom of your slow cooker or casserole dish, then top with some of the onions, apples, zest, mixed spice, brown sugar and spices.

Top these in turn with another layer of cabbage, and then another layer of apples and onions and so on, until all the ingredients are used.

Pour the vinegar and juice or cider over the rest, and dot the butter on top. Cover and cook on low for 4-5 hours, or, if using a casserole dish, over a low heat for 2-3 hours or until tender. Serve with Christmas dinner

Keeps for about three days in the fridge, or a month frozen.