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Barley and pork cabbage rolls

Cabbage rolls are a staple in many Eastern European cuisines. We decided to create this favourite food by adding pearl barley, a whole grain that carries a nutty and chewy texture that compliments the flavourful pork and onion filling. Try our barley and pork cabbage rolls today!

Don’t know how to cook pearl barley? Check out our How to cook grains guide for more information!

Yield: 12 cabbage rolls

Prep time: 25 minutes

Cooking Time: 75-90 minutes

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  • 1 head green cabbage
  • 1 cup pearl barley
  • 3 cups of water
  • 1 lb ground pork (or ground turkey)
  • 2 small onions diced
  • 3 cloves garlic minced
  • ½ teaspoon dill weed
  • 3 tbsp fresh parsley
  • Salt & pepper to taste
  • 1 can diced tomatoes (14 oz) undrained
  • 1 egg
  • ⅓ cup tomato sauce


  • 1 can tomato sauce
  • ⅓ cup tomato sauce
  • 1 tbsp brown sugar
  • 1 tbsp lemon juice
  • 1 tsp Worcestershire sauce


  1. Place barley, water in a saucepan and bring to boil. Reduce to low heat and let simmer for approximately 20 – 25 minutes. Barley is cooked when it is soft and chewy.
  2. Cut approximately 1/4″ off the bottom of the cabbage head and place the whole head of cabbage in boiling water. Boil about 2 minutes. Remove from heat and let cool. Peel off the softened leaves.
  3. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  4. Brown pork and onion in a saucepan. Add garlic, dill weed, parsley. Remove from heat and add to a large mixing bowl.
  5. Add barley, diced tomatoes, 1/3 cup of tomato, salt & pepper to mixing bowl. Stir in egg.
  6. Now onto the sauce: mix the other 1/3 tomato sauce and tomato soup in a separate bowl. Spread a very thin layer of the tomato soup and sauce mixture into a cooking pan.
  7. Lay removed cabbage leaves on a flat surface and add barley and pork filling to the centre of the leaf- add just enough to fill the leaf full when rolled up, but not enough to have it fall out the sides or prevent the leaf from being rolled.
  8. Fold in sides towards the centre of lead and roll the cabbage up. Place seam side down in the pan.
  9. Repeat with all leaves.
  10. Pour sauce over the cabbage and cover tightly with foil. Bake 75-90 minutes. Let cool 15 minutes before serving.