Finnish Cabbage Casserole (gluten free, cabbage, rice, beef in skillet)

Finnish Cabbage Casserole

  • Author: Katja from Savory Lotus
  • Prep Time: 20 min
  • Cook Time: 50 min
  • Total Time: 1 hour 10 minutes
  • Yield: 4-6 servings 1x



  • 1/2 cup white rice (like this OR like this)
  • 3 tbsp butter, ghee, or coconut oil – divided
  • 1 pound ground beef (or ground turkey or ground bison)
  • 1 small onion, chopped
  • 1 tsp salt, divided
  • one cabbage (about 2 pounds), sliced and chopped
  • 1 tbsp maple syrup (like this)
  • pepper, to taste
  • 1 and 3/4 cup good quality broth (beef, chicken, or veggie)


  1. Cook rice as you usually would.  Set aside.
  2. Preheat oven to 400’F.  Grease a 12 inch cast iron skillet and set aside. (*see note)
  3. Melt 1 tablespoon fat of choice in a skillet and add beef, onions and 1/2 teaspoon of salt.  Cook until meat is completely browned.
  4. In another large pot, melt remaining 2 tablespoon of fat over medium heat.  Add chopped cabbage and remaining 1/2 teaspoon of salt. Cook covered until soft, stirring occasionally – about 8-10 minutes.  Turn down heat if cabbage is sticking to pot or add a tablespoon of water.
  5. Once cabbage is done, turn off heat and add cooked rice, meat/onion mixture, optional maple syrup, and pepper to taste. Mix to combine. Scrape into prepared skillet or baking dish. Pour broth over the casserole.
  6. Bake for 45-55 minutes, until golden brown on top.  (Casserole will cook faster in a cast iron skillet.  Longer cook time is for regular baking dish.) Cover with foil if top is getting overly brown.


  • I’m a big fan of cooking in cast iron.  The casserole will cook a bit faster in cast iron and will stay warm on the dinner table. Any regular baking dish will do though.  You can use a 9×9 square, 9×11 rectangle or a large oval baking dish.