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Lazy Golabki Recipe (Polish Unstuffed Cabbage Rolls)

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Cover the meatballs with more cabbage.
Cover the meatballs with more cabbage

A cross between a Polish lasagna and a traditional golumpki dish, this lazy golabki recipe is perfect for an easy yet filling Polish dinner!

If you’re one of those Poles who grew up eating Polish golumpkis, but sometimes wanted a bit more sauce, you’ll love the lazy golabki recipe. Made with the same ingredients as the traditional one, these are more like unstuffed cabbage rolls. You can also think of them as a variation of Polish lasagna.  

What’s The  Difference Between Traditional Golumpkis And This Lazy Golumpki Recipe?

Traditional gołąbki are made by cooking the mince and the rice and then rolling the mince-cabbage mixture in cabbage rolls. These stuffed cabbage rolls are cooked in leftover cabbage water till soft and then served with mushroom sauce or tomato sauce. 

On the other hand, the galumpkis casserole is made by turning the mince and rice mixture into oval-shaped meatballs. These meatballs are placed in a casserole between two layers of chopped cabbage, covered with tomato ketchup and juice, and baked till ready. 

The lazy stuffed cabbage recipe really tasty and easier to make than traditional gołąbki!

Plus, it tastes so good! I literally don’t have a photo of the final dish (after cooking) because it was so delicious my family ate it all in one go…

Chopped cabbage, rice, and minced meat.
Ingredients for the lazy golabki: Chopped cabbage, rice, and minced meat
Polish Meatballs and cabbage.
Lazy golumpki: Polish meatballs and cabbage
Chopped cabbage.
Steamed chopped cabbage
Cover the meatballs with more cabbage.
Cover the meatballs with more cabbage
Top golabki with tomato sauce and bake.
Top the golabki with tomato sauce and bake!

Tips For Making Polish Golumpki Casserole

  • Any kind of cabbage will work for this recipe. If you use young cabbage or savoy cabbage, you don’t need to boil it first.
  • This lazy golumpki recipe is gluten-free!
  • Add water to the base of your baking dish so that it doesn’t burn. 
  • You can cook the lazy golumpki on the stovetop too!
  • If you want the lazy stuffed cabbage recipe to be tangier, add a few teaspoons of vinegar with the tomato sauce.
  • Top with chopped parsley or cilantro before serving. 
  • Like the thought of adding cheese with your unstuffed cabbage rolls? You might also like the Polish lasagna.
  • Want it more traditional? Try this recipe for Polish golumpki recipe.
  • Want to make a soup that tastes like gołabki? Try my recipe for Polish stuffed cabbage soup.

FAQs About Lazy Stuffed Cabbage Recipe

Do I Have To Use Pork Mince?

You may use poultry (chicken, turkey) instead of pork but you need to add some 1-2 tbsps of any kind of fat (oil or butter) to get the right consistency. If you don’t add fat, the taste will be the same but these Polish lazy golumpki may fall apart after cooking.

Do I Have To Use A Tomato Sauce?

No, if you prefer, you can use a mushroom sauce instead of tomato sauce

Is It Possible To Make Galumpkis Vegan Or Vegetarian?

You can make gołabki vegan by replacing the pork mince with veggies, buckwheat, or millet.

I Don’t Eat Carbs. What Can I Use Instead Of Rice?

You can make keto stuffed cabbage rolls (follow the link for the recipe) by replacing rice with cauliflower.

What Can I Serve With This Polish Golumpki Recipe?

Lazy golabki is a filling and wholesome dish on its own. But you can serve it with some crunchy toasted bread!, creamy carrot and pea salad, or dill pickles.

How Long Can I Store Leftover Galumpkis Casserole?

If there is leftover galumpki casserole, it can be covered with a lid or a layer of plastic wrap or aluminum foil and stored in the refrigerator for 4 to 5 days. It can also be stored in the freezer in an airtight container for 3 to 4 months. Reheat before serving. 


Yield: 15 servings

Lazy Golabki Recipe

Polish Meatballs and cabbage.

A cross between a Polish lasagna and a traditional golumpki dish, this lazy golabki recipe is perfect for an easy yet filling Polish dinner!

Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 1 hour
Total Time 1 hour 20 minutes


  • 21 oz (600g) of ground pork
  • 1 cup of uncooked rice
  • 21 oz (600g) of white cabbage
  • 1 tbsp of salt
  • 1 tsp of black pepper
  • ½ cup of water
  • 4 cups of tomato juice
  • 1 heaped tbsp of tomato paste


  1. Cook the rice until soft.
  2. Preheat the oven to 356°F (180°C).
  3. Remove the core from the cabbage and put it inside the boiling hot salty water. Keep it there for about 3 minutes.
  4. Drain and chop the cabbage in the way you like.
  5. Mix the rice with meat, salt, and black pepper.
  6. Pour 2 cups of water on the bottom of the oven dish (it will prevent the meat to stick to the bottom).
  7. Place half of the chopped cabbage on the bottom of the oven dish with a lid.
  8. Form the oval shape balls from the meat-rice filling and place them onto the cabbage.
  9. Put the second half of the chopped cabbage on top.
  10. Mix tomato juice with tomato paste and pour the mixture onto the lazy golabki.
  11. Cover the dish with the lid and bake for one hour. Alternatively, you may cook it on the stove. Serve hot.


    1. If you use young cabbage or savoy cabbage, you don't need to boil it first.

Nutrition Information:



Serving Size:


Amount Per Serving: Calories: 462Total Fat: 25gSaturated Fat: 9gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 13gCholesterol: 112mgSodium: 734mgCarbohydrates: 25gFiber: 4gSugar: 8gProtein: 35g

These data are indicative and calculated by Nutritionix

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Did you like this Polish lazy golabki recipe? Let us know in the comments below!

5 Responses

  1. This recipe Needs green pepper and onion. ( Sauté pepper and onion together. Add to tomato sauce,!

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