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"I Forgot To Be Your Lover" Southern Fried Cabbage {Recipe}

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Comforting pan of Southern fried cabbage. Cabbage is fried in smoky bacon fat infused with caramelized onions and peppers for a perfect Sunday dinner side.

Fried cabbage and bacon on a white plate

You’ll want to make a big batch of this cause it’s hard to just eat a small side of it.


Cabbage in my opinion is the forgotten soul food staple. Greens, sweet potatoes, and black-eyed peas get all the attention, but cabbage actually is that vegetable!


  • Cabbage
  • Yellow Onion
  • Bell Peppers
  • Garlic Cloves
  • Smoked Bacon
  • Paprika
  • Cayenne
  • Black Pepper
  • Sea Salt


Mix the cayenne, paprika, black pepper, and salt on in small bowl and set aside.

Dice the bacon into small pieces. Fry on medium heat in a large skillet. Remove the bacon cubes and drain on a paper towel line plate.

Saute onions in the grease fro 3 minutes. Lower heat and add garlic cloves cooking for another minute or two. Stir as much as needed. Season with a portion of the seasoning mix.

Add the cabbage and give it a few girl swirls to mix in well and make sure all the cabbage strips gets a healthy coating of the seasoned vegetables and oil. Cook for 2 minutes.

Add the diced peppers and mix in well.

Add more seasoning, mix well, cover and cook at a simmer for 8-10 minutes. 

Remove lid and add in the cooked bacon. Mix and allow to cook for a minute or two. Season to taste and serve. Hot buttermilk biscuits are great with this dish.

Fried cabbage and bacon on a white plate


Cut the cabbage into strips vs. big chunks. Not only do smaller strips cook faster, they also more easily absorb all the flavor.

Use a mix of bell pepper types. Trim-Colors add to appearance.

Choose a quality bacon, preferably a smoky one. This adds to the flavor quite a bit. I also prefer thicker cuts. Not only does this add to the texture of the dish, but also its heartiness can elevate this to a main dish.

Season as you go at each step.


make this recipe

If you make this Southern Fried Cabbage recipe, please come back and leave me a comment below with your feedback. Definitely take a photo of the dish and be sure to tag #foodfidelity so that I can see them. 

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Fried cabbage and bacon on a white plate

Southern Fried Cabbage

Comforting pan of fried cabbage. Cabbage is fried in smoky bacon fat infused with caramelized onions and peppers for a perfect Sunday dinner side.
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: 25 minutes
Course: Side Dish
Cuisine: Soul Food, southern
Servings: 6 people
Calories: 123kcal
Author: Marwin Brown


  • 1 small Cabbage head cored and thinly chopped
  • 5 slices thick-cut smoked Bacon diced
  • 1 small yellow Onion diced
  • 4 cloves Garlic diced
  • 2 teaspoon Paprika
  • ½ teaspoon Cayenne
  • 1 teaspoon Black Pepper
  • 1 teaspoon Kosher Salt
  • 1 medium red bell pepper


  • Heat large skillet on medium heat. Add bacon and fry.
  • Remove bacon and drain on paper towel-lined plate.
  • Add onions to grease and saute 3-4 minutes. Add garlic and cook another minute. Season with about a quarter of the spices.
  • Add cabbage and mix well making sure all the cabbage pieces get coated in the seasoned bacon fat. Add half of the remaining spices then mix well.
  • Add peppers to the pan, mix into the cabbage, then cover with lid, and cook for 10-15 minutes.
  • Remove lid and add bacon back as well as any additional seasoning. Serve


YouTube video


Calories: 123kcal | Carbohydrates: 11g | Protein: 4g | Fat: 8g | Saturated Fat: 3g | Cholesterol: 12mg | Sodium: 533mg | Potassium: 323mg | Fiber: 4g | Sugar: 5g | Vitamin A: 1178IU | Vitamin C: 70mg | Calcium: 56mg | Iron: 1mg
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Recipe Rating

Jessica Knott

Sunday 8th of November 2020

Living in New Orleans, cabbage is everywhere. The hubs grew up on it and it's still something I'm learning to cook. Of course, it's all about the process and spices and I can't argue with bacon AND garlic. He'll love if I surprise him with this for the holidays.

Chef Dennis

Sunday 8th of November 2020

Wow! That cabbage looks ah-mazingly delicious! This recipe is a keeper!

Loreto and Nicoletta Nardelli

Sunday 8th of November 2020

Love the tip on cutting the cabbage into strips instead of chunks! This is a wonderful recipe! So delicious, for sure it won't be forgotten in our house!


Sunday 8th of November 2020

This is a perfect side dish or a meal on its own. I really enjoy all your recipes, that are different and original. This fried cabbage recipe is a real hit. We all love it. I will make it again. Thanks so much Marwin.

EA Stewart

Saturday 7th of November 2020

What a flavorful recipe! I usually add raw cabbage to salads, but love your fried version with all the spices and bacon. So delicious!