How To Core a Cabbage


Cutting the core out of a cabbage is pretty easy. But you can also make it hard on yourself by trying to do it the same way you’d cut the stem out of a tomato. Cabbages are too big and too firm to do that. Here’s the easy way.

Cut the stem off the cabbage head.


Cut in half through the stem …


… then in half again through the stem.


Now you’ve got a wedge with the core at one end.


Slice the core out.


And that’s it.


  1. Christian R. Conrad says:

    But why would you want to do that?!? Is there anything wrong with the core?

    I think it tastes just as well as the rest; perhaps even better. So why slice out the best part?

  2. You know, that’s an excellent question. The short answer is, “Because that’s how I’ve always done it.”

    I think for cole slaw or sauerkraut I’d still cut it out, but for Corned Beef and Cabbage I’ll probably leave it in next time.

  3. Christian R. Conrad says:

    Hey, wait — I know[*] why you would want to do that!

    Only the *interior* of the stem is fully yummy cabbagey goodness; around that, there is this tough hard stringy shell (rind, bark, whatever) that you definitely want to peel off. Fortunately, that’s easy with your quartering method: Cut out the yummy center first and save it, and then the stringy hard bit and throw it away.

    If you slice the center of the stem (and then perhaps cut the slices in narrower strips. Or just grate the whole thing, perhaps), I’m convinced it’ll be great in sauerkraut or coleslaw, too.

    And, hey, you know the same thing — the whole “the stem is the best part” thing, that is — goes for cauliflower, too? Probably goes for all plants of that family… Just look at the extremes: For broccoli, with its yuck-inducingly watery flowers, the stem can’t help but be better. And the yummiest of them all, the kohlrabi, consists of nothing *but* stem!

    [*]: This occured to me shortly after we’d posted the above, but for some technical reason I couldn’t post it right then. I forget whether it was my PC that went nuts, or my ‘Net connection, or perhaps something else altogether (like my family life… :-) .

  4. I'm trying to figure out how to core a cabbage, yet keep the leaves pretty much intact for cabbage rolls. This should be an interesting experiment in dexterity (and finger counting after I've done it.)

    • Stalkee I have found a thin 3/4 in.piece of aluminum exhaust pipe 4 to 6 in. long and a wood block and mallet thru the center to a cutting board on the bottom works well

  5. Stalkee, I would cut the cabbage in half and cook it, then cut the core out once it's soft and manageable.

  6. Wren Truesongs says:

    La la posting on exceedingly old posts again!

    How do I wash the thing, though? Do I just rinse it off like an apple? I want to cut it into strips like for coleslaw (Though it’s actually for okonomiyaki). Should I do all the cutting and then wash the strips?

  7. Wren, cabbage and lettuce are like onions: They grow from the inside out. So as long as the outer layers are still tight there won’t be any dirt inside. Just peel off a few layers and the rest will be clean.

    This doesn’t apply to all greens, particularly loose-leaf lettuce and spinach. Those have to be washed.

  8. Thanks! This made cutting up the cabbage for the St. Patty’s Day corned beef and cabbage dinner really easy.


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